Order? Order! And the Logic behind it.

***Warning – Long Post Ahead***

I’ve set some savings goals so far and am looking at my spending habits to see where I can cut back to fund my savings faster (because let’s be honest, while there are still three more days I can work at my second job, I don’t know that I want to do so.)

But in what order should I be funding my savings? Biggest first? Smallest first? Most “important”? After much thought, I will be funding in the following order:

M & T Bank -Checking $100.00*
ING – Checking $100.00*
ING – Rainy Day $500.00
CapCom – Savings $500.00
ING – Moving $2,000.00
ING – School $2,500.00
ING – Travel $2,500.00
ING – Car Fund $ 2,000.00
ING – Christmas Gifts $1,200.00
ING – Emergency Fund $1,000.00
ING – Six Months $8,500.00
1001 $1,001.00*
(* is auto deposit)

Why this order? I could just say that I wiggled my nose and it came to be or that I was spoken to in a dream or just not offer any explanation at all, but what fun would that be?

I can honestly say that I will need to meet some “easy” or “almost there!” goals to keep myself motivated. Knowing this about myself, I’ve put the M & T Bank Checking at the top of this list (it will be done in 2 weeks), the ING Checking and Rainy Day coming next because they’re almost done too. I want to do the CapCom Savings after that because it’s attached to my main checking account and if I have a major mess up I’ll have that easily accessible. Once these are fully funded, I’ll apply direct deposits to the next goal.

Moving is up after that because I’ll likely be moving in May/June when my boyfriend finishes grad school. We could technically stay where I live now, but it’s quite small. We’d really like to move to the house next door, which won’t cost much of anything to do, but if that doesn’t happen, it’ll cost about $500 for supplies, truck, etc. Also, we’ll need to pay for him to actually get out here! (He’s based in Chicago for now.) Why the extra money on top of that? There’s always SOMETHING when you move and we’re also considering a new bed and may need a new couch then. With so much in the air, I feel it’s just better to have extra. Money left over from this will go to the next goal or to Six Months/Emergency Fund.

I’m planning on going back to School when I get my ducks in a row – and am working on that part now. While I might take a class or two in the spring and possibly over the summer, I am aiming for September to return full time. This is an account that will need to have remaining monies left in because I’ll be going back the next semester so any extra money will just be left there.

Travel comes next. Hopefully, my boyfriend and I will be able to take a trip late 2011 or 2012! I’m hoping for Prague – I’ve wanted to go there since I was a travel agent selling it, but am open to other options. If we don’t take one big trip, we can take more small trips. Our families/friends are a little scattered and while we will be taking some trips to see them, I see this as a good place to take the money from to visit them more. (Or be able to help them if they’d like to come visit us.)

As for my Car Fund, I’m hoping that my car will survive to October 2012 without too many problems. I also realize that $2,000 won’t buy me much car, but combined with my car as a trade in, I’m thinking that a car loan would be manageable for a newer decent car. I don’t need the newest one or car with the most bells and whistles, I need something I like driving, that’s safe and gets good gas mileage and I am not opposed to taking a car loan with a decent interest rate.

Christmas being low on the list is pretty self explanatory – I won’t need it til the end of the year, one thing I do need to figure out though is how to account for the gifts I buy/make as the year goes on. I really do Christmas shop all year!

Putting my Emergency Fund and Six Months of saving at the end is sort of misleading. I plan on funneling extra money towards this as I go and even am considering setting up a direct deposit for this. I’m still working that part out.

The 1,001 is from this project that I’ve been working on and reassessing lately. I’m still committed to it, but have to think about how it’s really going to play out. I’m not sure where the money from this account will go after it’s done.

I realize this might not be the way that others would fund their savings, but this is what will work for me. How did you decide what order to fund your savings goals in?

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