Monthly Financial Check-up
Remember how I said last month that we’d decided to wait to replace our van for awhile in order to put that money towards our children’s educational savings instead? Well, I’m not so sure that was the most brilliant decision ever.
For starters, I was heading out with all the children one day a few weeks ago and noticed that one of the van tires was low. Upon investigation, we ended up finding out there was a screw in the van tire wall (don’t ask me where that came from!). So we couldn’t just patch the tire, we had to replace the whole tire.
Then, a few days later, I was driving home and all of a sudden there was a very loud buzzing noise coming from the back of the van. Come to find out, the rear blower motor went out. Considering that it’s been over 100 degrees almost every day for weeks, we decided we’d better fix it ASAP.
Next, we had to get extensive front suspension work done on the van, which was quite costly. Finally, it seems like our transmission might be going out.
So maybe my idea to hang onto the van for a few more years wasn’t so bright? But the decision has been made, so we’ve decided to just fix the issues and hope that it extends the life of the van for at least another year or two–if not more.
I’m grateful that we have an emergency fund so we can cover these types of unexpected expenses and I’m grateful that we live on a strict budget and try to plan for the unexpected. This makes situations like flat tires, rear blower motors and transmissions going out a lot less stressful. As Amy said, “Being intentional with our money turns emergencies into inconveniences.”
We were able to set aside some money for Silas’ educational savings account, but it’s not as funded as we’d hoped to have it at this point. Oh well, moving forward in the right direction is always better than standing still or going backwards!
Here’s our current goals list:
Our Family’s Financial Goals for the Summer of 2010 through December 2011
1. Significantly increase our giving to needs in our community and around the world.This is an ongoing goal, so we’re keeping it uncrossed off from the list.
2. Pay cash for a replacement washer and dryer for our very used set.
3. Pay cash for a replacement for Old Blue Van.
4. Pay cash for a couch for our basement family room.
5. Pay cash for bunk beds for the girls.
6. Fully fund our IRAs.
7. Bump up our retirement savings to 10% of our income.
8. Fund our children’s educational savings. Kathrynne and Kaitlynn’s are done, now we’re working on Silas’.
9. Double our Emergency Fund Savings (Instead of having around six month’s worth of expenses set aside, we’re planning to set aside a year’s worth of expenses.)
10. Save 40% towards our real estate investing goal.
We’d love to hear about your recent financial goals and successes! You can post about it on your blog and leave your link in the comments. Or, just share about your progress/goals in the comments. Let’s all keep each other accountable to be better stewards of our resources!
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