Why yes, we have a plan now – unlike previously. I happen to love my job, who I work for and what I do, but I know that that’s not the case for everyone – especially Dad. Dad likes what he does, but in the 3 jobs he’s had since I’ve known him, he’s not a big fan of who he works for. He’d rather work on his own. But, with our debts, we cannot live on one salary, even without them it’s a bit hairy, and we’re not ready to take the chance of no-salary yet.
We’re loosely following Dave Ramsey’s baby steps. We have $5k set aside in a baby emergency account for when Murphy pays a visit – which seems quite often to us (baby step 1 slightly modified). Our first financial independence goal is to pay off all our debts except the mortgage (baby step 2). We think we can do this by July 2014 (maybe earlier if the stars align). If you haven’t been following me, we have 3 debts that still need to be paid off (a credit card – at a nice fixed rate, student loans, and a car loan). After we pay those off, we’ll be building up a 6-mth emergency fund (baby step 3), which we hope will be in place by the end of 2014 (or at least most of it).
Once that’s done, we’ll be socking away the maximums to our 401(k) and 403(b) plans, and splitting what’s left between paying off the mortgage (baby step 6) and saving for Daughter Person’s college (baby step 5).
In what I know is controversial, we’re ignoring most of step 7 – giving. We’re not religious, we’re quite libertarian, and we don’t have very many causes we feel strongly enough about to actually donate money to them. Dad donates blood regularly (I can’t), and we donate to races, etc that friends are raising money for, but we don’t have a “giving” plan, and certainly don’t give a percentage of our income away. Instead, we’re using that money to help ensure that we’re never a burden on others.