snowflake your raise

May 21st, 2008

Snowflake Your Raise

A few weeks ago, my spouse had his annual performance review. I am happy to report that he got an amazing review, his direct supervisor loves him, and put in for my spouse to get a 10% raise. His supervisor said that he didn’t think my spouse would get a 10% raise, because no one generally does, but he wanted to be clear he thought my spouse was outstanding so he put in for 10%. (I will mention that my spouse did get a 10% raise one year, because he is that awesome. My spouse rules.)

My spouse didn’t get the 10% raise, but he did get a 5% one which is the highest his supervisor has seen this year. His paycheck this past week was the first one to include his raise, and I was honestly just hoping that after taxes and the 401K were taken out, the raise would bring his paycheck back to what it was before we changed his 401K to from 4% to 6% earlier this year. Our budget is still based on the pre-401K change numbers, and therefore causes an extra squeeze that I’d like to do without. I was happy to see that his new biweekly paycheck was $44 more than his previous pre-401K increase one. Hurrah!

And immediately the wheels in my brain started turning. I needed to take action and figure out how to not just suck the raise into our monthly budget and never feel the benefit of having it. What to do, what to do… and then it hit me. Snowflake it of course!

So every other week, when my spouse gets paid, I will snowflake $44 to the student loan payoff fund. $44 is not a small amount of money, but it is small enough that I know if I just left it in our checking account, it would evaporate and I wouldn’t even know it was there. But $44 every two weeks makes $88 every four weeks, and that will put a little dent in the student loan every month. In 3 months, it adds up to an entire extra student loan payment.

Little changes add up to big results. This time, my spouse’s raise isn’t going to be just sucked in to lifestyle inflation. It is going to make a noticeable difference in our life.  Debt – be gone!

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11 Responses to “Snowflake Your Raise”

  1. My husband just recieved a significant raise and we have been developing a game plan to use it wisely also! It is so true, if it just goes in the bank account you will just absorb it and not use it to its maximum potential!

  2. You are one wise young woman! I learn so much from your plans. I will be getting a cost of living increase in my retirement benefit in July and although my rent is also increasing I will try to squeak a few snowflakes of the increase into my monthly loan payments.

    You keep my eyes on the prize of being debt free.

    Thanks.

  3. Thats what we did with R’s entire job… kinda.

    We had been living off my salary alone, so when he got a job we kept our living habits the same and have been saving/reducing debt with the rest.

  4. This is a great idea. I’ve got a cost of living raise coming up, and I think I’ll do the same thing. We are working on paying off my husband’s student loans. This will help us get there faster!

  5. You rock! It’s so easy to rationalize that this or that category in the budget should expand just a little. You know all the things our little voices say like, “You’ve been so good, you deserve this.”

    You’re doing the smart, responsible, unsexy thing with the raise and getting out of debt sooner!

  6. That’s exactly what I’ve just done with a recnt pay raise, I get paid monthly, so I’ve just been given a $130 a month snowflake to throw at my debts each month!

  7. That’s awesome! That’s the main reason people stay in the situation they’re in. whenever there’s an increase in income, the lifestyle spending goes up with it. I’m waiting to get my raise in Sept and normally, it gets eatin up by in the increase in my health insurance payment. This year the actually benefits decreased instead of increased payments so I’ll snowflake that into our debts. =)

  8. What an ingenious idea! I am getting a raise as of June 1st, meaning my paycheck on the 25th will reflect that raise. I’ll now plan on using that extra money to snowflake my debt! Thanks.

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