My original plan was to do my final report on these goals around the same time I did my final report for my 101 in 1001 list, but since I don’t anticipate that too much will change between now and then as far as these goals, I figure I may as well give you the update now! (Especially since I know you’re just DYING of suspense over there, ha ha!)
The recent sale of our house had the greatest effect on the rest of the goals below, as you’ll see. We don’t know what our next housing situation will be like (or even what our financial goals will be for the next few months, other than just saving up as much as we can), but I’ve enjoyed doing this financial series so much that I do intend to do some kind of financial goals series in the future, when we’ve figured our next steps out.
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How We Track Our Financial Progress
For basic budgeting and household account maintenance, I use Mint, which I’ve used and loved for years. Recently, I’ve started using Personal Capital as well, which has many of the same features as Mint, but I like using it instead of Mint for tracking our debt reduction and investments, as I find their tools are a bit better for that. Both are free. (And if you sign up for a free Personal Capital account, we can both earn $20 if you go through my referral link!)
For a clearer snapshot of our financial picture over time, I started tracking our net worth via Google Spreadsheet in August 2018. It’s been a total game changer, and I highly recommend you read the post I did on the why and how of that process here.
The Big Five
Complete Our Emergency Fund ($10,000)
This has felt like the eterni-goal, so I can’t even tell you how amazing it feels to be able to check this off! (It *almost* makes me want to buy and sell houses every 3 years, if this is what would happen every time! Almost…)
- Initial Amount: $2,934
- Goal Amount: $10,000
- (Amount at Checkpoint #1: $2,000)
- (Amount at Checkpoint #2: $2,155)
- (Amount at Checkpoint #3: $4,014)
- Current Amount: $10,000
- Percentage Saved: 100%
- Progress Made this Quarter: $5,986 (59.86%)
Pay Off Our Minivan
I know we didn’t even have this car loan for a year (we bought our minivan last September), but boy did I hate making that payment every month! When you’ve been debt-free your whole marriage and then all of a sudden you have to start making payments, you’re pretty motivated to knock that debt out as fast as humanly possible!
Of course, we never would have been able to pay this off so soon had we not sold our house, but we *did* still make the decision to use a big chunk of change from that sale to pay this off, rather than throw all that money into our next house.
I think we made the right decision for sure—
This way, our only debt will be our mortgage when we get into a house again, which will definitely give us some peace of mind if we end up having to pay more than we want to for our next place (which looks more and more likely as this housing market just doesn’t seem to want to cool down!).
- Initial Amount of Loan: $11,050
- (Amount Left On Loan After Checkpoint #3: $4,981)
- Current Amount Left on Loan: $0
- Percentage Reached: 100%
- Progress Made This Quarter: $4,981 (45.08%)
Save Up Cash For Our Hawaii Trip
As we mentioned in the last financial updates post, this one has been done for awhile, but obviously we’re having to put a hold on ANY travel until the current conditions change.
We still want to use this money for a trip to Hawaii for sure, but we’ve also talked about going to Montreal for a 10-year anniversary trip next year, so maybe we’ll use it on that. We’ll see!
Pay $3000 Extra on Mortgage (N/A)
This one’s no longer applicable, as we just sold our house at the end of July! When we end up buying our next house (whenever that will be), we’ll definitely set another goal to keep us motivated to pay it down faster than our loan term, but we’ll worry about that when we get to it again. For now, we’re just enjoying our mortgage-free life for the next couple months as we’re staying with family!
Buy a New Laptop and a Full-Frame Camera
As much as I WANTED to use some of the money we got from selling our house to purchase the camera, I figured we’d better be a tad more responsible with it :).
(Of course, I could argue that the full-frame camera is an investment because I do some client photography about a dozen times a year, but until I try to really GROW my photography business a lot, I can definitely make do with the nice camera I already own.)
For now, my rough plan is that with any paid shoots I do from hereon out, I’ll put about half into savings for that camera so that it won’t be a dream that continually gets pushed to the forever future and so that it actually ends up happening.
And that’s all, folks! Now tell me—have you ever sold a house? What did you end up doing with the money from the sale—pay off debt? Put it all towards your next down payment? I’m super curious, so please share below!
P. S. If one of your financial goals is to save money on groceries, a great resource is The Healthy Meal Planning Bundle, which includes 11 digital cookbooks, 15 meal plans, 9 courses, and more, all of which will help make it easy for you go feed your family nutritiously and affordably. In case you’re unfamiliar with how bundles work, they are a collection of high-quality resources pooled from various contributors and offered for a very limited time at one low price. (If you were to individually purchase all the resources it includes, you’d be spending in the thousands!) This meal planning bundle is only good until Friday 8/21, so if you’re interested, don’t wait too long to purchase yours, or you’ll miss it!