Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Changes to our finances
Over the past two weeks, my wife and I had quite a few changes to both our lives that will significantly impact our finances. For this reason, I wanted to give a quick update to all of my readers out there to keep you in the loop.
First, every year around this time my company goes through performance reviews. I have mentioned before that I am a Project Management Analyst for a government contractor. With that being said, my company has done some considerable downsizing over the past three years and as such, the money has not been there in the form of raises. Last year I received a 1.25% raise. However, my responsibilities grew dramatically shortly thereafter so I asked my boss for a raise. To my surprise, I received a 20% raise! That was a substantial jump in income that I am still very grateful for. This year, I continued to show great work ethic and was rewarded again. I received a 3% raise which was above the company average of 1%. I was satisfied with this increase because of the jump just 6 months prior. Plus, 3% more on top of the latest salary is a lot more than had I received 3% on top of the old salary.
I just paid off the last of my student loans by taking a pretty good size chunk of money out of our emergency fund so for the time being, I will not raise my investing level. I am going to build the emergency fund up to the level it was prior which should take about 2 months.
Now for the really good news! My wife was very unhappy at her job working for the state as a social worker. For the past 3 years she has always told me that her dream job was to work in a school and deal with kids. No traveling our to clients houses, no court hearings, just enjoyable work. So last week, she accepted a job as an in school social worker that is just 15 minutes from our house. She tripled her commute (last job was just 4 min) but she has had a huge smile on her face the past week. I have been very hesitant for her to leave the state because the medical benefits are amazing and in just 7 more years she could have a pension when she gets to retirement age. I have turned her away from 3 or 4 jobs because of the reasons above and the fact that it would have been a pay cut.
Well, this job has the best of all worlds. This new job allows her to do what shes always wanted. The job pays $3,000 more than the state job. The health insurance (just for her, since I will be going back on my companies healthcare) is just as good as the state. They pay her $40 towards her cell phone bill every month. And finally, there is potential for her to earn up to $10,000 in bonuses every year!
The past 2 weeks have been pretty incredible for us. After 2 months of saving money towards our emergency fund, I look forward to getting on the grind again and keep investing. I will probably raise up our biweekly investing by 5%. 3% from my pay raise and 2% from my wifes.
With 8 months to go, we are half way towards our $40,000 investment goal so stay tuned to see if we hit it!