By: Revanche

My ship has come in

October 3, 2008

The long-awaited quarterly check has arrived and I am positively stoked.

I am so close to having six months of living expenses in the Emergency Fund!! As soon as I have at least $1000 in the mini E-fund, my plan is to [finally] close the real E-fund to all non-critical withdrawals.

All the bills for September have been paid and I still have $1300 in the Expenses fund. With the deposit from the quarterly, I have enough for October’s expenses on October 2nd. All paychecks earned in October will continue to add an allotted amount to the Exp. Fund, but I won’t be waiting on them to pay the bills. Holy cow, I could pay the entire month’s bills on October 1st. I won’t, of course, that’s not the point of the cushion. The point is that I could if I needed to. Whew!

So I discovered a few things wrong with my math. The quarterly is for the past three months of work [July 1st-Sept 30th], so plotting the total expenses against income through the end of December means I come up short, ie: depleting most of the expense fund by year’s end.

What I need to do is fund the supplemental portion ahead of the next three months. In other words, instead of taking July-Sept money, and only setting aside three months’ worth of income to make up shortfalls from July-Sept, I should set aside enough for July through December. Then, I’ll be covered and still have the cushion in place through the end of December. Then the last quarterly check of the year [Sept through Dec] funds the various accounts that I’d previously planned for this check: Savings, Insurance, Car Maintenance, Travel, Moving, etc. That means I’ll be funding it for 2009, at the end of 2008! This makes much more sense.

All OT can now go towards other sub-expense funds instead of just savings and expenses. I expect an insurance bill in November and I don’t quite have enough for that yet, so OT will fund savings and insurance for the next month and a half.

Also, I’d goofed on the October paychecks, so I have to rewrite the plans for 4 paychecks in the next two months, not three. And actually, now that I’ve fixed the above problem, that third paycheck can come at any time, it’s no big deal.

It’s very strange budgeting on a hybrid [half regular-half supplementary] income. The supplemental is scheduled and the amount is set, so it shouldn’t be difficult, but I haven’t done it so very well since this started. Might I now be starting to get the hang of it?

Perhaps I’ll even get my September snapshot in order now that I’ve reconfigured the economic landscape …

5 Responses to “My ship has come in”

  1. Karen says:

    Yay! Again, I’m impressed with your savings.
    Sorry to hear about your miscalculated 3rd check. I’m paid monthly so no extra checks for me!

  2. Sense says:

    why is there a quarterly check again? is this from work? like a bonus?

    You are so organized with all your bill planning and savings! Then again, I guess you have to be, but I am still very impressed that you can keep this up day in and day out all year!

  3. Revanche says:

    karen: Thanks! I’m really looking forward to when that savings becomes *real* savings for keeps, not for spending later.

    sense: The quarterly check is (long story short) because instead of just upping my actual salary, the higher-ups preferred to lump-sum it. It’s weird.

  4. You have such detailed plans for your money! So… there is a mini-efund, an efund, and an expense fund? And a cushion?

    Well anyway, your savings sounds like it is going really well! Nice work. OT rules

  5. Revanche says:

    stackingpennies: I don’t know if I need such detailed plans because it’s a personal thing, or if it evolved because of the complications of trying to keep family/personal finances more separate. chicken? egg?

    Yeah, the emergency will be for job loss and major medical problems. The mini efund will be for minor problems that are always popping up, usually family related, and come up every few weeks. I can’t even really call that an efund, they’re not emergencies, they’re just problems/loans that aren’t accounted for in cash flow. And the cushion is for cash flow which is really important because I don’t want to jump right into my emergency fund if I lose my job.

    Doin’ my best!

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