Sunday, February 23, 2014

Less stuff, fewer loans challenge 1.5 months in

Back in January I decided that all of the "surprise" money that showed up should (if possible), go towards paying off our remaining loans and then building our emergency fund. Here's how we've done so far.

Emergency fund
goal: end of year
Kitchen Loan (1.99%)
due in Oct 2014 
Student Loan (2.65%)
goal: July 2015
Starting balance: $0
Goal: $20,000
As of 2/19/14: $0

$0 saved so far

0% filled
$0 $20,000

Starting balance 1/1: $10,000.00
Balance on 2/20/14: $5,376.99

$4623.01 paid so far

46.2% paid off
$0 $10,000

Starting balance 1/1: $8,127.00
Balance on 1/14/14: $7862.99

$624.01 paid so far

I only started keeping track of payments on Jan 10th. But since January 10th we've paid off $3842.73 worth of our loans! My goal was to put $3,000 a month to this task. Only 1 month and 10 days have passed and we've well passed the $3,000 mark. We're doing well. Our Kitchen Loan has $5,376.99 left. At our current rate we should have this paid off in two months. 

Unfortunately something that may put a snag in our ability to pay this debt off in two months is the fact that said kitchen is getting finished next week. We're temporarily holding on to extra money so that we're sure we have enough to finish the job. But after that I also should be getting a promotion at work and that should make up for any extra money that has to go to the kitchen. 

Afterwards we'll be focusing on the emergency fund. We'll do this by putting $1000 from my biweekly paycheck directly into that account. We'll start this on May 9th. That way there are 20 pay periods left in the year. Then we can apply all of our 'surprise' money to my student loan, and whatever is left of the kitchen loan if anything. 

My student loan has become less of a priority. The stock market is likely to do well in the next year and I would still prefer to invest some of my money. I may extend my goal of paying off the student loan until July 2015 and make a separate stock trading account where I put any of my personal 'surprise' money and then invest it. That will keep me from spending it.  I've gotten very good at investing and have figured out how to prevent most losses. I'm pretty sure that I can manage a return decently above the 2.65% in interest that my loan charges me.

That's the plan! What are your thoughts? 


  1. Wow! I'm impressed. So I'd love to hear your tips for investing, because I totally suck at it!

    1. sounds like a good idea for a future post! Pretty much every intelligent thing I know about investing amounts to this: 1.) only invest what you know you can afford to lose 2.) put the money in a stock and leave it there forever and ever amen 3.) pick stock in companies that make things that lots of people you know use and preferably need. Medical supplies and internet service providers probably aren't going away any time soon. But hold just about anything for long enough and it'll go up.

  2. WOOHOO! This is awesome :)

    I also applaud you for figuring our the whole stock market thing. I am *so* not a gambler...and the thought that I could lose money is enough to keep me far, far away ;)

    1. thanks! but heh, i've figured out the stock market thing in a ridiculously good bull market. Talk to me again when the S&P500 has dropped by 50% and see how I'm doing then....I totally understand the fear, though. I had to get a powerful lesson in "less is more" from my grandmother before I learned to invest. She bought $100 in comcast stock for me when I was 5. I still have it and it's worth $3,000 now. Tiny amounts over long periods of time can go a long way and you can avoid risking much. But of course, it's always most important to stick to your comfort zone, which you've already figured out!


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