Saturday, March 19, 2011

An Update on #17

I couldn't be more proud for Stephen and I. It's amazing to see our checking, savings, and emergency savings all healthy again. In such a short time, our emergency savings is back in the double digits and we're only $3,000 away from reaching our goal. When we reach that magic number we can stop putting every penny into the account and begin focusing on our investing.

We were trying to do both, and then remembered that Dave Ramsey said this:
1. Have $1000 in your savings- finally we do, after some ups and downs
2. Pay off all debt except your house - Thankfully we could skip this step. Although I am still paying off Christmas and now a large car repair.
3. Save for 3-6 months of expenses in your emergency savings account.
4. Invest

See, we were trying to invest and build our emergency savings at the same time. It just wasn't working out. So we decided to take all the money that was just sitting in our stock account and move it to our emergency fund. BAM! That much closer to our goal! Then we took our tax refund and put that towards our goal and BAM! That much closer!

It really is so exciting to see how we've come full circ
le...and it's all our own money. I'd say about 2.5 years ago, our emergency savings was in the double digits. But, almost half of that was our home buyer credit, that we'd have to pay back. Fortunately half of that went to our lovely new bathroom.
And since then, I've been unemployed working some temp jobs here and there. It was rough, but I'm really glad for most of that time I was at least bringing in a measly weekly paycheck.

And we also spent nearly $10,000+ on our trip to South Africa.
Now, here we are not even a year later back from our trip and we're so close to reaching all our financial goals. It's hard to put it into words just how proud of us I am. Every time I look at our trip to SA, I get all warm and fuzzy and think "wow...we actually did it. We actually went there."

Here are some ways that we saved money:
1. Cut out cable
2. Program your thermostat
3. Turn the water pressure down when taking a shower to use less water - this one is hard for me and I hardly ever remember
4. Use coupons
5. Plan meals so you don't eat out as much and have to go to the store alot
6. Look at your budget and see exactly how much money you spend on things, see where you can cut back, then with that money you can save...
7. Set up a direct transfer to your savings account- probably the best thing we did
8. Don't buy anything new for awhile
9. Don't get discouraged.

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