Quite a few things have happened in the last few weeks:
1. We decided to use some savings (my stomache cramps at the thought versus current cashflow) to finish outfitting our house. We reviewed our monthly cash flow and decided it was an acceptable risk.
2. Our second car, the one most frequently used by the live-in grandparents, became unstable and unreliable - stopping for two times in ten days. We had been planning to purchase a third car, but had been delaying the purchase for just such an occassion.
3. The purchases:
1. A mini-van (leased) $484 per month for three years
a. office furniture (high quality, best and most expensive we've ever purchased) $5,500 (most of this came out of operating income)
b. master bedroom furniture $1,450 (found a reasonably priced combination factory direct) - probably the lower quality tier, but at this price we can keep it for at least a few years and then either reposition in another room or donate to charity and replace. Bed frame, side tables, wall table/server
c. Flat panel LCD for family room, with stand and hdmi cable $1,900
d. Flat panel LCD for master bed room, with articulating wall bracket and hdmi cable $1,000
e. In August we bought a sectional sofa, ottoman and love seat for the family room at $1600
3. Home Improvements:
a. Fan for extra kitchen (we have an extra room that the sellers outfitted as a kitchen). $160 for hood ventilation unit and $400 for labor + extra for misc parts
b. $xxxx to repair water filtration system.
c. Possible: built-in dehumidifier for basement
d. Repaint master bedroom and remove old wallpaper $800
e. Replace window treatments in maste bedroom $400
f. Convert our propane grill to a natural gas grill $170
There are quite a few consequential decisions regarding the above. I'll write more about them in future posts.
The most important question here is why did we decide to dip into savings to make these changes:
1. Too often we've waited until just before moving to make necessary improvements, never having time to enjoy them
2. We think we'll live in this house for a long time - so we'll be around to enjoy the improvements
3. We've never had matching furniture except recently for the guest room.
4. Much of our past furniture didn't work with the new house (more rooms, bigger size)
5. We felt we could afford the expense, estimating it would be around $13k - $14k
6. We had to obtain a new vehicle with #2 being unstable
I'll also post in the future about several cash flow improving ideas.
Following the above expenditures, the majority of rooms in our house will have been furnished and updated. The most important rooms not update and subject to future expense will be:
1. Children's rooms - we can go slowly on these as the children are happy with what they have(while young)
2. Living room - we'll need to re-upholster the couch and change the window treatments; est. $1,700 (we can wait a while on this as we're still trying to decide what to do about the couch)
At the end of the day, we've accelerated the furnishing of our house while making necessary repairs. The flat panel TVs are a luxury plain and simple.