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New Savings Goals

July 29th, 2011 at 09:46 am

Iíve been really thinking about my savings in a new way recently. Before, I just put about $600 per month away in addition to two paychecks and my tax returns so far this year. Now Iíve evaluated my total savings to see where I really should be putting my money. It gives me new focus and a defined commitment of how I should be saving, why Iím saving and how much to commit each month.

Summary of Savings

EF $9046.13
Car (new) $300.00
Vacation $2283.38
HSA $1035.95

I will be able to commit just one more installment of $300 to my emergency fund next month. This is due to a furnace I bought last year so my landlord gave me a yearís worth of rent free to pay back the interest I lost but it was a better profit than if it had stayed in there so Iím not complaining. I live with a roommate so my half of the rent is $250. Then it will be $50 a month to the EF for the rest of the year until my debt is paid. I get an ďextraĒ paycheck in October since I budget myself on two biweekly paychecks a month and that month will be three. The other 50% will go on my credit cards.

Iíve decided to take the car money that Iíve been putting away without thinking and commit to applying it only to my car replacement/repair fund. I paid off this car last year and ever since Iíve been sticking the $300 away without a thought as to its true purpose. I added it to my emergency fund but Iím too lazy to do the true math to separate it out. I had some car repairs that totaled approximately $1k which threw off what I had really saved to the penny including interest. Instead Iíll start from square one.

My vacation fund is for my trip to Orlando next week. I really hope I donít have to use this fund. So far Iíve been paying for it out of take home pay. Whatever Iím able to spare will be left there for now. I am planning a surprise trip to Georgia to surprise my pregnant cousin on her baby shower. The ticket is going to be cheap so Iím expecting it to come out of take home pay and I wonít have to pay for a hotel or food since I can stay with my family. Iíll be adding to it monthly for next yearís trips but if it gets out of hand Iíll transfer any excess to the EF.

I have a high deductible health plan for now. I donít know if thatís going to change since my employer may be looking into another health care plan. Iím currently committing $50 per month since Iím now using it but I plan to contribute at least $100 a month when my debt is paid. My goal is to get this fund to $1500 just to avoid the $3.95 monthly maintenance fee.

I also save my spare dollars and change when I get a twenty out of the ATM. I rarely carry cash on me and when I do I tend to spend it just because itís there. As soon as I can I try to deposit the loose money into an old jug Iíve re-purposed as my spare cash and change bank. I try to empty it out a few times a year to add to my debt so for now I wonít count this money toward savings as long as itís going for debt repayment.

Stay tuned for my debt payoff strategy!