Friday, July 20, 2018

It's Friday!!

Thank goodness for the weekend!! I cannot wait. This is just going to be a stream of consciousness post, so forgive me in advance. 

Monday was payday and I was able to sock away another $1,000 to retirement.  I also made another $25 donation to charity.  I am over $225 in donations for the year. I hope I surprise myself this year and get close to $400 in charitable donations (baby steps people!).  Only time will tell, maybe, just maybe, we will get bonuses this year.  That will definitely up my charitable donations as I believe in spreading the good!  I always give my sister and mother a portion of any bonus I receive.  This year I would also like to give some to charity. 

My retirement contributions so far this year:

1/15/18    $1,390
2/15/18    $610
3/15/18    $1,270
4/16/18    $765
4/27/18    $55
5/11/18    $55
5/15/18    $1,355 
6/15/18    $1,000
7/1/18      $100
7/12/18    $25
7/16/18    $1,000

Those little bits and pieces certainly add up over time.  I have officially reached my $30,000 milestone with this last contribution.  I have only $2,875 left to contribute for the year.

I also have over $2,000 in travel reimbursements pending from work so I might push a little of that money towards my retirement accounts too (when it FINALLY is sent to me).  

I have so much to do this weekend:

1. cut the grass
2. clean the house (including dusting, mopping and vacuuming). 
3. do the laundry
4. wash my car and clean out the inside
5. catch up on some projects at work
6. finish my book- sparkling cyanide by Agatha Christie
7. exercise
8. make dinners and lunch for the week
9. solidify some financial plans/goals- i need a better focus for my financial life

Alright I need to get ready for work.  Have a great Friday!! 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Negotiating for A Raise

I probably shouldn't post this, but I am planning to ask my boss for a raise.  Yes, I know that I received a raise a year ago.  No, I'm not being greedy.  Here's the back story: my boss is actively seeking to take on a new client (A company) with a diverse, widespread and large book of business. The company has cases throughout the State.  I have been supportive in assisting him with obtaining this client. He definitely needs to build his brand.   I helped him to submit a proposal, informational paperwork and encouraged him to attend meet and greets with the company big wigs so that he would be awarded the contract. Now, it looks like he pretty much has the contract.  He has intimated that he wants me to run this project.

Undoubtedly, if he secures this contract I will have an even larger work load.  I'm already busy.  I think it's only fair if I am compensated with a raise.  I'm trying to think of a fair compensation arrangement, but that's hard to do without hard numbers.  I don't want to bid against myself by asking for a small $2,500-$5,000 raise.  However, I don't want to ask for a huge raise if the company ends up sending him only a portion of its work.  I'm thinking some sort of commission or quarterly bonus, but I truly fear that he won't be honest about the arrangement (i.e., he will lie about the number of billable hours, number of cases or something else when he decides that he no longer wants to honor the agreement).  I definitely have some thinking to do about the situation. What would you do in this situation?

If he does not want to offer me some additional compensation, I plan on telling him that I can't take on the project and he needs to hire someone else to handle that client. Let the cards land where they may. 

Monday, July 16, 2018

New Savings Account- Update

Another short post!  A few weeks ago I opened a savings account with Ally because it was offering a 1.75% rate.  Right around that time I saw that a company named Marcus was offering 1.8%.  I figured I would stay with Ally for a bit before rushing over to check out Marcus. 

So far Ally seems okay.  It's offering a higher rate than my old savings account so I am pleased.  I was worried for a few days because at the end of June because no interest posted to my account.  As I clicked on various links on the site I saw that the statement cycles ended on the 15th, so I figured I would wait until today to see if any interest posted.   It did!  I received $9.58 for a partial month of parking my money.  That's more than I received for having my money parked for an entire month in my former savings account!

I will keep you updated on how Ally works out for me. 

FYI- this is not a sponsored post.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Net Worth Update

Here's where the numbers stand.

 $11,650 Emergency Fund
 $11,761 Online Savings Account/$6,587 of that amount is for my Car Replacement Fund
 $25,722 Retirement- Roth IRA
  $3,188 Taxable Brokerage (Retirement)

$269 Travel Fund (Work)
$716 pet fund 
$57 medical fund
$1,991 furniture fund
$367 Slush fund

$299,385-per zillow

              Total (not including home): $55,721
              Total (including home): $355,106

Mortgage $203,877

                   Total (not including mortgage): 0
                    Total (including mortgage): -$203,887

        Total Net Worth(not including mortgage): $55,721                                             
        Total Net Worth(including mortgage): $151,229

Net worth, not including mortgage, increased by $4,846 from April(last net worth update)
Net worth, including mortgage, increased by $7,442 from April(last net worth update)

Still going the right direction so that is great! This is despite of some recent drops in my retirement account due to the market and a slightly lower value for my home.   Can't wait to see how much things grow by the end of the next quarter.  Happy Fourth of July!!!

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Second Quarter Update

At the beginning of the year, I set some goals for myself.  Let's see how I am doing.

1. Add $10,500 to retirement savings with the goal of having $35,000 saved for retirement by the end of the year.  $5,500 will go into my roth ira and $5,000 will go into a taxable account. Come on stock market growth and no recession! Last year I contributed $9,500 so this will be an  increase of $1,000.  So Far I have contributed $6,500 towards retirement this year.  $5,500 of that went into my Roth IRA.  $1,000 to my taxable account.  I still have $4,000 left to contribute towards retirement for the year. 

2.Increase EF to $18,500. I added just a little to my EF, but then I had to spend $335 for the garage door repair.  I will focus on this after my retirement savings for the year are done. 

3. Pay an extra $290/month toward principal on the mortgage.  My easily reachable goal is to have the mortgage paid down to $200,000 by the end of the year.  The ultimate goal is to have the balance paid down to $197,500 by the end of the year so that the PMI will drop off the mortgage. So far so good,  I have been paying $400 extra on the mortgage for the last few months.  I am defintely on track to have this under $200,000 by the end of the year. 

4. Save an additional $5,000 for my car replacement fund with the goal of having $10,000 in my car replacement fund by the end of the year.  I will be aiming to purchase a new car in 2019.  I hope with a trade in and any money saved in 2019 to have $20,000 to put down for a new car. My car replacement fund is sitting at $6,587 as of the time of this entry. Again, I will focus on this more after my retirement accounts are funded for the year. 

5.  Read 15 books. I have completed at least 3 books this year.  I have been starting books, but  not finishing them.  Hopefully I'll do better for the next report.  

6. Lose 20lbs. I plan to try to lose about 3lbs a month which should place me at 36lbs for the year.  However, I know I struggle with weight loss so I think 20lbs is a good goal.  I also want to commit to exercising 30 minutes a day for 4 days a week and eating more vegetables.  I haven't weighed myself, but I have been getting in 4 days a week of exercise most weeks (Except when traveling). 

7. Donate $300 to charity.  This is up $100 from last year, I hope to be able to donate more than $300, but let's see how the year rolls.  I plan to increase this amount each year. I have contributed $203 to charity so far this year.  I'm actually ahead of schedule for where I should be at this time of year! I can't wait to see how much I actually end up donating by the end of the year.

8. Build medical fund up to $1,000. This is sitting at $57, but I have been using this for various medical appointments. 

9. Continue to build car repair fund up to $1,000. This is currently at $240, but I will need an oil change in the next week or so. 

10. Get more life insurance. No progress here.

11.  Try to figure out a happy medium for the travel reimbursement fight.  I want them reimbursed in 30 days and the firm will wait 60 -90 days to reimburse me.  I think I will argue for 45 day reimbursement and all outstanding travel vouchers to be paid at year end.   I haven't had a chance to even begin to address this.  However, there are a lot of changes coming at work and this might be a bargaining tool for me. 

12. Find a new primary care doctor and receive treatment for anxiety and depression. No progress.

13. Make a decision about my career and job. No progress.

14. Try something new (or outside of my comfort zone) each month (restaurant, activity or social event). I did pretty good at this for the first quarter, but not so great for the second quarter.  I did try a new restaurant, opened a new savings account for a higher interest rate and continued to tip cleaning staff at hotels.

15. Increase net worth by $25,000. I failed to do a net worth post at the beginning of the year. I have been adding to my retirement savings and paying extra on the mortgage so I am definitely making progress on this goal.  Stay tuned for an updated net worth post. 

How are you guys doing on your yearly goals?  Are you on track or falling behind?  I feel like tracking my yearly goals helps keep me accountable and making progress.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

New Savings Account

Another short post this morning. I just opened a new savings account with Ally.  The rate is 1.65% and the rate on my old savings account  was 1.00%.  I should earn just shy of $200 a year on my savings with this new rate! I know $200 a year isn't going to make or break me, but it's definitely a nice addition to my savings. 

 I also learned that a company named Marcus was is offering 1.8%, but I have not looked into the details yet.  If it is offering no minimum balance and no fees, I might have to open another savings account!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Retirement Goals and Milestones

Another short post today on retirement goals!

Just a quick reminder, my employer does not offer any retirement benefits.  I am currently saving for retirement in a Roth IRA and a taxable account.  My goal is to contribute $10,500 to my retirement accounts for the year.  I will give specific number updates in my quarterly update at the end of the month.

Anyways on to the point of this post, I'm getting so close to my next retirement milestone of $30,000 in my retirement accounts! I am at $29,364, but the market keeps dropping.  Nevertheless, I was pleasantly surprised last week when I made my mid- month contribution and found the total to be just shy of $30,000. Overall $30,000 is so small, but so big in that I've never had that much money saved at one time before! I cannot wait to see the numbers at the end of the year.