Mistakes I’m Trying Not to Repeat in 2018

This post is inspired by Steve over at ThinkSaveRetire, whose post listing ways he “Won’t be a Dumbass” in 2018 just landed in my inbox. I don’t typically do New Year’s Resolutions either; while there are absolutely things I want to achieve each year, they’re rarely oriented around January 1st.  So, let’s start with a retrospective of 2017.  Last year, we:
  • Paid off two major credit cards, each with a balance higher than $10,000
  • Met our goal of adding $500 a month in “side hustle” income each and every month (which, of course, is a large part of HOW we paid off those two credit cards)
  • Simplified by getting rid of extra vehicles, boats, and projects
However, in 2017 we did not manage to do all of the things we’d wanted to.  For example, we:
  • Wanted to get rid of a 10×20 storage unit my husband has had since before we met.  At around $200 a month, it just doesn’t make sense to keep it – and since the move, we have plenty of room for the stuff at home.  But cleaning it out is a big project, and it just hasn’t happened yet.
  • Hoped to fully pay off a major outstanding debt of Don’s.  We’ve been in discussions to get this resolved with a single lump-sum payment, but again, it just hasn’t come to fruition yet.  We’re still hopeful that it will be finalized in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Planned to stop paying storage for our boats.  One boat, which we rather infamously left in the Florida Keys for Hurricane Irma, is still in storage at $100 per month.  The other, which is here locally, is $56 a month.  One of the reasons we picked our new home was because there was room to store both boats here at the house, eliminating $156 in storage fees each month.  But, again, we just haven’t gotten around to moving the boats here, so we’re still paying fees.
So, right now we’re paying around $350 a month in things we don’t really need, purely because we haven’t had time to deal with them.  This is hardly smart financially – so this is one of my highest-priority issues for 2018. That said, here is the full list of things we want to address in 2018, in order of priority (and because goals should be specific and measurable, they include target dates):
  1. Move our Proline boat out of storage in Tampa, and to our house, eliminating $56 a month in storage fees.  Target date: 1/15/2018.
  2. Travel down to the Keys and retrieve our Grady White boat from storage, eliminating $100 a month in storage fees.  Target date: 1/31/2018.
  3. Renew my scuba instructor license (I just need to do some refresher work).  Target date: 1/31/2018.
  4. Empty Don’s storage unit, eliminating $200 a month in storage fees.  Target date: 2/15/2018.
  5. Pull Don’s credit report and address any issues or inconsistencies.  I believe that, in the shuffle of back-to-back hospitalizations, some medical bills were overlooked, and we need to sort through this and get back on track. Target date: 2/28/2018.
  6. Complete the Elite Blog Academy course (which I’ve already started).  Target date: 3/31/2018.
  7. Completely pay off Don’s major debt.  Target date: 4/30/2018.
  8. Earn at least $1,000 a month in blog or other online income.  Target date: 6/30/2018.
  9. Purchase one rental property (there’s more to this, which we’ll share soon).  Target date: 9/30/2018.
There’s probably more I’m forgetting, but I think this is a good list to get us started.  What are your goals in 2018?

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