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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.
You know the saying “Do what you love and you’ll never work another day in your life”? Well, I think I found that job. My friend J and I started a podcast in August and worked furiously on it. I was putting in 18 hour days at some points between day job, podcast,
working on the rental property, activities, , and video calls with my man. All of that hard work paid off when we officially launched Fire Drill Podcast last week! I’m incredibly pleased with the response and want to give a huge shout out to everyone that’s supported us so far.
Speaking of working on the house, I did a ton of work in August. On the front of the house, the old front porch got ripped off, the joists fixed (surprise!), and the new front porch went in and looks amazing. In the vacant unit, I painted the walls twice- once with Killz and once with actual paint, ripped out some water damaged drywall and repaired it, and ripped out the nasty existing carpet. Still on my to do list is finish painting the walls, put down new carpet, and hang a few new cabinets in the bathroom. Then I can take pictures and list it for rent! It was going for $500 a month with heat and water included, but I’m going to give it a shot at listing it for $650 and see what I can get.
August wasn’t all about work though. I did manage to sneak in a few fun activities like several concerts (Brett Eldredge was AWESOME), co-hosting a meetup in Minneapolis with Jeremy from Go Curry Cracker, meeting my boyfriend’s family, and introducing him to my family. Everything on that front is going well and I’m pretty content with how my life is going these days.
Unfortunately though, all these things did not come cheap. Check out below for my total spending in August!
|Mortgage||Not including principle, which is accounted elsewhere on my spreadsheet. Actual payment is $705.43 a month!|
|Utilities||Went a bit over this month due to paying my sewer bill.|
|Food||I’m still in denial about how much food I eat. Don’t judge me too much. I did really good until the end of the month.|
|Phone||So low. I love Project FI!|
|Auto||Gas, new tail light, and new spark plugs.|
|Internet||Maybe this is my actual bill total?|
|Insurance||Health insurance is paid directly from my paycheck.|
|Pet||Don’t worry I bought extra food in July for him.|
|Support||Made up for a few missed months.|
|Blog||Monthly fees for support and email.|
|Fees||Normal quarterly fees on my 401k.|
|Misc||Hair cut, new shampoo/conditioner and other misc stuff|
|House||New front porch, paint, supplies, and $ for my handyman neighbor.|
Everything looked SO GOOD until you get to the house category. I’m pretty happy with how my house-not-included spending of $2,161 turned out. That was good enough to land me at a 70% savings rate for August. Until, of course, you have to add in all the money I spent on the house. That catapulted spending up to $8,586 for a spending rate of -21%. Fortunately, the big-ticket items are almost done so I should be able to rack up some big savings months here soon!
Rental income: $600
No money coming in from the vacant unit. Sad panda continues.
Roth IRA: ——
Total savings: $2,392.06
I didn’t set up the Roth IRA transfer yet. Bad Gwen.
According to the Lab over on Mad Fientist’s site, my FI date is now 7 years and 1 months away, which means I’m at September 2024! Last month I was at June 2024, so I slipped backwards a bit in the time line. Who knew spending that much money in one month would have such a big impact? Gwen is shocked. SHOCKED she says
My total net worth slipped a bit to $170,682 this month. A bit disappointing to go backwards, but my net worth can’t always go up every month. I am pretty excited to point out one thing though- my 401k is now worth 6 figures! Woot!!
Thanks for reading! What did your month look like? Did you stick to your budget?