The Money Mustache Community

Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: bomburdoo on February 20, 2014, 04:46:34 PM

Title: How do I maximize savings in two years?
Post by: bomburdoo on February 20, 2014, 04:46:34 PM
My husband and I have a dream to purchase land and build our own home with no mortgage in the near future.  Ideally this would happen in about 2 years.  I've done the math and it is possible, but only under the best circumstances.  I would like to improve those odds to "most likely possible" at least. 

We are working on lowering our expenses and raising our savings rate overall and it's going very well.  Home is gaining equity quickly, etc.  Right now though, I have about $20k in liquid savings sitting in a checking account - WAIT! - before you freak out on me, it's in a local credit union and I get 3% interest on that account up to $30,000 as long as I do things like have direct deposit and use my debit card so many times a month.  What should I do with this money to maximize it over two years?  Should I leave it getting 3% until I hit the 30k cap?  If so, what should I do with savings above that?  Should I move it into something possibly more lucrative like an index fund, but without the guaranteed return? 

I have faith that we can make our crazy dream a reality, but we've never done any investing before and I know this community will have some great ideas.  Thanks!   
Title: Re: How do I maximize savings in two years?
Post by: matchewed on February 20, 2014, 04:50:38 PM
A two year time frame leaves few choices such as savings accounts and CD's. Anything with greater return also has greater risk of losing your money. Your focus on reducing expenses should be the primary focus. If this is your dream then what about your life is less important. Take the advice on these boards and focus on your big expenses, typically food, housing, and transportation. Get those down to a level that will help improve your odds. Only by not spending the money today will you improve your odds for saving enough money in two years.
Title: Re: How do I maximize savings in two years?
Post by: bomburdoo on February 20, 2014, 05:02:14 PM
Thank you, this is actually very helpful advice.  Our spending has been dropping steadily but there is still a lot of room for improvement.  I think my focus was getting taken off the goal of living a life doesn't require a lot of money and getting caught up into - how do I make more money so I don't have to have money?  The focus is important.  Thanks.
Title: Re: How do I maximize savings in two years?
Post by: ZMonet on February 20, 2014, 05:42:38 PM
Can your husband open another account so that you can get 3% on an additional $30,000?  I think most will tell you that any money needed in less than 5 years should be in something fairly safe, like a savings account or CDs.

How much money do you need to make this happen?

I wouldn't count too much on getting there with equity in your house.  As your home appreciates, won't the cost of land+building also appreciate in cost?  Just something to think about.