Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Monthly Progress: October 2016


The first day of the month is always a big day for me with my personal finance spreadsheets. While I update them nearly every day there are a few things that I do and track on a monthly basis, so the first day of a new month means that I get to hard code the actuals of the previous month and see how we did. I LOVE IT!

So, how'd we do in October?

1)       Net worth: $182,011.71, down $424.67

I am a bit obsessive but I actually track my net worth every morning that I work, just because I love seeing the graph it makes and knowing what's going on, and it only takes me about 10 minutes using Personal Capital if I go slowly and analyze anything (if you’re not already using Personal Capital please click on the banner ad for them on the right of this article, they are 100% free and I love them and use their android app nearly every day). But over the past month our net worth has increased from $182,436.38 to $182,011.71, dropping a total of $424.67 for October.

2)     Investment income: ($3,267.68)

Another detail that I measure on a monthly basis is how much we've made (or lost) due solely to our investments. This helps me to see what I would have to live off if I didn't work at all and choose to live exclusively off of investments, which is the goal. The current amount needed from investments each month is $2,600, which means that at a 4% withdrawal rate we would need roughly $780k in investments (easy calculation: $2,600*12*25=$780,000). On the first of every month I document what all of our investments are worth and back out the beginning value of the previous month and all of the investments that we made during the month.

In October we started with $109,160.85, invested $1,422.23 and ended the month with $107,315.17. Meaning that, in October, we dropped by $3,267.68 on our investments. It looks like the markets have been struggling a bit in the face of the pending Presidential Election, any time there is a fear inducing event the market does this. I trust that it will bounce back shortly and I’m still investing just as vigorously while the market is down. Now that we are 10/12th of the way through the year we have seen an investment increase of 4.98% this year which, if things continue at this pace, could set us up for a 6.65% return this year. Not the 14% that was being projected a few months ago, before this down turn, but still above the conservative 6% I forecasted year-over-year when calculating my future retirement date (Now December 19, 2033).

3)     Financial plan savings: $907.47

I'm not going to go into the details behind the calculations on this one since it's more lengthy but you can read more about it in my post about 
Our Current Financial Plan. But after all of our income, expenses and planned savings for the month we ended up with an extra $907.47 in our checking account to use for investing in our future.

We have actually made one small change from our previously stated plan and instead on dividing this 50/50 between our mortgage and Vanguard we have begun dividing it into 4 buckets, adding 2 more buckets for remodels and vacation as follows: Vanguard = 30%, Mortgage = 30%, Remodels = 30%, Vacations = 10%. So this time we invested $272.24 in our medical industries mutual fund VGHCX at Vanguard, it has taken a huge hit this past month and “lost” a lot of value in my portfolio but it allowed me to buy more while it’s on sale – it’ll come back up eventually cause we all know that medical costs only go up.

Then I called up my bank and scheduled a payment for an additional $272.24 to go to the principle on our mortgage. So after our regular mortgage payment that automatically pays on the 1st of each month and this extra payment our mortgage dropped down to $108,366.13 today. Which means that, as of today, we actually own 37.72% (roughly 709 sq. ft.) of our home. We bought 10 sq. ft. this month!

So, by and large our October turned out just fine. How did things go for you? 

And here's to having a great November ahead of us.