Friday, January 22, 2010

something everyone wants to do

save money!

however, this is EXTREMELY difficult.  i don't know how many times kylie and i have sat down and made "budget."  i mean really, it's so easy to "make" it, but to LIVE it is a different story.  but, if we don't want to live in one of these...

for the rest of our lives. (this trailer is so much more attractive then the one i live in)
considering the timeline to building our dream home

is getting shorter and shorter we MUST save money!  our plan is to build the lane THIS summer then the HOUSE the following summer.  that leaves us with only one year and six months to save, save, and save again for our house.  we've known pretty much since the beginning of our marriage that building a house was what we wanted to do.(despite the time we put an offer on an adorable cottage house in town, thank the Lord we did not get it because we were so NOT financially ready for it. but it was so cute.) but instead of saving for the last almost three years, we waited til now, CRUNCH time.  so here is our plan and what we have been doing.  i wouldn't call it a "budget" but this is what is working for us.  for the last year we've been saving all of my income.  needless to say with buying a trailer and a new jeep we cleaned a lot of that saving out to lower our loans, but hey we did it and it's done.  so, we are still putting all of my income into the savings account.  now that kylie gets paid each week we take out money for his IRA or COW(an actual cow, he abbreviates it b/c he's funny), then we take out an additional $100-150/week for savings.  each week when i get the bills i pay them off.  i don't wait til the end of the month to pay the bills.  this is really working for me.  this way i can see how much money we are needing to pay that week and i can judge how much we can afford to put in the savings.  we pay cash for groceries, gas, babysitter, and recreation.  our debit card is for emergencies and when we get in a bind at the store.  we make lists and try to stick to them as much as possible.  we shop at aldi and avoid wal-mart at all costs.  that place is seriously a place to just throw away your money.  after that, i order diapers online for free shipping and money off, we make our baby food, and i breast feed.(helps me burn 300 calories/day too! yay for a healthy bean too!)  we currently have three loans, our trailer, my jeep, and kylie's truck.  none of them are longer than two years and we intend to pay them off as fast as possible.  the trailer has five payments left and i've been paying about $100 more each payment.  i've recently started paying more on my jeep and soon kylie's truck.  my goal is to have them all paid off by house building time! we have a rental trailer and it helps to pay extra on loans and add to our savings, however our renters suck butt...bad.  they've literally lived there two months and are currently late on january rent. needless to say, the eviction notice hit their mailbox today.  thank goodness the deposit will cover the rent they owe us! today we decided that we like to order out at least once a week.  we try to avoid drive-thrus during the week, and splurge on mexican or pizza at night.  so, we decided when we have the urge we can either 1. take the money we were going to spend on food and put it in an envelope to save or 2. order the food, but still pay into the envelope.  so it's a win win for the savings.  it sounds silly but these kind of things some how work for us.  it's wierd, when there's an envelope in the freezer for certain money things, we fill them.  we have a pringles can with my tips in it for christmas spending, and cardboard log cabin for change, and $5 savings envelope in the freezer.  and we do as above.  a $5 saving is, every time you get a $5 bill you put it back.  then with in a year you can save up like $1000!  we've been doing this since november and have almost $300.  it's easy.  if i'm shopping and i buy something and get a five back i put it in my jean pocket so i won't be tempted to spend it at the next place.  for some reason it's not hard for me at all.  i literally look at that five and think of this...

because THIS is what our $5 savings is for.  a trip to disney this november with my family.  my parents are treating us to tickets for christmas, our aunt is hooking us up with a condo, and we just have to pay for traveling and food.

so, saving money is extremely difficult, but extremely worth it.  our goal is to save $20,000+, but if we only save $10,000 and have all our loans paid off, i'll be happy with that. but a low mortgage, would be so wonderful!

are you trying to save money this year for something you love?


Amy@TheLemonCottage said...

Really good ideas! I'm rooting for you to save big! (hooray for new houses and Mickey Mouse!)

I'm a big coupon user (only if we need the item)
I also send Hubs to the store, instead of going. He buys only what is on the list. Saves a lot of wasted money on junk food!
I don't go to Walmart at all, unless I absolutely have too. And if I do, I take Hubs. That way I'm not tempted to throw a bunch of crap in the cart!
We are always saving 'for the rainy day', but in truth, we've been looking and dreaming about a certain house in our town. Its an old Victorian 'mansion' well over 6,000 sq. feet. We can afford the actual house, but the $100,000 in estimates to reno the house ... not so much. If we buy the house, I really want to have the majority of the reno cost in cash. A lofty goal, but we're trying. Fortunately, the owners are waiting for us. They aren't in a hurry, and they won't sell it to anyone else. (hopefully, they'll keep waiting!) We outgrew our house a long time ago, but have stayed because our house payment/insurance, etc is very inexpensive.
Sorry for the long comment! LOL
Anyway- I think I'm going to try the $5 idea. I really like that!

elise said...

i am so happy for you, but this post makes me super depressed. we are stretched so thin that we can't really save... and we can't really do much to be stretched less... tried to refinance the house, etc and can't.
we are just trying to pick up as much side work and odd jobs as we can!
and you better shut it about the double chin, you! i have so so so much baby weight to loose, and you look great:O)

just_me_tiff said...

We are working really hard to save money too! house here we come!!

Abbie said...

oh my sis....saving. Zac and I are already poor and we just bought another trailer. I can't wait til the white car is paid off, then pay off the red car, then the trailers. I can't even imagine how long it will take for me to pay back the student loans.

Annie @ The House That Jade Built said...

Keep saving big time b/c a low mortgage is worth it in the end. I wish Jade & I had saved more than we did. However, we're in a better place now & our savings has been growing by a lot lately - working for Disney has put me in savings high gear!!