Monthly Status Report: May 2017

Dis­claimer: some links may be affil­i­ate links. They help off­set the cost of keep­ing this blog run­ning!

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.



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.


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.


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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30 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. Wow $156k — great job! I don’t think there are too many peo­ple in gen­er­al, let alone at your age, who track their spend­ing like that. Do you have the Excel spread­sheet you use uploaded any­where on the site? I’m sure it’s not hard to re-cre­ate, just curi­ous. I’m excit­ed to see how the month of June goes for you — keep it up!
    Matt Kuhn recent­ly post­ed…Tax­es Made Easy Part 2: How to Legal­ly Avoid Tax­es and Keep More Mon­eyMy Profile

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. $500 is such a huge amount of fees to move your account! I don’t even under­stand how that is pos­si­ble! I’m curi­ous why did you choose Fideli­ty over Van­guard?

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