I had my annual performance evaluation for 2007 yesterday. My company does performance evaluations twice a year but raises are only given once a year. Last year, I had an excellent performance review which resulted in a 4% raise. Since I exceeded the company expectations last year, I received a raise and merit cash. The amount of the merit cash received is determined by 5% of your yearly salary.

This year, I was hoping to exceed company expectations again to be able to get another merit cash payment. Unfortunately, I did not exceed company expectations but I did fall into the highest performance tier. As a result, I was able to get a 5% raise and a $500 cash bonus. I was a little bummed about not getting the merit cash but I quickly realized, some people did not get a raise at all this year. Some people are even hoping they are able to get a job to be able to make money. I quickly realized, I am very, very fortunate to have a good job with a good salary and job security.

This year, I am making a conscious effort to make sure my expenses do not rise to meet my new income. Out of my 5% raise, I am adding an additional 1% contribution to my 401k. The rest of my increased biweekly income will go into savings and towards debt payments.

Did you get a raise this year? What do you plan to do with the increased amount of salary?

Mvelopes - The Simple Smarter Online Budgeting System - 30 day free trial.
Reminder: Please be sure to subscribe to SingleGuyMoney for more great posts.


  1. fandd // January 19, 2008 at 10:18 AM  

    I'm putting my raise toward building my emergency fund. I split my bonus between my emergency fund and an upcoming family vacation.

    As another Atlantan, I have to ask. Do you have enough milk and bread for the impending snow storm?

  2. SingleGuyMoney // January 19, 2008 at 1:30 PM  

    *fandd: Good idea to bank your raise and bonus. Yep, I am all stocked up and ready. I can't believe we've had snow twice in one week!

  3. Data Babble // January 19, 2008 at 2:15 PM  

    Glad to see you have increased your 401(k) contribution accordingly. Being a north Atlantan as well... I did buy milk yesterday but no bread! So much for the already melted quarter inch we got today...

  4. Chiot's Run // January 19, 2008 at 4:43 PM  

    I got a 3% raise and increased my Simple IRA contributions by more than my raise (doubled from last year). I'm trying to live on less and save more! I'm trying to do the opposite of lifestyle creep. I should have to spend less each year since I already have already acquired most things I need.

    My goals for the year are: Save more, Make more, Enjoy more and Spend less. So far so good.

  5. dreamfool // January 19, 2008 at 5:08 PM  

    We don't have bonus or merit cash in my company, but I did get a raise close to 10% this year. I'm saving more for my Roth IRA, Emergency Fund and Travel Fund.

    I've been tracking my expenses since I started working 3 yrs ago, and I'm happy that even with the crazy gas prices etc I'm able to keep my expenses at about the same level as 3 yrs ago. Hope this trend will continue for at least a few years!

  6. Serenity3-0 // January 19, 2008 at 7:08 PM  

    We have our evaluation and salary increase talks in late February. I do expect to be one of the top performers in my office, which would give me a bonus. My plan is for it to go straight to my emergency fund and once I have a certain number in that, the rest will go to credit card debt. The raise will also go to erasing that same credit card debt. I plan to have it paid off by May.

  7. SingleGuyMoney // January 19, 2008 at 7:41 PM  

    *susy: I like your goals. I need to adopt those goals too.

    *dreamfool: 10% is a nice raise. Congrats.

    *serenity 3-0: I hope you get the performance bonus. You have a nice plan of action.

  8. Anonymous // January 20, 2008 at 12:15 AM  

    Every year my husband gets a raise at the 1st and we ALWAYS allocate it to savings. He already maxes out his 401k, so we usually save his extra earnings for my Roth IRA contributions and to boost our emergency fund. We always save a set amount every week out of his paycheck that goes into our savings and we only use that to move into other investments. By doing all this, we are able to save a lot of money and never know that we are missing it, because we continue to maintain the same spending and saving habits.
    Good for you for adding to your 401K, it is the smartest thing anyone can do for their future!

    Take Care and congrats on the raise!


  9. Debt Dieter // January 20, 2008 at 9:48 PM  

    I received a substantial raise in October last year. Even though I'm in a lot of debt, I started contributing 1 of my pretax salary to my superannuation account as I figured I wouldn't miss it. The rest is going into debt elimination.

  10. Single Ma // January 20, 2008 at 10:03 PM  

    LOL @ you southern folk buying up all the bread and milk because of an impending snow storm. That's funny!

    SG, it sounds like we work for the same employer. I live for merits! As much as I hear my boss(es) tell me I'm the best they have, not getting one would be uncivilized! LOL I think '08 may bring a dose of reality for me as well. Hopefully, it won't hurt too bad.