Our Financial Goals: Six Months into 2013 (and $12,000+ in extra income)

by Erika Torres

It’s the halfway point of 2013. Time to take a look at how we’re doing on our 2013 financial goals. You can read our first quarter results here.

Bring down my student loans to under $10,000: DONE!

About a month ago, I decided to pay off the majority of my student loans and made a whopping $12,000+ payment in one day.  It was hard to take such a large chunk out of our hard-earned savings, but it feels SO AMAZING to be done paying interest! We currently have $6,624.33 left in zero-interest student loans left, and we hope to pay that off by the end of the year.

Make $5,000 in extra income: Complete!

I have made $12,000+ in Side Hustle income so far this year. It has helped us SO much with paying off debt and paying for our vacations to San Diego, New York and San Francisco, as well as helping to pay for my graduate school.

With student loans paid off now, the first $500 of side hustle income goes into the vacation fund, then some goes into graduate school fund, and now I’m saving the rest for a car down payment fund!

I may take a chunk of this money at the end of the year to pay off our debt and then we can say we’re debt free!

Here is a breakdown of how I earned the money:

side hustle income

Save $5,000 in our General Savings Fund: on track

I pretty much emptied out our House Down Payment Fund in order to pay off my student loans. However, we have since managed to put back $1,500 into our savings account for a house! I am confident we’ll have $5,000 by the end of the year, and I’m shooting for $10,000 now!

Rebuild emergency fund to $1,000: Done!

Not only did we fully fund our emergency fund, but now it is a true emergency fund. I used to keep our emergency fund in a different bank than our everyday checking. Because it was an online bank, it would take 2-3 days for transfers to occur, so it wouldn’t serve its purpose as a true emergency fund. I have now attached our emergency account to our checking so that we can actually access it quickly in case of a true emergency.

Save $800 for Christmas 2013: on track

We have $650 in our Christmas fund. This will help pay for Christmas tree, Christmas cards, postage, gifts, and all those extra presents we buy ourselves during the holidays. Once we get to $800, I’m putting the extra $50 from each check into our house down payment fund.


Jaclyn July 23, 2013 - 6:45 pm

Hi there, I just found your blog and am a new reader…and I am HOOKED! Looking forward to learning more about you!

Derek @ MoneyAhoy.com July 18, 2013 - 4:17 am

Awesome! One stupid question, what exactly is staff writing??

Catherine July 16, 2013 - 4:40 pm

HUGE Congrats Erika! I started reading your blog in the very early days, it`s amazing to see how far you’ve come. I’d LOVE to make the kind of money haha. I would love to make a few hundred extra per month but it’s tough! I did have a staff writing gig that was daily and would have helped but it was consuming WAY too much time. Committing to everyday is too much with a family. 1-2x/week max! Keep up the great work!!!

American Debt Project July 11, 2013 - 8:43 pm

This is awesome. You guys are going to have a really sweet Christmas!!

Melissa @ How to be Shy July 11, 2013 - 7:22 am

Your side income is so inspiring, I love hearing about that! Awesome work.

Jim July 9, 2013 - 8:45 pm

Great Job Erika, your hand had to be shaking when you wrote that big check, but it had to be quite liberating, congrats!!

Budget and the Beach July 9, 2013 - 7:41 am

Wow I’m so envious of your side income money!!! I’ve definitely made some, but not even close to that much! You killed your goals! Nice job!

Kristin July 9, 2013 - 5:22 am

I should start saving Christmas money now. That’s a great idea! Although, I was tossing around the idea of a tropical vacation for Christmas instead of all the hoopla. We did that last year and it was nice.

Canadian Budget Binder July 9, 2013 - 4:32 am

Congratulations on paying down that student loan. I know what you mean about putting down a big chunk and the feeling it gives you having to take it from the bank. We put down $38k on the mortgage a couple of months back and it was hard to do BUT we know that it is with good reason. Having no mortgage is more important to us just like getting rid of any big debt even like the student loans. Well done on extra income as well, makes it all worth it now! Have a good one! Mr.CBB

Emma July 8, 2013 - 8:17 pm

Congratulations on your progress so far! Just found this blog today. I really like the idea of saving for Christmas far beforehand, I may have to start that soon!

Thomas July 8, 2013 - 4:26 pm

You are rocking with meeting those goals this year. What type of car are you saving for? I like that you have the side income planned so that it doesnt just get spent on stuff. Cant wait to start making some money from my side hustles as well. Here’s to to a even better next 6 months.

Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies July 8, 2013 - 3:37 pm

Awesome job on goals and all the side hustling. Keep it up in the second half and nothing can stop you =)

Cat Alford (@BudgetBlonde) July 8, 2013 - 12:57 pm

I’m thrilled for you. Yall are kicking some serious ass!

Megan July 8, 2013 - 12:02 pm

What an inspiration! Way to go, girl!

SavvyFinancialLatina July 8, 2013 - 10:45 am

Congrats on all your side hustling! I’m glad you almost met all your goals 🙂


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