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Archive for March, 2013

woo hoo!

March 31st, 2013 at 02:53 pm

just looked at my 403b retirement account and the $300K has been reached: $300,766.52. Yay - so fun to see that number. Of course, now i want to see the next milestone. $310K? $325K?

now if only i could get motivated to do my taxes. i took a staycation all last week and successfully procrastinated on everything i wanted to get done. crap.

current debt update:
discover card - $3,383.00 (0%) - will be paid off by 9/2013
chase auto - $6,778.08 (2.9%)

good news - when i went to look up the chase auto balance, i discovered that the website has been updated and i will be able to set up auto payments for that loan, which wasn't an option before. now to just actually do it. Smile

today's finances

March 28th, 2013 at 02:09 am

Iím supposed to be in Florida visiting my mom and enjoying some warmth right now, but I never got it together to make plane reservations, so Iím making some of this week into a staycation. Ugh, Iíve been so lethargic lately. Combination of long winter, depression, poor eating choices and complete lack of exercise. And thereís probably some menopausal hormonal stuff mixed in there, too. Oh my.

I just called Discover to confirm how to set up an auto payment. The instructions on line didnít really make sense and I donít want to be late with a payment, or I will lose my 0% interest rate. The auto withdrawals wonít start until May. The next payment is due April 8, so I paid that tonight so that I wonít forget. After that, $677 will be withdrawn every month until mid-September and that c.c. debt will be paid off in full.

I still havenít done my taxes (thanks to creditcardfree for the reminder!). Iíve already contributed the limit of $17,000 to my work retirement account for 2012. Now I need to decide if I should put some money into my traditional IRA and get a little tax benefit. Or should I open a ROTH IRA? As I start to think about when I want to retire, I wonder if I should have a tax free ROTH account from which to withdraw money (contributions, not earnings) from before I turn 59, just in case I am able to retire before that (probably not a likely scenario, but a girl can dream!). I really need to figure this out so that I can finish my taxes and move on.

I have an exciting start to my day tomorrow Ė Iím getting my septic tank pumped at 8:00a! Iíve owned my house for 8 years and this is the first time Iíve had this done. It will cost $255 for the pumping, plus whatever labor cost there is to dig down to the tank. I had a fleeting thought of doing the digging myself, but I really donít want to, so Iím going to cough up the cash and have the pump guy do it. This is the first in an incredibly long list of house tasks that I need to take tackle.

Iíll say goodnight with a favorite photo of my cat Juby:

so very, very close

March 27th, 2013 at 03:29 am

I just checked my work retirement account (403B) and the balance is $299,849.31. I still really want to see it hit the $300K mark, if only for a day! Smile

weekend update

March 18th, 2013 at 08:37 pm

I had a combination ultra-lazy and somewhat productive weekend. Iíve felt very lethargic recently and ended up sleeping through most of Saturday. But, I did also manage to tackle the mess in my house and got a lot cleaned up. No more living in squalor for me, at least for a few days! It was a sad state of affairs.

This morning I paid three medical bills which totaled $355.29.

I owe $635.61 on my VISA due on 3/27, so I will pay that today (DONE) so that itís over and done with and I donít have to worry about late fees or finance charges. The total due includes a $6.38 finance charge because I was late paying last monthís bill Ė grrrr. Thankfully there was no late fee, though!

I FINALLY submitted my medical reimbursement paperwork on Friday (the deadline!). If all of the claims get approved, I will receive a check for $1222.00 in the near future, which will go into my bathroom renovation account. I had a total of $1300 in my medical reimbursement account and only $1222 worth of medical expenses, so I ended up having to forfeit $78.00, which Iím still not over. But, I did find out from Human Resources that all unclaimed med reimbursement money goes into a relief fund that is available for employees to apply to use in times of need. I feel better about that Ė itís like charitable giving rather than going into a black hole at an insurance company or something.

This year signed up to contribute only $1200 to my med reimbursement account, so I wonít have a problem getting it all back. Unfortunately, I will most likely have more than $1200 in out-of-pocket expenses since I need to get two fillings and probably a new mouth guard (still cranky about the lost $72! Smile) My current mouth guard snapped in half the other day. Iím still using it, but Iím wondering if itís now a choking hazard. Iíll have to look into getting a new one. They are expensive! I seem to remember my insurance covering some of it, but not sure if itís a once-in-a-lifetime type reimbursement. (Update Ė I just called my dentist and he suggested that if it still fits snuggly on my teeth, that I should just keep using it. A new one is $625! So, Iíll use the broken one for now and then see if my insurance will help me to buy a new one.)

I did a quick run through of my taxes using TurboTax and will most likely get a refund of between $200 Ė 900, depending on traditional IRA contribution. I havenít made a decision about that yet.

This is kind of fun: as of Friday, my work retirement account was up to $299,215.55 due to current strong market Ė so very close to $300K! I really hope it hits $300K before the market dies down Ė I would LOVE to witness that number even if only for a day! I see in an old post that the account hit $100K in October 2007. So, it took 5 years and 5 months to get to $300K. I hope the next big landmark comes faster than that. I still havenít figured out what my goal is for retirement savings.

Ugh Ė I just spent $7.25 on an unhealthy lunch and $1.42 on two small bags of Cadbury Mini-eggs. I have to pick up something for a potluck this evening (didnít feel like making anything this weekend). I want to get back into the swing of healthy and inexpensive meal prep Ė I am way out of whack with that.

quick update

March 6th, 2013 at 06:40 pm

Thanks for the support and ideas!

I put my phone/DSL and electric bills on auto-pay a year ago to make life easier, but I didnít realize I could do that for credit cards. So, I will set up the 0% Discover card to pay about $670/month April Ė September and then that will be paid off.

*Finally created on-line accounts for my medical reimbursement and health insurance. Now I can make sure that I have all of my claims from 2012 (I want to see if I can get back my full $1300, I only have $1220 worth of expenses, so will lose $80).

*Found an $11 reimbursement check in a pile at work, so will add that to the $160 guitar check for depositing this week.

*Got an email confirmation from Zappos that gave me an $80 store credit for my returned running shoes. I called customer service and was able to get an $80 refund instead since I spoke to someone a few days ago about this under-the-wire return and she made a note that I could get a refund. Yee-haw!

*Accounts update Ė Iíll do this now while the market is ridiní high!
Retirement plan through work: $293,631.52
Traditional IRA: $56,368.04 (earning nothing because I havenít taken the time to invest it Ė doh)
Brokerage account: $ 42,050.46
Misc money market fund: $6500.00? (not sure Ė need to find the paperwork)
Emergency Fund: $ 26,043.76
Cash: $42,903

Debt:
Discover c.c.: $4060 (0%) Ė this will be paid off by September 8 w/no interest charges
Car loan: $ 6,778.08 (2.9%)

I need to add ďcreate a willĒ to my to-do list. I donít have a spouse or children, so have to decide who to choose as beneficiaries.

O.k., now back to work Ė this is a busy week at the office!

a bit oí progress

March 4th, 2013 at 03:23 am

I looked through a few piles and boxes of desk junk last night and located the 2012 medical expenses receipts and paperwork that I had compiled last summer. It looks like I have $1218 in expenses to submit against my $1300 medical reimbursement account which means I will lose $82.00. That totally stinks! Ugh. At a December dentist appointment, I found out that I need two fillings and I should have done that before January 1. I am so annoyed. Ok, nothing I can do to change the situation, so moving on.

Guitar check Ė FOUND. Yay! Itís a refund for $160 worth of unused lessons, so I will deposit that tomorrow.

I have been sorting, recycling, shredding and organizing mounds of old paperwork today and have come up with additional financial items I need to take care of:

*Call Discover to find out when my 0% rate deal is finished on my c.c. that has a current balance of $4750. DONE Ė offer ends in September 2013, so I have 7 payments left at 0%. Thatís $679/month for 7 months and it will be paid off. Next payment is due March 8, so I submitted $690 electronically today.

*Car loan Ė oops, for some reason I have not paid my car loan in a few months and while sorting through mail discovered two late payment notices for it. So, I paid $462 electronically toward the loan today. That was the max I could submit, or I would have sent in $500.

*I just found a few outstanding medical bills for 2013, so will pay those this week.

*My Visa payment was due 2/27, so I paid that electronically today. Unfortunately, I will most likely incur a finance charge since the payment was late. It should only be a few dollars, but still. Hmm, I might also get a late charge, which would be more than a few dollars. Crap.

O.k., so thatís some progress. I feel annoyed that Iíve lost touch with my finances and that Iíve wasted a lot of money recently. Itís time for me to get back on track.

My office area is now a DISASTER AREA with paperwork everywhere. Whenever I decide to sort and organize old stacks and boxes of papers that have accumulated, I make a colossal mess. I so wish I was naturally anal Ė I envy people who are! Smile

financial to-do list

March 3rd, 2013 at 03:39 am

Ugh Ė Iím so out of touch with my finances. I need to get a grip! Iíll start with making a financial to-do list. Maybe that will provide inspiration. If only I could channel ceejay or lucky robin or one of the other super focused SA bloggers, Iíd be all set!

*figure out and submit receipts for my 2012 medical reimbursement account. I have $1300 in the account and the deadline for submission is March 15. After that, I lose the money. I started this project long ago and now I canít even find the receipts/statements that I gathered.

*do my taxes! Havenít even started. Shouldnít be too difficult, but Iím just not getting around to it.

*update financial standing Ė what I have, what I owe, etc. Iím in o.k. shape, Iím just tending my money well and, therefore, not allocating well.

*figure out if I will put any money in my IRA for 2012. I struggle with this every year. I funnel the yearly max in my retirement account through work (I think it was $16K this year?) and my company puts in 15% of my salary in the account on top of that (quite generous!), so about $25K has already been added for 2012. Do I set aside another $5K in my IRA (traditional)? Or, do I use the money for house repairs or something that I really need now. I think last year I comprised and put in $2 or 3K.

*find and deposit refund check for some unused guitar lessons that I paid for in advance last year. So psyched that the teacher sent me a check in December, but now I donít know where it is!

*figure out if I can return about $300 worth of clothes that I bought in December to a Ralph Lauren outlet. Would be awesome since Iíve never worn them and probably wonít. Can you say impulse purchase? Smile

*return unworn running shoes to Zappos. DONE. Thankfully I just remembered these the other day. Zappos has a 365-day return policy and I forgot that I had purchased these shoes a year ago Ė on March 1. I shipped them back on Feb 28, so Iím not sure yet whether I will get a refund or site credit. I really hope I get the refund of $80. Iíll never spend the credit!

Ok, thatís a good start. Iíll stop here. Hope everyone is having a good evening!