Yes, I know, I should just be grateful to have a job. But what fun would that be?
It would be easy to sit back and allow the $100 a month raise – $35 a check after taxes – to simply fade into our finances. Such an inconsequential amount of money would easily be absorbed into our regular spending habits without us ever noticing a change. So I’ve decided to make the most out of the extra ducats – but I need your help.
How should I spend my 3% raise?
A. Additional money to mortgage payment
Submitting an extra $70 a month towards my mortgage will save me $19,482 on interest over the life of the loan (29 years).
B. Donate each month
It’s nice to help others, but in reality, you are really helping yourself. If you believe in the Law of Reciprocation – or Karma – then by giving freely, you are
building up positive equity that can be cashed in at a later date.
C. Invest in myself by taking a class
Will greater education lead to a bigger paycheck? There’s no guarantee. But personal development always looks good on a resume, and more importantly, it will keep my mind fresh and nimble.
D. Gym membership or yoga/mediation class
The positive benefits of exercise and meditation cannot be overstated.
E. Up my 401k contribution
Without a pension plan, and realistic worries about Social Security drying up, my only shot at retiring comfortably is my 401k. Scary, right! But a few extra dollars invested today can lead to big bucks down the road.
F. Just put it towards your regular spending and shut up.
A slice of pizza runs $2 and it costs me $45 to fill up the gas tank. This extra money will help offset the cost of living increases that we all face. Everything seems to go higher…and our salaries can barely keep pace.Every penny counts. I believe my 3% raise CAN make a difference. Help me decide how to spend it and I’ll keep you posted throughout the year on what a seemingly miniscule raise can impact.