8/12 Budget Update

This past week has been insane! The whole family had to go out of town for a week for several reasons and my son broke his leg in a bouncy house at a birthday party. We’ve had an extreme series of unfortunate events the last few months.

Hopefully we’ll have good luck going forward. Starting with we sold our $30,000 vehicle this week! Eliminating nearly $700/month of vehicle and insurance payments! Woohoo!!

Current net worth:

Category Current Change (+/)
Student Loans -$205,000 0
Credit Cards -$13,000 0
Medical Bills (Collections) -$11,837 0
Medical Bills (Current) -$7,363.33 $2,363.33
Current Net Worth -$237,200.33 $29,636.67

7/27 Budget Update

Well, we’re in a lot better position this week and than we were last week. We were down pretty low ~1000 (low for us but better than our “old” low of $0 in the past. 🙂 ) since we had to pay our federal income tax to square that away, now we’re waiting for ~$3,700 to come back that was paid incorrectly. It should be back in a month or so.

With one more paycheck coming in next week we should be all set for the month of August. Then we’ll focus on being a month ahead and tackling more credit cards in September. I have some side-work to do in the next few weeks so hopefully I’ll have ~$1,000-$2,000 additional income to apply to credit cards in September. We’re going to keep focusing and work on sticking within the budget going forward with a lot of intensity.

There are 3 paychecks in September so hopefully we’ll have made a HUGE dent in our credit cards and nearly paying them off by then. The last update I have is on our vehicle. It’s still up for sale and a person has committed to buying it within a few weeks. So hopefully that doesn’t fall through. It’s been extremely stressful recently but it should be shaping up in the next months.

7/16 Budget Meeting

It’s been a little over a month since our last post. A lot has happened. We finished up June with a surplus of nearly $4,000 that went to purchasing a used vehicle for my wife to replace our newer vehicle that we are trying to sell (~$31,000). This will be a big win for us! We’ve had a few bites but without taking a major hit and selling it for less than what is owed we may be sitting on it for a while. We’re building ~$400 equity in it every month. At this point we owe exactly what it’s worth.

Other than that we’ve struggled this past month to stay on budget but are working hard to get back on track. This is the first summer where we’ve worked on our plan, without the kids being in school and all of my children’s birthdays are in June, July and August in addition to Mrs. FC.

The BIGGEST issue we’ve faced is that somehow throughout all of this I paid my federal income taxes to the state of SC buy mistake and I am currently cleaning up that mess. This has delayed/will delay any credit cards being paid off for the month of July but will get back on track as soon as this is resolved.

I just keep thinking to myself that there are peaks and valleys and we’re in a valley right now and will be working hard and see more results soon.

6/7 Budget Meeting

The budget meeting went well today. With several website/iOS development invoices coming in this month there should be ~$4,000+ extra at the end of the month to pay off credit cards. There is a possibility that this money may go to buying a used vehicle and selling the newer vehicle. This would free up ~$600/month of cashflow and knock out about 30K of car loan debt! My financial advisor is crunching these numbers and we will decide if it’s better to pay off the cards or buy a used car/sell newer car. I’ll update this Friday.

6/1 Budget Meeting

Had another great meeting this week! Unfortunately there is ~$550 of vehicle and income tax adjustments that are due that won’t go towards my our debt…

There is ~$800 budgeted towards a small personal loan that will be paid off this month as well. I am expecting ~$2700 worth of development work to come in this month and am expecting a $2500 bonus (drastically reduced by taxes I’m sure) in my first June paycheck. My hope is that this month we’ll be able to pay off close to 3 credit cards at the end of the month!

Still feeling positive and making progress!

5/24 Budget Meeting

Fantastic meeting with financial planner today. Great news! Since we started the blog we’ve paid down several credit cards!! Last month I was able to pay off the two smallest cards. Today I was able to pay off another credit card as well! I’m awaiting several payments for invoices for development work for several companies. When they arrive I should be able to allocate them for two more cards possibly in the next few weeks!

Current net worth:

Category Current Change (+/)
Student Loans -$205,000 0
Credit Cards -$13,000 $3,000
Medical Bills (Collections) -$4,000 0
Medical Bills (Current) -$5,000 $500
Vehicle 1 -$32,000 0
Current Net Worth -$227,000 $3500

Financial Independent Resources

Focusing on paying off personal debt is my number one priority. I do, however, enjoy reading various perspectives on what people do to achieve financial independence.

Currently my thought-process is more of Dave Ramsey approach and working with “gazelle intensity” to pay off debt.

I spent part of this past weekend looking through various websites and reading about personal finance. I’m sure everyone has read some, if not all, of the websites I began reading through but wanted to include them in on this site as a reference for readers and myself, just in case.

The sites I began reading through, from the very first post I might add, were:

Lots of fantastic information on these sites. I’ll keep adding more resources as I come across other great websites.

5/17 Budget Meeting

I met with my financial planner today. This was a crazy month with my Mrs. FC traveling (a trip planned prior to working on finances) but will be able to pay at least $2,000 on credit cards this month. An additional $1,200 came about because of an iOS app I helped to develop last year for free. The product owner decided to allocate funds toward it. It was for a non-profit. Next month I’m aiming for $3,500.

There will be, hopefully, a minimum of $3,200 total will be applied to credit card balances at the end of May! Whoop whoop!

Maiden Post

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I decided to start writing about my personal finances because I felt that it would help to keep my motivated on my way to becoming 100% debt free. I also wanted to document the process for myself and my family. I especially wanted to have a narrative for my three small children so that one day they could read what their mother and I had to do in order to dig ourselves out of our financial hole. Hoping that they would never have to go to through this and that their parents loved them very much.

I would like this site to ultimately consist of 3 things:

  • Monthly financial updates
  • Provide resources to others (books, podcasts, websites, tools, etc)
  • Document major personal milestones

I could see this possibly evolving over time but wanted to point out those main objectives.

Monthly Financial Updates

Currently our financial coach at Artisan Finance is having us stay one month ahead with our expenses. This has been fantastic and I would encourage everyone to have at least one, if not more, months of expenses in the bank. After we have the next months expenses locked in any excess funds at the end of the month are used to pay down debt. At that time I would like to update the total debt outstanding on this site to keep track of that as a way for me to see progress.

Provide Resources

I have learned a lot in the past year about financial planning and goal setting. I have asked and received may additional resources along the way from people and sources online. I would like to document articles, tweets, podcasts and websites I come across. I’ll add them in posts and try to keep a list up-to-date for people that find the site as these are great for motivation.

Milestones

This year is critical. There should be, and will, be major milestones. The goal for 2016 is to sell our vehicle ($35,000) and buy a older vehicle for ~$5,000. Credit cards ($16,000) should be gone. Medical bills in collections should be paid off and cleared as well ($4,000). These will definitely be documented and I’m going to celebrate!

About Page Update

I wanted to include our starting point on the About page as a reference to where we began.

Below is our current status:

Category Owed Change (+/-)
Student Loans $205,000 0
Credit Cards $16,000 0
Medical Bills (Collections) $4,000 0
Medical Bills (Current) $8,000 0
Vehicle 1 $32,000 0
Vehicle 2 0 -$26,000

Any feedback is welcome, send me an email through the contact page.