4.10.2011

financial housekeeping part 2

It's that time of year again when taxes and finance are on the mind. Today we sat down and evaluated exactly where our money goes each month and what our goals are.
When we divide out how much we spend per month on home repairs and renovations it's like a second mortgage payment. We joke that we could have just spend more for an updated house and saved time and energy. I think after 2 or 3 more years it will be pretty well updated though with the mortgage payment of a smaller house so I still think we did it the right way. We're on super saver mode to get the kitchen and bathroom knocked out since they are failing on us quickly. Once those are done we can ease up a bit and do other projects at a slower pace.
I know finances can be stressful for a lot of people and they procrastinate going over them but I truly find it relaxing. Even when we find we ate out too much one month or had an unexpected expense, it still feels a lot better to be aware of what's going on so we can make adjustments for the next month.
I made a similar post last year so I wanted to follow up with something related. I think it's really important to be honest with yourself about what you spend your money on. I found it really helpful to take some of our larger expenses and divide them by 12 to see what they would be as a monthly expense. Sometimes "one time" expenses can add up to quite a bit over the course of a year.
I also found it helpful to look at our loans in terms of what they will cost if we pay them off as scheduled. If you already have an emergency fund, it might make more sense to direct extra money towards a loan with a higher interest rate. Our loans are all higher interest rates than we make in our accounts at the credit union. With online payments it can get tricky to make sure your payment is applied to principle so read the instructions carefully!
This has been your annual reminder that money is not your enemy and you should befriend and nurture it so it will work for you not against you. =)

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