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September’s Debt Reduction Update and Goals for October

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Checking on the progress of my debt reduction and savings strategies today! Here are the raw numbers of my accounts, comparing when I first started blogging here and today:

Debt Reduction

Debt 07/14/2019

And Debt 09/30/2019

debt reduction

Debt reduction spreadsheet found at Vertex42

Savings Accounts:

Savings account: $2000 

Increase of: $2000. I said I had $321 that week, but I spent the $321 in savings immediately. Since then, I’ve saved $2000 exactly and haven’t dipped in to the funds once.

Investment account: $379

Increase of: $379

I’ve put some side-hustle money in to an app called WealthSimple, which is a service targeted at making investment simple for millennials. I opened this account a few months ago with two $175 deposits and I’ve already made a little cash. I’m in an aggressive-growth portfolio, so my earnings actually dropped to $1 during some market volatility. Today, I’ve got $29 of profit in there. I’m using this account like an additional savings account and will be contributing around $200 a month to this.

Once I have more time, I’ll take more control over which investments I buy, as I actually quite enjoy the stock market. For today, I’m glad for the help WealthSimple offers. WealthSimple allows you to transfer money out relatively easily, so I like it for medium-term savings. These are funds I can transfer elsewhere in a year or two.

EDITING POST TO ADD: I use this as a savings account I can withdraw from pretty easily with next to no penalty. I am specifically saving this money in case I owe extra taxes next year.

Registered Retirement Savings Plan: $13 267.33

This is the Canadian equivalent of the 401K. My employer matches up to 3%, which isn’t much, but it’s free money so I make sure to take advantage of the full matching amount. I was going to contribute more to this fund, but the management fees are 1.94%. That’s a bit high, even for Canada where we pay a lot for financial products. I regularly see offers of 0.5% for management fees, and I’d like to open a new RRSP account once I have a few months of emergency savings saved up.

TOTAL SAVINGS: 

$15 646.33

Net worth (based on total savings – total debt):

-$18 829.04

Takeaways

I’m going to give my efforts a B grade. Overall, my debt went down a bit. My savings went up significantly (considering I had none before), and I’m prioritizing saving over debt payment at the moment. If something happens and I lose my main income stream or need to move, I have almost nothing in the bank. That terrifies me.

I’m not thrilled that one of my credit card balances actually went up, but I’m going to make a payment of $100 to that today, and then continue to throw money at that as I can to bring it back down.

I think posting a monthly reconciliation of accounts is going to be imperative for my progress. As nervous as it makes me to review the health of my entire financial portfolio, it doesn’t make sense to hide from it.

Goals for October:

  • Track all transactions diligently
  • Post two spending diaries (chronicle all spending for a randomly chosen day, highlighting an average spending period)
  • Make a concrete plan for killing credit card debt, with or without line of credit approval

Keeping it simple because tracking all transactions is difficult enough for me!


And there goes the EF…

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I mentioned in one of my recent posts that I had to travel a good deal last week. Little could I have predicted what that would lead too.

As I returned home last Sunday, I was involved in a wreck, rear ending the car in front of me. I left the scene questioning God as to why me?

Tow hitches, even when barely hit, cause a lot of damage!

Not 10 miles down the road, I encountered the devastation of the tornadoes that ran rampant through Alabama. If I had not had that wreck, I would most certainly have been in the middle of the storm that killed so many.

This was an airport just a few minutes before I drove up.

As it was my 5 hour trip home, took me 8 hours due to downed power lines, jet fuel on the highway closing it down and having to feel my way through the back roads. But I am grateful. So many people lost everything, even their lives and their loved ones during these storms.

While I was out of town, I was notified that my Grandmother had been admitted to the hospital. So I stopped at the hospital on my way home from my trip and ended up spending a couple of nights there with her. She is fine, back home now. But it was a scary time.

It has been a tough week. I even gave myself a mental health day on Wednesday just to catch up on my sleep and de-stress a bit. I am so glad it is Friday and I have no big plans this weekend. And then I realized that we lose an hour of sleep this weekend as the time changes. Come on!

I hope your week has been better than mine. But through all of this, I am grateful for full coverage insurance on my car, an EF to cover my deductible and kids who are responsible enough to handle things at home when I have to be away.

I promise to get on top of my finance review and plan next week!

 


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