After many months of waiting (sometimes not too patiently), our mortgage has been refinanced and we can finally (finally) look to the future of our finances including what money we have -- no more awaiting mysterious and unknown withdraws to close and refinance.
What we're exploring:
1. Emergency fund -- we want at least $20,000 in an emergency fund.
2. Debt repayment -- I'll have figures for what we owe in a few days, but we're going to be ramping up our payments shortly and getting (the hell) out of debt as soon as is humanly possible.
3. Travel fund -- Iceland is now financed, but we have other trips on the horizon (Nairobi, a walk through Spain, various parts of Peru), which is to say within the next two years, that need our financial attention.
4. New car fund -- in three years we'll be getting a new-to-us car that's about three years old (so a 2013 model). In the meantime we're selling our current car (know anyone who'd like a Toyota for $2200?) and driving the new-to-us Subaru (love it!!), which really suits our pack much better.
5. New house fund -- by the time we're ready for our next home, I think we'll be ready for a place with a yard (room for the dogs, a garden, and trees!!). This means we need a downpayment of $75,000 or so in order to keep our buying options open. Our goal is five years out, so we'd like to put away about $15,000, which is actually quite accessible...after we pay off our burdensome debt!
6. Condo improvements -- related to getting a new place is improving our current abode. We have a few known projects we'll be tackling over the next five years: refinishing the floors, having the ceilings redone with lathe and plaster, refinish the bathtub, curtains, repaint the kitchen, etc. A few of these tasks are obviously a little more costly and time-consuming than others, so we're going to be coming up with a reasonable timeline within which all will be tackled.
Honestly, getting the refinance out of the way has felt like our lives no longer have to be on hold because we have an idea now of our immediate financial future. Back to the budget and all the liberation and success that comes with it!!