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Updates!

January 26th, 2017 at 08:53 am

It has been about 4 months or so since my last update, which have mostly been mortgage pre-payment updates, but some things have changed and thought I would share.

The mortgage pre-payment is still moving forward, but the $700 extra (for a total $1,000 off principal each payment) has been reduced to $150 (for a total of $500 off principal each payment). That was done in anticipation of the Holidays and potentially replacing my vehicle in the near future, as well as increasing our cash on hand to possibly move to a larger home sometime in the next 3-5 years. You may be asking why put additional to the mortgage? Mortgage payoff is pretty much what we would realize after a sale, if sold in the next couple of months. Mortgage regulations state, that I have read anyway, require 30% equity in order consider the rents on the current home to be considered income for a new mortgage loan application. Even if we don't rent, I still would like to have options.

Finally received a promotion at work, so 25% increase in base yearly pay is nice, but not effective until Jan 30, 2017, few days left. The management package, no longer union employee, is nice and savings on health insurance alone is a nice net in the pay check. The ability to cash out 2 weeks vacation and 2 weeks compensatory time are nice, which I will be doing for additional monies realized. Nice to see a decent "raise" after going without from 2009 to 2015.

I was done paying into the NYS retirement account (414H) back in July 2016, have since been diverting that to NYS Deferred Compensation 403B plan, and increased it from 3% (414H) to 5% (403B). I will most likely increase that after I see a couple checks to know the effect of the promotion and where we want to be.

The Vanguard ROTH IRA is doing great, just need to look into increasing, which was about 50% funded for both DW and I in 2016.

DW also signed up for her company 401K 6% match, for a total of 12%, she was able to get the match after 2 years of employment. She is up for a 5% raise in the next couple months.

Long time?! DW Promotion and Retro Pay!

March 26th, 2015 at 09:24 am

Apparently it has been a year since my last entry. I've been on frequently, just not blogging I guess, however, commented on a few other blogs.

My blog is usually straight and to the point, so this will be no different!

1. Wells Fargo (WF) Mortgage and Escrow. I FINALLY got them to pay our land taxes in a one-time yearly pay-in-full, now I don't have to hunt them down to get reimbursed for the installment fee.

2. Mortgage is due to be under $160K in June 2015 (with current additional payments), I may make it sooner, but trying to get rid of PMI. The loan documents state 5 years or 20% equity from original appraisal, whichever is longer. The use of DW's new promotion may actually make those criteria happen at the same time this December (read options below). I can't stand WF.

3. Retro pay (retro to Jan 4, 2015), will be close to $7K net. We should see that check in a week or two. That will just sit in the EF, which has been drawn down recently for medical expenses and some updates to the home (fence in 2014).

4. The raise that is doubling her salary,

Option 1. Mentioned above with removing PMI ($75/ mo), no, not really that bad, but 20%+ equity sound nice.

Option 2. Save to purchase land in the boonies, looking at about $70K for a 3.5 acre parcel. Expensive here in NY, and not much nice parcels left in this area. Pricey.

Option 3. Bank it all.

5. Retirement will be increased with any of the above. May be able to max both ROTH's out this year.

6. May need to look at opening some 401K's, the tax deduction may be needed to keep tax liability down and it will probably double from last year.

Problem, I am indecisive, DW trusts me and I include her in all large decisions, but my head spins thinking about the options, as we both want them all.

Some decisions to be made!

2014 Goals

December 24th, 2013 at 10:01 am

It's that time again; 2014 Goals!

Debt Service:

1. Auto Loan paid off by June 2014. This will actually happen by itself with regular payments, which will be 18 months early on our 48 month loan. Once it gets down below $1,000 I may reevaluate with a lump sum payoff. Right now, it costing us less than $6/ mo. in interest.

2. Mortgage principal only payments. Sending $50/ mo. additional principal only payments for 2014. I have automatic payments set-up from our savings account.

Retirement/ Savings:

1. ROTH IRA (ME), fund $50/ mo. I have automatic contributions set-up from our savings account.

2. ROTH IRA (DW), fund $50/ mo. I have automatic contributions set-up from our savings account.

3. Emergency Fund to $10,000.

Home Improvements:

1. Fence for rear yard. DIY project. $1,500-2,500 depending on materials used.

I made the goals a little more accessible this year. I had hoped to have the auto loan paid off six months ago, but other things came up and DW switched job to a much less stressful one, but at the expense of less wages.

Here's to 2014! Smile

Finally Opened ROTH IRAs for DW and Myself!

December 24th, 2013 at 07:01 am

We finally did it!

I have been pondering this for over a year. We set up our accounts through Vanguard. I originally wanted to have $10,000 in EF before we did this, but I figured we're missing out on compounding interest! The saving account interest is pitiful. Have to start somewhere, right? So we funded both with the initial minimum of $1,000 and set up automatic monthly contributions from our savings account, not much, but I feel good about the decision!