After a fairly successful 2007, I am excited about moving forward in 2008. As this is a personal finance blog, I have a few goals for both our finances and the blog itself.
1. Wipe out credit card debt. I can't wait to say goodbye to this forever. We have $12486.99 in credit card debt right now. The goal is to have it all paid off in April. This has been a goal for a long long time and to finally achieve it will be momentous.
2. Build our Emergency Fund. Despite all the times I talk about it, our emergency fund remains empty. I just can't bring myself to squirrel away money when I am paying all this interest. I have a million reasons to have a little one for now at least, but I still just... don't. The goal for 2008 is to put away $5000 into an emergency fund.
3. Open a 401(k) with my company. My company has a half match up to 8% of my earnings, fully vested immediately. I know I am throwing away free money by not opening the account. Once the debt is gone, I will open the 401(k) and work my way up to the 8%.
4. Open Roth IRAs for my husband and me. We don't have any retirement accounts currently and we need to get the ball rolling. There will only be so many years (hopefully!) until we hit the income limit to have Roth IRAs, so I really want to capitalize on them while we have the chance. In 2008, the maximum contribution per person is $5,000, so this is a $10,000 goal.
5. Start paying down our second mortgage. The next debt on the list is our interest only (cringe), adjustable rate (double cringe) $42,000 second mortgage. The goal is to pay $8800 of principal from the second mortgage.
These goals are definitely a stretch for us as we paid $23,712 towards our credit card debt in 2007 and the total amount we're working towards in 2008 is about $40,000. I have a shoot-for-the-stars, land-on-the-moon approach. Part of having separate goals is that we can achieve them individually and still be successful in 2008, even if we don't achieve them all.