Now that my student loans are paid off and we’re not making any extra payments this month, I find that I’m missing the little buzz of excitement I get when I make an extra payment and watch the line of total debt drop closer to zero. We’re still paying on the car, and I can watch that amount owed drop, but since we’re in a holding pattern, that little buzz just isn’t there.
I enjoy watching our other accounts grow, but it’s not quite the same “stick it to them” feeling that came with making an extra payment. I also look at our accounts way more than a sane person should. I don’t touch them or buy/sell, but I look at the little “portfolio balance” chart in Personal Capital a bit too much.
I have a new goal in completing our emergency fund, but for some reason, it’s just not as exciting. I’d love to set some more short term goals as far as savings go – like continuing to spend very little on groceries or getting our savings rate closer to 50%. But with life at a cross-roads, I don’t know what a reasonable goal is at this point. Moving will seriously impact our savings rate as we spend money on things like deposits, down payments, and fixing up the house for sale. We’re trying to avoid buying groceries right now – especially freezer stock up items – in case we do move. Just the bare minimums to get us through the week – which both helps keep the grocery bill low, and increases it since we’re not buying in bulk.
One thing I am excited about is the possibility to buy a smaller house with a (much) smaller mortgage, and hopefully saving more. We don’t know what our new salaries might be though – just what we’ve asked for, so we might not save as much as we’re expecting. But, it lets us look for a house with a different set of priorities in mind rather than just “how big of a house can we afford”.
If you’ve finished paying off your debt, what do you do to stay excited about saving?