Monthly Status Report: March 2017

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.


Oh March.… what an absolute­ly insane month. My respon­si­bil­i­ties are pick­ing up at work. The stress of get­ting all my paper­work in order for the house. Buy­ing the house. Mov­ing into the house. Fig­ur­ing out what to do with all my stuff and fig­ur­ing out how every­thing works in the new place. Hang­ing out with my friends. I had a LOT going on in March.

Unsur­pris­ing­ly, my spend­ing went not only out the win­dow, but flew out of it as though there was a fire. As much as I tried to keep my spend­ing down, it still crept up on me. I have faith, though, that this will be just one small blip in my over­all jour­ney and won’t be any­thing to stress over in a few years. Right now though, I have a LOT more gray hair than I did.

With­out fur­ther ado, I present my March 2017 expens­es.

RentLast month of pay­ing for hous­ing out of my own pock­et!
Util­i­tiesNo util­i­ties! It’s all includ­ed in the rent.
FoodNo ragrets.
PhoneSo low. I love Project FI!
AutoOne year of auto insur­ance, pre­paid when I switched com­pa­nies.
Inter­netNo inter­net charges for awhile 😀 also includ­ed in the rent.
Insur­anceHealth insur­ance is paid direct­ly from my pay­check.
PetMore food and lit­ter for the floof.
Sup­portI sup­port my sis­ter with her mis­sions!
BlogNext year’s host­ing fee, plus new month­ly charges for sup­port and plu­g­ins.
Enter­tain­ sub­scrip­tion. BASEBALL IS BACK!!
Shop­pingRan­dom neces­si­ties
FeesFees are dumb.
MiscMov­ing charges, doc­tor vis­it, kitchen island.… misc stuff.
Trav­elFlight for Fin­Con! Paid for with miles 😀
Hob­biesOne week­end quilt retreat with my mom­ma!
HouseYeah.…. down pay­ment.… that hurt.

All told, my spend­ing totaled $9,488.50 for March! That is more than I’ve spent in the past few months COMBINED. It hurt to get that mon­ey pulled out of my account, not going to lie. But, the cool thing is, I wrote a check for $5k and now have $8k in equi­ty in the house since I had a bunch of cred­its and clos­ing fees paid for. So it’s not like the mon­ey just dis­ap­peared on a shop­ping spree or any­thing. But hey I have a roof over my head and I’m not the one pay­ing down the mort­gage! Woot woot!


Gross: $6,462.00

Adjust­ed: $3,119.58 (after tax­es, deduc­tions and oth­er with­hold­ings are tak­en out)

Tax­es: $1,518.46

A nor­mal month in income. It’s slight­ly more than it was thanks to my 1.11% raise that went into effect at the begin­ning of the month! It’s not much but I’ll take it. April will be a fun month for income with the first rent pay­ments com­ing in and my tax refund.


401k: $2,171.22

Roth IRA: $450

HSA: $238.73

Cash: $0

Total sav­ings: $2,859.95

Absolute­ly zero dol­lars were saved in cash this month, because I spent it all on hous­ing stuff. My sav­ings rate this month was a whop­ping -70.75%. Yes that’s right, folks, neg­a­tive sav­ings. But, like I said, since I put it into the house I’m not real­ly spend­ing it.

Accord­ing to the Lab over on Mad Fientist’s site, my FI date is now 7 years and 11 months away, which means I’ve stayed at Feb­ru­ary 2025. I’m not exact­ly sure how Bran­don runs the cal­cu­la­tions over there, but some­thing seems a bit off. I would have expect­ed it to take a huge jump back­wards like my spread­sheet date did but I’ll take it? (My spread­sheet went from 7 ish years to 25 ish years. $70k of debt takes a toll on the ol FI time­line.)

My total net worth slid to $137,901.00 this month. I’m not wor­ried about it going down (was bound to hap­pen at some point) as I will be mak­ing up the lost ground quick­ly with the rental income. Fluc­tu­a­tions are nor­mal!

Side Hustle

This month: $0

Total: $1525

Income: $0

No more expens­es for the near future as my shop has moved from a work­shop to box­es.

Note: this will be the last month for this for­mat. Next month I will be chang­ing things up with the addi­tion of my rental income and relat­ed expens­es. Stay tuned! Also, this post now con­tains affil­i­ate links so I can off­set keep­ing the lights on around here 🙂

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

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14 thoughts on “Monthly Status Report: March 2017

  1. Keep in mind that the 70k of debt is bal­anced out by the val­ue of the asset that it was used to pur­chase (your house), so there is no change to your over­all net worth by get­ting the mort­gage (unless the val­ue of the home has changed since you pur­chased it). In the­o­ry, this should apply to ALL pur­chas­es, how­ev­er for nor­mal con­sump­tion items we typ­i­cal­ly dis­count the val­ue to near-zero imme­di­ate­ly after purchase/consumption, so it goes down as a loss to net worth. Hous­es and cars are dif­fer­ent in that they (usu­al­ly!) hold at least some of their val­ue over time, so they shouldn’t be writ­ten off right away. Although per­son­al­ly, I con­ser­v­a­tive­ly don’t count my car’s val­ue in my NW even though it’s prob­a­bly worth at least $5k, sim­ply because I don’t want to have to assess my car’s val­ue every month when I do my NW reports.

    The only imme­di­ate loss­es that you should see are clos­ing costs and oth­er fees asso­ci­at­ed with the trans­ac­tion. And of course the ongo­ing expens­es asso­ci­at­ed with real estate like prop­er­ty tax, insur­ance, mort­gage inter­est, improve­ments, repairs, vacan­cies… 🙂
    Mitchell recent­ly post­ed…Month­ly Finan­cial Snap­shot: March 2017My Profile

    • I like how you basi­cal­ly blah de blah over the stuff that’s caus­ing me the most stress there at the very end of your com­ment haha­hah

  2. Haha­ha­ha, buy­ing a house has that effect on your bud­get. 🙂 Our bud­get took at least six months to recov­er after we bought our house back in Sep­tem­ber. But at least you’re rent­ing out part of the prop­er­ty, so that’ll be great for reduc­ing some expens­es.

    • I have a feel­ing things will set­tle down big time after I get the house exte­ri­or repaired and repaint­ed!

  3. We’ve had some expens­es pop up in our new house that inher­ent­ly come with pur­chas­ing a new home. I am work­ing on a kick a$$ farm house table that costs $115 in mate­r­i­al. The same table would be over $600!!

  4. No wor­ries, Gwen. That hap­pens when you buy a house and move. It seri­ous­ly dis­rupts life. But things will set­tle down, you’ll set­tle in and the expens­es will get bet­ter. How’s that new kitchen island work­ing for you?

    • The kitchen island is amaz­ing!! So glad I got it. The feel­ing of joy as I set my stuff on the island to make my lunch this morn­ing was over­whelm­ing!

  5. Yesss. Base­ball IS back! Curi­ous to know, what VPN do you use to get pass the black­out rules? Pis­cot­ty had some real bad luck get­ting hit three times in the span of less than 10 min­utes.

    Con­grats on the offi­cial move. My com­pa­ny is mov­ing to a new build­ing in May so I am also in the mid­dle of a move to stay close to my job. It will be my first time liv­ing alone (well I’ll have a room­mate) away from my fam­i­ly so it’s a big change. I am just glad I already secured a duplex for rent that will be just 4 miles from the new office build­ing.

    • I use a vari­ety of Chrome exten­sions. Just turn em on and boom! Base­ball! Poor pis­cot­ty… I’m just glad he’s ok!!

      Glad you found hous­ing! New office space space is the best!

  6. Awe­some month, Gwen. Con­grat­u­la­tions on the island. What is it about islands? When I was grow­ing up, there was no thing as a kitchen island. But now I’m def­i­nite­ly jad­ed. I can’t live with­out an island and gran­ite coun­ter­tops.

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