Thursday, April 17, 2008

Who Stole my Paycheck? Oh, I did...

Whenever Jerad pays the bills or happens to go over our banking stuff, he always remarks that he is surprised at how small my paychecks are. I always get defensive and say that I have a well paying job, blah blah blah... he gets out a chair to hold me back and says that what he meant was that it seems like with what my salary is, my checks should be more... I always shrug it off and mumble about tax withholdings, deductions, health insurance, then he sees something shiny and forgets about it. This has happened many many many times.

I'd like to think that I'm pretty financially minded. I pay the bills a month in advance. I've made fancy color coded spread sheets showing when the bills are due, the amount, when our paychecks come in, and what bills will be paid. After next month I will have paid off *drumroll* all of our credit card debt....

It has taken me a long time to come this far. I plan everything out and double check it 52.7 times. I notice when Subway charges my debit card twice for the 2.49 special... and you bet I call them. So, I get very defensive when he suggests that my financial situation be anything less than perfect. I am not compulsive when it comes to banking, oh, but apparently I am when it comes to payroll deductions!!!

I get paid weekly. So, that automatically makes your checks seem half as big. I always tear mine open and look at the amount, how much vacation time I have, then glance over at the deductions column at how much is in my 401k. I just ignore all those other numbers. Today I decided to add them up.

Health Insurance. Gotta have it, but, its still something that I elect to have taken out of my check. I could probably shop around and find something cheaper but I like being on a company plan because we have a Insurance Service company that will call up our actual Insurance company with any billing problems or will find out information for us or ways for us to cut costs. So, potentially it could save me a lot of money. Anyways:

week: $31.55 year: $1,640.60

Then my job will match contributions to a health saving account, and I can make pre-tax deductions to that... so I'd be crazy not to right? Its like having free healthcare as long as I have more than my deductible in there! And you can use it for dental, vitamins... whatever... The federal gov. puts a limit on what you can contribute, but my employer matches, so I'd be crazy not to do 1/2 the max right?

week: $27.41 year: $1,425.32

401k... again, they match up to a certain amount... and you always hear that my generation won't be getting our social security money so I better but something into a retirement fund...

week: $45 year: $2,340.00

Savings Account... I have a savings account at my regular bank, but its so... accessible... it takes like 3 seconds to transfer money from it into my checking account online. Or even onto my credit card which is also from the same back. What? You can do a direct deposit to the credit union here?

week: $100 year: $5,200.00

So, if I got rid of these "voluntary deductions" my checks would be $203.96 more a week, or I would have $10, 605.92 a year. That is the same as working 25.5 hours a week at minimum wage in CA ($8.00/hr).

I guess its good if I keep this up I'll have money set aside later in life, but they better not start offering anymore deductions or I am going to have to get a night job to be able to buy groceries now... because apparently "no" is not in my vocabulary. In the meantime I'll just stop using electricity so I can still afford to go to Curves haha.


Beth McDermott said...

Go you for planning responsibly... and can I just say, you pull poverty off rather well! You will be laughing all the way to the bank in a decade when you have $50k in savings, a HUGE head start on 401k when most 30 year olds are just starting to contribute, and a health savings account that is maxed out allowing you to afford the highest deductible and therefore lowest premium quality health care package available.
Add all that to the list of reasons I am SO glad you are my lesbian soulmate! I cant wait to blow thru it all with you, I mean... ? ;)

Steph said...

haha switch your curves membership to paso and start the curves smart program... having you as a workout buddy i think should qualify as a "health" expense for me... I'll pay the start up out of my HSA hehe