Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Money Update

It's been a long couple of weeks in our lives. Family issues, snow, lights going out for weeks on end. Expanding the garden, getting ready for spring. And then there are the money issues.

First we were all set to re-fi the house, rolling the van loan into the Mortgage in turn saving us over 300 a month. BUTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT apparently the housing market has tanked and our appraisal came in so very low. And I mean low. So in turn we are doing a streamline, basically a loan without an appraisal it's a loan for those, who have made all their house payments, who will continue to make them, but want to capture the low rates on the market now.

In turn we can not roll the van loan into the Mortgage. So doing this will save only about 100 a month, giving us a little breathing room every month paying that Mortgage payment. We still have a van payment every month. So now we have a new goal of paying off the van this year.

Taxes are done and it's just enough to pay the school what we owe for the year and calling it good. I am Thankful for that, but things have changed from last year and we are not seeing what we got the year before. Which sucks because we could use that money, but yet Grateful we can pay the school, so I'm not complaining.

So I now need to sit down and re-work everything about our budget. Come Friday we start to use our new pre-paid debit cards. Should be interesting since I have never used one, let alone a credit card. I think I will like not having to go to the bank 2-4 times a week. Saving me from dealing with a bank I really don't like, and gas money driving there. It's a trial, nothing set in stone. So we will see what happens there.

So our current money goals are...

Paying off the van currently at 4169.42
Increase money going into mutual fund
Open a Roth IRA for retirement
Fund the garden expansion
Get a few dollars saved. 

Well the power was out for a week, and I was stuck here in the freezing cold I dove into my new book, (well new to me)(Thanks Goodwill) Dave Ramsey The Total Money Makeover. I have to say we have been through hell and back with money and medical bills and doing everything we can some months to pay the Mortgage. There were times we had no TV or lights (during the summer)(camping at home) to pay the Mortgage. But I worked 60 plus hours a week to get those medical bills paid off. I really didn't learn too much reading this book. But I do highly recommend everyone reading this book. I do understand his steps. I also highly believe his course needs to be taught in schools. I think high school kids can get a LOT out of Dave Ramsey. We were pretty much on a good track. We do a weekly budget, I keep track of every penny. But I believe in teaching kids early. How many kids are not taught about money before leaving High School and then you get into College, and then a job and marriage and you know NOTHING about money. That is what sinks you. I know NOTHING. I was taught NOTHING.

Kids need to be taught the value of a dollar. They need to be taught about not going into debt and paying cash and saving. They need to be taught this and that before going into the world. And sadly I don't think anyone is teaching kids anything about money and so in turn failing in this department. I know my parents failed, and I am refusing to fail my kids.

 So we will pay off the van, and work on Mortgage and work on retirement. I'm not trying to worry about College. That will come another day. I think it's more important to pay down the house. What a dream that would be to pay that off. It would be nice to retire one day so we need to work on that as well. Hitting small goals, but keeping an eye on the big picture.

On that note, I showed Ethan a math problem in the Dave Ramsey book. Basically you take x amount of money over a working career so every month for 40 years and 12 % interest you would have x amount to retire on. That number was freaking big. He saw that number and was like OMG. So we had a chat about saving allowance and how we will match his savings and add it to his account every month. He has a mutual fund opened. Of course Tucker heard everything and must of course beat Ethan at this. Ethan has a goal to be at 500 by the end of the year, he has like 200 and something. Tucker has a goal of 600 he is currently at 300 and something. Trying hard to out do his brother. We will see what happens here. Nothing like Brotherly Love right?


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