Check it out here.
1. Request your credit report.
Check. It's been a few years since I've done this, so I was a little worried about what might be out there. But ours are pretty simple. Our mortgage. Our student loans. Our credit cards. And that's it. And, accurate, as far as I can tell.
The fear that we'll lose our minds some weekend and go way into debt is always at the back of my head. So I've decided I'm going to:
a) Keep only one credit card. And I'm going to lower that credit limit from $10,000 to $2,000. That should be enough to cover any real emergencies.
b) Cancel all of the other cards. There are three more. I'll let you know how that goes. Any tips?
Of course, it's easy enough to request new credit, but this is what I feel like doing right now.
2. How is our budget system working for us?
I do feel like my budgeting system works pretty well for us. Of course, it's always the *sticking to it* that's the problem, more than the actual method of planning and tracking. The cash system has done us well in this area. Our envelopes are looking kind of raggy, though. Wish I hadn't given my Crown Financial envelope system away a few years ago. (Um, the last time we did this, ha.)
3. How do I want to improve our spending habits?
Firstly, I don't want any surprises. We are already saving for next year's Christmas and tax fees and some other stuff that always seemed to catch us off guard and completely ruin our budget. Secondly, I want to stop running out of money before we run out of week/pay period/month. This has a lot to do with self-discipline, which is an area I'm continually working on (and continually falling short of my goals).
I've always had a policy of not stocking up on food. Firstly, clutter is my bitter enemy. Secondly, I like to use up what's in my cupboard because that reduces this week's grocery bill. But I think I need to rethink this policy, because if (ahem, when) we run out of money and food before the week is up, some food in the pantry would be pretty nice. During my last shopping trip, I added an extra jar of spaghetti sauce and 3 pounds of hamburger (at 1.49/pound - woo!) and 4 cans of veggies. I hope to keep doing this so that, little by little, I have a decent back-up system.
Of course my shopping spree should help this out too! :)
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Check it out here.