Hi.

Welcome to my site. I am on a path to financial independence and want to guide the way for you as well. Follow along as I, a 27 yr old, take a regular salary and simple investing strategy to an early retirement.

February Budget Review

February Budget Review

Well I Knew It Would Hit The Fan Eventually....

My investments took a 5-digit slide in February. A $13,653 loss to be exact. Even though I saved like crazy, my networth took a $7,775 slide as well. Man this hurts. Even though if all I did was average last months budget with this one, my networth would be up over $12k and my investments would be close to even. This month just drives home the fact that we shouldn't pay attention to these small swings. We have to stay zoomed out. There are gonna be months when you get your teeth knocked in and there are gonna be months where the top rows diamond and the bottom rows gold. That last sentence was a grills reference. If you're still lost...it's basically when you get a diamond encrusted retainer. Click here if you're still curious. 

Income: $7,921

After inflation adjustments and tax law changes, this should be the stable income going forward. No extra money this month just my standard military pay. Coming from Mississippi and knowing what most of my friends and family back home make, I totally understand how blessed I am. Some of these articles may be intimidating because of pay differences, but everyone can benefit from tracking your expenses. Same can be said for people who make a lot more than me. You may be wealthy but do you know how wealthy you could be?

Expenses: $2,042.13

I don't think I've ever been so proud of myself with expenses when I spent over $2k. The reason $2k is particularly good is because it includes $546 in tuition. This is also the LAST TIME I'll ever have a tuition expense. Pop them bottles because school is no longer in session. I finally completed my masters degree from the University of Arkansas...Woo Pig Sooie! I also had a lot of awesome events but we'll go over that in the travel section. So I did pretty solid in the spending department...but did I mention my networth still went down $7,775? I'm ok, I'm ok, this is all part of the ride....I might still be freaking out a little. 

Going Out: $56.60

This category involves any food I didn’t cook myself or any alcohol purchase. Wow, killin' the game two months in a row. Only shelled out $56.60 for food and drinks in Feb. That's two bar tabs, some froyo, a Groupon I actually haven't used yet, some popcorn at the ski slopes, some taquitos from 7-11, three ill advised Natty Daddys, and the glorious combination that is KFC and Taco Bell. God bless whoever put those two under one roof. You may notice that I don't have an expense for taking my girlfriend out to eat for Valentine's day. Well the truth is I got her presents and she wanted to take me out to eat. We had some great food and margaritas down in Harvard square. She also got us this awesome workout session at the Reebok headquarters that included us getting tons of swag like shirts, shorts, shoes, water bottles, hoodies, and my new favorite obsession (Joggers). 

Groceries: $65.46

I just started keeping all my receipts last month so I could give you folks a nice display of exactly what I spend my money on and I've already fallen off the wagon. This is what happens when you get behind, are taken finals, and in severe grief over your networth dropping $13k in one moneth but I'm obviously not dwelling on that. I know I had lots of chicken, sweet potatoes, asparagus, and brussel sprouts. I made some bomb chicken nachos on sweet potatoe fries and I also stocked the freezer a little more. 

Bills: $1597.65

Bills are the worst. Shelter, education, insurance... I mean what good is any of that. I finally got that Chegg subscription cancelled but unfortunately I think I waited too long and it'll still pop up next month. I sent in the router and modem I was renting and should start seeing a reduction in that cost. As I mentioned earlier I had the $546 tuition payment as an abnormal expenses this month. Other than that I had the usual suspects with Rent ($775), Cell ($85), Spotify ($5), Car Insurance ($96.65) and Utilities ($60). 

Travel: $138.49

Travel is sometimes a misleading name for this category but basically anything travel, non-personal car travel, or entertainment falls in this category. This month I got to go skiing twice and the lift tickets were a grand total of $10. Truth is one trip was free and one trip was $5 each for me and Leslie. The military does have perks. I was also able to grab two tickets to Bellator 193 which was an awesome mix martial arts event for $15 thanks to VetTix. I took a few Ubers of which $15 worth were free thanks to my Amex and $14.50 was paid out of pocket. I grabbed two tickets to Demtri Martin for me an my buddy. He put on a great show at the famous Wilbur theatre in Boston. Last but not least was a great Air BnB that ended up not costing me anything thanks to the travel credits on my Chase Sapphire. 

Gifts: $37

Finished out the Valentine's Day gifts. She had Tequilla and Tanooki so all was well. 

Miscellaneous: $89.19

Nothing too exciting here. Shampoo, a modem, power cord, cleaning supplies, and a glass repair kit to keep a crack from running on my windshield. 

Gas:  $57.74

Fairly self-explanatory category. I have a 24 mile round trip commute in my 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid. 

Big Picture: Net Worth Decreased $7,774.76 to $235,228.93

If I don't type it, did it really happen? All kidding aside, this one was painful but I'm not worried. I knew things were going too good and a correction was inevitable. It doesn't make it fun at all and I may not hit my goal of $250k before I turn 28 but I'll be dang close and I'll get it before April is over I'm sure. Life is good, and it's important to remember that in these volatile months. My technical retirement date got pushed out a month but that's about 11 years before I plan on actually retiring anyways so I think I'll be fine. The most important steps in all of this is believing the philosophy and trusting the process. 

MadFientist Retirement Date Estimate - Jan '23

January Budget Review

January Budget Review