February was really busy and I was exhausted all the time. I guess that comes with being a stay at home parent. I was also a little sick most of the month and was busy with turning over a rental. It’s done and I’m glad that’s out of the way! Anyway, let’s go over our 2014 New Year resolutions first. Reviewing them at the beginning of every month will enable me to see how we’re doing and keep the momentum strong.
1. Invest $50,000 in tax advantaged accounts
We added $10,250 in February. Mrs. RB40 made a mistake on her designation form and contributed twice as much as usual. It’s fixed now so it should be back to normal in March. I had a record breaking month of online income in January so I went ahead and maxed out my Roth IRA contribution.
For 2014, we saved $13,550 so far and we are about 27% toward our goal.
- Mrs. RB40 401k: +$2,900
- My solo 401k: +$1,450 I will break down the business income and expense in our monthly newsletter so if you’re curious, sign up with our email list.
- RB40 Jr’s 529: +$400
- Roth IRA: $5,500
2. Generate $12,000 in passive income
We had a light passive income month and made $727 in February.
For 2014, we made $1,921 so far and we are at about 16% to our goal.
3. Get Leaner
I’m trying to get back in shape after 18 months away from the gym and reduce my body fat percentage from 20% down to 17%. I think my scale might not be very accurate. I didn’t make to the gym a few times last month and when I did, I was a bit sick. It was just a busy month and I thought I’d slide back a bit. I just took measurements before sitting down and the scale told me my body fat percentage is 18%. That’s good progress from 19% last month. I’m pleasantly surprised because I don’t feel leaner at all. Anyway, I’ll try to get more good workouts in this month. BTW, I lost about 4 lbs so far.
Take a family trip to Hawaii. We are looking for tickets. The flight over to the Big Island is a direct flight and it’s not too expensive. The flight back is not good though. Most of the flights back get in too late and we’d have an overnight stay somewhere before getting home.
5. Blog Goal
My goal this year is to exceed 120,000 pageviews/month. In February, we had about 97,000 pageviews. A bit slower than January, but we’ll keep working on it.
Net Worth (+1.5% YTD, +2.5% MTM)
I have been too busy to pay attention to the stock market, so it’s a pleasant surprise to see the gain in February. I’d like to see 8-10% increase in our net worth for 2014, but we’ll see how it goes.
If you need help keeping track of your finances, try using Personal Capital to manage your budget and net worth. It can help you keep track of your income, expenses, and net worth, all in one place. Personal Capital is geared for investors and has many great tools. See my review of Personal Capital and how they helped me reduce what I’m paying in investment fees.
Personal Capital has a great Investment Checkup tool. It will help you keep an eye on your asset allocation so you don’t drift too far from your target.
Take Home Income (target > $5,000)
Our take home income didn’t meet our $5,000 target this month, but that’s because Mrs. RB40 contributed too much to her 401k. I’m not too concerned because we’ll see extra take home in December. We had a positive cash flow month, so it’s not a big deal.
- Mrs. RB40’s Paychecks: It doesn’t look like much because she is paying for our medical coverage, maxing out her 401k (2x normal this month), contributing to our FSA, and deducting child care credits. This income is dependable which is good in uncertain times.
- Online income: My take home was not bad $1,454 this month. That’s already excluding tax withholding, retirement saving, and 529 saving. I will break down the online income in our monthly newsletter so if you’re curious, sign up with our email list.
- Dividend and interest: February is a slow month with dividends. Not much excitement here.
- P2P lending: Our current ROI is 8.27%. That’s down a bit from last month. I also have $1,770 sitting around waiting for a good borrower. P2P lending also became very passive for me so I’m generally happy with it. See my last update - Peer to Peer Lending Is A Pretty Good Passive Investment. I will write another update as soon as I get the yearly statement.
- Rentals: The rentals are doing well so far in 2014. February was a slow month with just $201 income. I’m going to sell our rentals to take profit this year. The market is hot so I want to take advantage of that.
- Misc income: $14 class action settlement check from Clearwire. $100 birthday check (toward education) to RB40 Jr. $250 bonus check from my new business checking account.
Expense (target < $4,500)
We spent $3,669 in January. That’s well within our target of $4,500. We didn’t have a big purchase, so it’s not too bad. This month I used Personal Capital to track our expense and it worked pretty well except the housing expense. We pay property taxes once a year, but I want to show it on our monthly housing budget, so I manually add that in.
Housing: $2,163. Mortgage, HOA, and 1/12 property tax.
RB40 Junior: $377 this month. Childcare, new clothes, birthday gifts, etc…
Cash allowance: $300 for discretionary spending. A bit lower than usual this month.
Groceries: Actually $331. Personal Capital missed a transaction somewhere. Not too bad even with eating more organic food in 2014.
Insurance: $188. That’s auto, home, and my life insurance.
Hobbies: Mrs. RB40’s Toastmasters conference fee.
Utilities: $61. That’s just electricity for our condo.
Healthcare/Medical: $46. Gym membership.
Surplus (+$6,465 YTD)
We only had $155 extra this month. I’ll take it.
Our saving this month is +$155.
Piggy Bank 2013
- Travel fund: +$965.
- Roth IRA fund: $0 right now. Maxed out 1 Roth IRA so far and will work on the other one.
- Slush Fund: $0
How about you? Did you have a good February?