the one where i talk about money.11:01 AM
I'm trying to be more creative with this here blog because I find myself falling into the same routine/boiler-plate posts that frankly, are even boring me so I can't imagine how you feel.
Many times over, I start drafting a post but then abandon it part way through because I think it'll likely be of little interest to anyone so I went back and thought to myself, what do I like reading about? What keeps me going back to certain blogs? -- real life, real stories, personal interests, fitness, financial shizz, parenting thoughts...basically, I like reading about people's everyday lives so I decided to give you a dose of what normally occupies my mind:
Not going to lie, finances are at the top of my list each month. Ok, every day is more like it. I have a running total in my head and also recorded in my planner of all bills that are scheduled for payment, upcoming payments, how much we'll have in our checking account once bill X, Y, Z has been withdrawn, how much more we can add to our savings based on our expenses, if my investments are doing alright etc.
Earlier this week, I got a bunch of bills...seems like the aftermath of Christmas is now bumping up with reality and the credit card bills are rolling in. We're also in the midst of planning (and booking) for 2017 vacations so throw that in with holiday spending and let's just say my freak-out meter tipped to red when I saw the balances.
Oh, did I forget to mention that our interim property tax bill also came in for the first half of 2017?
After the shock of how much money will be flying out the door next month, I went to work on the books.
This is where my asian genes excel. I may not be good with math but I'm
Like when our water filter and AC broke on the same weekend - those repairs cost us just over $2300 and our savings account saved the day. Although I hated parting with that money, it served its purpose and we weren't any worse for wear.
The rule is investments first. We pay ourselves before anyone else. When it's payday (we both get paid bi-weekly), money is immediately allocated into our portfolio - retirement, Kayla's education, Kayla's TFSA (all automatic withdrawals). I'm a huge planner when it comes to retirement because I want to be able to enjoy my golden years so when it comes to savings, that gets priority.
Once investments are taken care of, then it's our savings account. The immediate amount that goes into savings is 20% of each pay. I refuse to leave a large sum of money in our checking account because banks give you jack shit in interest so fuck them; I prefer to have my money work as much as possible. For that, I use high interest savings accounts - they pay higher interest rates than every bank I know and the beauty of these accounts is I can open as many as I want and transfer money between each of these accounts or directly to my checking account with zero fees.
I have several accounts going: our Main savings, Kayla's Braces fund (I know she's going to need braces when she's older and braces are hella expensive), our Vacation fund and most recently - the Door fund. We're planning on installing a new porch/front door this spring so I started that fund just this month and we've estimated it's going to be around $2500-$3000 so I'm targeting about $4000 in savings.
Money that isn't spent from these accounts are re-routed back into our main savings or added to the vacation fund.
Finally, expenses - you know, the usual things that suck joy out of life: mortgage, utilities, groceries, credit cards etc. The bare minimum to cover everything stays in our checking account. All payments are post-dated at least by 2 days before the due date to avoid late fees and for some strange reason, I check these post-dated payments at least twice a week to make sure that the dates are right. I have, in the past, made a mistake and set the date wrong and then got charged late fees which makes me rage even harder than shipping fees.