On Christmas day, my husband and I spent 4 hours together traveling in a car to visit his family. The kids were in the back seat watching a movie and we were in the front seat reviewing 2011 and strategizing for the upcoming year. Four hours of uninterrupted time is a luxury, so we took advantage of it. We talked through some issues and opportunities for our business and our personal, family, and financial goals.
We are still working through some numbers and there might be some adjustments in the timelines we have given ourselves, but these are our financial priorities for 2012.
Our 2012 Financial Goals
1. Finish Will.
No more excuses. Just get it done!
2. Increase our Monthly Debt Payment.
We have set a goal date of July 2015 to pay off all of our debt. This includes our mortgage and my husband’s student loan. We are very excited about the possibility of being completely debt-free and there are two things that have made it a possibility: (1) We made a very conscious decision 10 years ago to buy a house below our means and (2) we made a risky decision 18 months ago to convert our mortgage to a HELOC.
3. Increase Family Emergency Fund to Six Months Salary.
Currently, we have about 3 months salary saved, but we are self-employed and should have a six month security net. This might take us 2 years to achieve.
4. Start a Car Replacement Savings Account.
Our 2002 Honda Civic has 125,000 miles and still runs well, but we don’t want to have to take out a loan when it is time to replace the vehicle. The amount needed is yet to be determined.
5. Start College Savings Accounts for our Girls.
Our oldest daughter is in Kindergarten and we have not started to save for her higher education. My husband and I have some ideas about how much we want to contribute and we definitely need to devise a game plan this year. Do we set up 529 accounts or other types of accounts? I need to do some research on this one. Our first decision is how much do we want to save for each of the girls and then we’ll go from there.
6. Save for a Walt Disney World Vacation
We want to go to Walt Disney World in the fall of 2012 or spring of 2013. I have never been there and neither has my husband so we have no idea what to expect or even how to plan. I’m not even sure how much we will need to save. I’ll be asking you for advice in the upcoming weeks.
7. Review our Retirement.
Retirement saving has been a permanent part of our monthly budget for the entire eleven years that we have been married and this will not change. But we do need to review it more regularly to make sure we are on track to retire…eventually.
These goals are epic for us. They seem insurmountable to me as I stare at them, but they are important to my family’s well-being. These goals will not be achieved by just reducing our spending; we will have to increase our income as well. The good news about making this list is that it has given me many blog post ideas for 2012! The bad news is that we have a lot of work to do.
What financial goals did you make for 2012? Let us know in the comments.
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