By: Revanche

Net Worth & Life Report: January 2016

February 1, 2016

DollarSign

Change from Dec 2015: 0.6% decrease
0.6% decrease from last month

ON MONEY

I use Swagbucks. Here’s a handy tutorial if you’d like to join and earn. And any purchases you make going through my Amazon links keep the blog lights on!

We made it through the holidays intact in most ways, despite running on empty and for that, I’m grateful. Like a giant nerd, I’ve decided to change our financial reporting for the new year. Presenting money news: Konami Cheat Code-style!

It’s a clean slate as far as percentages go, whatever this month’s net worth is will be the number I compare each coming month to.

Up: A friend told me that I inspired her to start saving and investing because my #1GoodMoneyThing hashtag made it seem simple and not intimidating! That made my entire month.

Up: I negotiated a huge discount on my hosting fees for 3 years, thanks to Donna for the kick in the pants post. This added a year to my already paid service cycle, and netted a refund of $120. Since this blogging venture isn’t exactly raking in the moolah, that lowers the cost of entry so that I can cover the cost of a hobby.

Down: The market’s doing its chacha on AXP’s head, making me second-guess my latest buy. (Go figure, my next possible buy seems to be doing just fine, heading straight up.) Also our retirement accounts took a big hit, they’re the reason we’re down 0.5% this month from the end of December.

Down: The car insurance and registrations for the remaining two cars came due this month. That’s about $1000, alongside the other installment of the property taxes, just oh, $3000. *ow*

Left: We’re a one-car family right now. The savings from not spending on the insurance or registration is a temporary miser’s reaction. Big picture, PiC’s stressing that he won’t be able to find a replacement for a reasonable amount of money by the time we need it. He’s been spending hours on this every day. What a monumental pain.

Right: My hopes of a cheap (though Euro-luxe) replacement have been dashed. All the actual contenders that meet most of our needs are in the $12,000-$14,000 range. Big fat sigh. We are waiting as long as we can, though, making do with the one car is ok as long as we don’t have to all four of us go somewhere.

Left: I was setting up auto-pay with one of our merchants and stopped dead in my (online) tracks. How ridiculous it is that they want us to set up direct withdrawal on their site authorizing “ANY AMOUNT”? Literally it doesn’t allow you to specify the amounts that you’re authorizing, they want you to approve a blank check. Monthly.

They have fallen off their sweet aunt Betty’s rocker and suffered head injuries because nope and nope. I’ll log in and make the payment myself every month because nobody gets free rein with our checking account.

Right: We did transfer some money out of savings to fatten up our anemic cash checking account, I’m not proud of that. I’m so unproud, in fact, I had to go back and check all transfers in and out to make sure I didn’t undo very much good work. (We didn’t.) Of the $11,000 extraordinary transfers into savings (extraordinary meaning the savings I “stole” from our checking when it was flush over 18 months that we didn’t need for cash flow, so it wasn’t the usual scheduled 25% savings deposit), only $4000 came back out to cover expenses.

(Only. Hahaha…)

A: Our side money was deposited right into savings though. Small steps back in the right direction!

B: Tax time tax time! It’s almost tax time! I keep a spreadsheet throughout the year in preparation for each tax season because I hate having to hunt down all our paperwork. I want it funneled into one place as it comes in, none of those shoeboxes full of receipts and forms for me thank you very much. Tax season always starts in January for me and this year is no different. I’ve also started up the spreadsheet for Tax Year 2016 since I’m already paying things like car registrations that will be tax deductible next year. Go on, call me a nerd.

ON LIFE

We spent much of the month battling one virus after another which meant even regular duties like getting ourselves fed and clearing up around here seem to take on extraordinary efforts.

That I managed to cook consistently for several meals deserves a few weak hurrahs: roast pork shoulder, barley and vegetable soup, pasta sauce from scratch for the pasta night that never was. We had quite a few soup from the box and sandwich nights, and happily ate up the soon to expire Immaculate biscuits from the can that we found at Costco. PiC failed to check their expiration date when he bought them so of course we had 2.5 weeks to consume 30 biscuits. Gee, so rough!

***

I still managed to keep ahead of work by putting in late hours at night (Even later hours, more accurately.)

***

As I pick through my closet and weed out the sad, the threadbare, and most things over 10 years old, I couldn’t resist a couple clearance sweaters from Nordstrom as replacements. I’m still spending judiciously at Nordstrom using gift cards I bought at a discount 4 years ago! It’ll be a sad day when that money runs out.

***

Our walks are awesome quiet time to mull over random thoughts and chase them down to their lairs where I feast upon the cracked bones and marrow… Wait what am I talking about? Ideas! I have ideas! Geesh.

That’s about the state of my brain so, of course, I keep starting drafts and lack the brainspace to finish those thoughts coherently.

2 Responses to “Net Worth & Life Report: January 2016”

  1. Thanks for the shout-out, ma’am — and so glad to hear that you, too, got a discount. I just sent this tip out in my weekly(ish) writing newsletter. Remember: If you don’t ask, the answer’s always gonna be “no.”
    Donna Freedman recently posted…Paying less for handwashing.My Profile

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