Furnace fund v debt

New to YNAB, about 3 months. Am really struggling with too many savings  categories v debt.  I end up spreading thin to meet them all, and not making real progress. 

My furnace is starting to get iffy. Had a quote of $7k, by a company upselling me who I no longer trust. It needed cleaning, not replacing. 

I have started a "furnace fund," because eventually it wont be bs.  (Really, you are going to pull that on a mechanical engineer who works at the gas company?) At my current rate of contribution it will take 5 years, assuming that price is ball park.

For debt, I snowball. Pay off 1, then add that payment to the next. etc. I will have paid off the "next debt" in less than a year. Then there is the next one, but that will take longer. 

So am realizing I am inclined to pay off debt above everything. I hates it. At the expense of things that will be needed, like the furnace fund. 

Tips for getting over myself? How do accept that the furnace is actually important too when the debt is costing money? 

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  • It is human nature to want to do all the things and have them all done yesterday.

    YNAB encourages embracing true expenses even before debt pay down. The philosophy being that funding true expenses reduces the likelihood you will have to take on future debt.

    For this particular category-given the  timeline-contributing small amounts may be sufficient for right now.

    Scarcity helps you dial in your priorities. And having to make the decision where to budget available monthly tests those priorities regularly.

    Ask yourself is paying down current debt faster more important than funding this true expense category?  

    Like 4
  • I say fight the devil you know. Even IF you have to use credit to pay for a furnace down the road, you will have saved interest in the interim.

    Like 6
  • I had to spend 10k on a new hvac and replacement ductwork throughout in Summer of 2018; going w/out AC in FL is not an option.  I had to put it on credit; it has been so frustrating b/c I cannot ever seem to get ahead of being 10k in debt.  It is nice not to have to worry about heating and cooling though. I would not do it until absolutely necessary.  I spent a few hot days and nights coming to terms with my payout.  That was rough.  Good Luck, and hopefully you will find a reputable service; that also helps the medicine go down.  

    Like 1
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 3 mths ago
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      Violet Router Keep at it! You will eventually dig out and start saving in the other direction. Been there, done that. We are rooting for you!

      Like
    • Violet Router I carried about 1200 in personal debt for YEARS, even working with YNAB, and FINALLY have been able to hack it down this year. SO stick with it, you will get there, even if it takes a while.

      Like 2
      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
      • 3 mths ago
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      Violet Router You can do it, just keep YNABing and don't lose hope.   Every month YNABing gets you closer.

      Like 1
    • Melissa
    • Routinely questioning every assumption I have about my budget, my spending, and my savings habits.
    • todays_mel
    • 3 mths ago
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    👋🛶 Me waving to you from a similar boat…

    I’ve been struggling with this also: too many savings categories, too little extra money. Here are my Long-Term Savings categories:

    • Auto Replacement (17 years old)
    • Auto Repairs (see above)
    • Home Repairs (A/C unit is 19 years old)
    • $7k Medical Debt; it's on a 0%-intro rate credit card, which expires March 2021.
    • Loss of Income
    • Unpaid Days Off (no holiday or sick pay with my employer)

    I asked myself which one of these was causing me the most stress: I have a stable job in a stable industry (so far), my elderly (17 yo) car is still chugging along (and I'm only 2 miles from work, so walking is an option), the A/C unit is working even with 110 degrees days already, and I haven't had to take any unpaid sick days this year. So the answer is the medical debt - I do not want to pay interest on it if I can avoid it. I've already paid off $10k between 2018/2019 of previous medical debt, so I should  be proud of that. But having this last bit hanging over my head is what causes me the most sleepless nights. This is my only other debt except for my mortgage.

    So I'm with you in; the debt is my biggest priority right now. I'm still saving for my true expenses, but these long-term items are on simmer for the time being and they'll get whatever "extra" I have no matter how small that amount is. I was able to throw my tax refund and COVID stimulus towards these, so that helped too. 

    (I should note that since the medical debt is on a 0% rate, I'm paying a little over the minimum, and stashing the rest in a Savings account to earn interest until I have to pay it off. So worst case is that I would pay interest on whatever the balance is at the end of the 0%-intro rate in March 2021 rather than the entire $7k.)

    Like 2
  • I've found that I am better able to sustain focus on my goals when I narrow down the list and pick one to focus on, then tackle the next, then the next, and so forth. That could mean setting interim goals, like save $3,000 toward a new car, then pay off the $7,000 debt, then save $2,000 more toward the new car, and so forth until I accomplish everything.

    I also try to monitor my long-term progress on that goal and all the others, so that I can look at the full timeline graph and see how money diverted elsewhere (say, an unexpected medical bill) does not completely cancel out the progress I've been making.

    Like 3
    • Gold Pilot Thinking of going this route. Doing the math, I could get debt paid off + furnace fund done in 18 months.

      At my current rate of savings, doing all things at once, that would take 5 years. My savings rate would go up eventually as the debt burden lowers/other goals hit, but I'd still be competing with my other budget categories. 

      Think I will pick a goal and throw everything at it, within reason. Will get there faster, as long as I prioritize the savings goals appropriately.

      Like 2
      • Melissa
      • Routinely questioning every assumption I have about my budget, my spending, and my savings habits.
      • todays_mel
      • 3 mths ago
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      Gold Pilot said:
      I've found that I am better able to sustain focus on my goals when I narrow down the list and pick one to focus on, then tackle the next, then the next, and so forth.

      It's interesting that you mention this! I was playing around with the total funds available from all of my long term goals yesterday evening which equals $6632.11. That's $367.89 less than the $7000 I owe on my medical debt by March 2021. I guess I knew that I had around 6k sitting in my savings account, but I was focusing on the individual categories with their walled off funds and not really noticing how much that all added up to.

      When I moved all those dollars into the MD category, I realized I'd be able to fully fund it when I get paid next Friday, 6/12. June is already fully budgeted for all of my immediate obligations, variable and true expenses, so I'll be able to reserve the rest of that 6/12 paycheck, plus the entire 6/26 paycheck towards my July budget. 

      Beginning in July I'll set up a goal for the next highest priority (loss of income) and start tackling that with any left over funds I have after budgeting for my immediate, variable and true expenses.

      And if anything comes up that I'd need to cover unexpectedly, I'm comfortable knowing I can roll with the punches and reallocate the dollars needed from that medical debt funds to whatever category needs it.

      Like 2
      • Gold Pilot
      • Gold_Pilot.4
      • 3 mths ago
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      Melissa It definitely takes some tinkering and different scenario modeling to determine whether you can take things one goal at a time, but as long as you can avoid taking on extra debt if surprises pop up, I think it works well.

      Like 3
    • Melissa Wow! I am so happy my little furnace question helped you get out of debt faster. Given the week we and world has had that means something. Congrats to you!

      I have decided the furnace can functionally wait until I get the home equity loan paid. Credit card was paid off this week.  :D 

      Picking a priority, getting there, and moving on to the next makes sense to me.  Covering the basics, and hitting the goals don't have to happen all at once. 

      Like 3
      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
      • 3 mths ago
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      Melissa This is one of the powerful psychological tools that Dave Ramsey does skillfully take advantage of in his baby steps.  He has you focus on one thing at a time.  It may not always make the most mathematical sense (he suggests people not invest in their 401k, even to the match, while getting out of debt and building an emergency fund), but that strategy works for a lot of people for better motivation, that combined with his gazelle intensity cheerleading.  I am in the same boat, I have enough in my Emergency fund now that I could pay off my debt and then just start building up my emergency fund again. 

       

      I may just do that at the end of June, (I got a 1% bonus on my savings at Ally but the money has to stay in until the end of June) and then start funding my emergency fund again, which is what I would have left and then I would essentially be following Dave's baby steps, but with a pause because of the Coronavirus.  I'm not sure if I'll do that or not, now that my savings interest rate is 1.25% and my debt is at 5.85%, it's starting to feel lame paying 4.6% for the security of that cash sitting there.  I can always start saving again as soon as I pay off my debt, and I had less than that saved before I started the baby steps, so it's not like I would be in worse shape.  But that cash also feels so nice right now.

      Like 1
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 3 mths ago
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      PhysicsGal Not getting your 401k match is horrible advice. We're talking about a 100% return on your money.

      Like 5
      • Gold Pilot
      • Gold_Pilot.4
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      Superbone said:
      Not getting your 401k match is horrible advice. We're talking about a 100% return on your money.

      Superbone It would be terrible advice if humans were entirely rational and you could safely assume they would save the same amount of money in either scenario. However, Dave Ramsey assumes that when you empty your savings accounts down to 1% and stop 401k savings, the scary “this is a debt emergency” feeling that inspires will then lead you to accelerate your debt pay down rate by many novel means. So that in the end, you actually get more return on the “investment” of laser-focused debt pay down (and subsequent behavior shift away from accumulation of future debt) than you would have earned via the 401k match. I have to admit that there is a lot of truth in that perspective, although it’s hard to swallow. 

      Like 1
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
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      Gold Pilot Yeah, I'm not swallowing it. One thing has nothing to do with the other. We'll just have to agree to disagree.

      Like 5
      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
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      Superbone I've never followed that particular advice of his, and I dropped his plan at some point and started following my own plan, but my retirement account at work is mandatory so I couldn't even if I wanted to.  And I get 200% return on my money, I put in 5%, they put in 10%.  It's the best retirement deal I've heard of and I wouldn't give that up to get out of debt faster unless it was a serious emergency and doing that could stop a bankruptcy or something like that.  Although if the retirement account is protected from bankruptcy...

      Like 3
      • Purple Foal
      • Purple_Foal.3
      • 3 mths ago
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      PhysicsGal I agree. Keep contributing to your retirement with the employer match. But everything else can go to debt. You are denying your future self some security. In the present, you need to pay off everything that your past self spent. :)

      Like 2
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 3 mths ago
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      Superbone Yeah, it's not swallowable. The interest rate of the debt would need to be greater than employer contribution / (employee+ employer contribution) -- the instantaneous ROI on the employer match while still accounting for opportunity cost of the employee contribution that could have been used to pay off debt, because you can't pay off debt with employer contributions and you can't get employer matching contributions without making your own employee contribution.

      So contributing to get a full match with a 1 to 1 match would result in needing a debt interest rate of > 50% to break even on paying off debt.

      Like 3
      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
      • 3 mths ago
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      Purple Foal My past self didn't "spend" myself into debt, my past self had to get out of an abusive marriage and it costed me $15k, plus lawyer's fees, plus living expenses while I stayed somewhere else because he got to stay in my house for 6 months (while I paid all the bills and gave him money so he could sit around and be lazy and not work) while he delayed the divorce.  I wish I had actually enjoyed getting myself into debt with fun stuff, although life without him in it is definitely a huge huge huge improvement, so yeah, worth every penny, but it would have been better if I had avoided the entire experience.  

      It could be worse, could be medical debt for a chronic condition still plaguing me. Most bankruptcies in the USA are from medical debt, actually.

      Like 4
      • Purple Foal
      • Purple_Foal.3
      • 3 mths ago
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      PhysicsGal I'm sorry to hear that. My HELOC is also the aftermath of a nasty abusive divorce & all the emotional spending that went with it (plus not living within my means). That is why getting rid of this debt is important to me & clearly that is also your focus. You've got this. You'll get rid of it and move forward. Talking about it & purging the emotions that go with it will also help you heal & move forward. It's taken me 9 years. 💕

      Like 2
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 3 mths ago
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      PhysicsGal Wow! That's awesome. (The double match.)

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    • HappyDance
    • YNABing consistently since 2014
    • HappyDance
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    PhysicsGal said:
    This is one of the powerful psychological tools that Dave Ramsey does skillfully take advantage of in his baby steps.  He has you focus on one thing at a time. 

    I agree wholeheartedly. When you find yourself in the black pit of despair, you struggle to find a workable solution.  If setting out on a  multi-month trek through the barren landscape of Mordor with only determination and faith to guide you, it helps to have a proven and endorsed step-by-step plan that has successfully worked for others. DR's steps are frequently cited but are certainly not the only map around.  Another one that's very popular is the personal finance flow chart from the Reddit community, and it considers the minimum amount for retirement matching to be a non-debatable essential. Link to the US-specific flow chart: https://i.imgur.com/lSoUQr2.png

    There are also variants of this flowchart for Australia, UK, Canada, EU, Ireland, and New Zealand, link to main page where you can find those alternatives is here:  https://www.reddit.com/r/personalfinance/wiki/commontopics#wiki_the_flowchart

    Source: Reddit community, https://www.reddit.com/r/personalfinance/

    Like 2
      • Purple Foal
      • Purple_Foal.3
      • 3 mths ago
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      HappyDance Interesting. So according to the steps 5 & 6, I should be saving 15% of my pre-tax income before paying off low interest debt. That seems really high. Paying off all debt is saving. Even though my debt interest is 2.47%, on 26k it is still costing me $50 a month. My goal is to get rid of my debt in 2 years and then start using that money for investing. Other books/podcasts have said to get rid of debt before investing. I am saving $100/month for longterm savings to get into the habit but the debt is my priority. :)

      Like 1
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 3 mths ago
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      Purple Foal 

      Purple Foal said:
      So according to the steps 5 & 6, I should be saving 15% of my pre-tax income before paying off low interest debt.

       Not just saving. This is retirement money intended to be invested. The expected long term rate of return on invested money is closer to 8%. Paying off low interest debt instead of investing has a huge long term opportunity cost.

      I have $293k of debt at 2.625% interest. My mortgage. I am in no hurry to pay that off before investing. The annualized rate of return on my brokerage account which is only 4 years old and inclusive of the recent market crash is still over 6%.

      Like 3
      • Purple Foal
      • Purple_Foal.3
      • 3 mths ago
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      nolesrule Good distinction. Yes I invest my money for the future rather than just putting it into a savings account. I invest my $100 monthly (dollar cost average) into 4 diversified index funds. I'd like to invest more but right now my debt is my priority & will have a huge positive psychological impact when it's gone. I'm lucky that my pension will be enough to live on, especially when I don't have this debt or mortgage, so my goal is to be debt free before I retire. :)

      Like 1
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 3 mths ago
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      Purple Foal 

       IMO, the important element for success isn't so much selecting the perfect plan but in selecting the plan that you can work and that you can stick to, because it is the sticking to it until done that is the most important part.

      Like 6
      • B's Gambit
      • bs_GAMBIT
      • 3 mths ago
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      nolesrule This thread is quite interesting and has caused to me to rethink my saving/payoff plan. Nolesrule, if I may ask a question... Say you had a loan that you owed $35,500 on,  payments were $865.00 per month and the interest rate was 3.49% . Supposing you had the cash (new cash, no jobs given yet) would you invest the cash or pay the loan. 

      More to the story. 20% pretax to 403(b), 18% post tax to taxable investments for the next 5 years then assuming all values equal and no life changes 10% to taxable investments. 

      I'm in the process of refinancing my mortgage, the thought of 30 years is making me crazy, but the math on the investments makes so much sense. Trying to determine if the same would apply to the above situation.

      Thanks for any input.

      Like 1
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
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      B's Gambit 

      B's Gambit said:
      Supposing you had the cash (new cash, no jobs given yet) would you invest the cash or pay the loan. 

       How much extra are we talking about?

      I'd probably split it to some degree. Maybe round up the payment to the next $100 increment and invest the rest.

      I've always rounded up my mortgage payment (despite saying I don't pay extra, but rounding up isn't much). it let's me feel like I'm doing something without actually doing much.

      Like 1
      • B's Gambit
      • bs_GAMBIT
      • 3 mths ago
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      nolesrule said:
       How much extra are we talking about?

       The total amount, $35,500

      I round up my payments too, but only to the nearest 5 or 10, I should probably push that a little.

      Like 1
      • PhysicsGal
      • Nerdy female homo sapien
      • physicsgal
      • 3 mths ago
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      HappyDance It's similar to healthy lifestyle changes, what works for you that you can stick with is the best plan.  A better plan on paper that you won't stick with isn't better.

      Like 4
  • It is really hard when it feels like you are being pulled in so many directions. I've started using the wish farm method to at least list out the things I want, even if I don't fund them. I can slide them up and down in the wish farm category so that I can keep an eye on them and what I'm working towards when extra money comes available.

    As far as the debt goes, if it is costing you money, then yes, I would focus on that (especially if you can eek out a few more years out of the furnace). I would also explore options that can bring the interest down as well, like zero percent balance transfers. The less the debt costs you the faster you can pay it down.

    The only other thing to remember is that funding your current expenses is really the first priority. If you don't, then you end up with debt, which is what you're trying to get out of. The game changer for me was looking at my averages in the categories that tend to fluctuate - primarily our power bill, groceries, and gas. If you have some history in YNAB, then you'll be able to see what your average monthly spending is, and that alone helped me to make sure I was properly funding things so that they were covered and reduced my need to move money around dramatically. Now that I have been working with that method for a few months, our budget is much more stable, and we've made more progress on the things we want and need because of it. And there's been no more stress with the power bill arrives. Generally it's already completely funded, and that feels SO good.

    Like 3
    • farfromtheusual 

      I'm not sure if you have this option, but for both the water/sewer bill and the electric bill I've enrolled in what is called "budget billing"; they send me a bill for the same amount every month. It has made things so much easier and less stressful than opening the bill and wondering if I budgeted enough that month, based on a guess from what we used at this time last year.

      Like 1
      • Superbone
      • YNAB convert since 2008
      • Superbone
      • 3 mths ago
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      Boy Do INAB The other day, I opened my water bill and electric bill at the same time and I was shocked!

      Like 3
      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 3 mths ago
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      Boy Do INAB It's quite easy to roll your own "budget billing" in YNAB. I do that for the various utilities as well as Auto Gas, Kids Activities, Lawn Care, and anything else that varies seasonally. Basically, you just budget a minimum of the average (yearly total / 12) and cover any overspending if you happen to start when expenses are higher than average. I put "(avg)" at the end of the category name to remind me, and I recompute the average once a year (around tax time).

      Like 1
      • Purple Foal
      • Purple_Foal.3
      • 3 mths ago
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      dakinemaui I budget the highest amount for my electricity (gas is equal billing) and am pleasantly surprised when the amount in my eBilling is lower& I can WAM the money elsewhere. Although since covid, the provincial government made the electricity rates at the lowest peak rate 24/7. Saying that, WFH w 2 kids online actually make my bill go up by $10 at the lowest rate. 

      Like 1
    • Boy Do INAB I do this within YNAB and keep the money in *my* pocket instead of in the power company's pocket. In our area the power company is KNOWN for pulling out MORE than their fair share to cover your "budget" billing, and then sometimes you get a refund eventually, and sometimes you don't.

      Once I had enough longevity living in our house, I reviewed the average spending on the power bill (I waited a full year to check the reports), and then I just budget half of the monthly average every pay day, and I haven't had to struggle to pay a bill since.

      Case in point, the power bill just arrived yesterday, and the total is $122.85. There was already $89.09 sitting there funded that wasn't used last month, and since the BF's pay check hit this morning, I added another $65.00. So it's already at $154.09, which is more than funded for when it is due at the end of the month. Right around the time it's due, there will be another $65 going in it, in preparation for next month's bill. I never have to worry about it being enough.

      To me this is way better than giving the power company an "average" and hope they get the numbers right in my favor. They can just as easily "owe" me money, as they can come back and say "oopsie, we didn't charge you enough, now you owe a LOT more" out of the blue.

      Like 1
      • Bruce
      • Software Engineer
      • Bruce
      • 3 mths ago
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      farfromtheusual 

      farfromtheusual said:
      To me this is way better than giving the power company an "average" and hope they get the numbers right in my favor.

       I should probably look into doing this.  I currently am on the "budget" plan for both Gas and Electric.  It might make sense to get off of that, and do the average myself.  Maybe I'll do Gas now, and wait for Electric until after the summer months, when it's not so high because of A/C use.

      Like 1
      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
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      Bruce I've always wondered if you switch back would you get a refund? I can't imagine they are not front-loading things (just as you would in YNAB). To be fair, they might give a "rate adjustment" after the month of maximum drawdown.

      Like 1
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 3 mths ago
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      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 3 mths ago
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      @Bruce, given bill amounts for the last 12 months, you can calculate how much should be Available to be "on-track". (I'm happy to do this calculation for you, as well.)

      This is the kind of goal I had hoped YNAB would have implemented by now. People have been asking for it since launch. The canonical example is a Birthday category, but this is an identical application.

      Like 2
      • nolesrule
      • YNAB4 Evangelist
      • nolesrule
      • 3 mths ago
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      dakinemaui Where I lived in NJ we used budget billing on the natural gas. It appeared as a credit balance on your statement when they were holding too much. I would assume that they would just consume the credit over time if you turn off budget billing. Once it was used up you started owing money again.
       

      Like 2
    • Bruce I don't know what they'll do at this point, but I am sure you are probably ahead on averages (they're going to protect their investment, naturally), so you might have a credit for a month or two. I would expect that you shouldn't be paying more than their average per month, so you've already been putting that away on a regular basis. Can't hurt to give them a call and see what they say, worst case you stay on it for a while more. Best case scenario you find out you do have a credit, and you roll with the credit while setting aside the money until the credit is gone which should pad out your funding enough that you can maintain it.

      I'm curious to know what happens!

      Like
      • Bruce
      • Software Engineer
      • Bruce
      • 3 mths ago
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      dakinemaui 

      dakinemaui said:
      Bruce, given bill amounts for the last 12 months, you can calculate how much should be Available to be "on-track". (I'm happy to do this calculation for you, as well.)

       

       I'll take you up on that:

      Gas: Currently have a credit of $203.81 (not sure why, but I'm not complaining.)

      May 2019    -    $48.77                    June 2019    -    $44.58

      July 2019    -    $40.22                     Aug 2019    -    $38.05

      Sept 2019    -    $40.11                    Oct 2019    -    $40.15

      Nov 2019    -    $46.73                    Dec 2019    -    $81.51

      Jan 2020    -    $87.83                    Feb 2020     -    $92.18

      Mar 2020    -    $89.28                    Apr 2020    -    $67.31

      May 2020    -    61.66

       

      Electric: Currently have a Credit of $24.00

      Jul 2019    -    $120.73                    Aug 2019    -    $123.69

      Sep 2019    -    $119.09                    Oct 2019    -    $118.64

      Nov 2019    -    $85.39                    Dec 2019    -    $80.01

      Jan 2020    -    $98.69                    Feb 2020    -    $65.94

      Mar 2020    -    $74.94                    Apr 2020    -    $77.28

      May 2020    -    $83.26                    Jun 2020    -    $50.82

       

      Hopefully the formatting doesn't get messed up when I post this.

      Like
      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 3 mths ago
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      Bruce The gas company is definitely holding more than they need to. If this was all in YNAB you could recoup the excess ($143), but as it is, your only option is to just budget less until the surplus is used up.

      Gas: budget $43.82 / month in June 2020 through May 2021, then $60.80 (the average) starting June 2021. The credit will be used up first, building a surplus in the YNAB category, which will dwindle in the high winter months to $0 in May. You start building a surplus again in June. (However, I'd recommend that you re-compute the 12 month total ending May 2021 for a better estimate for the contribution level in June 2021 onward.)

      Electric: You're actually a little short, so you have a choice:

      a) budget $101.79 June 2020 through October 2020 then back off to the average of $91.54 starting Nov. 2020. (Consider recomputing the average through October to include the more recent information for Nov onward.)

      b) budget $142.81 now (June 2020) to immediately get "on-track" and budget the average ($91.54) starting July 2020.

      Lastly, I've assumed those credits are before paying the June bills. Additionally, all of this assumes this year will be identical to last year. You can either cover any shortage if it happens or you could contribute a little extra as a hedge against price/usage increases.

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      • Bruce
      • Software Engineer
      • Bruce
      • 3 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      dakinemaui Awesome, thanks! That makes sense.  And  it'll be nice to have the money in my own account instead of the company holding it for me.  At the time I applied, it made sense, because I didn't have YNAB and it was just easier to pay the same thing.  Now I've got my budget under a bit (understatement) more control, and I think this will work well.  

      I'll just have to get used to seeing a surplus in those categories, and remember NOT to WAM with it!  lol.  I guess the only other (fairly minor) inconvenience is I'll have to adjust the scheduled transaction each month to match the invoice.

      I'll look into switching over.  I'll see if I can do it online without calling.  I'll let you know how it works.

      Like 1
      • dakinemaui
      • dakinemaui
      • 3 mths ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      Regarding the scheduled transaction, I can't remember if you've seen the trick to put the month in the memo. When the scheduler advances, the mismatch between transaction month and the memo indicates a "stale" amount. Cheers!

      Like 1
  • I've been in that struggle.  It's almost impossible to guess when that unit will actually die.  Mine is 25 years old.  OTOH, it could die tomorrow.  I believe that your best option is to pull together a small emergency fund for some incidentals and then focus on debt.  If, god forbid, the furnace goes before then, you can probably finance it and just throw the on the additional debt to continue to hack at.

    You are in no worse situation by having to finance the furnace or having saved for it and ignoring your debt.

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