Progress to Date

  • Original Loan Amount: $204,000.00
  • Balance at Beginning of 5-year Goal (1/1/08): $188,983.82 @ 6.00%
  • Balance at Refinance in February 2009: $148,000.00 @ 4.625%
  • Outstanding Balance: $0.00 (PAID IN FULL!!!)
  • Latest Payment Date: April 2011
  • Latest Additional Principal Amount: $17,623.22
  • Amount Ahead of Schedule (since refinance): $121,462
  • Time Ahead of Schedule (since refinance): 7 years 10 months
  • Interest Saved Last Month: $23,972.48
  • Total Interest Saved: $28,435.55 ($1,037.74 on original mortgage; $27,397.81 on current mortgage)
  • Months Remaining in 5-year Goal: 20
  • Average Monthly Principal Needed to Meet Goal: N/A (Goal achieved)
  • Progress List Explained

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Not Very Stimulating

I was expecting to receive our stimulus payment by May 16 based on this payment schedule, but for some reason it hasn't arrived yet. According to everything I've read, we should have been eligible for the direct deposit because we filed our tax return on time (in March), didn't exceed the income limit for joint filers, and had our tax bill paid by direct debit (which went out in early April). Of course, the IRS website has a disclaimer stating that "A small percentage of tax returns will require additional time to process and to compute a stimulus payment amount." Either we're part of that small percentage, or else we're getting the payment via paper check for some reason that isn't clear to me.

In either case, I've had to modify the budget for the next few months to exclude the stimulus payment. For now I'm going to assume we should have it by July if we are due a paper check. I'll keep monitoring the payment status using this page for the next few weeks, and may resort to calling the IRS if I don't get any answers. Until we receive it, I'm not counting on the stimulus payment for anything. If and when it arrives, we'll use it to pay down our mortgage balance. I am earmarking only $1,000 for our next extra principal payment as a result of the delayed receipt (previously I had been targeting at least an extra $2,000 per month).

We had some inquiries about the car this week, but it's still sitting in our garage. It's nice that we aren't in a hurry to sell, because we don't have to take lowball offers or feel pressured to work with unreasonable buyers. I'm still confident we'll find the right person to take it off our hands in the near future.

I still haven't received the final figures from our April mortgage payment to determine whether the extra principal was applied to April or May. I hope to know by this time next weekend. By then it will be almost time to make the May payment, and I want to have the right numbers in place on my spreadsheet. Yes, I am a big nerd.

Last week I changed the tube on the rear wheel of my bicycle because it had caught a small nail and was slowly leaking. Just like last time, the internet saved the day. There are a bunch of good how-to videos on sites like YouTube covering all sorts of bicycle maintenance. Although it took a bit more effort than a front tire replacement because of the chain and gears, I'm pleased to report another "do-it-ourselves" success (the wife helped out this time). Total cost of the replacement was about $4 for the new tube. I saved the old tube and plan to buy some patches at some point so that we can always have a backup (patched) tube on hand for future flats.

May is turning out to be an expensive month after all. We had a big vet bill for our dogs' annual checkup, including shots and medicine. I hope we can cut back our spending in June, because we're going on vacation in July and will be spending more for gasoline and related travel expenses.

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