Monthly Status Report: August 2016

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.


August seems like it went by in the blink of an eye. I can't believe summer is almost over! (Not that it really matters a whole lot as I spend most of the days working in a frigid office).

I spent most of August close to home except for one very memorable and enjoyable weekend in Chicago! I met up with friends from my Chautauqua trip. Chicago was a great place to meet as one couple lives there and it's a good halfway (ish) point for me and our other friend. We explored downtown, got some Frango Mints, witnessed an amazing Cardinals win at Wrigley Field and had several delicious meals. We also got the opportunity to meet local Mustachians at a meetup Saturday night. It was a blast!


Other than that weekend, I read a lot of books, worked on my side hustle, finished up my summer softball league and enjoyed spending some time outdoors in the warm weather.

But I've segued far enough from the numbers. With­out fur­ther ado, I present my spend­ing (for bet­ter or for worse) for August 2016.


RentStilllll paying rent.
UtilitiesI'd expect this month to be the highest of the year. It was HOT. Thankfully, I've been able to turn the AC off recently so next month's bill will be lower.
FoodVery reasonably over budget for a month with travel in it.
PhoneSo low. I love Project FI!
AutoParking charges sunk this category. Sigh. I biked to work for a few days to use less gas.
InternetSame price as always.
InsuranceHealth insurance is paid directly from my paycheck, and the others are an average from my 6 month payment.
PetI got the privilege of paying to make my cat mad. It was time for shots! Good news is he will be rabies free for 3 years now! Woo!
SupportMonthly allotment to my sister.
BlogI bought a new plugin for the blog.
ShoppingClothes, some new sports equipment…
TravelTrain tickets and some spending cash.
FeesQuarterly fees on my retirement account
GiftsStarting to find good presents for Christmas!

All told, my spending totaled $2616 for July. Look at me getting a handle on my spending! I'm quite pleased with the spending dropping this month. My total savings rate for August was 49.81%, or almost 50% on the nose! Woot!


Gross: $5,810.00

Adjusted: $2,966.82

Taxes: $1,180.32

Very normal month of income. Hopefully this will go up in a few months when I get my new job!


401k: $2,091.60

Roth IRA: $450

HSA: $100.00

Total savings: $2,641.60

A very normal month for savings.

As of 1 September, my net worth sits at $105,442.73. The market continues to go up and I continue stashing away money. Life is good.

According to the Lab over on Mad Fientist's site, my FI date is now 9 years and 7 months away, which means I'm now at March 2026 instead of February 2026. I'm sad this remained the same amount of time, but I think I need to save more or spend way less to get it moving again. Maybe this winter when I'm not traveling.

Side Hustle

This month: $300

Total: $1015

Income: $30 (!!!)

I actually sold some pieces this month! They're being very well received and I have plans rolling to include them at a booth in a fall sale. Wish me luck!

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


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8 thoughts on “Monthly Status Report: August 2016

  1. You are doing great. Keep doing what you’re doing. March 2026 is still a pretty amazing FIRE date for someone in their 20’s. 😉

    A few blog posts ago, I mentioned how it turned out that my savings rates were all over the place in the immediate past 12 months. From 8% to 76%. Sometimes life happens.

    Also, it is very cool that you’re able to save as much as you do and still help out your sister.

    Congrats on the side hustle success as well.

    • Thanks TJ! My sister is basically the only form of charity I do at the moment. It helps me feel involved with all the great things she does for other people 🙂

  2. Is your intention to hit the 18.5k max on the 401k early or are you playing catchup as I think at that rate you are well on course to fill it up?

    • My intent is to fill it up on the last paycheck. My employer only matches what I put in, so if I max early I miss out on the match.

  3. I think you’re a superstar and doing a great job. As someone who just hit $250k net worth at 28 I know how great it feels to hit milestones and see your net worth rise and rise. The only thing I think that’s worth altering is the mindset that the market going up is a good thing and a crash is awful. Remember, we are buying stocks at this stage of our lives, not selling. Let’s get excited when we get to buy something great for 30 or 40% off. Don’t we get excited when we go to the store and get those types of discounts? Why not with stocks? As stocks go up while we are buying we have to pay more for less.

    It’s a weird mindset instinctively to have enjoying a market crash and seeing our investments plummet but we will look back when we start withdrawing money and be grateful for those crashes. They will be the period that afford us the best discounted purchases.

    • Thank John! I agree. It irritates me when my older traditional friends tell me I’ll crack and fold during a downturn. Yeah it’ll suck watching my net worth go down, but I’ll have the same amount of shares. Just gotta wait for their value to recover!

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