We did our taxes last week and would you believe even after having them take out an additional $50 for Federal taxes out of my weekly paychecks for the last 17 weeks of 2011 (which totaled $850), we still owed even more money! We owed $300. At least I over estimated how much we owed the state and got a small refund of $130. I think part of the problem is my husband is claiming a "2" on his W4, and our combined household income just barely surpassed the 6-figure mark for the first time ever! I don't know if we'll earn as much this year because I am not getting any overtime and my husband's bonus will be less this year because sales are down.
Well it looks like I may not have to save $20K by September 1 after all. A couple weeks ago we had a guy knock on our door and it just so happened he was selling windows and siding. My husband said he would be interested in replacing just our basement windows at this time. With the off-season discount, replacing our 3 basement windows is going to cost us $4,200. We already have that amount saved! So, I'm not sure if I should continue to save. I guess the only thing I'd do besides save cash is put money into my Roth IRA. We recently refinanced our mortgage to a new 25 year loan at 4.5%, so even though we still owe more than our house is worth, I've going to leave it alone for now. Besides the interest is tax deductable. I might compromise and put $2,500 (half of what I'm eligible for) in the IRA and then still save up cash for maybe the rest of the windows next year or to replace our vehicles when the time comes.
In other news we were recently victims of bank fraud. I woke up one morning to find we only had $4.23 in our joint checking account. Someone 300 miles away withdrew $500 from the account! We filed a fraud report and a couple weeks later got it resolved. But it was no fun to call the banks and hassle with them asking if we were being too careless with our personal information. We also closed the account just to be safe and then had to go through the hassle of changing all our monthly automatic withdrawals to a new account. When they finally resolved the issue the bank didn't say what happened. Our last name is not that common, but my husband has a distant relative who lives in the same area that the money was withdrawn from with the same first and last name. I didn't notice until I did a Google search and found an obituary that listed the family's names that this relative married someone with my first name! What are the odds? So now there is another couple with our exact names out there. We kind of think because of this that the bank made an error. Hopefully we won't have to deal with this name issue again. I wonder how often this happens to the Smith’s.