That’s the price you gotta pay when you get rid of your 9-5, though! The cash flow just isn’t as sexy when you cut your income down like that ;) Which I’m still nowhere near used to.
The funniest part is that I feel just as busy, if not more, than when I WAS working! How crazy is that? I pretty much substituted Love Drop for my 9-5 now so fingers crossed it continues to grow so we can eek out a small salary.
Other than that major change in this month’s recap, everything else seems to be going well. I finally took some of your advice and paid down our credit cards to get them to $0.00 again. As you can see, we pulled some of it out of our Emergency Fund which had been sitting pretty for 3 years now. It kinda stung, but financially it just made the most sense. My goal of nixing the c/c debt in 2 months failed about 6 months ago ;) Here’s how last month played out…
Net Worth break down: January, 2011
CASH SAVINGS (+$540.96): Not the most exciting increase, but at least it IS an increase! If only those jerk-offs would pay me my last paycheck from 12/15!!! Arghhh… I’ll be blogging about this soon, just you wait.
EMERGENCY FUND (-$1,648.21): Yup, the first time in 3 years we took money outta here. It kinda feels wrong pulling from this fund since credit card debt isn’t really an “emergency” per se, but at least it got us to finally wipe them out and move on with our lives. I’m hoping this drop will motivate us to build it back up to the full $10,000. I know I can pull from my “work for myself” stash (of $40,000) if ever we wanted to, so it’s not the end of the world.
ROTH IRAs (+$828.95): This is relying 100% on the market fluctuations – we’ve got no current plans to add to these this year unless our income takes a major shot of adrenaline. It’s a good thing we were maxing out when we could! Two straight years ain’t too shabby ;)
401(k)s (+$2,451.02): This is currently tied to the market as well right now. ALTHOUGH I still haven’t told you all my secret yet! I’ll have to add it to my future blog posts to do, but I’m basically getting F’d out of money still owed to me here too! It’s a $hit ton, and I’ll actually be filing an official complaint with the Department of Labor today. Fingers crossed…
AUTOS WORTH (kbb) (+$550) : So this is the second month in a row these cars went up in value. How is that possible?? It doesn’t make much sense, but since KBB is what I’d use to sell these guys whenever the day comes, I’m continuing to use their valuations. As crazy as they are sometimes… Here are the current values:
- Pimp Daddy Caddy: $2,970.00
- Gas Ticklin’ Toyota: $10,180.00
HOME VALUE (Realtor) ($0.00): The same $300k our realtor set it at last year. It’s possible it’s changed a bit over the months, but for now we’re gonna keep as-is until I talk with him again. Our neighbor’s house had an offer of $297k not too long ago too, so hopefully it’s still in the same ballpark.
CREDIT CARDS (-$2,471.85): Free again, at last! And this time we’ll be keeping it that way ;) We’re still gonna keep using them for easy budgeting (seriously, I love credit cards for that!) but this time I’ll make sure to pay larger items w/ cash so I’m not tempted to keep a balance anymore. We’ll see how that goes.
MORTGAGES (-$152.26): A little more knocked off every month! The whole “rounding up to the nearest $100th” is really helping. Easy to keep track of, and easy to pay bits and pieces off as the months go by. Here’s how our mortgages are looking these days (and believe me, they don’t make me happy either):
- Mortgage #1: $286,419.05 – 30 year fixed, interest-only @ 6.875%.
- Mortgage #2: $62,088.87 – Maxed out HELOC w/ 2.8% interest.
Alrighty, that’s it for this month. Still got a ways to go to get used to my new financial lifestyle, but so far I’m enjoying the trade off :) It’s amazing how much happier you can be even though your income gets cut in half.
Hope you all are finding success this year too! If you’re tracking your own net worths (and I really hope you are!), let us know where you stand this month. We can all motivate each other :)
PS: My “Sexy Goals” have also been updated in the sidebar. Currently there is only 1 in there – to reach a net worth of $250k this year. Not anywhere as aggressive as the past few years, but it’s something to strive for :)
PS: If you’re just getting started in your journey, here are a few good resources to help track your money. Doesn’t matter which route you go, just that it ends up sticking!
- The "Budget/Net Worth" spreadsheet - the colorful Excel template I personally use.
- The "Money Snapshot" spreadsheet - a simple Excel template I created for my former $$$ clients
If you're not a spreadsheet guy like me and prefer something more automated (which is fine, whatever gets you to take action!), you can try your hand with a free Personal Capital account instead.
Personal Capital is a cool tool that connects with your bank & investment accounts to give you an automated way to track your net worth. You'll get a crystal clear picture of how your spending and investments affect your financial goals (early retirement?), and it's super easy to use.
It only takes a couple minutes to set up and you can grab your free account here. They also do a lot of other cool stuff as well which my early retired friend Justin covers in our full review of Personal Capital - check it out here: Why I Use Personal Capital Almost Every Single Day.
(There's also Mint.com too btw which is also free and automated, but its more focused on day-to-day budgeting rather than long-term net worth building)