Heading into 2019, I wanted to take a minute to outline some of our financial goals for the year. I haven’t done a stock-taking exercise yet because that’s a bit more complicated — our financial situation changed dramatically this year. Maybe I’ll get around to that at some point.
Anyway, for 2019, here are the financial goals that I’m setting:
- $5,000 onto the mortgage, in addition to our bi-weekly payments.
How are we going to do this? I’ve already increased our bi-weekly payments by $200, which means we’ll actually put an additional $5,200 on our mortgage. I’ve saved up money in the past for lump sum payments, but find we “dip” into that more than we should. This should make it easier to get that mortgage paid off! (Maybe in about 8 years? Depends on interest rates….) My intention is to increase our payments by this amount every year until the mortgage is paid off. If you’re wondering why we’re not paying off our mortgage faster, our rate is 2.34%. Not really worth it.
- $49,000 into our tax-free savings accounts.
We’ll allocate $310 from our bi-weekly budget ($8,060), plus our tax return and some money I’ve got set aside. Our tax return will likely form the bulk of this because we had a very strange tax year (transfer value from my work pension, not all of which was tax-sheltered upon transfer). This will leave us with a little more than $20,000 of space in our TFSAs that we intend on taking advantage of over the next few years (plus yearly space).
- $6,500 for house renovations.
This comes from $250 set aside in our bi-weekly budge. We know we need a new deck this year, plus there are some cosmetic things we want to do over the next few years. This fund also serves as an emergency house fund if something comes up. We try to keep about $5,000 in the fund at all times.
- $9,000 for vacation.
We love a good vacation! We’re also live in the moment type of people in the sense that we try to be good financial planners, but we’re not interested in denying ourselves experiences today. You only live once, and you never know when you’re going to get hit by a bus.
We’ll re-visit this plan quarterly and re-assess. There’s a lot of uncertainty and volatility in the markets these days, so I’ll also keep some cash on hand to weather any difficulties or to take advantage of opportunities that may arise.
I’m curious about your financial goals for 2019 – ours are pretty “stay the course”, but are some of you planning big things, like finishing a mortgage, ending debt, etc?