I started out 2017 behind in bills, meaning I didn’t have enough money at the end of the month to pay all the bills that were due the next month.
I’m ending 2017 all caught up and feeling pretty positive about 2018! I came across this article recently. I had forgotten all about it and was amused as I read over what goals I had planned out for the year.
I thought I’d go over them with you.
- Bills caught up approximately by 4/2017
- Achieved! I’m not sure about the date, but I did eventually become able to pay all of next month’s bills on the last pay day of the previous month.
- Send extra payment of $175 a month to Navient, focusing on smallest loans first
- Fail! – I never did end up increasing those payments like I wanted to. I think instead I decided to concentrate on the debt snowball, focusing on one thing at a time rather than spreading all our extra money among many small things. I think that was the right choice! Now I send extra to Navient and I’m finally getting somewhere with this loan.
- 2018 Goal – Continue to pay $25-$50 a week from side hustle through the year
- Increase Christmas Club and Vacation Club savings accounts from $5/week to $20/week.
- Fail! I had a hard time letting go of that money, and now I know that it’s silly to put so much a month in to something that isn’t THAT important. That was an extra $30 a week that went in to savings and eventually to bills and debt instead.
- 2018 Goal – Continue $5/week automatic transfer to Vacation and Christmas Club savings account. Cash flow any vacations and gifts.
- Personal Loan sent to 0% interest 18 months balance transfer 4/2017
- Fail! Do you know I had still not gotten an offer to do that darned balance transfer?! I’m still waiting! At that point it would have cost $101 (3% fee), saved $336.60 in interest, and moved the loan maturation date from 8/2019 to 9/2018.
- 2018 Goal – Pay off by 3/2018 by paying all extra money at the end of the month to it.
- CP Visa paid in full 8/2017
- Fail! We were sending $100/week to this card in an effort to pay it off, but we ended up just swiping away the $100/week again on miscellaneous stuff. We made a change in 2017 and started sending this card $100/month instead and trying to use it less, but it still stays maxed out.
- 2018 Goal – I haven’t figured the bills out far enough in advance but I know that after the Personal Loan is paid off in March, this CP Visa will be next on the chopping block. I estimate it will be paid off July or August 2018.
- HHR paid in full by 10/2017
- Achieved! If I remember correctly we actually paid it off earlier than this.
- Save $250/mo. for vehicle to replace Equinox lease in 3/2018
- Fail! – Like with the Christmas and Vacation savings accounts listed above, I decided our money would be better spent tackling high interest debt like the Personal loan and CP Visa.
- 2018 Goal – Purchase a used car with less than 100,000 miles, 5-8 years old, and preferably around $6,000. We are preapproved for a used auto loan from our credit union of up to $20,000 at 3.49%. I verified that there isn’t a minimum required amount to finance after I was briefly star struck by a $2,995 VW Beetle convertible. 3.49% beats 9.5% (the rate of our CP Visa and Personal Loan) so our money is better spent going toward those debts rather than avoiding financing a used car.
I then went over some ideas what to do next in 2017 as I didn’t have a clear plan. Here they are:
- Send extra money to mortgage to bring balance below $56,160 and getting rid of PMI payment of $54.54/mo.
- Fail! I didn’t do anything above sending the regular extra I do every moth.
- 2018 Goal – This is still an idea I like. I have been toying with the idea of adding it to my debt snowball. At the time of writing this post, I would have to pay $5,499 to do that. Adding this to my debt snowball would be about #3 on the list. I would put it after the Personal Loan and CP Visa, but before my student loans and before any debts with interest rates under 4%.
- Send extra money to Navient which has interest rates up to 6.55%
- Achieved! A work in progress.
- 2018 Goal – Continue working with Shipt and paying $25-50 a week on highest interest, lowest balance accounts first. Start throwing extra money at the end of the month toward these debts after Personal Loan, CP Visa, and maybe the PMI are paid in full.
- Send extra money to retirement account which would earn 8-10% over next 29+ years
- Fail! I now know this is a bad idea as long as I have debts that I am paying over 4% interest on. I will focus extra money on those debts first.
- See a financial planner
- Fail! I still want to do this!
- 2018 Goal – Set an appointment with The Financial Gym the next time we go to NYC.
That’s it for Financial Goals for 2017. It’s amazing how my mindset changed over the year, and how much I learned listening to personal finance podcasts and reading personal finance books all year.
Now let’s see what 2017 Me had to say about other areas of my life.
- Install new interior doors upstairs 4/2017
- Achieved! We did install new interior doors, we just haven’t sanded and painted them.
- 2018 Goal – Sand and paint the doors.
- Purchase high efficiency furnace and central AC with 0% 24 month special financing through Home Depot
- Achieved! Kind of. We only did the furnace, which allowed us to install a Wi-Fi thermostat which is really fun to set schedules and turn down when we are away from home. However we haven’t been saving any money on our gas bill at all so that’s disappointing.
- 2018 Goal – Purchase high efficiency central AC with 0% 24 month special financing through Home Depot. I KNOW this one will save us money because our AC died a couple years ago. One of my coworkers happened to have a motor that fit my fan blade even though it ran at a higher horse power than our old motor. We used it last year and our electricity bills were ungodly.
That’s the end of the 2017 Goals Review!
Let’s go over all the 2018 Goals so they will be easy to review next December.
- Pay $25-50 a week to Navient earned from Shipt working in this order:
- Navient #9
- Navient #1
- Navient #2
- Cash flow any vacations and gifts
- Send end of the month money to Personal Loan beginning 1/2018. Pay in full in or around 3/2018
- Send end of the month money to CP Visa beginning on or around 4/2018. Pay in full in or around 7/2018
- Send end of the month money to mortgage to get rid of PMI payment of $54.54/month beginning in or around 8/2018.
- Will continue to send the same mortgage payment, so additional $54.54/month will go toward principal. This will drastically reduce the term of our mortgage.
- Send end of the month money to Navient concentrating on highest interest rates and lowest balances beginning in or around 8/2018.
- Turn in Equinox 3/2018 and purchase used car
- 2008 – 2012 manufacture year
- Less than 100,000 miles
- Between $6,000 – $8,000
- Purchase high efficiency central AC in or around 4/2018 using Home Depot 0% 24 month special financing
- Small scale kitchen remodel with tax refund money
- Garbage Disposal
>1 Year Goals
- Eliminate any debt with interest rates higher than 4%
- Minimum payments on any debt with interest rates lower than 4%
- End of month money divided in half and sent to individual Vanguard Target Date Retirement Funds
I feel really good about these 2018 and further goals! I had a lot of fun reviewing the goals I made just 2 months after I started my debt free journey.
I can’t wait to see what else I learn as I continue to educate myself through reading personal finance books, listening to personal finance and personal development podcasts, and sharing my journey with the debt free community on Instagram.
Thanks for reading and following my journey! You can follow me on Instagram @networthnegative where I share inspirational quotes from the personal finance books that I read and post daily updates on debt elimination and more. I hope to see you there!
Thanks for reading!