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Archive for September, 2013

procrastination clean up and other tidbits

September 16th, 2013 at 02:35 pm

Yikes - I opened about three months worth of mail last week and I have a lot of catching up to do. Thankfully, most of my bills are on autopay, so nothing is overdue. Apparently, I never renewed my car registration when it expired in April. Woops - I thought I did that months ago! I will renew that online today.

I found a notice that my town reappraised all properties this year and mine went up quite a bit. Ugh - I've missed the appeal date, so I will have to pay the assigned yearly property taxes that are due on October 1. I'll check to see if I can still appeal the appraisal for future years. My house has many problems and I know of others in town who were able to get their property value decreased.

Money spent this weekend: On Saturday, I dropped off my trash ($2.50) and recycling (free), and I paid my neighbor $180 for the last nine weeks of lawn mowing. There should be 4 or 5 more weeks, at $20/week, of mowing before it gets too cold, so I'll owe him another $100 next month and then will be done until next April. But I will have to figure driveway plowing charges into the budget if we have a snowy winter.

Yesterday I went to an event with a friend and spent $6.75 on a sandwich because I didn't have time to eat before we left. My friend drove, so no gas costs for me. I am running out of food, but I found some potstickers and peas in the freezer, so heated those up for a simple dinner. I've been eating a lot of apples from my backyard tree for free and tasty snacks.

Oh, I also bought tickets ($30 Canadian each, not sure yet what that will be in US$) to see one of my favorite bands in Montreal next Saturday! I'll be going with a friend and we'll need to stay overnight because the show doesn't start until 9:30p. He's financially strapped, so I'll probably pay for the hotel room. I'm fine with that, because I was happy to find someone who was willing to go with me! I'm searching for a cheap one, but it looks like a lot of frugal people visit Montreal, because the cheapest places with passable reviews on various travel sites are all booked for Saturday night.

Today's meals will be scavenged from what's currently left in my fridge/freezer. Breakfast is rolled oats, steamed broccoli, cauliflower and carrots, kidney beans, olive oil and salt. Lunch will be a "healthy" ramen noodle soup package with added frozen peas. Dinner will probably be quinoa, steamed veggies, olive oil, salt & pepper.

Spendy day and current net worth

September 13th, 2013 at 08:16 pm

I am so not ready for fall! This summer went by waaaay too fast.

I spent one week in the finger lakes on vacation at the house of a friend in June and three weeks with my mom in late July/early August helping her to recover from a hip replacement. She is almost 80 and is doing great! I am lucky that I have a lot of vacation time at my job and I was actually able to use accrued sick time for the three weeks with my mom since it was medically related. I also worked while I was visiting her, so I did not have to claim all of the time that I was away from the office.

It is 60 degrees out today, so I guess I better start facing the reality that summer is indeed over.

My job just started back in full swing this week and I am ready to revisit my finances.

Current net worth: September 13, 2013

Assets

Cash 66,911.10
Brokerage 47,836.41
403B Retirement 338,415.87
Traditional IRA 56,396.46
Roth IRA 5,001.89
House 200,000.00

Total Assets 714,561.73

Liabilities

Auto loan (2.9%) -5,427.75
Property Taxes (10/1) -1,003.82

Total Liabilities -6431.57

Current net worth 708,130.16

Not bad for a net worth. It is a little deceiving though because I need to do A LOT of work on my house. Like possibly $75,000 worth of work. Bummer. So, the next stage is to start using incoming money to save for the house projects. I already have $11,000 set aside for a bathroom renovation. I hope it won’t be that expensive. It is a small bathroom and I have fairly simple taste. But, I am counting on water damage and other hidden expenses to be found, so I padded the account so that I am ready.

Today was spendy. I prepaid for my heating oil ($1596.62) and filled up with gas ($51.10). I need to get a few items (toilet paper, olive oil, sponges) on my way home, so that will probably be about $25.

I am going to work out after work, stop to purchase my needed items, and then head home for a quiet evening.

(I just edited this post to remove apostrophes - why do they not work?)

me and my auger

September 12th, 2013 at 02:08 am

Once again, it has been a long time since I have posted. I admire the regulars!

I am so excited because I recently saved myself about $60 now and more $$ in the future by purchasing an auger (drain snake) and unclogging my tub drain. It clogs at least once a year with my hair and I hire a plumber to fix for at least $75. So, I watched a few videos on Youtube, talked to a very knowledgeable salesman at Loews, and bought a bottom-of-the-line auger. I went home and fixed the clog myself, yay! And, now I have the tool on hand for inevitable future clogs. My sink also clogs with my hair, so I am hoping that I can use the auger for that, too.

I am also excited because this afternoon I emailed all of my medical flexible spending account paperwork to the insurance company. I have already spent the $1200 (and then some) that I allotted this year, so I am collecting it now and will use it towards my property taxes, which are due on October 1. I owe $2203.82, so I will pull $1003.82 out of savings to make up the difference. I usually stress myself out and send in the medical paperwork the day before it is due in March, so this is big news!

As of September 13, my Discover credit card balance will be paid off (0% interest special expires after this month, so I wanted to finish it off). I was paying $677 (!) a month, which I think I will now direct towards my Roth IRA. Wish I could remember what that card balance represented, I have no idea what I bought!

I will hit the voluntary limit of $17,500 to my 403B work retirement account with my next paycheck and will now have much fatter checks for the rest of the year. I need to really think about how to allocate the money. Last year I just wasted it away and I want to avoid that strategy this year.

I am not a planner by nature and that is definitely a liability. If there is no plan for existing and incoming money, it just gets frittered away. If there is no plan for time, it also gets frittered away. I did not plan a career and here I am at age 49 (well, in three weeks) in a job I do not really enjoy and I have no idea what to do next.

I do feel lucky to be alive, though, especially on 9/11, so I will see if I can start learning to plan and use my resources and whatever time I have left in ways that are satisfying to me. Good night all!