Hello ladies and gentlemen, I just wanted to do a short post on my 2018 goals. Not those normal kind of goals. Not the lose 10 pounds goal or the exercise 30 minutes a day goals. No, I’m talking about financial goals. I’m talking about short term one year goals. I try to make these one year goals actionable and quantifiable and attainable. There is no use in saying I want to save 1 million dollars this year. Or I want to pay off my house this year. Because that just isn’t going to happen.
Small goals are more easily achieved
We are looking at more realistic goals. Baby steps. Goals that you can start today without adding misery to your life that you can maintain throughout 2018. If your budget is like mine you have to find a place to cut some money to achieve these goals. You could also start a side hustle which I plan to do in 2018, but I like to cut unnecessary spending first. Last year I made a goal to cancel my gym membership to save $40 per month. Instead of going to the gym I purchased a couple dumbbell weights and worked on core strengthening exercises. This saved me $480 for the year and saved me the time of driving back and forth to the gym. Also the routine was fast and I could fit it in before leaving for work.
January first I set down and laid out my 2018 financial goals. Here they are.
- Max out both Mrs. Smartfi’s and my 401 k’s = $37,000*
- Max out both Mrs. Smartfi’s and my Roth IRA = $11,000**
- Max out family HSA = $6900
- Contribute $10,000 to taxable brokerage account at Vanguard for my hybrid mortgage payoff plan.
- Add $300 dollars per month to the mortgage payment. This gets me to $20,000 of mortgage principle pay down per year.
* 401k contribution limit increased $500 to $18,500 per spouse in 2018.
** HSA limit increased $150 to $6900 for family for 2018.
Lets add this up
37,000 + 11,000 + 6,900 + 10,000 + 3,600 = $68,500
That is quite a goal. I will have to employ a couple of strategies I will detail in later posts to cut down on family expenses but I think I can get there in 2018. Keep in mind these are audacious goals. I will probably have to start a side hustle job to reach these goals. Now, I know I was just telling you about baby step goals and I’m laying out giant step goals. These goals fit my financial personality. I like to push myself to save. This will only get me to financial independence more quickly. I also know that I will be okay if I don’t get to this goal. I will have next year to try again.
Write down your goals
Reaching your financial goals takes motivation. It takes encouragement. A couple of ways I encourage myself to reach goals is by writing down my goals. Not in some note pad you tuck into your junk drawer. No, I’m talking about an in your face write it down kind of place. When Mrs. Fi and I were trying to pay off her car in two years after we made the mistake of buying a new car. We took a bar of soap and wrote on the bathroom mirror our goal. Each month we wrote the new amount of car debt we had left to pay. We used that as motivation to get that car paid off. Another motivational tool I use is podcasts. I listen to podcasts on the way to work. I have turned off the radio and turned on the motivation of podcasts. I have a couple favorite financial podcasts I listen to. Let me tell you, when I finish a podcast I’m pumped to get to financial independence. The funny thing is, I will tell Mrs. Fi about what I listened to on the podcast and she is not usually as inspired. So you must have to listen to the podcast yourself. Don’t count on the cliff notes to get motivated.
That’s all I have time for today. So set those 2018 goals. Big or small it doesn’t matter. Write the goals down somewhere you can see them and get on the path to Fi.
I you have questions or comments shoot me an email or leave a comment at the end of the post. What are your 2018 goals?