It’s Good to Have Goals

We’re closing on our refinance today, fulfilling one of my major goals for this year surprisingly early. I had been thinking about refinancing for a while, but when I saw the Pentagon Federal Credit Union rate and deal on closing costs, I had to jump at it. Good thing I did too, because rates have gone up by 3/8% 5/8%! since we locked in.
In light of this accomplishment, I thought it would be a good time to go over some of the other goals I have set for myself for this year. It’s good to have goals, they give you something concrete to aim at.
1) Refinance. Check. With rates slowly creeping up, I wanted to make sure to get out of our ARM before it reset.
2) Set up a real emergency fund. Almost there. We’ve got about $4000 in it right now, and we’re having about $550/month automatically put in via direct deposit. It will probably top out somewhere around $10k ideally, but I would be comfortable with anything over $5-6k.
3) Buy adequate term life insurance coverage. This is part of a broader goal of ensuring that we have our financial house in order in case something happens to either of us. We’re planning on going to see someone about getting a will and such things taken care of later this summer.
4) Get a new (to me) minivan. Our poor Intrepid is getting old, and with two carseats in the back seat, it pretty much only fits two adults in the front and the two kids in the back. We’re hoping that we will be able to put some money aside for a decent downpayment on a minivan before Christmas. I plan on setting up another automatic direct deposit for this purpose, because money you don’t see, you can’t spend!
5) Set up Evan’s college fund and a Roth IRA? These are not priorities at the moment, but they are definite goals. I already set aside a good portion of my paycheck in my 401(k), but it never hurts to get even more socked away for retirement. When Ellie was born, we signed her up for Virginia’s prepaid tuition program, but we haven’t set anything up for Evan at the moment. I plan on opening the Virginia Education Savings Trust 529 plan for him in the near future and contributing monthly to that, but other expenses are taking precedence right now.
Do you have any goals? What are they?