2017 Financial Goals – August Update
For the last few years, I’ve posted some financial goals on this site…so we have a hope of realizing them. I figure you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Then again, goals can change over time. Sometimes the path you’re on needs to be adjusted. Then again life just happens and changes anyhow. More on that in a bit.
Before I touch on our 2017 goals, essentially our long-term financial goals boil down to these two biggies:
- A paid off home; and debt-free thereafter
- A $1 million investment portfolio
We dream big here on My Own Advisor…and why not! We figure the combination of both goals above should set us up nicely for an early retirement or at least provide some financial flexibility many years from now. (In addition to these assets we will also have two small-modest workplace pensions (~16 years’ worth each) and government benefits such as Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security to draw from in our 60s, and beyond.)
To achieve these two, monstrous, major financial goals (while living our life and having some fun along the way) we establish some short-term goals, including these ones this year:
- Do not to incur any new debt.
- Maximize our Tax Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs).
- Make double-up mortgage payments.
- Save $5,000 for a vacation.
- Save $5,000 towards a new car.
- Top up our emergency fund.
Here is where we are at folks…
- Do not to incur any new debt. I had my doubts about this one earlier this year, namely because I wasn’t sure if we could afford a newer car but we managed to pull it off. That said, we may be taking on more debt later this year (or next year?) if we purchase an income property. We’ll see. More on that soon.
- Maximize our Tax Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs). Goal long since accomplished! We maxed out contributions to our TFSAs earlier this year, in January. In fact, that is our goal every January and we have plans to do the same in 2018.
- Make double-up mortgage payments. You may have read about our housing dilemma and we continue to work through that. Do we sell and buy a new place in the city? Probably can’t afford that. Do we sell and buy a resale home in the city? Do we downsize from this house? Downsizing is 100% assured – our next place will be smaller. Do we buy a rental property, with plans to move into it in a few years? Possibly. Do we sell this house and simply rent for a few years? That’s on the table as well. What does this have to do with our double-up mortgage payment? We’ve stopped it. While we continue to make more than the minimum payment on our mortgage we’ve turned down our double-up payment privileges. We’re going to use that money instead to build up our cash reserves for the next few months and decide from there. This money could be used for future moving costs or other housing needs. Besides, we can always put any money saved back onto the mortgage as a lump-sum payment.
- Save $5,000 for a vacation. Our trip to Portugal is coming up soon! Our tickets are bought and paid for. We’ve paid for our Airbnb accommodations already. Beyond what is bought and paid for I figure we need another $2,000 to cover our rental car expense, food and fun. We’ve got about $1,000 in the bank so I feel we need another $1,000 saved up so the trip can be paid for in full when the credit card bills come in. Goal remains in progress.
- Save $5,000 towards a new car. Goal accomplished and the old car is now for parts. We purchased this car and hope to drive it into the ground in another 10-12 years. (I didn’t always think this way but I think there are great benefits of buying used cars over new cars.)
- Top up our emergency fund. Goal accomplished. We keep our emergency fund at this amount. We’ll probably increase it by $1,000 next year and every other year going forward to cover inflation.
Not too bad. More work to do though.
What about RRSP contributions?
They are no longer a goal. My RRSP is out of contribution room. My wife has some RRSP room left, but not very much. We hope to have her RRSP maxed out in 2018. That would mean both of our TFSA and RRSP accounts would be fully contributed to – a huge milestone for us if we can get there in 2018.
Back to the present, that’s our update. Three of six goals accomplished, a couple more in progress but also one abandoned. Things change and we’re ready for some in the coming years with this house move; at least I’m getting more comfortable with the idea. I’ll keep you posted if anything happens sooner than later. It could. You never know. Thanks for being a fan.
How are your goals coming along this year? Do you monitor them like I do?