Long time no check in!
Short story that took a majorific LOT of work... On 6/24/11 we sold our three story house and downsized into 3 bed 2 bath condo. Paid cash. Moved. Still debt free!
Went on vacation on 8/13-8/20. Home. Still debt free w/$130 still in the vacation fund to apply to next year's vacation.
The condo we bought is in a nice gated quiet community. One story unit with very nicely done courtyards front and back and no neighbors upstairs. Security guards make the rounds several times a day. Some one else does all the yard work & outside maintenance. Pool is just across the walkway. Very close but far enough not to hear any noise. All bills paid except electricity in the presently very reasonable HOA fees of $290 a month. Showers are already geezerhood ready w/nice handbars and a low threshhold, etc.
We are very happy with the major decluttering that took place to get here. Many items went to auction, given to friends and family and lots of Craigslisting and ebaying went on and many many trips to donate to the Goodwill!
Paying cash for the unit has run us to the nearer end of the bottom of our cash position, so that will have to be re-beefed! Still have not begun to withdraw any $$s from retirement funds and don't expect to have to for quite some time. Paying the HOA fee & electric bill by autodraft is making life pretty simple. Now I just have to pay the CC bills which I still payoff monthly. The unit is all electric so that's a switch that I'm having to get used to, but so far the two electric bills I've received seem reasonable enough.
Hubbie just turned 65 this month and he made it to Medicare with no major medical mishaps which would've likely wiped us out financially as we had no medical coverage for him. Hurraaaaaaay for him on all counts!
For you new folks who don't know me - I just want you to know that saving and being in anticipation beforehand of life's financial events can turn out okay for you! Don't give up!!! Budgeting may be a pain in the patumpkus at first but the benefits are worth the effort.
Well, folks that's all the current news fit to print. More again later if I think of it. If it seems as if I had abandoned you all, I apologize. Life was just too too busy to even think about much computering!
Viewing the 'The Hubster' Category
Long time no check in!
We've been looking for a new cabinet to go over the stool in the bathroom remodel. The one I had up there was an antique-y looking one (crackle paint & old hardware) and Hubster thought it time for something else for prospective buyers. Ehhh.
The ones at the big box stores look like crap and they wanted at minimum $115 plus tax for them. I had checked at three different stores and nothing looked any good and the prices seemed awfully exaggerated for what you were getting. No sale.
CashHappySon and I went yesterday to metro area to do some banking and while we were there I thought we might as well take a chance and look at Habitat for Humanity's resale Store where they sell old and new lumber type items. Score! I wasn't exactly sure it would work so took Hubster over there today and we found the closet doors we also need for another room and the right cabinet. Total for 2 solid wood louvered closet doors and a bathroom cabinet? $16.28. Yippy-Ya! Lurv a good bargain.
I will have to repaint the cabinet, but I don't mind - I'd much rather do that than overpay for something ugly to begin with. I'll try to get some pics of the before & after looks to post later.
Also, I will likely take the old cabinet to the junque' booth and sell it at a good profit. It'll be all profit as I got it for free to begin with.
This past week - we've met with and ordered from our plumbing contractor a new bathtub and surround, which will run about $1610 installed. Had to do it - the vinyl bathtub has been cracked for awhile (whoever installed it before we bought the house did not get the concrete base down correctly) and the tape job Hubster did to keep it from leaking was an okay short-term fix, but it's been needing doing, so we're biting the bullet. One less thing for potential buyers to balk at.
I went earlier in the week and bought the new hardware for the shower and replacement matching faucet for the sink, new towel hooks, toilet paper holder, new toilet seat, flush handle, valves, doo-whichies and doo-ma-bobs, etc. to the tune of $400.
Waving bye-bye to $2000 not so fun necessarily, but something we have saved for, so nothing debted for.
While I was at the big-box lumber store I was happy to see that to just buy the stuff to do the tub & surround in the materials we chose? $1474 plus tax, so it is very much to our advantage to have someone who knows what they are doing being the wrecking crew & installer instead of us. Cost difference is minimal - $136!
Boys and Hubster working hard on the yard this week. We got another load of the ice storm firewood to Dad, and there are probably 8 or more loads left! I bought my crew ice cream sundaes last night to the tune of $11 and change. Ordered a birthday DVD gift for $25ish yesterday off ebay.
Since I was last here...I've been on a weeks vacation in NM and AZ w/the parental units visiting family, then my brother-in-law passed away unexpectedly, then another week's vacation in Missouri w/FrugalSon as Hubster stayed home to be with his sister, then my older brother passed away and we had his funeral.
Many of you may remember my posting about the last time he was in hospital...COPD and diabetes. Give up smoking now and save your family some grief later, okay?
We then spent some time cleaning up brother's affairs and then we (Hubster, FrugalSon and CashHappySon and I) went on another vacation, this time to Arkansas. Now, I'm back in my spot, hopefully for the summer and can catch up with you guys here on Saving Advice dot com!
Vacations? All paid for in cash AND I ended the travel season w/$60 left to put back in the pot for next year's vacations. YEAH for advanced anticipatory budgeting! It works.
Another financial event of note is that while we were gone on the last trip Hubster's final tier of unemployment benefits have ended. We are now totally going to be dependent on our retirement savings, Social Security and his carpenter's pension. I think we've got life covered, but it may run close at times. Saving MORE while you're working? Always a great idea!!
DONE-1)Shower, Dressed, Makeup, Breakfast & Vitamins.
DONE-2)House checking & Money Markets checkbooks balanced.
DONE-3)Stop an old autodraft before 1st.
DONE-4)Add new autodraft that will cover auto insurance, house insurance and house repairs their monthly pro-rated amount that we set back. To-do's numbers three & four are the result of insurance shopping that Hubster took care of for us - nice savings included! It paid for us to shop around - our new insurer is AAA. Twice the coverage and about $500 a year less cost! I'll take it! Auto insurance was due for renewal 11/30 so that's all spent, but there should be about a half of a year refund coming in on the house insur.! Old Agent - Send it!!
DONE-5)Set up CC payments for Dec - 56.14 & 23.15 balances on two cards. We never carry a balance any more. EVER. 69 days TOTALLY DEBT-FREE and counting!
DONE-7)Recharge camera batteries.
DONE-8)New entry here showing my spare bedroom BEFORE & AFTER pics. After repainting the bed and investing in different bed-linens.
DONE-9)Clean out purse.
DONE-10)Sketch out painting idea for Jeffrey's Penny Experiment.
DONE-11)Get old comforter & shams listed on Craigslist.
12)I've been eyeing the closet in the spare bedroom. The clothes/shoes/stored items all need to come out and the walls & shelves in there need a coat of paint. Actually while doing that I need to 'encourage' Hubster to help me change the way the shelving is in there to add some more up top storage - we now have a LOT of wasted space. There is probably wood in the attic that could be used to add some more simple storage shelving. He's not up yet - he'll be thrilled with this idea - NOT!!!
The reason I want to get into this closet is there is a bunch of his parents' stuff that needs going thru and either shared with siblings or gotten rid of. So far, it's just THERE, overlooked and neglected, as it will stay unless I press the issue.
This is their jewelry, his Dad's coin collection, and family photos. I feel bad - he has two sisters who could be enjoying some of their Mom's jewelry. The coins and Pop's jewelry could possibly be worth something as well, and they could all probably use a small cash influx right about now, and the family photos ought to be shared.
13)Work on FrugalSon's & my personal (not House) budgets for 2010.
Okay - that's today's direction. Here we go!
Yesterday was a No Spend Day for the housebudget. Well, it was no-spend if you don't count that we popped off and invested in ING's 2% CDs yesterday. I don't consider that 'spent'. AND, while I had planned to pay yesterday for the meal out w/family, you can't beat my Dad to any restaraunt and pay first. He's a sweet little pain-in-d'patumpkus that way!
The whole way there I was encouraging Hubster to speed up or he'd beat us there and have already fixed it up with the cashier. Sure enough, he was there first. If I'd of been driving, we MIGHT have made it there early enough, but Hubster drives like your Great-Grandma on a handful of downers! I have to read in the car or go further C.R.A.Z.I.E.R. than I already am!
Found out yesterday that Dad will likely be having cataract surgery within the next month or so. If it's on a Friday, sister will drive him. Any other day of the week, I'm his chauffeur, and I'll need to budget gas money for that. Glad to do it - he often takes long driving trips to make his living/playing, it's worrisome enough for my 78 year old Dad to be out driving cross-country, so at the very least I need for him to be seeing well! He doesn't have to keep working, but does like a mad-man. He's a very hard worker.
The Emperor will have no new clothes. At least not for awhile. Up to my eyeballs in calculator tape revamping the Frugalis Family housebudget. Better hope Santa puts clothes on the list for those here who need them as there is no room at the inn for new clothing. Being up in the air over the possibility of healthcare coverage for Hubster sees me throwing all extra dollars into the Medical category until we find out exactly what kind of coverage we'll be able to get.
Nope, not Hubster, he has better knees.
Today has been a No Spend Day.
Yes, we paid off the house, but those dollars are going into future house repairs or updates. For now.