After a five year battle (war, actually), I am finally winning my Social Security disability. Because I have been disabled and unable to work, the “back pay” I am owed is a nice chunk of change. Knowing this money owed me is all I will have for my future and my daughter’s future, I must spend it wisely – making every penny count. These are my plans for the $200,000 the Social Security Administration owes me.
Tithes – The first thing I am doing is paying my tithes. God has brought me this far and I know I can do more with $180,000 than with $200,000. I’ve always done my best to pay my tithes and this time will be no exception. God will use the ten percent for His glory and bless (and stretch) my 90 percent.
Car – My daughter and I need a safe and dependable car that gets excellent gas mileage. I want a car that was made in this century that is big enough to haul groceries, two animal carriers and a few other things. I won’t spend over $8,000 for a used car. As much as I’d love to buy an American-made car, I may have to buy a Toyota or Nissan to get the size and gas mileage we must have and still stay within our budget. I will use all my comparison shopping, deal-making and research skills to find us a car that will last for years.
House – I am buying a house. Not just buying a house, but paying cash for a house. As in paid in full – no mortgage payments. Because of where we live, I can find a well-built house for around $80,000. It won’t be a mansion on a hill, but it will be sturdy, in a safe neighborhood and in a good school district. It should last my lifetime with minimal repairs and can be passed on to my daughter.
Insurance and Taxes – I am paying, as far in advance as possible, for home and auto insurance as well as taxes. Shopping around to get the best rates and deductibles for insurance is something I will be doing. I will also pay the taxes on the home I buy as far in advance as possible. Because I don’t have the exact car or house, I can’t put a specific amount on how much I will be spending. I cam deducting $5,000 for these expenses from the $200,000. I am expecting that will be more than enough to cover the insurances we will need as well as the taxes on our home.
Home Furnishings – Look out thrift stores and garage sales, I will have an entire house to furnish and decorate! Even though I have a fairly large amount of money (to me) to work with, I’m not going to waste it on over-priced items. Although I will buy new mattresses, most of the other items we will need will be bought pre-owned. I’m budgeting $2,000 of the $200,000 on items for our home. I can always pick other items, as needed, in the future.
College Fund – At this point, the is about $85,000 remaining from the original $200,000. I want to put at least $45,000 in a college fund for my daughter. As usual, I will shop around to see what will get me the most bang for my buck. I will be much more conservative with this money than I was with previous investments. I can’t take a chance on losing that small amount; I know there won’t be any money to replace it.
Savings – The last $40,000 will be (extremely) conservatively invested and saved. This will be our emergency fund which will only be used for the most dire of circumstances such as a house fire, blown car engine, medical emergencies and other situations I would rather not think about. I can not be too careful with this money; once it is gone, it is gone.
For me, looking at the future with only $200,000 is a bit daunting and terrifying. Although I will be getting monthly disability, I understand that amount will not be enough to cove all of our monthly expenses. Because of this, I must spend every penny of my Social Security disability as wisely as I possibly can.
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