Now that I’ve achieved being consumer debt free I’ve adjusted my goals.
I’m fortunate to live at home, pay a minimal amount for rent and have access to vehicles. This has allowed me to commit 51% of my income to savings. As soon as I get my cheque, I transfer that money to my savings account and I forget about it. My plans are to buy a vehicle by the end of the year and because I’ve mapped out my savings I know I’m going to have a good amount of money to buy wheels. Earlier I was debating on whether that savings should also go to my student loans which would drastically cut down my loans. But I’ve seen the practicality of owning a car. Especially when my plan is to purchase used, and to pay for the whole thing up front. No financing or monthly payments, I want to drive that car off the lot and know I own it completely, preferably with a years insurance paid and winter tires all ready to go. After that I can reduce my savings amounts and increase my student loan payments.
Paying Down My Student Debt
Since beginning my job I’ve been able to pay my calculated student loan payment without a problem. Looking at the budget I decided to up my payments by 40%. So instead of paying $392 every month I’ve committed to putting $1000 on my loans every month. That’s 22% of my monthly income allowing me to shorten my pay period which means I’m paying less interest which is worth it.
The Other 26%
The rest of my cashflow goes to bills which basically includes my phone & rent. I no longer have a credit card ‘bill’ per se. Whenever I use my credit card I immediately transfer money from my debit to cover it. I mainly use my credit card for the AirMiles and since I only spend money on things I can afford I’m able to keep my balance at 0 and completely avoid interest charges.
One thing I need to sort out is my retirement savings plan. How much, where, how often? I need to get something going in that area sooner rather than later.
Some Other Things
I recently dropped $290 on new glasses which is so worth it. I picked them out and it was satisfying to pay for them in full. I’ve had my current glasses for a little over 7 years. My prescription has shown to be quite consistent over the years so I haven’t had a need to change my frames (and until now I haven’t had the money). So I’m quite excited to be able to change my look and update my glasses. I’ll make sure to add a pic of me with my new specs!
I have 2 trips planned this year. July I’m going to Haida Gwaii. My return trip ferry pass has been purchased, our campsite has been booked, we’re sitting pretty right now. I’m also planning to go to Toronto and visit some dear friends in October. I chose October because it’s a 3 paycheque month and I want to take advantage of not dipping into my planned savings/loan repayment. I’m excited because I’ll be able to pay for my return ticket with my vacation pay. And with the 3 paycheque month it doesn’t throw off my budgeting.
To be honest, I love budgeting, I like staying on track and watching my savings grow and watching my debt be reduced. I also like knowing I can take care of myself. Being independent is big for me. This is the first time in a long time I’ve been financially independent to the point where I do not have to choose between paying one bill vs another.
What’s the most difficult financial aspect right now? I can map out my savings and stick to it like a pro. It’s the buying of random stuff that gets me. I like my space uncluttered. I try not to purchase stuff that I won’t use or will eventually toss. But every once in a while a girl needs a new shade of Essie nail polish or a workout top yknow? I think it’s key to be aware of that. I don’t hold myself back from everything all the time but I try to be conscious of what I’m spending my money on because money is time and I spend enough of it at work, my money better be going to something fantastic.
What are my short term goals? To purchase a vehicle in full and pay down my student loans.
What are my long term goals? Completely pay off my student loans, have a good chunk of money in savings and to have a good retirement savings plan.
What do you find most challenging about finances?
What are some of your goals? Long or short term?
All that being said, cheers to smart finances and taking control of your money!