Clearing Debt Update!

We got our tax return back, and I immediately followed the plan I had laid out for paying down debt. If I let the money sit for very long, it’s so easy to talk myself into small purchases that fritter the money away.

So… first we paid off the head gasket! That’s one monthly payment that I can cut out of my budget and give a breath of relief.

HUZZAH! I had SO much fun coloring this chart.

We threw some into next years taxes because our estimate was lower than what our CPA suggested we set aside. We pay in quarterly, and I’d rather pay in too much than have to scramble later.

Then we through a bunch towards my smallest student loan!

I had a ton of fun coloring these as well. We’re just under $600 short of what we need to clear it!

And then there’s the stimulus check that’s pending in my bank account for deposit Wednesday.

I know there’s been so much talk about stimulating the economy, often implying that we should run out and buy stuff we want (but don’t need), and I’m sorry, but that’s not me.

My break down:

  1. $200 for four pairs of pants. I am down to one pair of pants that fit. I have capris that fit, but it’s a little nippy for that right now.
  2. $600 to pay off and close out the student loan listed above. This started out as a $12,000 loan, so I’m happy it will be going away! That’s $80 less a month going towards debt.
  3. $500 for my parents roof. They had a roofer disaster, and now they’re paying someone else to finish the roof, and they BARELY have enough if NOTHING goes wrong. You can find info here on their GoFundMe. It’s been a hot mess.
  4. $600 to put a monthly payment into each of my ‘sinking’ funds. These are things like yearly expenses, new tires, car registrations, vet visits and associate costs, publishing costs, and costs to maintain this website. I estimate how much I’ll need, put in a due date, and You Need a Budget (the website I use) estimates how much I need to put in monthly. I do all of my budgeting, account tracking, balancing, and forecasting in here, and I keep a notebook too just in case.
  5. $200 in gardening costs for dirt, peat moss, and compost to set up three raised beds and procure help.
  6. $200 for my brother’s birthday. I won’t spend it all, but he relies heavily on holidays and birthdays to pay items he can’t on his fixed income. So, I’ll go through his ‘need it’ list and order some items.
  7. SLUSH! $200! This is money that I set aside for ‘surprise!’ purchases. Things like buying my husband’s new medication cost $90 WITH insurance and I hadn’t put enough in the budget so we weren’t repaired. Also small items like getting a snack after one of our upcoming work meetings and stuff like that. It will also occasionally go for books when my monthly book budget gets hit by multiple releases at once.

SO. That’s the plan! Crossing my fingers things go as I laid them out.

What are you planning to do with your stimulus money? Inquiring minds want to know!

2 thoughts on “Clearing Debt Update!

  1. You are so responsible, Heather. I really admire your money savvyness. I’m proud of you. That Tetris one looks awesome! Love it. You can budget, take care of your family and Tundra, and do all things. I’m only a tiny bit jealous over here.

    Love ya,

    P.S. I haven’t read your material yet, but I plan to soon.

    1. Thank you! I still make a lot of money mistakes, but things are going in a better direction. Just remember my blog has what I think is interesting at the moment, or things I want to talk about. It’s a prettier picture of my life, you know?

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