During my first of year of blogging I was doing a monthly recap showing where all of our money went for that month. I think that is a very important piece to paying off debt, holding ourselves accountable, and inspiring others. If you don’t know HOW we were able to put X amount of dollars towards debt, how will you benefit from it?
Well this year I have been bad at showing the recap, like really bad. I only did it for January. So I decided that better late than never will have to do. I want to do a recap of the first half of the year. I am going to make it as quick, short, and concise as I can but still highlight the big parts.
These first three months we brought in a lot of income. Some of it we got to keep, some of it covered the costs it took to move to Italy; which the Air Force pays for so essentially we just gave the money right back.
If we were smart about things though, we could definitely benefit from some of the extra money we receive for moving. The house deposits in Italy are really large (ours was 2800 Euro), so the Air Force gives us an advance that we don’t have to pay back until we leave Italy. This allowed us to put more money to debt now, saving us on some interest.
We also sold some stuff, like Cory’s computer, which brought it an income.
Can’t forget about tax returns either!
There was definitely a lot of unexpected expenses that came our way as you can see. We didn’t really know what to expect in Italy and when to expect it. Luckily we were able to cover them and still come out on top.
One of the bigger expenses we had was furnishing our new home. We ended up with a duplex that has 3 bed/2.5 bath and two living rooms. We only had furniture for one living room, so I set a budget of $3500 for all big items that we needed. This included stuff for the kitchen and bathroom, as storage is very limited in a lot of Italian homes.
I was proud we came in under budget! There are still a lot of little things we need, but we are trying to be crafty and make a lot of things on our own. We will see how that goes.
Cory also bought a new computer screen, but he sold his other computer in order to buy that. Fair trade, I suppose!
The next three months show a more accurate depiction of our income.
I am handling our traveling budget a bit different than everything else. We had $3000 set aside for a honeymoon we haven’t been able to take yet. Well, since living in Europe is a honeymoon in itself for us, we decided to use that money for a lot of little trips. Every month I budget $500 for usually one trip. If we go over that, I transfer the difference from our savings. Some months have been pretty close, others not so much.
The money that we transfer from savings I count as “income.”
We currently have $1141 left in savings for trips.
We were still getting other little things for the house, so household was still pretty high a couple months.
The biggest expense would be the motorcycle. Cory has two motorcycles and hasn’t been able to ride either of them since we have been together. It was time. Especially being in Italy. We were forced to register one, so if we were going to pay for it and pay for insurance, we might as well utilize it.
Sidenote: We weren’t forced to register the other one because it is literally in a million pieces as he is patiently waiting to rebuild it when we are out of debt.
We, and by we I mean Cory, had to fix a couple things on the motorcycle so we can safely ride it. We also invested in good motorcycle gear. That, in total, was about $1600.
The most important question. How much of our money has gone towards debt in the first 6 months of the year?
I am really proud of this number. I am very thankful for the military and moving to Italy, because that helped us out a lot!
Last year we put just under $40,000 towards debt. We are about to blow that number out of the water!
Are we on track to reach our yearly goals?
Our overall goal for 2016 was to put over $50,000 towards debt. We are roughly $15,000 away from that goal.
I broke that down into little goals.
The first one being paying off my federal loan by May. We accomplished that early.
The next goal was to reduce the Parent Plus loan to $15,000. That loan currently sits at roughly $35,000; therefore, we need to pay off $20,000 more by the end of the year.
When I first made that goal, I didn’t take into consideration interest. Of course interest changes things a little bit.
Well, I finally found a payment calculator that breaks things down. It shows the beginning monthly balance, amount paid, amount of interest charged and end of month balance.
Assuming that calculator is correct, we will have to put at least $3600/month towards the Parent Plus loan for the next 6 months. That equates to $21,600 which would bring us to $56,844.97 for the year!
I think it will be close, but I think we can do it!
How was your first half of the year??
Check out our debt progress here.