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Loan Updates

November 12th, 2019 at 10:42 am

My TSP loan balance is now lower than my auto loan balance. The original amount of the TSP loan was more than the auto loan, but I am paying $250 every two weeks for the TSP loan & only $150 for the auto loan. The TSP loan will be paid off in approximately 20 pay checks. Once I'm no long paying $250 every two weeks towards my TSP loan I can add that $250 to the auto loan. Both interest rates are very low, so it may make more sense to put it towards the credit card debt, though I like the idea of owning my car outright sooner rather than later.

401k Limits Increase in 2020

November 7th, 2019 at 11:31 am

As I mentioned in my now deleted blog entry due to the hacking, the IRS will/has announced higher retirement plan limits in 2020. You will now be able to contribute $19,500 to your 401k and catch-up contributions for those 50 & older has increased to $6,500. No change to the IRA limit.

Multiple articles linked below for your reading pleasure:

https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/retirement/irs-raises-retirement-account-limits-for-2020/ar-AAJXoWD?ocid=spartandhp

https://www.journalofaccountancy.com/news/2019/nov/irs-inflation-adjustments-2020-retirement-plans-201922407.html

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ashleaebeling/2019/11/06/irs-announces-higher-2020-retirement-plan-contribution-limits-for-401ks-and-more/#1f285dc533bb

https://money.usnews.com/money/retirement/iras/articles/ira-contribution-limits

https://401kspecialistmag.com/irs-bumps-2020-401k-contribution-limit-to-19500/

ETA:

Biweekly contribution for the 401k:$750
Biweekly contribution for catch-up:$250

Ugh, we got hacked?!

October 12th, 2019 at 05:03 pm

I wondered what was wrong when I couldn’t access the blogs. I’m so sporadic with my posting, but I actually had a few good entires that got lost. Maybe I can somewhat replicate them later on.

Money Diaries

April 5th, 2019 at 03:07 pm

I love readings money diaries from Refinery 29. Check them out at:

https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/money-diary

Retirement Savings Article

April 3rd, 2019 at 09:23 am

The GAO has released a report on the rate of retirement savings at the request of Bernie Sanders. It's still shocking to me no matter how many times I read pretty much the same thing.

https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/697898.pdf

The numbers don't quite match up, I calculated 101% with the percentage breakdown. Savings rates have slightly improved, but still, what is to be done? More personal finance education for children? Is it a lack of education or a lack of income? Probably both. When you consider that this survey is for Americans 55 and older, the picture gets even scarier.

2019 Tax Season

February 17th, 2019 at 11:44 am

Apparently I’ve landed myself in retired blog status due to not posting for 3 months. So an update is in order.

It’s that time of year again: tax season. A time of year that I don’t particularly look forward to as i’m Sure to owe taxes again this year. Thankfully, this year will be in the hundreds instead of the thousands. The much hyped middle class tax breaks netted me little & I will miss some of the lost deductions. Oh well, there are worse things to happen than to be gainfully employed (two jobs even!) and to owe a little in taxes.

New Retirement Plan Limits

November 4th, 2018 at 09:42 am

The IRS announced new retirement plan limits on November 1st. The 401k limit increases to $19,000 and the IRA limit increases to $6,000. For those under 50, you can contribute $1000 more to your retirement accounts next year. Both plans were projected to increase & it's nice to know that it's official. For those of you that contribute biweekly you'll be contributing $731 per period for your 401k(if you choose even distributions) and $500 a month to your IRA.

Im looking forward to meeting my max once again next year. Although the market has had a rough year, I am still committed to contributing up to the IRS limits.

Home Maintenance

September 2nd, 2018 at 08:22 am

I'd really like to get back to building up my savings again. My savings accounts were depleted in an effort to pay down debt, but I'd like to have that assurance of having something set aside again. Also, after more than 12 years of owning my own home it has belatedly dawned on me that I really need to have an account for those unexpected, yet expected, home repairs & maintenance costs.

2019 Budget

August 18th, 2018 at 07:39 am

I have already started to work on my 2019 budget with estimates of an increase in my retirement plans as well as an increase in pay. My pay should go up in January even if an annual raise isn't approved, because I am due for an increase due to my pay schedule. Retirement plans may increase $1k in contribution limits, but my pay should increase at least another $2k, hopefully $3k if an across the board increase is approved.

Retirement Plans in 2019

August 18th, 2018 at 07:36 am

I have read predictions that both the 401k and IRA limits will increase by $500 next year. It will be nice to be able to save an extra $1k next year. I will make the adjusts accordingly in December, when the changes are signed into law.

Goals Accomplished

August 18th, 2018 at 07:35 am

Over the past couple of weeks I have met many goals on the path to debt repayment. My mortgage is now under $65k and I have 50% equity in my home. My auto loan is now under $10k so I now owe 4 figures rather than 5 figures. My TSP loan is now under $13k. In July I paid off my federal taxes owed. I'm most relieved to have paid off the federal taxes owed. Hopefully, the adjustments that I have made to my exemptions were sufficient for this year.

Taxes Paid Off

July 28th, 2018 at 07:12 pm

This week I sent off the final payment for my federal taxes (including the late fees & penalties). This year I owed over $4k, which is a much larger amount than I've ever owed. Last year was an unusual year with income that I didn't anticipate. This year will be less income, but I still decreased my exemptions to 0 at both jobs. I don't anticipate another 6 figure year for 2018.

I have been working a lot of extra hours at my full-time job, but there is no overtime pay involved. I earn hours to take off later. I don't have strong feelings about not getting overtime, but it would be nice if I did. I've raided what little cash I had to pay off the IRS. However, I will enjoy the extra time off later when we get past our inspection.


No other new news on the personal finance front. Things are the same, but I'm happy to see some bounce-back in the stock market, for however long it holds.

Catching Up & Checking In

June 9th, 2018 at 01:13 pm

A few weeks ago I wrote a pretty long blog summing up my past few months & it appears it was never posted. Don't you hate when they happens?

My last entry was in February & since then the following things have happened:

Took a trip to Greece & New York in March. It was a wonderful experience, perfect weather in Greece. I got to experience my first St. Patrick's Dqy parade in New York & take in some great Broadway shows including the preview shows of Mean Girls & My Fair Lady. Also saw, Chicago which never gets old.

I filed my taxes and owed over $4k. Ouch. I'm on a 120 day payment plan & have to pay it off by the end of July. I knew I would owe, but wasn't planning on paying nearly that much.

April was fairly quiet. Last month I had two deaths in the family, one expected as my grandmother was in the final stages of dementia, and the other unexpected as my younger cousin died suddenly. It was a rough couple of weeks there.

I'm hoping that June will be better.I am not planning on taking any trips this summer. I am preparing for my biannual lab inspection & planning some fun in between working my two jobs.

I have a couple of trips planned for the fall, to Seattle & Vancouver, and possibly a winter trip to NYC.