A few weeks ago, Bill got a letter from an appliance manufacturer. He worked for them briefly in the 1990s when he was married to his ex wife. While he worked for this company, he was enrolled in a financial incentive program. The company sent Bill a letter to inform him that they were going to send him the money he had earned while enrolled in that program.
Bill had no idea how much the amount would be. Since he worked there for under a year, he figured it wouldn't be much.
Yesterday, he got a packet in the mail explaining more about the money. It turns out the amount they had for him was a lot more than a couple hundred bucks. It's not a huge amount, but it's enough to invest. Oddly enough, I was actually thinking about starting a new mutual fund account the other day, but then realized that I want to move to a different house next year and we will need cash for that.
This money was totally unexpected and comes at a time when we don't really need it to pay for anything pressing. Ten years ago, it would have really come in handy because we were relatively poor. But we are not really poor right now. A year from now, that may not be the case. It makes sense to park it somewhere, hopefully tax sheltered. Bill is going to stop by our trusty USAA branch and have a chat with them about the best way to stash those unexpected funds.
What really makes this unexpected windfall pretty cool is that the ex doesn't get a dime of it. Back when she and Bill separated, Bill went into the Army and this company sent him a $1200 bonus. Ex took it and spent it all; meanwhile, Bill was struggling to get by on $600 a month as Ex took most of his paycheck in child support, alimony, and the house payment Bill was compelled to make for her. She leeched money from him for years and was way overpaid in the ensuing years of their divorce. So she gets none of this little windfall, not that it's really that much anyway.
Sometimes the universe comes through for you just when you least expect it.