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1. Establish a budget in whatever format is useful to you. It should be portable enough for you to access when out shopping. I put my budget on a 4x6 index card with amounts for each category. When I exhaust a category, I line through it and write the date.
2. Pay yourself (put money into savings and retirement) and pay all bills before buying anything else.
3. Limit most purchases to what is needed.
4. Before doing regular grocery shopping, do an inventory of all cabinets, fridge, and freezer.
5. Use cash to pay for small purchases, such as snacks from a convenience store, etc.
6. Use any remaining cash to pay towards weekly grocery tab. Pay an equal amount towards savings or debt, if you have any debt.
7. Use grocery store loyalty card to get discounts. Pay an amount equal to the coupon savings to savings or debt, if you have any debt.
I will update this as I think of more things to write.
I have been having a hard time writing 2019. It does not seem like it should be 2019. Anyway, when I wrote my last entry with my 2019 Financial Plan, I put 2018. ha-ha! I have fixed it now.
1) I have kept emergency savings well over target figure for nearly a year. Woo-Hoo!
2) I have dutifully contributed to savings every payday.
3) I am close to having enough to buy a good used car.
4) I have saved money with coupons and grocery store sales, enabling me to put more into savings and pay more to credit cards.
5) The mortgage is significantly reduced.
6) I have been able to eat good, organic food for much of the year through growing some and buying some. This enables me to stay healthier.
7) I paid cash to replace a dishwasher this year. Update: I forgot that I also replaced a tv and computer monitor with cash this year.
8) I have been recommended for promotion. If that goes through, I will get a significant bump in pay.
9) I paid cash to attend a work related conference and make a presentation. I received a $100.00 award for my presentation. (WooHoo!!!) I was also reimbursed in full for my costs in the trip. I deposited my "loot" into my professional savings account for my next trip.
1) I was not able to buy a good used car to replaced my current car this year. Good used cars under 100K miles that are affordable are hard to find. I think this will be resolved when I have added more funds from the next 4 paychecks and get my tax refund.
Hi, everyone. I am doing a little maintenance on my blog today. Apparently, with a couple of my pages, I may have deleted the data, but the links still show up on the main page despite all attempts to delete them. Also, whenever I update anything lately, it seems to taking a lot of effort to do so, like saving it then at least two page refreshes to actually see it. Does anyone out there have any ideas about this?
Sorry it has been so long since I last posted. I have had so many things going on. Here's just a short list:
1) My nearly 20 year old car is in bad need of being replaced. I have spent several hundred dollars in the last 6 months just to keep it running.
2) The total amount of money I have gathered to replace the car is $2151.52.
3) I have some snowflakes arriving soon, $5.00 from epoll and $3.00 from Pinecone. That will add another $8.00 to the car fund.
4) The credit card #1 is down to $5753.94. Last March, when we had to replace the hvac, cc #1 went from approximately $2960 to about $7700 over night.
This last year has been REALLY hard, but I have gotten through that and I will get through this, too!
I decided to take a cue from Dido and find out my money scripts. What do we have to lose, as we learn more about ourselves, right? Here are my money scripts. I am very surprised, as I did not expect to do as well as this.
To find out about your money scripts, take this test:
Money Avoidance = 2.00
Your score on the money avoidance scale suggests that you do not exhibit significant money avoidance beliefs. In fact, research has shown that your score on this scale is similar to those who have been identified as wealthier, wiser, and more highly educated.
Money avoiders believe that money is bad or that they do not deserve it. They believe that wealthy people are greedy or corrupt, and that there is virtue in living with less money. Because of their negative associations with money and wealth, money avoiders may sabotage their financial success and/or give money away in an unconscious effort to have as little as possible. Research has shown that money avoidance scripts can be associated with ignoring bank statements, increased risk of overspending, enabling others financially, financial dependence, hoarding, and having difficulty sticking to a budget.
Money Worship = 3.14
Your money worship score suggests that you do not endorse significant levels of money worship beliefs.
At their core, money worshipers are convinced that the key to happiness and the solution to all of their problems is to have more money. At the same time, they believe that one can never have enough money. Individuals who score high on the in the area of money worship are more likely to have lower income, lower net worth, and credit card debt. They are also more likely to spend compulsively, hoard possessions, and put work ahead of family. They may give money to others even though they can’t afford it and are more likely to be financially dependent on others.
Money Status = 1.43
Your score on the money status scale shows that you do not hold money status beliefs.
Money status seekers see net-worth and self-worth as synonymous. They may pretend to have more money than they do, and as a result are at risk of overspending. They often believe that if they live a virtuous life, the universe will take care of their financial needs. They may have grown up in a household that prioritized the financial aspects of social standing. Research has shown that people with money status beliefs are at greater risk of overspending, gambling excessively, financial dependence on others, and hiding expenditures from their spouses.
*Money Vigilance = 4.00
Your money vigilance score indicates that you endorse money vigilance beliefs.
The money vigilant are alert, watchful, and concerned about their financial welfare. They believe it is important to save and for people to work for their money and not be given financial handouts. Research has found that higher money vigilance scores are positively associated with higher levels of financial health. The money vigilant are less likely to buy on credit. They also have a tendency to be somewhat anxious about their financial futures, inspiring them to save. While they have a tendency to be secretive about their financial status with others, they are less likely to keep financial secrets from their partners. While money vigilance encourages saving and frugality, excessive wariness or anxiety could keep someone from enjoying the benefits and sense of security that money can provide.
I got another Pinecone deposit today, so I sent that $3.00 directly to cc #1. My husband also made his payment to cc #1 today.
Prior 52 Week Challenge Balance: $598.44
Pinecone Deposit $3.00
DH's payment to cc #1 $66.70
New 52 Week Challenge Balance: $668.14
I just got some great news yesterday and I thought I would tell you all about it as a caution to be aware and ask questions. I recently had some lab work done. I have health insurance that comes with a "lab card" that is supposed to insure, in most cases, that I don't have to pay a bill. There were a large number of tests run, but I was still surprised to get a bill of $107.00. I called the lab testing company to inquire if they had a list of tests that are covered so that I would know in the future if a certain test was run, I would have to pay for it. The person said they do not have a list, but asked what the problem was. So, I told her about the lab work and my lab card, which she asked me to send to her, which I did. One clue is that the name of insurance company listed on the bill was not mine. That was forwarded to billing and they fixed it straight away and said they had gotten incorrect billing information from the collection facility. Anyway, this is just a note to all of you that if you get a bill that does not seem right, ask questions. Woo-Hoo! I feel fantastic.
We have been waiting for awhile for a contractor to get back to us about 2 jobs we need him to do, installing a doorball and an outdoor light. We already had $300.00 set aside for paying for it. We got a curveball today when we realized our A/C was not working right and so had an A/C contractor come in to repair it. The repair cost $251.18 out of the $300.00 we had set aside. Arrgh!
I have written the same exact blog post two times and two times it has disappeared. Anyone know what's up?
Hi, everyone. It's all boring here. I got paid again. The only really exciting things are that 1) my raise finally came in and 2) we are having the rest of our windows measured on Monday for replacement.
I have lost count of my Challenge amount, so I won't count that here. Here are my numbers. Because my raise got delayed due to a contract negotiation issue, I got extra catch up money in my pay today.
$20.00 Deposit to slush fund
$40.00 Deposit to regular savings
$40.00 Deposit to car account
$40.00 Deposit to house account
$40.00 Deposit to professional account
$20.00 Deposit to aaa/tax savings account
$ 6.00 Deposit to escrow account
I will be making some payments to the cc's. I just have not decided how much yet. I am also getting an oil change this weekend and buying a new mop. That may not sound like a splurge to most, but I have needed one for awhile now and had no funds to spare. I have been putting so much into paying down debt and putting into savings.
We refi-ed our house last month, so we had no payment due for October. I am using the "extra" to 1) pay for the deposit on a new window and 2) pay down credit card debt. Here are the numbers so far on that.
$225.00 Set Aside for window deposit
$ 40.00 Payment to cc #1
$ 40.00 Payment to cc #2
$ 59.95 Set Aside for an Annual Expense
$ 82.46 Extra padding for checking account
That leaves $119.20 (I previouly typed $179.15. I have no idea where I got that number) for me to figure out what to do with. I think I will throw it all at cc #2.
Hi, everybody. My dh and I bought a house in 2010. Our mortgage was sold to BOA before the ink was even dry on the documents. We knew it was possible that it could be sold to another bank, but did not know it could happen right away and did not know how to opt out by not signing a certain document. Anyway, with all the bad stuff going on at BOA with them foreclosing on properties that should not be foreclosed on, we have been extra careful with making payments in person, getting a receipt with a time/date stamp on it, and keeping all paperwork organized. We don't want to be out of town one day and come home to our stuff on the front lawn and pets missing. Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when we found out that the local BOA branch is becoming Arvest, but our mortgage is staying BOA. The closest other branch that is not going to become a BOA branch any time soon that we know of is over an hour away. We intentionally don't do automatic payment or any electronic payments with them. We don't trust them and want to deal with real people, in person, about our mortgage. Credit cards don't really matter from my point of view, but if someone doesn't do their job and records a payment wrong, you could lose your house due to no fault of your own. Our only choice, other than driving over an hour every month to the nearest branch, is to mail in payments. I feel really unsure about this, any way you look at it. We could look into refinancing with one of two credit unions, but do not have the money for closing costs, inspections, etc. Does mailing in payments to BOA work well? Do you have problems with BOA mortgage services?