Build Financial Security With Less Effort

by Texas Homesteader ~  

When RancherMan & I married I already had a house of my own. As a single mother I was making ends meet, but just barely. Of course he had his own home as well. 

So when we married we sold my house since his house was an easier fit for our growing family. The kids and I moved in with him & his children. Now of course with a larger brood the previous monthly household expenses such as utilities were bound to go up, but certainly not by double.

I wondered if now might be a good time to take a step to build our financial security for the future?

Most people would find this blending of homes, income and expenses as a way to finally relax the financial binds of barely getting by. And of course we certainly did, it was a breath of fresh air!

But I asked RancherMan, “I’m already used to making a house payment of approximately $1,000 each month for my house before we were married. Why don’t we continue to make that payment, but put it into a CD every month instead?”

The Power Of Systematic Saving

It was hard to wrap my brain around the potential of us having $12,000 worth of CD’s in just one year! But we really wanted that financial security, so we decided to go ahead & give it a try. We were thrilled to find it was beyond effortless.

Of course at first it took discipline not to just consider my previous mortgage payment amount just extra spending money. Even though with our blended income we had more wiggle room than before and could relax a little, we still had to be mindful of our budget.

But soon buying a monthly CD became a habit we no longer needed to even think about. One by one our CD’s began to rack up.

After that first year we knew that were never more than 30 days away from available money from a CD maturity if for some reason we needed the cash. What a comfort!

With each new renewal if we didn’t need the funds at that time, we would simply add this month’s $1,000 payment to the renewing CD and put it back out there for another 12 months to earn yet more interest.

This was brilliant! And because it was using money we were already used to earmarking previously for a mortgage payment, it didn’t even come out of our current budget. Effortless!

Building A Dream

We both dreamed of a day when we’d have our own little place in the country. Was it just a dream? Could it actually be possible??

We contacted a real estate agent and found this piece of paradise in Northeast Texas. I fell in love with that old 1880’s Barn & he loved the lay of the land. We decided to call it our own.

But we didn’t want to risk our financial security by blasting through the nest egg we’d built up. Maybe there’s a way to expedite paying for the note for our new property while still working our corporate jobs to fund it. We’d be keeping the nest egg intact, and that was important to us.

So even though the land payments were only a fraction of our monthly CD amount, we started rerouting those same $1,000 payments to the land mortgage company to pay for our new property.

Make payments to yourself. Start small and build on it and you won't feel the pinch at all. The feeling of financial freedom? Priceless! #TexasHomesteader

We paid off the note in record time, yet it still didn’t come out of our built-up nest egg nor our current monthly household budget. Wow, that’s exhilarating. NOW WHAT?

Expensive Acquisitions Necessary

Well now we needed a tractor, storage buildings, fencing, ponds, etc. And all of that is going to cost money.

But these things one by one were all taken care of with that same effortless step started years ago. We simply continued to set aside that same amount equal to my old house payment that we were no longer making.

Our equipment and our pasture improvements were all paid using that method. And ponds were dug and fences were built using that method as well.

The beauty of it was that we weren’t going into debt. And it still wasn’t coming out of our monthly budget. Effortless!

Make payments to yourself. Start small and build on it and you won't feel the pinch at all. The feeling of financial freedom? Priceless! #TexasHomesteader

Living Our Dream… Debt Free!

Fast forward a few more years. We built our home here on the Homestead & moved from the big city to live our dream of country living.

And a few years later when we decided we wanted to pull the plug on corporate employment and both of us stay here to run the homestead full time we were able to do so. With no debt looming over our heads, our monthly income requirement was already low.

Wow, what a tremendous difference being debt free makes in your ability to make decisions. Those decisions are not based on your debt load, but on your CASH!

Make payments to yourself. Start small and build on it and you won't feel the pinch at all. The feeling of financial freedom? Priceless! #TexasHomesteader

You Can Do This!

Are you longing for financial security? You can take the same steps we did. It’s a more effortless way to build that nest egg. I urge you to try it in a way that works for your household.

Maybe make a small monthly payment to yourself into a savings account each payday, just like any other bill.

(Note: Some links in this post are for further information from earlier posts I’ve written. But links preceded with * are affiliate links. If you click them and buy something (almost anything, not just the item noted) I could receive a tiny commission. But the price you pay will NOT change. It’s an easy way to support this blog without anything coming out of your pocket. So click often! Thank you!)

You won’t even have to take it from your current budget if you can free up a little budget money by skipping a night or two of eating out each month, eliminating ‘boredom shopping’ or saving money by buying groceries cheaper in bulk from Amazon.

When that washing machine goes out or the lawn mower dies, the money will already be in the bank to pay for its repair or buy a new one. That means you won’t be forced into debt to pay for repairs due to unforeseen circumstances.

If you start small and build on it you won’t feel the pinch at all.

And the freedom of financial security is priceless!

~TxH~

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32 thoughts on “Build Financial Security With Less Effort

  1. Karen

    I totally agree with you. When a bill is paid off, continue those payments toward your savings or investments. It really isn’t hard because you already are used to not “having” the money. Glad you wrote about it because it has been successful for my husband and I too. Thanks for sharing at Let’s Get Real Friday.

    Reply
  2. Next to Natural

    Love this story! It’s so important to learn how to save and be financially stable. Thanks for sharing at Simply Natural Saturdays!

    Reply
  3. Jamie @ Medium Sized Family

    Any time I can set myself up for lazy savings like this, I do it! If I don’t have to consider whether I will or won’t save (because it’s just automatic) I always come out ahead.

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Absolutely Jamie. To me, making saving effortless is key to success. After you set it up, you don’t even think about it anymore!

      Reply
  4. Kennie

    Thank you for sharing this! When you break it down like that (12 mo CD), you realize just how simple this is. With the amount that I tend to throw away each month on frivolous items, this is definitely doable! Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I’ve always heard ‘Slow & Steady Wins The Race’ & I think it certainly applies here!

      Reply
  5. Joyce @ It's Your Life

    My southern man and I do something similar, and were debt free. I went back to school and now have a student loan to pay back, and other things including a move, and illness leave us in debt. However, we are slowly getting things back under control, yes it is nice to be debt free. Thanks for sharing once again on Tuesdays With a Twist.

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Joyce, although I know it’s frustrating to have debt after previously being debt free, thank goodness you were debt free before dealing with an illness. I was watching a news story yesterday about how many people are just one illness away from financial ruin. I’m sure being debt free beforehand made a huge impact on your ability to bounce back financially.

      Reply
  6. Theanna

    This was a super idea! thank you so very much!

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      thanks Theanna. It was a pretty painless saving plan, and I’m ALL ABOUT painless saving! LOL

      Reply
  7. Natasha @ Epic Mommy Adventures

    What a great story! It’s amazing what you can achieve by just starting to save today. I am definitely headed on that same path, and I hope to achieve great things like you have.

    Thanks so much for sharing on Turn It Up Tuesday! We love having you! 🙂

    Reply
  8. Melissa @ Stitches In Flight

    It was very inspiring to hear about your savings efforts. I pinned it to my Pinterest money board for future inspiration. Thanks for this post!

    Reply
  9. Angie

    When I decided I wanted to be a stay at home mom back in 2003, I put my paycheck into our savings account for the last year of my employment. This was a test to see if we could live off of one income. We passed and I quit my job in 2004 and am still currently home today. The blessing of our savings came in 2005 when we had the chance to start our own business. The finances were there to get us started. We are still plugging along supporting ourselves. My husband doing the physical part, me doing the paper part.

    Angie at Oak Springs Farm

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Angie that is so awesome – thanks for sharing your story. Love the SUCCESS!

      Reply
  10. Tiffany

    Great advice! Really made me think of ways my family and I can put money away while decreasing money flowing out. Thanks for sharing at the Blog Hop Blitz, you were selected as one of our Most Valuable Bloggers!

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Tiffany, I find that just being mindful of money in/money out can often lead to painless ways to cut back on things that never really mattered to you in the first place, leaving extra cash for those things that really DO matter!

      Reply
  11. Ruth @ Living Well Spending Less

    This is such great advice. I am SO glad you stuck with saving that way y’all did/do have money when you really want something. I think I may have to try this. Thanks for sharing and for linking up to Thrifty Thursday.

    Reply
  12. brokeGIRLrich

    Great advice! I’d been paying down $500 a month in student loans for years. When I finished, I just split that $500 between building up an emergency fund and investing and I never even noticed the difference. I like that even with “extra” money, my lifestyle didn’t inflate at all, since I never really see it – I just have a comfortable safety net and a small, ever growing, nest egg too.

    Also, your farm looks really cool! I’m a little jealous ;o)

    Reply
  13. Tshanina @ Thrifty T's Treasures

    I’m stopping by from The Thriftiness Miss linky party!

    What a wonderful story you have! Thank you for sharing and encouraging the rest of us to live debt free. You hit it spot on when you said, “what a tremendous difference being debt free makes in your ability to make decisions not based on your debt load, but on your CASH!”

    Reply
  14. Rebecca @ Stapler Confessions

    “make decisions not based on your debt load, but on your CASH!”

    YES! What a liberating feeling! Well, we still have ridiculous amounts of student loan debt but we also keep a supply of cash for anticipated big expenses, like a car purchase and our wedding.

    Reply
  15. Lisa Lynn

    I’m very proud of your family for saving up for your homestead and future! We are doing something similar, but not with cds. Thanks so much for sharing your wisdom on The Creative HomeAcre!
    Hope to see you again tomorrow at:
    theselfsufficienthomeacre.com/2013/05/thecreativehomeacrehom17.html

    Reply
  16. Jayne

    This is great advise, my 86 year old mom did this her whole life and was never in debt.

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      It seems the older generation really had their finances figured out, doesn’t it Jayne?

      Reply
  17. Linda @ A La Carte

    Great advice! When I lost my job to ‘downsizing’ a few years ago I was able to make it because I was debt free. I remain that way, except for a low mortgage payment. I keep urging my kids to pay yourself a little bit each month, it’s hard but so worth it. Thanks for sharing at TTF

    Linda and Diann

    Reply
  18. Tulip

    Financial independence is hard in this country, but for me represents true freedom. I agree, it takes small steps and patience. Thank you so much for the encouragement and beautiful pictures. I hope I can own a piece of the country someday. Hope to see you at True Aim!

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Small steps and patience is often the combination for many rewarding things we wish to obtain Tulip. I think sometimes people living day-to-day just don’t think it’s possible, but as you said: Small steps and patience makes it possible. Thanks for your comment.

      Reply
  19. Chris at Hye Thyme Cafe

    I used to be really good at that – not so much now. In addition to doing that, it was in the days before debit cards, etc., when you actually had to go to the bank, so I would take a weekly allowance from my pay check and deposit the rest. At the end of the pay period, I would also take whatever money I had leftover form the last and stash that away separately. That money would accumulate pretty quickly too, and I would use that to either fund my Christmas shopping that year, or a trip, etc. 🙂 [#TALU]

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Chris, banks are making it really easy these days with free automatic transfer if you have a savings account with them as well. Once you see that balance inching upward it almost becomes a challenge to see how fast you can make it increase! Thanks for your comment.

      Reply
  20. Nancy W

    Great advice! Amazing what you can do when you set your mind to it! TALU

    Reply
  21. angi

    Such a great reminder! And something our culture really needs to hear. My husband spent four years unemployed/underemployed. When he got a fulltime job in his field last year, we committed to continue living at the level we were and using everything extra to rebuild our savings. Now, a year later, we’re able to happily do some projects around our little homestead because we know we have plenty of savings.

    BTW, my oldest son goes to jewelry school in your neck of the woods. It’s a nice area up there.

    Reply
    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Angi – your method of continuing to live beneath your means when things ease up is another way to ease into financial security. It’s not a sacrifice since you’ve already adjusted your budget. Good for you! It’s really hard to put a price on a good night’s sleep because you’re not worried about a house of cards falling on you at any moment!

      Reply

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