Home > Finally, able to do some planning!

Finally, able to do some planning!

November 21st, 2011 at 05:09 am

The past 2.5 years have had so many ups & downs, with a long bout of un/under-employment, two pet final illnesses and my mother's final illness, that I just gave up the ghost on trying to plan ahead, and I racked up a lot more credit card debt than I am comfortable with paying for veterinarian bills, some major plumbing & other house and car repairs, and travel between my east coast home and my mother's west coast home.

I've been at the new job three weeks, and today I logged in to the payroll company and got a sneak peek at my next paycheck, which will actually be direct deposited on Wednesday. Because I'm salaried, each of my future paychecks will be the same (except that health insurance contributions are likely to go up come January, and the Social Security tax withholding is scheduled to go back up to 6.2% from its current 4.2%.

Knowing what I'm making, what I own, what I owe, and what I expect to inherit when we close out and distribute the assets from my mother's trust next summer allowed me to actually make some reasonable plans for the first time in a long time.

The first year will be tight, because I have a lot of debt payment going on. Nonetheless, I'm contributing 5% of my pay to retirement because it feels so good to be able to contribute again after not having been able to for 2.5 years!

When the trust distributes next summer, I will be able to pay off the balance of the debt, and increase my retirement savings. I'm also going to take a chunk of the expected distribution to put away for a new car and roof replacement, both things I expect that I may have to do within the next 3-5 years. Plus I'll also leave some of it accessible in a taxable account as an emergency fund in case I become unemployed again. Anything that's left after that I'll probably put towards retirement.

I also downloaded a preview of the tax package that I use at home (TaxAct) and ran the numbers on this years' anticipated taxes. This year, I'm in the 15% tax bracket and next year I go back to the 25% bracket, so I need to think about whether there's anything that, given that fact, it would be advantageous to do this year rather than next (maybe a second pair of glasses, since I definitely was way over 7.5% on Schedule A for medical expenses, given the fact that I paid my own insurance for 11 out of the 12 months this year.

What a massive relief to know that there is light at the end of the debt tunnel. I've been hoping and praying that this would happen, but now is the first time that I actually can begin to *expect* that the nightmare of debt will end.

3 Responses to “Finally, able to do some planning!”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    I'm so glad you get to start making future money plans!! Very exciting.

  2. Amber Says:

    You'll be fine, you have a plan that sounds doable and I am sure by the end of next year you'll be doing the happy dance

  3. Jerry Says:

    I wish you the best with your money planning, and it does sound like there was a lot on your plate to lead you legitimately away from these kinds of things. Don't worry about it, and just use the fresh start as insurance to keep things rolling in the right direction. Good luck!

Leave a Reply

(Note: If you were logged in, we could automatically fill in these fields for you.)
Will not be published.

* Please spell out the number 4.  [ Why? ]

vB Code: You can use these tags: [b] [i] [u] [url] [email]