My goals from last year to this year haven’t changed much. Our focus this year is to buy a house, so with that in mind, saving is the top priority. Earlier this year I posted that the first quarter should go something like this:

First Quarter Goals RECAP:

  1. Save $655 each month towards a down payment (this is distributed into two different accounts; one which is more aggressive and one which is more stable) = $1,965
  2. Side income gets deposited towards this goal. I’m averaging $300 a month on this, so that additional $300 will be applied towards the goals. = $900
  3. Squeeze out another $200 a month to put towards savings. This one will be more difficult, but I should be able to manage it with budgeting our money closely. = $600
  4. Total income saved first quarter = $3,465

How’d we do? Not great. Here’s the break down:  Goal number one was a slam-dunk. It’s pretty much automated, which makes it easy to achieve. Goal number two fluctuates – this quarter my side income averaged more around $150 a month. So I’m 50% off on this one! And I didn’t ever reach goal number three. Yikes!

We also ended up spending an unforeseen $1,100 on travel for a funeral which was sudden, tragic, and unfortunate. I won’t go into details, but all I’ll say is that this graphic sums it up (motor vehicle accident).

Ways to Go from National Geographic
Ways to Go from National Geographic

Not as surprising, we did end up owing money on federal taxes, but our state rebate will cover the amount we owed. So this past quarter was pretty much a wash.

That's a wash.
That’s a wash.

Moving forward, I’m going to tweak this quarter’s goals a bit.

  1. Save $655 each month towards a down payment (this is distributed into two different accounts; one which is more aggressive and one which is more stable) = $1,965 (Same as before since this is automated).
  2. Side income will be adjusted to $150 per month = $450
  3. Projected income from a project for this quarter = $1,500. Notice, I’m not trying to squeeze any additional money out of my budget, which is quite firm. Instead, I’m anticipating a project getting completed this quarter for a hefty sum and that should allow us to use $1,500 towards savings.
  4. Total saved for this quarter = $3,915

As long as there are no other unforeseen expenses, we should be able to meet these goals.

How are your goals coming along this year?


  1. Jon @ Money Smart Guides Reply

    Sorry to hear about your loss. It’s good to see you are making some tweaks to the budget and hopefully things turn for the better this quarter!

  2. Squirrelers Reply

    Sorry that you guys suffered a loss of someone important. Not that the financial part is the first thing we think of in those situations, but the $1,100 is a good example of how sometimes the unexpected can happen and we just have to deal with it. So while the quarter might have been a wash, you controlled what you could control for the most part and did a good job. Here’s to a strong Q2, and hope it’s going well for you so far.

    • @Squirrelers – We were as prepared as we could have been and it got us remembering why it’s a good idea to have a nice stash of cash in a savings account. Thankfully, this quarter has been much better – no surprises and a little more income.

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