I'm still using Quicken to manage my money, but I'm also thinking about "starting over" with a new version and not transferring data. A fresh start would allow me to clean out all the junk in the old database.
I also wanted to be more loyal to fewer companies. If I only stay at a couple of hotel brands I could earn better status and more points. I've been doing this with my credit card accounts for several months. We also concentrated our hotel stays to two major brands in 2017.
The other major area I am always working on is reducing my material possessions. We've done a great job of this. We eliminated a table and chairs, several odds and ends stored in the carport, and culled a lot of things from the house. This will continue.
- Debt: Reduce outstanding debt to less than $150,000.
- Spending: Spend less on vacations and entertainment.
Mission Accomplished! This wasn't by chance, and we don't feel like we sacrificed this year. In 2017, we spent nearly two weeks in Iceland, Amsterdam and London. I relied on AirBnB and loyalty points to keep our expenses down. We spent a week in Belize, but used airline points for the flights and stayed in an inexpensive AirBnB. We visited Las Vegas three times and took two cruises, but instead of gambling the whole time, we did inexpensive excursions and side trips. When I did gamble, Lady Luck was with me, as I had a net win for the year.
Overall, I'm really happy with the progress I made in 2017 on each of my three goals. Even better, the quality of life has improved even as we cut back on some spending.
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