Money Happens

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As the blogger Funny About Money (a blog I love to read) notes from time to time, sometimes money just happens.  I never really thought about it until I’d read several of her posts on the subject, but money does in fact happen all the time.  Sometimes we get tax returns or rebates.  This past Spring, for example, I won “teaching funds” from a donor to the university who wanted to support instructors specifically doing first year composition.  I bought a lap top with the money.  This money was even more special to me, considering that most donations and awards seem to go to tenure track/tenured people, who make up a minority of my department folks.  I was proud and pleased!

This year, money is getting ready to happen because I just closed on the refinance of my home.  I realized as I was going over the paperwork I’m going to get to skip a month of mortgage payments because of the paperwork.  That’s $615 back into my budget for January.

What to do with it?

I have a bit of emergency money/summer money (I don’t get paid during the summer, so it has to stretch).  But not enough to actually get me through the summer until I start making paychecks again.  This is all in theory, of course, because I won’t know until late March whether I have the chance to make paychecks at the university for another year.  I have about $4700 in credit card debt (gross).  $600 is a lot of sushi…

My inclination is to pay down the credit card.  While I am a tad worried about the summer, there are other opportunities, so I’m not terribly worried about it.  I need a 6 – 8 month emergency fund as well, but for whatever reason the card debt bugs me more.  I guess because the percentage I would be making on savings is laughable, while the percentage on my credit card isn’t bad, but it’s more cash out of my pocket.  I think I’d rather run a little lean in the savings department knowing the chances of picking up summer work are pretty high and get rid of the credit card as quickly as I can.  It’s by no means my only debt, given that I have divorce debt, a student loan and a mortgage.  But it’s the worst percentage payback, that’s for sure. And it would put about $120 back into my budget a month.

Decisions, decisions!  But hey, it’s good to at least have a decision to make!  Suggestions?

Further noted:  with the refinance, $65 goes back into my budget every month, since I was a good girl and did a fantastic job on the terms of the refinance.  What to do with that?!  Regular debt repayment?  Savings?  Retirement?  Gah!

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One response »

  1. Wow! Congratulations! That’s a nice little windfall.

    At GDU, FT/NTT faculty were allowed to apply for grants. That might be another way to generate some extra dollars.

    BTW, I just sent that post I spun off your site, the one nattering on about the joys of full time nontenurable jobs, to the “Teaching Carnival” that runs at the Chronicle of Higher Ed (http://bit.ly/tuSfVS). Since it links to Budget Glamorous, if they include it in their carnival, it may give both our sites a brief traffic spike. Though its Google PageRank is nil, its Alexa ranking is an admirable 7874, suggesting a lot of eyeballs see it.

    I’m also asking them to let me host one of their editions. They only come up once a month, unfortunately, but will let you know if I get in. In that event, I’ll be looking for good posts on teaching or higher ed.

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