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October Update – 2012 personal finance and investing goals

It’s been a little over two months since my last update on our 2012 personal finance and investing goals, so what the heck, no time like the present to share what’s been good and where we are headed for the rest of the year.

Here’s a recap of our 2012 goals:

• Goal # 1 – Pay off our LOC by end of February ($2,000).

• Goal # 2 – Starting in March 2012 (after the LOC is paid off) put $300/month as lump-sum payments on the mortgage for the rest of the calendar year ($3,000).

• Goal # 3 – Maximize both TFSAs before end of year ($10,000 in contributions).

• Goal # 4 – Grow our emergency fund by $3,000 (to $5,000) by the end of this year.

• Goal # 5 – Optimize RRSPs ($5,000 in contributions).

• Goal # 6 – Save $3,000 for a great trip in the fall/winter.

Here’s our update for October:

  • Goal # 1 – Pay off our LOC by end of February ($2,000).

At 4% interest, our line of credit (LOC) borrowing costs were rather cheap and we took advantage of this by putting almost every available cent we could find to pay off this debt.  I hate having an outstanding LOC almost as much as I hate my mortgage.  Although the journey started in 2011 to pay off this debt, the job was completed earlier this year.   Good riddance!

  • Goal # 2 – Starting March 2012 (after line of credit is paid off), put $300/month lump sum payments on our mortgage.

This goal remains a work in progress until the end of the year but we’ve made solid progress to date.  From March through August, we put $300 extra on our mortgage every month as targeted.  For September and going forward, we’ve increased our lump sum payments to $400 per month thanks to less expenditures this fall.  It feels great to be paying down the mortgage more.

  • Goal # 3 – Maximize both TFSAs before end of year ($10,000 in contributions).

Earlier this year I maxed out my TFSA for 2012.  Recently, my wife’s TFSA was maxed out for 2012 so here is another goal nailed down.

  • Goal # 4 – Grow our emergency fund by $3,000 (to $5,000) by the end of this year.

I know not everyone agrees with having an emergency fund but they work for us.  Last month, we achieved our goal for 2012 and until 2013 comes around, no more funds will be added.

  • Goal # 5 – Optimize RRSPs ($5,000 in contributions).

This goal remains a work in progress but I remain confident we’ll hit this mark now that our emergency fund has been established for 2012.

  • Goal # 6 – Save $3,000 for a great trip in the fall/winter.

This is our most exciting goal and we’re over halfway to achieving this one.  I’d much rather spend money on experiences than stuff, so travelling fits the bill (pun intended) quite nicely.  We’re looking forward to our winter vacation so to build more funds needed for this trip small automatic contributions of $50 every 2 weeks have been set up.  If we have extra money at the end of the month it will go towards this travel fund but with Christmas shopping on the horizon, our credit card bills are expected to take a hit and we’ll need the cash to pay them off.

So, there you have it…three of six goals down and just as many to go.   The next time you read my update I hope to report we finished 2012 six for six.

How are your 2012 personal finance and investing goals coming along?   Got any feedback on our goals?

Filed in: Goals & Planning

12 Responses to "October Update – 2012 personal finance and investing goals"

  1. Hi Mark,

    It looks like you’re doing a fantastic job with your financial goals. Taking a page from David Chilton’s latest book where he worries about people growing lines of credit, I think you should have (and probably do have) an implicit 7th goal:

    Goal 7: Don’t create any new debt of a any form that undermines the value of achieving the other goals.

    If you can go a full 7 for 7 this year, you’re definitely moving toward financial freedom at the same time as enjoying a fun vacation.

    Michael

    • Thanks Michael, so far, so good. That is a good 7th goal and I hope we don’t go there, any more debt. 7 for 7 this year and more of the same in 2013 and we’ll be in a good place. Thanks for the support.

  2. Liquid says:

    Pretty lofty goals, but I’m sure you can do it. You can always cut back a little on Christmas shopping to hit the savings goal for your vacation. After all it’s the thought that counts anyway right :0) I only have one financial goal to grow my net worth this year, so far so good.

    • We might have to roll back the Christmas shopping to achieve our goals. We’ll see how November goes! Thanks for the support Liquid.

      As for you, that’s a great goal and I look forward to reading more about your NW growth for the rest of 2012.

  3. Echo says:

    Nice job on the goals thus far, Mark. It’s funny that you can tell where your financial priorities lie by the order in which you’ve accomplished your goals. You take a very tactical approach, and once your debt repayment and investing goals are looked after, you save up for a bit of fun. Nothing wrong with that!

    • Thanks Robb, great to have the support. Yeah, you’re very observant. We do take a very tactical approach to saving, investing and having fun and so far, this order is working for us.

  4. Well done mate! We have emergency funds and I know what you mean about some people think you should be investing your money rather than holding on to it. Our ES is going to pay off our mortgage in the next month so that is why we haven’t put it into anything the past 9 months. We may have lost out but what can you do, we’re learning. I think you are doing great.. keep up the good work and reach for the stars!!! Mr.CBB P.S.. where will your trip be to?

  5. Steve says:

    Nice Work, Mark. When it comes to money you have to have a balance between having a life and paying off debt. Trips are very important to help expand our knowledge and awareness of the world and help us to enjoy life.

    It would truly suck if we all we did was work and save money then suddenly die without enjoying our lives.

    “All work and no play makes Homer something something”

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