Financial Update – May 2019

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

may 19

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

may 19 joint.png

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

may 19 ind.png

Monthly Summary

Relatively spendy month. Our fridge died, so we had to buy a new one. We also had our condo deep-cleaned which was stupidly expensive. Let’s just say it was a similar order of magnitude as the fridge, but they managed to scrape all the burnt bits off the stove so I feel pretty satisfied by the whole thing. Also, I ended up flying to the west coast for a milestone birthday party for my grandmother, so that was a pretty penny too.

I’m kind of sad how much our net worth dipped this month. Between the spending, stock market slump (only 1.5 more years of bear market to go!), and a few thousand in charitable donations (not in the spending summary above but does count toward our yearly 10% of income threshold), we definitely backslid a bit. I plan to quit my job in six weeks, and would like to build up a little cash cushion in advance, but I’m afraid that I’ll need to money to exercise my options instead. So yeah, we’ll see how that goes.

How were your finances in May?

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Financial Update – April 2019

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

april 19

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

april 19 spend.png

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

april 19 single

Monthly Summary

Lots of financial updates this month. For one, I finally finished our taxes, woohoo! I don’t know whether it was because of the 401(k) over-contribution, getting married, the new tax law, or all of the above, but filing this year felt twenty times more complicated than usual. Long story short, I thought we’d be getting a refund, but apparently my 401(k) contributions last year were traditional and not Roth, so we actually owed, like a couple thousand dollars. I’m just glad that’s over.

In other news, apparently someone stole our joint credit card number? I was doing my usual mid-month financial check-in and noticed about $300 worth of sketchy transactions that occurred in $20-50 increments over the course of like 5 days. My husband and I were puzzled by where those came from, but given the merchant was a portmanteau of two real, but completely unrelated company names, it seemed clear pretty quickly that it was fraud. Luckily, the overall damage was quite small and our credit card company reversed all the charges. We now have our new credit cards in hand, all with relatively little hassle. Super bizarre though.

Lastly, I got charged a $27 late payment fee because my personal bank switched my account number with about zero warning, causing my credit card’s auto-pay to be declined. That was annoying.

Notable things that happened in April include:

  • Maybe I should just get rid of this section. -_-

How were your finances in April?

Financial Update – March 2019

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

mar 19 joint

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

feb joint19.png

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

mar 19

Monthly Summary

Lots of money towards travel to Copenhagen to see my friend get married this summer. In other news, got my money refunded from my 401(k) over-contribution, but still waiting on my amended W2 to file my taxes (due for a few thousand dollars refund). All in all, things are going fine money-wise.

Notable things that happened in March include:

  • Sigh, nothing. Again.

How were your finances in March?

Financial Update – February 2019

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

feb joint

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

feb 19

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

ind feb 19

Monthly Summary

Life marches on. I’m having trouble being pithy about it.

In any case, I have some financial updates this month.

Good news: got a nice bonus from my employer. I doubt we’re going to see the same level of growth as these past couple months going into the near future, but we should be able to hit our financial inflection point by fall/winter, which is nice.

Bad news: I screwed up our taxes. Or, rather, I over-contributed to my 401(k). Pro tip, the annual $18,500 limit from 2018 is based on total employee contributions per person. I thought it was per plan, which meant I maxed out at my previous employer and at my new one too. Whoops. (But somehow your employer can contribute and you can put in after-tax dollars up to $50-something thousand dollars and that number is per plan? Another LPT: The tax system is broken and for wealthy people.)

At least my over-contributions were Roth dollars, so shouldn’t effect my refund that much. Working now in getting that fixed, but it’s another headache I don’t really feel like I need right now. Plus my husband and I are missing tax forms from our health insurance, which is annoying and necessary for our state returns. Bah, humbug.

Notable things that happened in February include:

  • Nothing. 😦

How were your finances in February?

Financial Update – January 2019

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

jan 2019

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

j19.png

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

january 2019

Monthly Summary

Huh, I guess stocks bounced back. Cool.

I bought insoles and sneakers on our joint, per earlier musings and a conversation with my husband. We also tried floating in sensory deprivation tanks for our anniversary which was super uncomfortable at the time but left my muscles super relaxed thereafter. I’m kind of interested in trying another round, but I’d want to do it multiple times in a week to see whether it’d help my terrible office-worker back.

In other news, I’m looking for new a job. I guess I should probably try to stay for a year, at least so I can hit my one year cliff. But, yeah, it’s not going that well. I’ve done a few interviews so far and I’m realizing that this role is inherently pretty stressful and political. Not sure what to do yet. 😦

Keeping on keeping on.

Notable things that happened in January include:

  • Floating!

How were your finances in January?

Financial Update – December 2018

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

december

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

december joint.png

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

spend ind

Monthly Summary

Big net worth drop this month due to the market. Not terribly concerned (wake me once we get back to pre-election levels), but I am keeping money coming in a bit more liquid for now, in part because I know we’ll be front-loading retirement plan investments in the beginning of the year anyway, so might as well stock up a little cash-wise while we can.

Husband bought some more work clothes, but otherwise joint expenses are what we expected for the month (including the delayed $$$ therapy bill dropped on us in November). Individual spending was just under target, almost compensating for the overage last month.

Personal life-wise, I’ve just been working a lot. But I’m hitting flow (I think) so that’s maybe good? I am trying to push hard and build all the systems I need to put in place so things will be easier to handle before pregnancy, babies, etc.

Notable things that happened in December include:

  • Nothing. 😦

How were your finances in December?

Financial Update – November 2018

Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates consist of two parts:

  • Financial Progress Table – Tracks joint net worth progress.
  • Spending Table – Compares monthly spending to an average (for us) budget, keeping us accountable for additional expenses. I will also include my personal discretionary budget as well; I will not include my spouse’s discretionary spending, which I do not see.

Financial Progress

Each net worth goal in the Financial Progress table is broken down into undisclosed units of money. Our current goal is to reach “Financial Freedom.” By the time we reach this goal we will have:

  • A retirement account that can support us when my husband hits 65
  • Two college savings funds funded for four years of in-state public university tuition, room, and board
  • An emergency fund for six or more months of living expenses
  • Sufficient liquidity for my husband and/or I to make a career change with one to two years’ runway
  • A mortgage less than two times our combined gross salaries without bonuses or equity.

Once “Financial Freedom” is achieved, the focus will then working be towards “Financial Equilibrium”, where the income from investments covers all our ongoing expenses.

november

Spending

We’ve created a joint budget which represents the average amount we can expect to spend each month. This is average amount we need to comfortably live in case of a job loss, emergency, etc. I expect to frequently mostly keep in line with our budget when amortized over the year, even though amounts may vary from month to month.

For privacy reasons, there are two things I do not include in our joint spending updates: our monthly mortgage and charitable donations (pegged at 10% of our net income).

joint nov 18.png

Here is my own personal discretionary spending for the month of November. I try to spend $600 or less each month for my “fun money” since that’s the allowance that’s apportioned to me and my husband.

ind spend nov 17

Monthly Summary

Some of these numbers are still in flux since we’re not quite done combining everything. But we’re getting close. I can feel it.

October and November I really took a good at our joint finances (in part because we started putting an estate plan together) and boy howdy we spend a lot for the two of us. Yikes. Like, I knew this, but I didn’t really internalize it until I went through my husband’s auto insurance statements. Auto premiums in this city are bonkers.

The other big annoying thing for us is health care. Apparently, contrary to what I thought, my husband’s open enrollment period is exactly six months from my company’s open enrollment period. But we want him on our insurance long-term because of his recurring specialist sessions, which are covered on my insurance but not his. I’m super afraid that him being on two insurance is going to lead to a coordination of benefits nightmare in the meantime where we pay out the nose covering both deductibles before getting anything covered. Had we known his insurance would leave such a gap for his specialist sessions before or right after we had gotten married, we could have switched him over then. But we didn’t find out until two months after our nupitals. So. Whatever.

Have I ever mentioned how much I hate health insurance in the US? It’s a really dumb and unintuitive system.

In any case, that means we’re going to be paying on the order of $500/month just for his medical care for six months, then that should go down to $300/month for him when his insurance switches over. Assuming all goes well, which, who knows! Medical billing is an endless nightmare!

Edit: adding my husband to my insurance maybcount as a qualifying event? Which is good is true, because then we won’t have to have him double-covered. Stay tuned as I continue to be flabbergasted by the rigamaroles of insurance. Wheeee.

Anyway, here are the minor steps we have taken / will take to hopefully chip away at these recurring numbers in the long term:

  1. Switch husband to my insurance (saving $200/month)
  2. Find cheaper auto insurance (unknown savings)
  3. Trade in my Google Fi for Mint Mobile (saving ~$40/month)
  4. Cancel Amazon Prime which I mostly used to watch Tokyo Girl (saving ~$13/month)
  5. Set up system to enforce submitting work reimbursements (~75/month, though won’t reduce line item in monthly reporting)

Things that will probably increase our spending:

  1. Putting an estate plan into place
  2. Getting life, disability, and umbrella insurance

We’re also not going to do any more clothes shopping on the joint account (husband really needed more basics for work so we got him a couple things at Uniqlo, but going forward we’ll both be using our discretionary account for those items).

As for my personal spending this month: food. What else is new?

Notable things that happened in October and November include:

  • Got married!
  • Surprise $10k raise at work
  • Went to my first cooking class with Little Sis

How were your finances in November?