Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A journey to the bank… Interest to the Roth… and the temptation to purchase property…

Today I went by my bank to get some cash out. There are really only one or two things I ever actually take cash out for (laundry quarters, and offering)… so I always go to the teller.

Don’t ask me why, but I’ve never really liked the invention of the ATM machine. Sure, in the past I‘ve used them to access cash when the bank is closed, and for that they are great…. But when the ATM because your sole access to the bank, your just asking for trouble in my opinion.

So instead, I choose to wait in line for a few minuets and actually be able to take out only the $25 bucks I’d wish to have in my wallet… not the 40 I’d have to take out if I went to the ATM. It’s amazing how easy it is to spend that extra $15.00 when it’s just sitting there in your wallet… especially when you need to break one of those twenties just to get a $5.00 bill.

While I was at the bank, the teller decided to inform me that I was automatically eligible for a 9,000 credit card with zero APR for an entire year. She asked me if I wanted this card. Told her no, she decided to “put me down” as undecided… which means the next time I pop into the bank I’m going to be asked if I want that card.

I know some people would jump at the offer of a zero percent Credit card right now… but I already have a visa with my bank… now they want me to have a MasterCard? Thank God I’m a 23 year old with her head on straight. No racking up debt for me. The funny thing is that the teller asked me what my APR on my other CC with that bank was… thinking I’d open the account for a better percentage… When I told her that I didn’t carry a single balance on any of my credit cards and only use them sporadically to stay on the grid… she looked at me like I was a crazy woman. Didn’t help that I was in sweat pants at the time mind you, but she looked at me like I was bloody crazy just because I didn’t have any consumer debt.

Plus, with online savings accounts earning crap now a days, it isn’t worth the risk of missing a payment just so my cash can earn 2% in a online savings account when I have a 2% cash back Credit Card. Plus the new card would give me more incentive to spend on things I really don’t need. So poo on them for trying to tempt me and I again exercised my right to say NO to another card. MUAHHHA

In the land of exercising my right to say NO, I turned down a few more outings this week, my sister twice in fact. Once due to a migraine, the other was to reschedule since she cancelled on a hang out that wasn’t going to cost either or us a dime. So when we re-scheduled for dinner, I reminded her that I didn’t have any more cash for the month to go out so she agreed to stay in an order pizza on her since I’m driving to her place. Bueno.
I also decided that any interest I earn at ING (including my CD’s) is going to go to my Roth IRA until it’s maxed out. I was previously putting this money towards the house down payment fund, but since there isn’t much extra money coming in at the time being… and frankly more and more unexpected financial obligations to meet that interest will go to helping me turn dimes into dollars. I’ll still be adding my interest from IGO Banking to the house down payment fund.
In other news, with my house down payment finally in the land of the double digits, I’ve been antsy with the possibility of owning a place of my own… I drove by two places and called a mortgage company to see if I could get prequalified or to at least get more information on the loan process.

The latter doesn’t bother me, it’s the fact I drove around to 2 places. One is in this area I love… the other made me want to pass. (which is good cause that one was a bit outta my league with my current down payment and the fact that my lease isn’t up until December 31st.

But the government keeps tempting me. If you purchase a home by Dec 1st… you get 8,000 in tax right-offs over three years with the new stimulus plan. And to be honest that’s tempting when I’m looking at condos. Maybe at the end of this year I’ll be able to take the plunge and go… and take advantage of the free money… or I may in fact just wait it out. I’ve never been one about making rash decisions.


  1. I'm starting to say Yes to real estate because with an FHA loan, you only need 3.5% downpayment. When the mortgage is only $200 more than my rent (and i have cheap rent) it's hard to keep saying that i'll wait until i have 20% saved up. I live in a LCOL area, home prices are pretty good, i already set my "walk away price" in that if i can't get the house for that price, it's not for me. considering i have the 6 month EF, and can still save toward vacation, christmas, home repairs, retirement, and future car while owning, it just seems to make sense...timing is pretty good too. My lease is up May 15, and the 8k first time homebuyer credit is nice too!

  2. I was really tempted when I heard about that $8,000 tax credit as well. And unlike the one from 2008, you don't have to pay it back!