Thursday, November 19, 2015

November Update

So it was pointed out to me that I was long overdue for update. It is a nice thing though, when updates are few and far between not because of stressful setbacks... but because things are good, and there's just not as much to update about!

As of this summer, we are officially OUT of credit card debt. Zero credit card debt. (as she pauses and waits for the cheers and adulation to die down) We have one card - just one - that we continue to use for groceries, gas, and daily expenses, and faithfully pay it completely off every paycheck. It makes life (and keeping up with the checkbook) so much easier to use a card for everything, and, bonus, we rack up Amazon points like crazy! Having no standing credit card debt is the. best. feeling. ever.  

Current debt includes:

My car - $19,000 Which sounds like a lot, but it's worth much more than that, so that's a plus. We pay more than the minimum every month. AND, barring any unforeseen circumstances like last time (RIP Sparkle), I fully intend to keep driving it long after it is paid off. It's a Toyota, so it'll run for 17 trillion miles.  I love this car.

Our primary mortgage - $156,000 Since we were able to refinance, we are no longer upside down on our mortgage, and will be in a good position to sell (if that's what we choose to do) in a couple of a years.

Our secondary mortgage - $31,000.  This is currently our targeted debt.  We increased our monthly payments recently so that it will be completely paid off before a balloon payment is due.

And... that's it!  My one concern for next year, money-wise, is that we have an expensive roof repair coming up (is there any other kind?) that we can't put off much longer.   But it's one of those inevitable joys of home ownership that just come, no matter how hard you try to will them away.  So I know that there's zero point in stressing about it.

Otherwise, we're feeling good about our financial plans in general, have saved up for Christmas, and are looking forward and ahead to the new year.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

2015: Numbers, Goals, and Baggage

A long overdue update:

As of February, 2015.... our house is worth more than we owe, so hurray for that! We took out a car loan about six months ago (for the first in quite awhile) after my car was totaled in an accident, but it's a payment we can make easily every month. And the car too is worth more than we owe on it.

We are down to a balance on ONE credit card, and it's a small balance. Well, at the time of this writing, it's around 5K... which I realize isn't a small balance, but it feels small when you've dealt with balances across several cards in the tens of thousands each.

Interestingly, my biggest and most increasingly frequent money frustration at the moment is a mental one.  It seems that over the years, as we've made more money, paid down more debt, become comfortable financially, it's brought to light all the issues I developed surrounding money when we didn't have any.  Unlike so many of the people around us, we don't talk about how much money we make.  We don't aspire to "keep up with the Joneses."  We live simply, and don't feel any sort of need to upgrade our houses or cars or lifestyles just because we can.  And because of it, we're looked down upon, and we're treated as if we're less-than in some way.  It's condescending and it's frustrating and it's exhausting as all hell.    I recognize that it's my issue though, and beyond making different choices about what kind of energy we allow in our lives, it has nothing to do with anyone else.

Money baggage aside, all is well.  We just increased our payment on our second mortgage so it will be paid off before the balloon payment is due.  Next step is to pay off the last of the credit cards.