Our Family’s Financial Update August 2013
Do you ever wonder how other family’s finances work? Take a peek at how things go at our house, and be encouraged that no matter what your financial circumstances are, you can always improve them. 🙂
We moved. Enough said.
While we spent less than $50 on the moving truck (coupon!), and got our boxes for free, the deposit for the new house pretty much wiped out our savings. It was so worth it, though! We are out from under a bad situation with our previous landlord, in a better neighborhood and enjoying a much nicer house.
Now back to work on our financial goals!
We were able to replenish part of our Freedom Account (read more here) with the return of our deposit from our previous rental. Some of the money had to be spent for utility deposits (which the companies thankfully billed us), but we have our rent, utilities, car insurance and life insurance categories funded at the level they should be in order to pay them on time.
Our goals for September will be to completely fund our Freedom Account and save any extra money we can into our emergency fund. As soon as we can get our emergency fund fully funded, we will start saving for Christmas (it’s right around the corner!).
If you would like to start thinking about how to pay for Christmas so that you don’t resort to credit cards, print out my Christmas Master Gift List here (scroll down to the Christmas Gifts Section of the post).
Were you able to meet any financial goals in August? Leave a comment so we can encourage each other! 🙂
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I have been so stressed out about our finances lately I came across your blog at the beginning of the year and it has helped me tremendously get out of debt and learn to save so we don’t have to live month to month anymore. As a result of reading your blog I got a second job to help more with the income because at the beginning of the year my one job 10/hr but then 11/hr in may 40/hr a week and my husband doing day work wasn’t cutting it. I didn’t like depending on my husbands income bc one week it was $300 and the next $700 it was so and still is unstable. At the beginning of the year we had a lot of debt burdening us down also with car reapir expenses (dad helped us out), a school debt of mine about to go into collections, a furniture debt from a place I got a bedroom set to build credit (was barely keeping up with the payment, and I was depending on my parents for a lot. I used my income tax return to pay off all immedaite debt, deferred my student loans and put my efforts into saving and first becoming financially stable on my own (not depending on mom and dad). This led my husband and I entering into a sort of community savings program with other people that we know and trust ( I have told a few people about this and they all have their reservations at the same time it was a good experience I would rather not do it again). So the way the savings program works is that you are given a number 1-11 in this case the savings is of 5,000 and everyone makes a weekly payment and there is a biweekly payout so number 1 gets 5000 after two weeks and then continues to make payments until everyone gets their part. Well my husband and I are numbers 10 and 11 so for 6 months now we have been paying out 1000 dollars extra every month into savings ….. well now six months later we have received the first part of the money and it is GONE all GONE 🙁 having that said we have had lots of extra expenses like we are moving into a bigger house bc my husbands kids are coming to live with us (his daughter is already and that has increased our babysitting expenses, so I had to use some of that money for the security deposit 850 and also had to use that money to pay off some of my husbands old debt I didnt know existed 1200 :-/ I used it to pay the immediate months rent in the place we are living 784 ect ect. We also have more expenses because my husband is now starting to get his own contract construction work and as you all new starting up your own anything is now cheap nor easy. I qualified for loan for a new vehicle bc my husband did not have one so we got a truck although I was very proud I qualified for a loan all by myself at 24 no cosigner I am now worried and feel over extended bc although with my husband getting contract work on his own instead of working by day it comes with more expenses and responsibility. We now have more gas expenses, a car payment, insurance, our rent and bills will increase (we have more space though and will not increase by much ect ect needless to say I am feeling a little overwhelmed and frustrated bc we worked really hard all summer saving money and to not have a dime of that money saved in the bank :-/ we will be getting the other have of the money tomorrow but I feel like it is already spent :-/ I need some words of encouragement
Hi Jennifer! Thank you for taking the time to comment. If you had asked me ahead of time, I would have strongly suggested that you not get that car loan. Now that you have it, I would do everything in your power to sell it and pay off that loan. If you have a difference between the value and the loan, I would take any extra jobs that you can to save the difference.
It would also benefit you greatly to take the Dave Ramsey Financial Peace class with your husband so that you can get on the same page about money and get some of this cleaned up. If you have not moved yet, you may reconsider that decision because adding expenses right now is not a good idea. I hope that you can get everything straightened out soon.
Hi Kimberly! Well At Sept. 1st We are debt free after 21 months, paying off about $70,000 Taking home $47,000 We also cash flowed large hospital stay, Vet stay, Dental during this time! yowza!! With a final extra summer job my husband refunded and bumped up the emergency fund. Next goal is to fully fund the medical EF , then the regular EF. This month, Sept, all other accounts are funded. These last 21 months I’ve had to rededicate myself to scratch cooking, learning and using budgets, menu plans and even changing eating styles, electric use etc.. thanks to your blog and several others, We have been able to be debt free, credit card free, and just plain FREE. Myhusband finally gets the wonders of the thrift store!!
In November our emloyer is treating us to a paid 2 week vacation in Cabo. Isn’t that crazy, cool? Although we look forward, and make plans we leave it all in the Lord’s hands He has the final say.. we’ve come across several obsticals but, by rolling with them everything got paid, or our health improved.
re: Christmas giving, We haven’t spent $$ on Christmas in a few years. ( no kids!) But this year and next I want to, so I’ll be checking out responses, the small weekly deduction sounds less painful!
WOW, WOW, WOW!!!!! I am so excited for you Barbara! That is amazing and I know that you must feel fantastic to be completely FREE! Thank you so much for honoring me by telling your story here. I hope you have a wonderful time in Cabo and a terrific Christmas.
Lee Anne says
I’m new to your site, and I was wondering what the categories you fund are. I noticed you listed car insurance and life insurance. What are some others? Do you fund them monthly? Thanks!
Hi Lee Anne! You can read all about how we use the Freedom Account here: https://thepeacefulmom.com/2012/02/21/living-on-less-than-28000-a-year-managing-the-money/ and print one for yourself here: https://thepeacefulmom.com/click-to-print-freedom-account-page/. Let me know if you have other questions. 🙂
Congratulations on the move.
Already live frugally, I’m a single-working parent. In August, stayed on budget for groceries, spend just over $40.00 a week for two people, 3 meals a day. We rent 2 bedrooms, can’t afford our own place right now, but we have kitchen and laundry privleges. Teaching my daughter how to drive, can’t afford the classes. Had to put front and rear brakes on the car. Daughter started senior year in high school, expensive. But she babysits and dogsits to help pay for extras. Getting major work done on my teeth. But, God blesses us in many ways everyday! Trying to save enough to get our own place again.
Good for you for making the most of a tough situation Esther! I hope you are able to get a place of your own soon.
I cannot even remember. I’m pretty sure we had several categories over budget. We’re doing really well for September so far! Although there is something wrong with our car 🙁 (again)- so waiting to hear on that.
Glad that you are doing well this month Jerilyn!
All I can say is that we didn’t go in debt with our various moving, lodging and eating scenarios in August. Fortunately we didn’t have any utility deposits as the old owners moved out and we moved in. But its time to tighten our belts and once again live by our budget. Being disciplined financially is hard but awesome to not have last months fun and hard work waiting in the wings to still be reckoned with.
So smart to not go into debt Jennifer. Hopefully you and I can both be disciplined this month and rebuild the savings!
Congrats on the move! =) August was a little tough for us. My husband made some big cuts to the budget to ensure that we could live off just his income in case I decide to stay home with this baby (Due in 4 weeks!). The biggest things to cut were cable and tithing. We still give tithes and beyond, but unfortunately not as much. My smaller income is then used to give more to the church, and build up vacation savings/other fun stuff.
One thing we do for Christmas is set up an automatic deposit, where $5 a week goes out of our checking account and into a designated savings account. If you’re financially able, it’s a great choice, because you really don’t notice the money coming out and you then have a nice chunk of money for Christmas!
You are so smart to live on one income now. Kudos to your husband for thinking of that option!
As far as the Christmas money, that is a great idea. We actually had some Christmas savings, but spent it on the move so we are starting over.
Raina Jessup says
I love seeing your posts! August and Sept have been crazy months for me. We ended up putting in over $500 into the house to try and adopt my nephew. We are scraping by this month but it will be ok. October goals are now in revision.