Our family has dealt with financial ups and downs throughout 2012. There was a second child added, a life-changing motorcycle accident, and an impromtu move to my in-law's house. We are walking into 2013 with very little debt, unlike many of the previous years. It is our goal to pay all of our outstanding bills and move forward with buying a house. This is how we plan to make 2013 our "financially smart" year, and what the benefits will be.
Pay off the credit card debt from Christmas
In order to get everything for everyone, we needed to use my credit cards. We went about $350 in debt on those alone, and some of them carried balances beforehand. After collecting all my statements, we are about $1000 in debt to the various cards I have acquired. With two months to go before we end up with our income tax refund, the balance should drop to about $700. That will be paid off once our refund arrives, leaving us with no excess bills.
Bank the majority of our tax refund
The sad reality is without a bank account, a mortgage is impossible to get. We have been checking account free for years, but it is time to go back. The majority of our refund will be put into the checking account and saved for our down payment toward the house we are planning to buy. I estimate this will be close to $4000, if not a little more.
Create a monthly and weekly budget
We struggle with keeping within budget. Most of the time we are slightly over, but my goal is to always stay slightly under in 2013. We need to have a decent amount of money saved before buying a house, and this is the year we need to push to make it happen. Saving is key, and following a budget is the only way to make it work. I will plan out a monthly budget, along with a weekly expense budget. This will hopefully help keep track of where we are actually having the issues and allow me to easily combat them.
Right now we are considering 2013 to be our "financially smart" year, and we are prepared to make it happen. Following our budget and saving as much as possible are the two goals for this year. If everything goes as planned right now, we are headed into the best year of our lives!
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- Banking & Budgeting
- credit card debt