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Monthly Progress Report (#1)



As I’m starting this adventure I’ve been thinking a lot about how to make sure I follow through. We’ve all been there, we want to do something but sometimes something just requires so much effort.

I’m going to try my best to avoid excuses. The one thing I think will force me to get some stick-to-itiveness is to maniacally track my progress. The last day of every month I’ll let you know how I did. So since we have nothing to really track just yet here is the initial debt breakdown:

Mortgage: $149,800 (I’m going to do some rounding for simplicity’s sake.)
Car Loan: $9,400
Student Loans: $4,800
Credit Cards: $3,700
Grand Total of Debt: $167,700

I don’t have much of a game plan. I’ve read different theories about debt repayment methods such as the debt snowball and the debt avalanche. I’m still undecided which method I’ll use, however I am leaning towards the snowball with my focus being on my smaller student loan.

My student loan balances

The drawback? Well, I have to put some money away for home renovations that will be starting in May. Turns out I didn’t pad my estimate enough and fell short.

So to add to the debt total:
Renovation fund requirements: $3,200
New Grand Total of Debt: $170,900

I’m hoping that between saving every spare penny and hopefully receiving a tax refund (fingers and toes crossed) I can make up the difference. I can’t tell you how mad I am about the shortfall. My own dumb mistake but seriously disappointing! The money that I’ll plug into the renovations could have been going towards other debt.

Oh well, hind sight is 20/20. But hopefully I can make up the difference without getting myself further into debt. Lofty goal? Probably. I mean we’re talking $800/month. Well, that’s just a bit unrealistic. I’m already looking into my options and realistically a portion of this will probably end up on the debt tally above.

Overall I know that I’m not in too bad of shape. My mortgage is crazy (I wasn’t joking about being house poor). But I’ve been lucky to have a job that pays for the majority of my education (according to CNBC the average student loan burden is $30,000).

This is my second master’s program and I should be able to escape without adding much more to my debt total. In all likelihood an increased student loan balance will probably happen sometime this year or next.

Now onto the savings side of things.

Savings account: $1,950
Peer-To-Peer (P2P) Lending account: $300 (there’s a story there for another day)
Investment account: $3.93 (you guessed it, there’s another story there and I’ll definitely tell you all about it soon)
Grand Total of Savings: $2,253.93

My goals are less concrete on the savings side. I want to build up my savings account and attempt some stock market investments. I don’t have a set amount that I’ll increase either by, it’ll likely be anything left over after everything else is paid.

Eventually, I would like to save 6 months of expenses for an emergency fund. An emergency fund is always a good idea. So do as I say and not as I do and set one up for yourself if you can.

Well, I certainly have some work to do. One day I hope to at least see those totals close to each other. But if we’re talking pipe dreams, I want that debt total to be $0.
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Broke Dolly
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