With the second quarter starting it is time to dust off the old play book and make some revisions. Too late to get the Leafs in the play offs but not too late for me to score some big points against my HELOC.
Sometimes I think of the HELOC (currently owing $7,529) as a competitor that I have to beat. The rest of the time I think of the HELOC as a heavy weight that pulls around my chest that I must drag everywhere I go.
Most of the time I think that the competition is against myself and that when I revise the financial play book for the second quarter of 2014 it is to keep me in the game, to keep me focused and to keep me moving forward. Keeping your head in the game is what it is all about. Money is all about emotions and sometimes I need one of those sport’s psychologists to keep my head in the game.
There will be no savings this quarter because I need to continue to hack at the HELOC. I am contributing up to the match for my work pension. I will never let free money go even though I could use the 4% of each cheque that I contribute to get the maximum employer match of 2%.
Minimal Spending Needs To Continue
I tried a no spending challenge during the first quarter but my love of salty fried stuff and ice cream took me off track. Some days my cravings are stronger than my resolve to save. Haagen dazs now makes a salted caramel gelato. Many days my cravings are much stronger than my resolve to save.
The Yard Sale Pile Is Growing
In conjunction with spring cleaning I am gathering items for a yard sale. I am planning on keeping any money from the sale to treat myself to something (not ice cream) because I need a few treats. This goes against my attempts at extreme frugality but I am trying to raise the money for treats separate from my 40 hour per week. Life without treats and fun can be pretty dull and knock you off the savings path pretty quickly.
I had hoped to replace 2 basement windows in 2014 but I will have to bump that to 2015.
I have a foundation repair that I can delay until 2015 too. All the money is going to the HELOC so everything will have to wait until 2015. I will be buying 2 cans of stain when it is goes on sale. I can pick up 2 cans for about $60.
HELOC Repayment Schedule
Repaying the HELOC by July 4, 2014 is my big goal. ( http://solvingthemoneypuzzle.com/2014/01/26/can-a-canadian-celebrate-heloc-freedom-on-independence-day/ ) With only 8 pay cheques remaining until that day and with only $500 to $600 from each pay cheque available to throw at the HELOC the most I can hope to get from that is $4,800. I am facing the very real possibility that I may miss my goal.
I am relying heavily on my tax return and my son’s tax return (he owes me $1,900) to get me closer to the goal.
I have another secret weapon that I can pull out if I need to. I receive 3 pay cheques in May and I can put the entire $1,350 third pay cheque on to the HELOC if things are moving too slowly (the tax returns turn out to be small). I would have to skip paying bills that week and I wouldn’t have any cash for anything including gas for my car but at this point I am getting pretty desperate and I am willing to try anything.
There is a problem with putting an entire pay on to the HELOC. All my bills are broken up in to 26 payments to match my 26 yearly pay cheques. That would mean that I would be have to make up those payments in July. I would not be so far behind that I would suffer penalties from the utilities. That would mess up my plan for the second half of the year when I have planned to save $10,000.
The accountant has had the tax information for a full week now and the suspense of knowing how much the refund will be is torturous. The amount of my return will make or break my plan for Q2.
I am waiting for the accountant to call but not exactly prepared with how to deal with the news of a very small refund messing up my debt repayment plans. If the accountant’s call is not good news I will have to deal with the fact that I will miss my goal and I will have to come up with a new plan that drags the debt out for a longer time and sinks my savings plan for the second half of 2014.
Staring at the phone is not making it ring faster.