Monthly Status Report: May 2017

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Why do I do a monthly status report?

I find it best to do a monthly status report for a few reasons.

  • It helps me evaluate how I did the previous month. Did I hit a target reduction in spending or did I go way over budget for a par­tic­u­lar category? Did I earn more? What was my overall savings rate?
  • It helps keep me accountable. How can I make an extra purchase knowing I’ll have to explain myself to all of you? Talk about awkward when the blogger can’t walk the walk and talk the talk.
  • I want to prove this crazy thing called financial independence works!
  • It provides an example of real world budgeting and expenses. Some of the people I talk to haven’t ever seen a proper budget or seen one put into action, and part of the purpose of this blog is to lead by example!

I use Mint to help me track my spending and keep an eye on my accounts. I also use a really awesome and super in-depth spreadsheet. So many formulas….. Some people use Personal Capital and others use You Need a Budget (YNAB). Whatever tool (or combination thereof) works best for you and your needs is the best one for you, since everyone and their budgets are different.

Spending

Seriously HOW IS IT ALREADY JUNE?

It is absolutely crazy to me. Seems like I just blinked and May melted away. That being said, it was still a pretty fun month! Softball started up so I get some “free” (already paid for) entertainment and socializing. My team is currently undefeated after 4 games and we're in second place overall in the league. I love being on a team that's so competitive!

Summer made a come back with a roar towards the end of the month. I'm trying to stay away from getting some form of AC, but I don't think I'll make it much longer. Thank goodness my friend has a pool! With the nice weather, I'm getting out more to do fun activities like the farmer's market on Saturday mornings and playing frisbee golf in the park after work. Once I figure out where my bike chain, lock, and helmet went I can even ride my bike around! I'm all about these low cost activities with the house now 🙂

Speaking of money….. here's how I did spending wise in May!

MortgageNot including principle, which is accounted elsewhere on my spreadsheet. Actual payment is $705.43 a month!
UtilitiesI have a feeling it's only going to get higher, too.
FoodI consider that respectable. This includes dinners out with my new softball team and all alcohol.
PhoneSo low. I love Project FI!
AutoAll gas, as far as I know.
InternetTotally not worth what I'm paying for it. So slow!
InsuranceHealth insurance is paid directly from my paycheck.
PetThe cat likes to have food everyday and clean litter. What a weirdo.
SupportI support my sister with her missions!
BlogMonthly fees for support and email.
EntertainmentWent to watch Guardians of the Galaxy 2! SO GOOD!
FeesTransferred over my taxable investment acct to Fidelity.
ShoppingNew socks for work!
TravelCamp Mustache SE 2018 payment and other travel expenses.
HouseAdvance payment on the house exterior project.

All told, my spending for May totaled $2,867.39 without the house project payment, and $5,142.39 all told! THe fees pushed up my spending which I'm not thrilled about, but the bulk of them are for switching over my taxable investment account to Fidelity. I'm hoping by having it more accessible I will put more money in every month which will put me ahead in the long run.

Income

Paychecks: $3,194.07
Rental income: $1,100
Misc: $518.88

Total: $4,812.95

May changed things up again income wise. I finished paying off the vacation days I bought so my paycheck went up a whole $75! I also got random payments in for things like the entertainment stand I sold, interest on savings accounts, and people paying me back in cash for things we split.

Savings

401k: $2,171.24
Roth IRA: $450
HSA: $220.82
Cash: $0

Total savings: $2,842.36

Savings rate this month was 60% excluding the house spending. With the house spending, my savings rate dropped to 28%. I basically threw all the extra in my budget into the advance payment on the exterior house project. It hurts, but it will be worth it.

Net Worth

According to the Lab over on Mad Fientist’s site, my FI date is now 7 years and 3 months away, which means I’m at August 2024! It's always a good month for me when I see more than one month drop from my target date. If nothing else changes, I will be 33 when I hit that date.

My total net worth went up 3.27% to $156,284 this month! It looks like my investments are starting to pick up steam on their own, since this month isn't anything special savings wise or spending wise. I'm obviously thrilled this is the case!

Thanks for reading! What did your month look like? Did you stick to your budget?

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29 thoughts on “Monthly Status Report: May 2017

  1. Oh my lawd I wish A/C were optional down here. I read about lucky folks further north telling people to go without A/C and I’m like, “Uh, that will kill you in Texas.” Great job increasing your net worth! I hope your homeowner woes are working themselves out too. 🙂
    Mrs. Picky Pincher recently posted…What A Frugal Weekend! June 4My Profile

    • As someone who spent a good chunk of the summer outside in San Antonio for basic training, I can safely say AC is an absolute MUST in Texas! It got hot AND humid. So gross. We had to take two showers a day or else we would’ve been even more gross.

  2. Looks like another very solid month of earning more than you spend! We’re looking to purchase our first property next year and I always love reading about the different projects people are taking on. It’s exciting to think about spending money to improve your own Net Worth! The only discouraging thing is the difference in Real Estate markets, I might be able to buy a shed here in Denver for $80k :P. Thanks for sharing!
    Ryan @ Just Another Dollar recently posted…Monthly Financial Review – May, 2017My Profile

    • Thanks Ryan! I don’t really mind the spending on the house because I know it will pay off later in the form of better tenants and maybe even to go so far as to encourage other owners to fix up their properties! If it makes you feel any better, there’s a reason it’s so cheap (bad neighborhood). Still, I’m happy I didn’t have to pay $200k for a neglected house!

  3. “Don’t call me a racoon!”
    “You’re right. I took it too far. I meant trash panda.”
    “…is that better…?”

  4. Looks like a great May, Gwen! Honestly, A/C is one of those things that is worth it to spend on, to me. Especially for sleeping more comfortably. Hope you survived yesterday…it was a warm one! If you come to visit, we’ll take you to the lake, put you in a tube, and pull you around (and around, and around). That’ll cool you off.

    • I got fees for other things than just moving the account, but yeah I wasn’t too pleased. It ended up being about $300 to move it from Baird to Fidelity. So rude.

  5. You had a good month Gwen! I look forward to the pictures of your house as the house projects make progress and she gets to be more comely. $500 in fees! Ouch. Who did you have to pay that to? Fidelity or the company you moved the money from? How was the amount calculated?

    $156k at your age! I had (approximately, because I wasn’t really tracking) $60k the year I turned 30. I met Mr. BITA the next year, and his NW at the time was (his best guess): $5k.
    Mrs. BITA recently posted…On the path to financial independence: May 2017My Profile

    • So far the porch has been power washed, random men have climbed on the roof, and an overhanging tree limb trimmed back. Nothing too exciting yet. The fees did come from Baird. $150 for each account to terminate it, plus a $60 transaction fee for a total of $360 from Baird. Good riddance! Thanks for the kind words!

    • I will have some in a Roth IRA, and I will also have some in a taxable investment account. It won’t be nearly as much as compared to my 401k though, so I’ll be pretty dependent on my other passive income streams to get by until I can access the 401k without major penalties.

  6. Seven years is nothing. You’ll get there before you know it. Things will probably also change in that time. My family budget has expanded by about 40-50% over a few years. A big chunk of that is additional savings for our kids education, which technically is optional, but its a decision we made for our kids and not something we anticipated a few years ago.
    Owen @ PlanEasy recently posted…Canada Child Benefit: The Hidden Tax RateMy Profile

    • Thanks, Owen. It feels like it will take forever now! Hurry up already!

      ………of course all this assumes it’s just me in life with no partner/family. I would assume the future Mr. Gwen will bring in assets of his own to offset planning for two people lol

  7. I just found your site and I wanted to congratulate you on finding/committing to FIRE at such a young age. At your age I thought I was being financially responsible when I learned that I could contribute $2000/yr to an IRA and comfortably retire at about 65. All I had to do was plug myself into the Matrix for 40 years – sounded fine at the time, but I discovered I like owning my own time. Before finding FIRE blogs, I had revised my goal and was on track to retire at 55 (people thought I was crazy). A year ago I discovered that I can be “retired” before 50. I wish you the best and hope you inspire the young me’s of the world to take the red pill sooner than I did.

  8. Awesome job on the savings this month! You still hit a 28% savings rate even with that huge house expense, that’s impressive. That $500 fee is killer though as others have mentioned, but looks like it’s unavoidable. Probably worth it in the long run to be able to choose your own funds though.

    When it comes to retirement, having a goal only 7 years in the future at age 33 is amazing.

    Debt Hater recently posted…Net Worth Update – May 2017My Profile

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