July 2015 Progress


July was a very interesting month for the family finance.  We had one planned extra expense in the form of a vacation and one unplanned expense in the form of veterinary surgery.  First I’ll give a quick goal update and overview and then talk about how we planned for the vacation expenses.


  • Reduce overall outstanding debt (including mortgage) by 10%.
    1. At the end of July, overall debt reduction is 7.15%.  Still on track.
  • Make contributions to investments (taxable and retirement) of 10% of salary.
    1. Combined saving in investment accounts is 10.36% of income.  This includes 401k, IRA, ESPP.
  • Eliminate any monthly interest payments due to credit cards.
    1. We maintained $0 in credit card interest in July for a four month streak.

Total expenses for July were $8305 which was $36 lower than June making it our lowest expense month of 2015.  I had to double check this with the vacation and vet bills, but we really buckled down and almost eliminated dining out (except for during our travel, which I’m breaking out into travel expenses).

The trip was a combined work/vacation to California.  I had to go out for an onsite session so my airfare and hotel for the week was covered.  The family’s flights were mostly paid with Skymiles so their airfare was around $600 total and was paid in June.  We extended the stay for four nights past the work engagement which gave me a three day weekend with the family.  We got to see Muir Woods, Half Moon Bay and top of Mt. Tamalpais.  Total personal expenses for the family were around $1100.  Not too bad.

The unexpected vet bill was around $450.  We have an older pure bred small dog that just turned 14, so I guess unexpected is not really accurate, but we didn’t have it budgeted.

All in all, it’s remarkable that we still hit the low mark for expenses on the year.  We’re also not paying childcare expenses during the summer since both kids are home, so that does help balance things out.

We also just got an ESSP purchase on July 31 which will help clear some more of the long term debt.  I’ll write that up in another post.