The Money Game started with $5 and I looked around grabbing every little bit I could add to it while thinking of ways to get this money to grow. My thoughts kept leading me to places where we could save money without sacrificing our lifestyle. It was fun and I kept playing.
Then bigger deposits came in here and there – a Costco rebate check for example. I kept at it thinking this part would dry up and I’d figure out something I could buy and sell.
But the savings kept coming in and I learned how to group several of them together at a time. I used ibotta and I used grocery sales. I used gift cards bought at a discount. I started shopping for gifts early in order to take advantage of good deals.
Our tax refund was a stunner and it went in. Then came the first Social Security check. I went from grabbing 20’s to 100’s and now there is nearly $1,000 going in each month on top of everything else I was already doing.
I never expected this. I did expect the fund to grow but I thought $300 a month just from watching our budget would be a big month (and I was okay with that). I hope you play along and I hope you find unexpected surprises along the way too.
I am dying to buy a place to rent out but it’s too soon. I would prefer to follow Dave Ramsey’s advice to buy investment property with cash. But if not, then I’d like to be able to put 20% down and use the social security check to cover the mortgage payment as a precaution. I was thinking today “it’s going to take too long!” That’s when I remembered how quickly this money piled up. I would have been thrilled to have $5,000 at this point and yet here we are looking at over three times that much.
Our efforts truly are snowballing.
Along that line, I’ve been combing the budget every day as we near the end of this first year. I’m trying to find every dollar I can to boost our MG fund’s performance as this year winds down. Today, my car’s maintenance fund stood out. I just sold the car and hope to convince George that we can be a one car family. $348.62 is sitting there (we have a separate maintenance category for George’s vehicle). I don’t know how I missed this but I’m slamming it into the MG fund (and George agrees).
A word on agreeing as a couple – we budget a certain amount for recurring expenses. For example, $300 is budgeted for the electric/water/gas bill each month. After I pay the bill, whatever is left goes to the Money Game. We both know that so there’s no need for a discussion.
Money left in this car repair category felt a bit different. Car repairs can be unpredictable and tricky. If we decide to buy another car for me, we may need it right away. We always buy used cars and there’s usually something that needs attention. So I checked with George first. We agreed that we could start rebuilding the fund if we decide to go back to 2 cars. We also have emergency savings.
Level Completed: 165 out of 251
Amount Deposited this month: $1,798.48
Total Balance: $16,145.54
Our Money Game fund has increased 12.5% so far this month.
$313.09 is needed to reach the next level