Budget, Savings

How To Save Money For A Mid-Range Goal

I am not a fan of borrowing money, so it’s important that I plan for and save for mid-range goals.  I would define a mid-range goal as any major purchase or expense that I might have to make in the next 2 to 5 years. Right now, we’re focusing on saving enough money to buy a newer automobile for me, some new furniture for our youngest child, and a sprinkler system for our lawn. Obviously, some goals are more important than others.  An automobile is more necessary than a sprinkler system.  We try to create a list of reasonable goals, incorporate that list into our monthly budget, and save accordingly. We only began to save for mid-range goals after we…

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Budget, Money Management

I Spend One Day Managing Finances And Then Enjoy The Month

My current system for managing our household finances is super-simple.  Here’s the entire process: Monthly Review On the last day of each month, I review that month’s budget, income, and expenses.  I make a note of any budget overages or shortfalls  I also balance our checkbook. Budget Creation After reviewing our budget, I create a zero-based budget for the upcoming month.  Usually, the changes to the monthly budget are minimal, but it never hurts to review and fine-tune. Income Deposit My wife gets paid on the last day of the month, and I get paid on the second Monday of each month.  I wait until the first Tuesday of each month and deposit both checks in our local bank. Income…

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Budget, Money Management

Creating A Financial Timeline

The goal of the financial timeline is to plan for future major purchases. I define a major purchase as any item costing more than $1000. My financial timeline focuses on purchases to be made in the next 5 years. I create a list of items that I plan to purchase.  I am careful to consider items that might need replacing, such as the dishwasher or refrigerator, larger items like a newer automobile or lawnmower, and convenience items like a new laptop or even a pool for the backyard. I estimate the cost of each item.  This is, at best, an inexact science.  I want to be sure that when the time comes to make a purchase, I have saved enough…

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