Tuesday, January 15, 2008

taking time for large expenses

So I finally bit the bullet. I have been putting off the purchase of a table saw for about two years. I have always been tempted but kept thinking it through. But last night I finally went and purchased it, $500 on my rewards card, a $500 write off. I am a self-employed carpenter by trade, so it was only a matter of time.

Big expenses, all expenses, need thought and research. Always make sure you think about your purchases and research them well before you splurge. There is so much information and knowledge on the web about products. After all my research and price comparisons, it was beneficial for me to buy "locally" (out here that is an hour away!).

Well hope you all have a great day, and THINK before you spend!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Paying VS. Saving

This is a topic that comes up fairly often, and is something I have given much thought too. Which is better, to pay off your debt, or to begin saving money?

Paying off your debt tends to be a better option on paper due to the fact that most debt is above the average returns from investments. As such you will end up with more money if you can pay off those debts first.

But for people just getting into the mindset of improving their financial standings, saving and investing is an important habit to begin.

As you can see by my last post I have small investments that I contribute to regularly which has gotten to be a habit. I spend more each month paying off debt than I do investing, but at least I have started the process . It is important for me to be able to see positive growth in my finances to keep me motivated. $50/month towards my IRA and $100/month towards my stock/etf's is not much, but it is a start. Over this next year I plan to increase each to $200/month.

My Savings account is set up for multiple reasons. The first of which is to provide me with my Emergency fund. I am a self-employed carpenter and as such need cash that I can use in case of personal injury which could put me out of work. This account is also my catch for the tax money I will owe come April 15th.

Good habits with money is what we all strive for. For myself I needed to set up these avenues to save and invest for the motivation and security they provide. Paying off debt first would be better short term, but for long term goals it pays to begin forming your habits as soon as possible.


Habits are something which take time to form and even more time to break. In march of 2007 I had a wedding to go to back on the east coast. I showed up with two maxed out credit cards ($8000) and $175 cash in hand. That was all I had. The tux ran me $160 and I had $15 left to my name. This was the point in my life that I realized I had habits that needed to change. So I began my financial quest to get back on my feet. through the last 9 months I have made great strides to clean up my mess. So here is how my finances break down:


$2300 savings
$1700 checking
$332 Roth IRA
$1500 HSA
$675 stocks/etf's
$157 Prosper

$6604 Total


($2700) Credit card
($15200) Truck
($7800) Medical Bills

)$25700) Total

NET WORTH ($19,096)

So there you have it, my starting point for this blog


So one more personal finance page eh? I am writing this as a creative outlet for my thoughts and processes with money. It will be a way to see how my own ideas and financial standings change through time. I am also hoping to make a little money with the site as well.