Wow, the first month of 2016 flew by very quickly. The gym traffic is already starting to get lighter. I hate going to the gym when it is crowded so that’s good news for me. The weather is also getting nicer and we are starting to see flower buds already. I am so ready for spring. We had a ridiculous amount of rainfall this year in the Pacific NW. I’ve had just about enough of it. Okay, let’s go over my 2016 New Year goals first and then see how we did in January.
Non Financial Goals
Improve Fitness – (January Fail..)
I got a Garmin vívofit 2 for Christmas and I’m using it to track my activity level. Actually, I was pretty sedentary in January. I’m just so lazy when it’s raining so much. Anyway, I did not meet my step goals in January. I had 162,865 steps and the goal was 186,591 steps. That’s about 5,200 steps per day and it is classified as sedentary. I need to bring this up to at least 6,000 steps per day in February.
Control my triglyceride level (WIP)
I’m trying to eat better to control my hypertriglyceridemia. I’m cooking more fish and vegetables, but I don’t think it will make a big difference unless we change our diet completely. Mrs. RB40 keeps adding cheese to things she makes. I will get a blood test in about 6 months and check the triglyceride level. I’d probably have to increase the dosage of my medication.
Try 6 new great restaurants (17%)
We only went out once in January to try a sushi restaurant. SuBe is in downtown Portland and the sushi was very good. Mrs. RB40 liked the Tokyo tower – “layered tower of sushi, with rice, avocado, tamago egg, spicy crab mix, ahi tuna, topped with tempura flakes, wasabi infused tobiko, spicy aioli and unagi sauce.” It’s non-traditional, but we liked it. I give the place 4 stars. 🙂
Take an extended trip to Thailand ($988.96 saved)
I’m planning a 3 week trip to Thailand in November. I want my family to experience the Loy Kratong festival in Chiang Mai. Saving for this trip is made very easy by using Digit. Digit deduct a small amount from my account every few days and I don’t notice the “stealth” saving at all. Check out my Digit review if you don’t know about them. The current balance is just a tad under $1,000.
Attend a conference – (WIP)
I got a ticket to FinCon 2016 in San Diego! Next, I need to reserve the hotel room.
Visit a national park – (WIP)
We’re planning on a short trip to Crater Lake this summer. I need to reserve the campground very soon.
Start a non-finance website – (September)
I will start this after kindergarten begins.
In January, we saved $5,286 in our tax advantaged accounts. I added $1,000 each to our Roth IRA to max out the 2015 contribution. If you haven’t maxed out your 2015 Roth IRA yet, now is the time to do it.
Increase Dividend to $11,500 (7%)
We started off 2016 pretty well with $791 in dividend income.
Surpass $50,000 in RB40 Junior’s 529 account (86%)
The stock market went down quite a bit in January and the 529 is now worth $42,895. This is discouraging because the value decreased about $3,500 in a month. It’s not looking good this year, but I think RB40Jr’s account should be fine by the time he’s ready for college. We have 13 years left to work on this.
Increase Net worth by 3x risk free rate (currently -1%)
The 10-year US government bond yields about 2%. So my target net worth increase for 2016 is 6%. This will be very difficult to achieve if we have a bear market this year. We will save over $50,000 this year, but that won’t be enough to turn the tide. This goal seems almost futile in a bear market. Currently, our net worth gain is -1%. We’ll see how it goes.
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Take Home Income (target > $5,000)
Our take home income was a bit low last month ($4,719) because I transferred $2,000 to our Roth IRA. Oh, I received my dent check from the insurance company. That helped quite a bit. I decided to keep the cash instead of fixing the dent.
Mrs. RB40’s Paychecks: $4,376
Rental income: $614. This is the ideal amount of monthly rental income I’d like to see in 2016. It won’t last, though. We have a few more repairs to deal with this year.
Online income: $1,962. I’m hoping to average around $2,500 per month this year. We’ll see how it goes. I will break down the online income and expenses in our monthly newsletter so if you’re curious, sign up with our email list.
Dividend: $791. This is not bad for Q1.
Interest: $8. The interest rate is quite low so this will be small for the foreseeable future.
P2P lending: $46. Our ROI is holding stable at 8%. That’s not bad at all. I don’t have to do much for this account and it is making much more than our saving accounts. The fund here is not very liquid, though.
Misc income: $2,221. My dent check arrived!
Expense (target < $4,500)
I think we did pretty well with our expenses in January ($3,965.) We spent about $250 on entertainment and miscellaneous. Everything else was core expense.
Housing: $2,256. Mortgage, HOA, and property tax.
Cash Allowance: $0. We’ve been using our debit card for grocery purchases so we don’t use much cash anymore.
Child/Dependent: $584. I’m really looking forward to sending him to kindergarten at our public school..
Bills: $276. Electricity and insurance.
Entertainment: $220. Gym membership fee, a day trip to Mt. Hood, and tickets to the Mochitsuki (Japanese New Year celebration.)
Misc: $48. I got a new pair of sneakers to replace my old holey pair. Mrs. RB40 ate out at lunch a couple of times.
Extra Saving ($754 so far in 2016)
We had $754 extra saving in January. I’ll take it in the win column.
All in all, January was a pretty good month for us. Our net worth is down a bit, but it’s not bad considering how much the S&P 500 decreased. I also had a nice start on my 2016 goals. It feels nice to start with a clean slate. The hard part is to keep the momentum going the rest of the year.
Did you have a good January?