Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thank Goodness for Overtime!

Today is payday, and boy did this one seem a long time coming! After only getting paid $380 last pay (see last post), I ended up putting quite a bit of stuff on my credit card (and, yes, not all of it was necessary needs - bad pf blogger, I know!) But, I made it through and now not only was this pay a full one (no days off) but it also included 7.5 hours of overtime. This is going to help me a LOT in getting back to a place where I feel comfortable and not worrying about money all the time.

I did a few things that may or may not make sense in the grand scheme of things, but its making me feel better for the meantime. 1) I did a balance transfer of $1,000 from my BMO MasterCard to my CapitalOne MasterCard. This brought my BMO card back down to $0 but moved my CapitalOne card up to $2,679.27 BUT, I just put a payment of $700 on that card today. I didn't know how much I would be able to put on that debt before I went for the balance transfer, otherwise I would have just transferred the $300 or not bothered and paid down the MasterCard next month. But, what's done is done and seeing the zero balance on at least one of my debts is good, for now. I just gotta keep focusing on paying it and keeping it all down! (2) I'm stopping my PAC on my e-fund now that its at $1,000. I know this is nowhere close to the 3-6 month amount I should have, but I just feel that for the time being, this should be a good starting point, in case an emergency does happen in the next bit until I can start increasing it. With Christmas being just around the corner, I figured it didn't make sense to split my money in too many directions.

I'm still on the fence about tracking all my money and budgeting down to zero at the moment. I just have a feeling that the next 2 months are going to be crazy and spendy. I know that I just gave a really good reason why I should be tracking and budgeting, but I also know that I'm going to fall off the wagon. Yes, there is still a good reason to try at least and if I fail, I fail, but for the time being, I'm going to leave things as it is. Make automatic savings and major debt repayments first priority, then maybe the tracking and budgeting will come along after that. Or, maybe I have it all backwards? I don't have all the answers, I'm just trying to work things out as best I can for me. I'm still only giving myself $350 to spend out of every paycheque (23% of my takehome pay, less than Gail's 25% for life, hah!) but I'm not going to break it down further than that, then it starts to get depressing :(
I've updated some of my side-bars, it will take some time for payments to go through, so they will change again soon, but this is still showing some progress, in my eyes, so I'm happy. Plus I'm now over the +$5K mark in Net Worth! This is a huge amount of progress considering that when I started this blog my net worth was -$21K :)

Well, that's all I got for now. Take it easy,

Friday, October 12, 2012


So, while I was on my honeymoon, it was considered a "leave of absence without pay" at work. I'm currently on a contract with zero paid vacation. I've been on this contract for almost 2 years now and while its been tempting to look for a permanent position elsewhere with paid vacation/sick days and benefits, I've stayed here because the pay is amazing and I like my job (ok, I like my work but not necessarily the work environment/some co-workers). T has benefits through his work, so we've been ok on that front as well.

Anyways, the point is that I didn't get paid for the 2 weeks I was on my honeymoon, plus 2 days off before my wedding and 1 day after the honeymoon (needed to recoup, get back to my timezone, and do lots of laundry!) So, my paycheque yesterday came in at $380! I haven't made that little in a 2 week period since my part-time job in University! I still had my RSP/E fund/Christmas fund come out of that leaving me with $155 to go for two weeks. I'm not too sure how this is going to work out, to be honest. There isn't too much planned for the next two weeks (I might buy a Halloween costume) and we've been trying to eat out less (both for wallet and waistline sakes), so I'm really hoping that I can stick to that amount and not put anything on the credit card. T has told me that he can wait for the money back on my cell phone bill so the $155 is completely spending money, but I'm still a bit concerned.

Also I'm hoping my next paycheque will be able to cover all my end of the month bills (rent, groceries, I help T with his parking costs since we carpool, savings, credit card payments, and now my cell phone) and still give me some spending money too.

This is certainly going to be a lean month but I'm looking forward to the challenge! Wish me luck!


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

I'm back ... I think

Its been over a year since I posted on this blog and some things have changed ... I'm married! We had a great day and an awesome honeymoon. We paid for (mostly) everything up front so the wedding cash we got was (mostly) ours to spend on the honeymoon. Right now I'm sitting on about $560 on my MasterCard from the honeymoon, which isn't too bad. You don't think you've spent too much until it gets converted from Euros/Pounds into Canadian Dollars! Ouch!

Right now I'm sitting at about $6,500 in debt (all credit card) but I do have $800 in an emergency fund and over $10K in my RSP which means I'm now in POSITIVE net worth! :) That seems like a huge accomplishment to me, I know I still have a LONG way to go to be where I want to be, but just knowing that I own more than I owe makes me feel good.

But ... not so good that its taken my focus away from paying off the debt! I definitely want to be debt free before the end of next year. My preference is to have it paid off ASAP but right now with looking at my current budget, it seems that I'm still looking to at least 8 more months of debt repayments (that's if I leave my credit cards alone for the next 8 months as well!) However, I will be putting any extra money onto my credit cards if I have anything left over (this is NOT including regular payments). So, if I could have it all paid off in 6 months that would be awesome, but I do have other goals and objectives so I can't throw everything I have at debt or it would be counter-productive at this point.

Now that the wedding/honeymoon are done (and mostly) paid for, its time for our next big goal ... buying a house! This is why I can't throw everything I have to debt repayment, I also have to help save for this house. We are planning on using the 1st time homebuyers plan (i.e. take the money out of our RSPs) to pay for our downpayment. T already has his $25K and is working on a "closing costs" account (taxes, lawyers fees, etc). Since I only have $10K in mine, I still have a ways to go. Our goal is to have 20% down on whatever we are to purchase (screw CMHC!!!) and we are looking to spend anywhere between $300-375,000 on a house so our downpayment would have to be anywhere from $60-75,000 plus those closing costs. Ideally we want to start looking at houses around this time next year because we do want to start a family soon thereafter, but we can't stretch ourselves too thin either. I'm planning (starting in November - still paying off wedding/honeymoon related costs and I didn't get paid for my 2 weeks off either!) to put $550 per pay cheque into my RSP, yes, this is $1,100 per month. Its really aggressive but its the only way to have enough in a year from now.

This should still leave me with the $350(+) per pay for discretionary spending after also taking into consideration my other bills and savings (emergency and Christmas fund - probably will be converted into a gift/travel fund after Christmas). If I was able to do it (most of the time) before the wedding, I should still be able to pull this off now.

I'm hoping to get back on track with budgeting and tracking my spending again as well as updating this blog again. Wish me luck!