Money tips

April 30, 2010

I'm not actually linking up to the Kelly's Korner blog tour with this...I'm really just using it as a way to process how Jonathan and I save {and spend} money.

Rule number one- Always GIVE!
Jonathan and I have been VERY blessed when it comes to money and SURPRISE money (tax returns, money my mom finds in my old accounts, paying too much into escrow). As soon as our paycheck goes into our account we automatically write a check for 10% to our church. Even when we come across "Surprise" money we give 10% of it back. It's a great feeling and there is really no better way to spend our money. Try'll feel great!

-We don't use credit cards at all. We've considered using one for points and what-not but we just never have, not to say that we won't but we would always have it paid off and pretty much use it as a debit. If we don't have the cash then we don't get it. We only dip into our savings for emergencies...or for something we've been saving for :)

Accidental Savings
-We use Bank of America's "Keep the Change".
-We also have a change jar

What we owe
-We do have 1 car payment and we've always had one car payment since we've been married. As a rule we never want more than one car payment. We would like none at all...we'll get there but right now it's nice having a warranty and free maintenance. Also, my old car was Jonathan's college car and we were having some issues getting the title put in our names. We've gone back and fourth for nearly 2 years now and I finally wanted to be done with the whole mess. If we bought a new car it was an easy way to have the title and financing all in our names.

-We do have a mortgage but just the mortgage alone is LESS than our apartment rent was...crazy. Of course with insurance and taxes it is more but not by much. Also, our property value has already gone up. We've pretty much made 20,000$ the day we moved in!

-I have a small amount of student loans. Baylor summer school is expensive...what can I say. Once our savings is beefed up to where we want it we plan to pay them off in cash.

-Don't save TOO much or you'll go crazy. I ALWAYS want to save and the husband always wants to spend. When I was younger my mom told me (I doubt she remembers this) that sometimes, even if you don't have a lot of money, you need to spend just a bit on you to feel good about yourself. Jonathan and I take that to mean two things:
1. save but don't save SO much that you never have any fun
2. if you never spend any money you'll be more likely to just explode one day and go spend way TOO much money

-things we won't sacrifice for money
-travel: we save up so we can travel
-weekends with our friends: we will not cut back the amount we go out with our friends to save money. (We see Erik and Rachel nearly 2 times every weekend. Usually dinner out on Saturday and lunch after church on Sunday...we don't want to give that up)

So, all in all, we save A LOT but we're teachers so we're not suddenly going to lose our jobs (although we do have plenty saved up in the off chance one of us did). A big perk in being a teacher.

We can live off of one paycheck. All of our bills can be paid if one of us lost our jobs without having to dip into savings.

We have XX,XXX$ saved up but we know we can't take our money to heaven with us so we might as well travel and enjoy life while we're here, right?

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