I feel compelled to report that nearly $3,000 more went into our checking account in May than out. I feel compelled to do so because my two prior posts on our month’s expenditures both detailed more money going out than in.
Just last month, I reported that $11,000 left our account while $9,500 made its way in and back in February, I reported $9,000 added with $10,000 flowing out. Writing those got me thinking: how can more money always be leaving our checking account than coming in? Would not logic dictate that eventually your funds would be depleted if that continued to be the case?
That is why I was pleased when I went over last month’s bank statement. For nosy types, exactly $8,322.17 left our account and $11,046.56 went in, a mathematical difference of +$2,724.39.
As my last post reported, we did eat out quite a bit, so we did not really cut back in that regard. We also made another $2,400 payment to our son’s college, which we blessedly do not have to do this month or next, our next payment due August 15th for the fall semester.
Also, I continued paying myself and my wife first, sending checks to both of our Roth IRAs last month.
Just because of timing, this plus-$2,700 is a little skewed. It includes two work-related reimbursements for me that total around $900, but not the credit card payment that I submitted early this month or next month’s bill that I will have to pay in early July. If I do this post next month, we’ll most likely return to the minus category again. Month-to-month probably is not the best way to measure our family’s cash flow at this point, but calculating it for the whole year would give my brain a cramp.
It would probably show about one hundred and twenty grand coming in, with the same amount going out. Are we living high on the hog? Hardly!
I drive a rusty 1998 Subaru station wagon that teenagers, co-workers and neighbors laugh at. My wife drives a 2006 lemon Chrysler minivan without air conditioning. We still have tube TVs. Despite our daughter’s protests, we have cheap pay-as-you-go phones. We do not travel to any exotic locales, although that is one thing that I would like to change.
What we do is strive to pay for our son’s entire undergraduate college costs. We shelled out about $25,000 during his first year, and still have almost $80,000 in his college accounts, so we should be able to cover his undergraduate costs without him taking on any debt. I am getting close to $100,000 in our daughter’s two college accounts as she gets ready to start high school this August.
I have also sent money to my wife’s and my Roth IRA accounts sporadically for years, but now send a payment to one of the accounts twenty-six times per year, every other Friday when we are paid. This past week was no different and I sent $300 to my Blue Chip Growth account with T. Rowe Price.
Blue Chip Growth [account #]
Tele*Access code: 50 Ticker: TRBCX
Date Description Amount Price Shares Shares Owned
6/08/17 2017 CONTRIBUTION -ACH $300.00
6/08/17 Ending Balance $14,827.33 $88.0300 168.435
It should be noted that I have a similar amount in another T. Rowe Price fund, the Capital Appreciation fund, in my Roth IRA, so my balance is nearing $30,000, not just under $15,000. Truthfully, that is at least $100,000 short, perhaps $200,000 short, of where I should be at as I near the age of forty-seven.
For many years, my thought was that I should rely only on my pension when I am able to collect it, and we did not have any “extra” money for me to send to my IRA, since I was supporting my family on my income only, as it rose from the forties to the fifties and so on, until it passed the $100,000 mark a few years ago.
So please don’t judge me a cheapskate because of our cut-rate cars, phones and television sets.
My financial goals are to support my family, pay for as much of our children’s educations as possible, remain gainfully employed and save more for retirement.
I realize that it is rare for $2,700 more going into our checking account than out last month, but I sure liked that it happened at least once this year. I know that six months from now in December, I’ll be singing a different tune.
Probably sooner than that.