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Update on personal finances

November 18th, 2009 at 01:49 pm

Boy, housebuying experience last year really jump-started me into being serious about finances. Before house I was really on cruise control, just saving nearly half my paycheck and blithely paying the bills.

Now, there really is a place for every dollar, and for every dollar it's own place. I have to set aside appx $2000 each month for combined mortgags, taxes, insurance and association fees.

$500 is set aside each month to pay bills and such, though that number is flexible. I used to put nearly all leftover money into my brokerage, but now that I am a "slave to the house" I feel the need to have money at hand in case of house emergencies. And yes, I've discovered house accidents (overflowing toilet was the latest) do happen. So I try to keep a minimum $1000 in the local bank.

I also started making regular contributions to my Roth IRA. I'd taken out $10,000 to go towards homebuying, and the automatic contributions(something I probably should have started long ago)started because I wanted to "repay" my Roth IRA.

For whatever money is leftover, I was putting it towards rebuilding my emergency fund. I'm happy to say that I've reached my goal of saving $15K (or about 6 months expenses). Now, any leftover money goes into my brokerage. It's not too much, but I do feel confident that over time I'll have more money that can go towards investments.

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