In 2005, we spent a small fortune to repair some structural problems in our house and finish our basement, installing a full bathroom while we were at it. That same year, we ended up with no maternity coverage while I was pregnant with Nate and had to spend another small fortune to get COBRA coverage.
We put all of that money on our home equity line, and we're doing fine slowly paying it down. We've gone from about 70K in debt to about 58K. It's our only debt, but we'd sure like to see it gone.
Our big challenge for 2009 is to try to increase the rate we're paying it down dramatically to a tune of $3,000 per month. This will mean reducing what we spend (duh) and chasing extra income.
Right now, Stewart works full-time in IT, and works as a professional photographer at night. He'll start marketing his photography more intensely, and also try to pick up some extra computer work for people who need some help with their home computers.
I'll have to start back with eBay, something I've been avoiding for a few months. Oh well, I can do anything for a year, right?
We'll be using Mint.com to track every dollar we spend, and we'll do our darndest to put every single dollar on our credit card (which puts 2% of purchases into the kids college funds). Since we pay it off each month, we get the benefit of the contribution to the college fund, and we get an easy way to track and catagorize our purchases.
I hope to blog every day or two about our progress, about the little things we're doing each day to keep us on track. I'll also talk about what's going on in our minds; why we're making some compromises and not others. And I'll be showing off the great deals I'm getting at CVS, Harris Teeter, Target, and Giant Food!
Is anyone else having a big yearly challenge? What are your goals for this year?