I posted a handful of goals for 2012 in late December last year, I like to post quarterly updates on how I’m progressing throughout the year, the first quarter update can be found here. The second update can be found here and what you’re reading is to be update number 3! Let’s do this!
I’m beginning to feel that some of my goals are outdated, I would say I’ve changed my mind but that is’nt really the case. It’s more that my priorities are changing and that I’m hitting some targets faster than I had imagined and some not at all. Personal finance isn’t just about black numbers on paper, it’s continually adapting to new and challenging financial situations.
1. My first goal; make an extra $30k. Fail. $264.40 for the year. I haven’t really tried, the goal was crazy and I think I’ll just leave that where it is.
2. Save $4,000. Done. This went to my emergency fund, progress can be seen to the right in the financial progress widget! I’m now hovering around $6,300.
3. Invest $2,000 Done. This went into an RRSP early in the year(see more here)
4. Prepay mortgage $5,000. Fail. $1,300 for the year.
5. Pay off my student loan. Done. This goal was a little sneaky, but I wanted to be able to say I hit the goal and consciously cross if off the list. I paid this off in the first few days of January. Click here to read more about that. It feels like forever ago already!
7. Graduate! In Progress… I am currently enrolled in 3 courses with one mandatory course left for January and I may retake one course to increase my average mark. I really hope I pass everything!
8. Attend Fincon12 Fail. Long story, read more here.
9. Travel Done! Belgium, The Netherlands, Iceland, the UK and with perhaps another short trip to NYC in December! More than I could have ever imagined I would do! I am very happy with this.
Let’s break it down…
With 3/4 of the year past I can say I’ve done quite well. I have achieved many times over what I thought I would and could do. I am so blessed to have been able to have traveled the amount that I have this year. Even though the total amount of time spent travelling wasn’t that much, I saw more places than most do in years, let alone a year and I am incredibly grateful for the chance to be able to do this.
Out of nine goals, I have failed three:
1. earning an extra $30,000,
4. prepaying my mortgage by $5,000 and
8. Attend Fincon12
I only want to address the mortgage issue as the other two are explained in the list above. I had been making mortgage prepayments every single month for… a year and a half? Maybe more? But I stopped in June. There wasn’t really a specific reason why I stopped, I just didn’t make the payment that month. Then I didn’t make the payment in July, then I didn’t make the payment in August and you know what? It wasn’t a big deal. Before I was really focussed on this but I’m okay with it. I feel that right now with my potential plans for next year (a possible move, change of job, selling my house) it is in my best interest to keep making my mortgage and heloc payments current, fix my house the best I can, max out my emergency fund and work on my other savings goals instead. The interest rate on my mortgage and the balance aren’t that high and I could very well be needing the cash next year so why tie it all up if I don’t have to?
My plan for the next three months
This summer I built on a new deck to my house (pics up soon!) and renovated my bathroom (which is still in progress as of the writing of this post) This and my travel has been a cash-suck and I am trying to get my finances back under control, it feels like I’ve been bleeding money everywhere. My first goal is to get this back under control, stay current on my bills and most importantly; keep saving.
I had a few paragraphs here explaining why and how and what but let’s keep it simple. I’m focusing completely on my emergency fund. The aggressive goal will be $10k by December 31, 2012. I’ll be very happy with $9k. Too many goals are distracting, I’ve definitely had too many on the go, there will be a change in my goal-setting for next year based on this experience. Until the end of 2012 though; One plan, 3 months: save save save!
Christmas is coming soon… wow. This year has just flown by, what are you focusing on in the last quarter of the year?