February 2012 Cash Flow

February 2012 cash flow
February was a very good month!

We had a great February and our cash flow worked out very nicely. 

We are planning to save 100% of my paycheck in 2012 and will only live on Mrs. RB40’s paycheck and our side income. This month we had a surplus of  $1,892! This was much better than the $399 we had in January.

IncomeFebruary        January
Mrs. RB40’s paycheck26943069
rental income8241042
side income1495707
dividend, interest20447
Total income56165195
cash allowance-816-975
Total expense-3,724-4796

Total saving in 2012: $2291

*There is a bit of fuzzy accounting here because I don’t count the cost of baby daycare. We pay $1,035 a month, but it is covered with DCAP from my paycheck. It is already deducted pre-tax and we wouldn’t have seen it anyway. Also, once I quit work, then I’ll be home to take care of the little guy so I think we can zero it out as we look forward to the future.

** I don’t count my paycheck here because we are trying to live on one paycheck. We are preparing for the day that I Go It Alone.

Income (Target > $5,000)

Mrs. RB40 is paid biweekly and the amount shown here is the take home pay, after her 401(k) contribution. Last month was a bit bigger than usual due to a little reward bonus.

Rental Income – I’m showing all income minus expense. The property taxes are also baked in now.

Another good month on the rental front. We’ll need a few more good months because the 4-plex will get an exterior paint job this summer.

Side Income

Retire By 40 had $1495 net income this month. I’m very happy with this and just need to continue to work hard on this site.

Dividend, Interest, and P2P lending

Dividend portfolio – $156. Not too shabby, but it’s still way short of the targeted $500/month.

Interest – $34. My $50,000 is still with ING. I’ve been too busy to do much with it. I’ll probably put some in I bonds.

P2P – $14. One of my loans went into default. There goes $25. I think this -$25 will show up in a month or two at Prosper. I’m thinking about slowly increasing my investment here to around $5,000. That will give me the proper diversification. I have about $2,000 invested at this time.


I made $220 by selling a couple of things on Craigslist. It was a nice boost to income, but non regular.

Chase gave me a $150 bonus for opening an online checking account. I’ll keep my eyes open for more of these kinds of deals.

Serve, a competition to PayPal from Amex, gave me $10 for signing up. They sent me a card and it actually worked. I used it to pay the parking meter today. 🙂

Also got a $19 Costco/Amex refund. It was a pretty good month for miscellaneous income.

Expenses (Target < $4,000)

Housing – The housing expense is very high, but it’s stable at this point. Living in this location allows us to cut expenses in transportation and bills. The property tax and HOA dues are baked in.

Food and Cash Allowance – I think about 90% of the cash allowance goes toward food and groceries. Mrs. RB40 also received her 10% editor pay in cash.

Transportation – This is for gasoline and public transportation. We kept it under $100; that’s going to difficult this summer when the gas price goes up.

Baby – Diapers and formula. He’s transitioning to whole milk with no problems, so we won’t be buying any more formula. Yay!

Bills – I purchased some minutes for my Tracfone and the rest of the bills are holding steady. This category should go back down under $300 next month.

Medical – $10 deductible for my annual physical exam. I got a referral to physical therapy for my shoulders. They are a mess from sitting in front of the computer all day every day. PT is really helping, but if I continue to work in this job, the problem will come back very soon.

Entertainment – Didn’t do much in February. We skipped Valentines this year.

Misc –

February Cash Flow

February turned out great for our finances. If we can keep adding to our savings at this rate, then I won’t have much qualms about quitting my day job. We didn’t have many unexpected expenses this month and that made a big difference.

How about you? Did you have a good February? Valentines Day is getting to be an expensive holiday, but we celebrated baby RB40’s birthday instead, so it wasn’t too expensive. 

If you need some help keeping track of your finances, you should try using Personal Capital to manage your budget. It’s a great free budgeting tool. You can keep track of your income, expenses, and net worth, all in one place. Personal Capital is geared for investors and have many great tools. See my review of Personal Capital and how they helped me reduce what I’m paying in investment fees.

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Joe started Retire by 40 in 2010 to figure out how to retire early. After 16 years of investing and saving, he achieved financial independence and retired at 38.

Passive income is the key to early retirement. This year, Joe is investing in commercial real estate with CrowdStreet. They have many projects across the USA so check them out!

Joe also highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. They have many useful tools that will help you reach financial independence.
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48 thoughts on “February 2012 Cash Flow”

  1. Joe, did you think it would be a good idea to bank your salary and pay off your primary residence before quitting. With the reduction in expenses life would be much much easier.

  2. Pingback: Personal finance bloggers February 2012 income round-up | Personal Finance Success
  3. I’m loving that rental income column Joe! Great job on getting a passive income source and working it. Are you going to buy another property soon?

  4. You’re doing well! I’m waiting for updates on the multi-unit apartment though. Maybe I’m selfish. 😉

    • I’ll probably give an update after I finish tax. That way I can see the whole picture. It will be a loss in 2011, but 2012 should be positive.

  5. “We skipped Valentines this year.”

    Mrs. RB40 is very understanding. Although I wish we could cut this hallmark holiday expense completely, we have learned to compromise by picking another day during February to celebrate as “Valentines Day”. It helps save on costs and we get to skip the crowds – oh yeah, it also keeps Mrs. Early FI happy. That’s always a plus.

    • We were way too busy with everything this year. If we had more time, we probably would have gone out for a nice dinner or something. 😉

  6. Awesome month and nice positive cash flow. Sorry to hear about the Prosper default. Don’t worry, I won’t be letting that happen to me. My mom is loaning me some as well so the immediate issue will be cared for, then it is a matter of getting it all paid back.

    • I think I’ll have to add more investment into Prosper. That way it will be more diversified and a default wouldn’t hurt as much.
      Right now, a default wipes out 2 months of interest. Nice to hear things are getting settled for you too.

  7. Great breakdown. I love the style of graphs too!
    We’re pretty much doing the same thing – we’re living off of my husband’s income and saving my income and our rental income. Such a great way to make quick progress with saving =)

  8. Very nice job. Particularly impressive is you rental income . I wasn’t so sure you’d have that plex cashflowing so soon.

  9. You indeed rocked in February. 🙂 Congrats! You guys are savers. We are spenders. I got some side income and off we went on a small trip. 🙂 So much for saving!

    • Actually, I need to add another expense row – tax. I didn’t withhold tax for the online and rental income yet. That’s going to take a big chunk out. I’ll do tax first to see what it looks like.

  10. I had a very bad February in terms of spending, I blame it on all those school tuition deposits (MBA programs require you to send in $1K or more to hold your acceptance spot at the school, which you need to do before you hear from your other schools).

    And wow, Mrs. RB40 is doing GREAT.

    • That’s crazy. Can you get the $1k back if you don’t go to that school?
      Your earning potential will go way up after the MBA, right?

    • No, I used Excel for these graphs. Mint has a pie chart and a line graph.
      We use cash for everyday items and groceries and the credit card for online, insurance deductioin, and those type of transactions.

  11. I am always envious of these posts. I chuckled over the baby cost being under 100 dollars. I just shelled out 300 dollars this morning to two of my ‘babies’ (ages 14 and 17) for class trips. Thank goodness my daughter isn’t going anywhere this spring. (These are not spring break trips, but participating in Model United Nation competitions.)

    You are doing so good RB40. How much do you think keeping such careful track of expenses helps curb your spending and increases your saving? I bet a lot…

    • Mrs. RB40 just told me she went to the Model UN competition when she was in school. I never heard of it until now. 🙂
      Keeping careful track on the blog really help curb the spending. I don’t want to have to tell everyone that I purchased a bigger TV or something like that.


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