Financial Goals: 2013

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The start of a new year is a natural point in time to embark on new goals and to review the achievements of the past year.  Last week, Brian and I talked a bit about our net worth.  We’re pretty happy with the numbers on paper, but how did we do in terms of achieving the goals we set back in early 2012?


Photo Credit: Images_of_Money via flickr

Photo Credit: Images_of_Money via flickr

CF’s Goals

  • Emergency Fund: $2000 – Failed.  Some family emergencies forced me to divert extra money away from this goal.
  • Net Worth: $0 Success!  From our net worth post last week, I am at a net worth of almost $7000.  This is the first time in my adult life that it’s been positive!
  • Add $1000 to TFSA. Success!  I added several hundred dollars a month plus tax refund money.
  • Increase RRSP contribution to at least $100 per month. – Success! I am contributing a total of $600 a month to my RRSP, plus employer matching

Brian’s Goals

  • Personal savings rate of 35-40% – Failed. I admit, I didn’t have much of ‘plan’ to achieve this, but I still ended up with a 30% savings rate. My budget changed a few times throughout the year, but never exceeded this rate.
  • RRSP balance of $11000 – Success! I ended the year with an RRSP balance of $11,500.
  • TFSA balance of $5000 – Success! I ended the year with a TFSA balance of $5600.
  • Emergency fund: $5200 – Failed. Extra money was diverted to our new condo downpayment and an unwise couch deposit prohibited me from reaching this goal. I ended the year at $4100.

Joint Goals

  • Make one lump sum payment to the mortgage of $1500 Failed.  We decided to divert our extra money towards our new condo downpayment and made a smaller lump sum payment instead.
  • Contribute a minimum of $5000 to the Condo savings fund. – Success!  We ended up saving almost $15,000 towards our downpayment.
All in all, not a bad haul.  I do wish our personal savings rate was a bit higher, so that’s something we are focusing on this year.

So what’s on the radar for 2013?  Well, we bought our 2nd condo already, so in 2013, we’re going to be focusing on reducing my student loan and increasing our savings.

CF’s 2013 Goals

  • Emergency Fund: $2500 – This should be doable.  I am regularly contributing $100 a month to my emergency fund.
  • RRSP balance of $20,000 – This may require more contributions on my part.  We’ll see.
  • Student loan debt: Less than $20,000 – I currently owe about $27,000. My monthly payments will not achieve this goal, so I’ll have to put extra money towards it.

Brian’s 2013 Goals

  • Net worth greater than $70,000 – I increased by $20,000 last year, so I hope to increase by at least $22,000.
  • RRSP balance of $18,000 – This will be achieved by regular contributions of $500 per month.
  • TFSA balance of $8,000 – This may require some extra contributions.

Joint Goals

  • Make a $1000 lump sum payment to each condo mortgage – As budgeted, so should be doable.
  • Increase our average dividend income to $100 per month – We are currently averaging $25-$30 per month.

What are your financial goals for 2013?



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  1. It’s very exciting to get to zero net worth after being in the hole for a long time. It’s only up from there. Impressive year.

  2. Great job mates! You made some positive improvements in 2012! You did awesome with the RRSP contibutions CF at $600 a month. I really need to look at my RRSP contributions for 2013 so I can max out if possible. I also have a tonne of room in my TFSA! Keep up the great work. Mr.CBB

    • CF says:

      Thanks! I am still not close to maxing out my RRSP, mainly due to extra room from previous years, but hopefully soon! Good luck with your TFSA.

  3. Even when we don’t reach our goals, I still think it’s great to have them. Savings is probably a lot higher than it would have been if you were like, “I’m going to have an emergency fund…” rather than pinpointing ideal number you’d like to reach.

  4. Nice job on some of the goals. I want to increase my 401k contributions along with my Roth IRA. I also want to start investing in dividend stocks.

  5. Liquid says:

    Great job on your 2012 goals, not a bad haul at all. And looks like things are off to a good start so far in 2013. Either paying off debt, or saving to invest, both priorities will make your net worth stronger 😀 One of my goals this year is to make at least $1,000 more in dividend income than last year.

  6. I think you guys did great, and that the Pass/Fail mechanism can be hard when a goal changes over the course of the year. It sounds like your new condo was being planned for when you made the goals, but maybe didn’t expect it to happen in 2012. That doesn’t mean it’s a fail to divert some money from another place to make it happen a little sooner.

    • CF says:

      That’s what happened exactly actually! We had planned to buy in early 2013. However, this place was exactly what we were looking for at about $30,000 less than what we had expected to pay. So we decided there was no point in saving aggressively for other goals and having to borrow more to pay for the condo.

      (it’s also a bit smaller but so far, that’s not been a problem)

  7. Congratulations! You are making progress! Don’t let the fails get you down. You are moving in the right direction!!!

  8. Wow that’s quite an impressive year, you saved so much! I’ll be looking forward to reading your next goal recap to see how far you’ve come.

  9. A lot of your fails are near-passes, so don’t beat yourself up too much. I’m excited to see what 2013 brings for you!

  10. eemusings says:

    Here’s to a successful 2013!

  11. Pauline says:

    you did pretty good overall, congrats! Good luck with 2013, with a new property and new investments it should be exciting! My goal is 30% improvement of net worth which is a stretch but I like to aim high!

  12. Congrats on seeing positive numbers in your net worth! Now keep going that direction! 🙂 I know, sometimes easier said than done.

  13. I remember the first time my net worth went from negative to positive. It’s a pretty great feeling! Overall, you both have a lot of pretty aggressive goals. If you make half of them that would be pretty awesome.

    • CF says:

      Definitely a great feeling! I’m still pretty pumped about it.

      Our goals are aggressive, but hey, better to be aggressive than complacent, I think 🙂 At least, at the this point in the game.

  14. Jose Nieto says:

    Congratulations Pauline and Brian, don’t let the fails set you back, celebrate your successes and work towards your 2013 goals. I’ve set mine and posted them, hopefully making them public will help me in sticking to making them a reality!

  15. Dear Debt says:

    Wow, I can’t even imagine what it will feel like to have a positive net worth. It will be so exciting. Congrats! Must be a relief. You have some nice goals there. I want to try to pay $1,500 towards debt the rest of the year. That’s 86% of my day job income, so I need to side hustle more!

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