February 2019 Recap

Hi, friends!  I can’t believe it’s almost March already.  Weather-wise, it certainly doesn’t feel like it in South Dakota.  We’re still battling bitterly cold, negative temperatures and new snow accumulations what feels like every other day.  There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it will be great to experience some spring-like temperatures soon.  Before I know it, I’ll be complaining about the heat and humidity so I’m trying to not rush away winter too fast. 🙂

February was a high income month for me, mostly thanks to teaching two online homeland security courses, which pays $1,200 every two weeks (that’s almost as much as my full-time job!).  I’m going to miss having two courses the second half of the semester!  I’ll only be teaching one instead.  I also had a few mornings of nannying and some Facebook sales of miscellaneous household items that helped bump my income as well.

I did not travel at all in February, with the exception of visiting my boyfriend twice (he lives about 150 miles from me), which is pretty normal and a minimal cost.  My other spending was also fairly standard this month.  I’m still on my organizing kick, so I ordered another $120 worth of bins from The Container Store.  Thank goodness there isn’t a physical store near me, because I would spend WAY too much time and money there!  I ate very few meals out this month, so the lower spending combined with greater income allowed me throw quite a bit of money at my savings goals and debt.

I received my tax refund and spent it according to plan – $800 went to my travel fund and $1,712 went to my car loan.

I almost spent $8,000 on a new furnace this month.  Yikes.  My furnace maintenance company contacted me because they were running a special on some extra inventory they had.  They were offering up to $3,000 off on furnaces, which seemed like a great deal, until I realized they were only offering that on their $20,000 models.  No thank you!  For a more reasonable AC and furnace unit, I was quoted $8,000.  I was giving it some serious consideration but when I told my boyfriend about it, he said, “So you’re going to spend $8,000 to replace something that’s working just fine?”  That really stopped me in my tracks.  Damnit.  I hate when he’s right.

My unit is about 22 years old, so it’s getting up there in age, but it’s still rather efficient and (knock on wood) I haven’t had any issues with it.  I have a maintenance agreement with this company so they service both my AC and furnace once per year.  If/when a serious issue is found or one of the units just stops working altogether, then I will look into having them replaced but in the meantime, it’s an unnecessary expenditure that would completely drain my savings.  It just goes to show that we all need a little reminder sometimes we all make mistakes, no matter how dedicated we are to our goals, and it’s nice to bounce ideas off another sensible person!

My net worth increased from ~$69,000 to $74,000.

Here’s an update on how I divided up my leftover income for the month:

  • To Auto Loan (50% of my leftover income): $1,601.12 – I now owe less than $3,500 on my vehicle!  I bought my vehicle brand new in 2015 for roughly $30,000 with a five year loan.  Ouch.  We live and learn, but I’ll be happy to have this paid off early and I plan to keep this vehicle for several years to come.
  • To Emergency Savings Fund (25% of my leftover income): $800.56 – To truly be comfortable with my emergency savings fund, I would like to have about $20,000 saved up, which equates to about 5-6 months of living expenses for me.  So far, I have nearly $6,000 in a high-yield savings account.
  • To Home Savings Fund (25% of my leftover income): $800.56 – I have been spending quite a bit out of this fund lately due to some basement renovations, so I wanted to replenish it a bit more.  I now have about $3,800 in the account.

I don’t expect anything crazy for March, so hopefully I can stay the course!

Have a great week!

~Autumn

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