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May 2024 Net Worth

June 1st, 2024 at 10:35 pm

TSP $1,146,260

IRA $337,601

Brokerage $4,305

Total Investments  $1,487,166

Savings $137,238

May 2024 Net Worth $1,624,404

April 2024 Net Worth $1,549,558

Monthly Gain/Loss $74,846

Checking $13,490

Car Value $10,000-16,000

March 2024 Net Worth

March 29th, 2024 at 08:52 pm

Today is Good Friday and the markets are closed. I can update my investments, but will have to wait until Monday to add my savings & cash, and calculate my total monthly gain.

TSP $1,141,985

IRA $333,541

Brokerage $102,440

Investments $1,577,966

Savings $34,816

March 2024 Net Worth $1,612,782

Monthly Gain Loss $53,939

Checking $19,155

My brokerage account is earmarked for my downpayment on my home, which is scheduled to be completed 6 months from now. I'm glad to have 6 more months to accumulate savings. I know they say that a downpayment shouldn't be invested aggressively, but I don't want to pull the money prematurely.

January 2024 Net Worth

February 5th, 2024 at 12:44 am

Investments $1,448,641

Cash Savings $32,579

January 2024 Net Worth $1,481,220

December 2023 Net Worth $1,470,019

Monthly Gain/Loss $11,201

I don't include the below in my net worth.

Checking accounts $17,979

Car value $11,000

2024 Raise

January 24th, 2024 at 01:34 am

My 2024 pay has posted & we received a 4.7% raise. This translates into $5,456 for the year, $2.61 per hour, and $208.80 biweekly. I will receive a step increase in June. That increase will be another $1.77 raise per hour. I'm always grateful for whatever increases I receive. I have already increased savings & contributions for the year so there are no plans to make any further increases.

Update to 2024 Goals

January 14th, 2024 at 05:43 pm

At the end of December I had about $19k in my checking account, which is about double my goal of $10k. So I decided to up my savings goal to $1000 a month from $500. I continue to end up with more money in my checking account at the end of the year than I need. In 2022 I did a transfer to my brokerage account at the end of December. Since I'm looking to buy or build a home this year I'll keep that money & just increase my monthly contributions. 

Now my revised goals look like:

$23,000 TSP

$6,000 TSP employer match

$7,000 IRA

$6,000 brokerage

$12,000 savings

$2,600 FSA (to fund my vision surgery)

December 2023 Net Worth

January 4th, 2024 at 01:38 am

Investments $1,438,561

Savings $31,458

December Total $1,470,019

November Total $1,388,506

Monthly Gain/Loss $81,513

Not included, but worth mentioning. Checking accounts were $19,208 total & car value at lowest estimate is $11k. This puts me at $1.5 million net worth for the first time.

2023 Q4

December 30th, 2023 at 03:54 pm

2023 Q4 is done for the year:

TSP $1,040,872

IRA $306,280

Brokerage $91,409

Total Investments $1,438,561

For comparison, 2022 Q4:

TSP $810,864

IRA $243,949

Brokerage $79,994

Total Investments $1,134,888

ANNUAL Gain/Loss $303,673

2024 Goals

December 3rd, 2023 at 02:49 am

Contribute $23,000 to my Thrift Savings Plan. My match will be a little over $6,000. 💰

Contribute $7,000 to my Roth IRA. 💰

Contribute $2,600 to my Flexible Spending Account. 💰

Save $6,000 in my brokerage account. 💰

Save $6,000 in my savings account. 💰

Buy or build a new home with $100,000 down. 🏡 

Keep dancing! 💃🏾 

Cherish every moment & memory made. 💗

November 2023 Net Worth

December 2nd, 2023 at 10:41 am

One of my CDs pays the monthly dividend on the 1st so I'm always a day late.

TSP $980,827

IRA $290,549

Brokerage $86,295

Total Investments $1,357,671

Cash Savings $30,835

Total Net Worth $1,388,506

Monthly Gain/Loss +$117,446

Checking $16,841 (included this month just to give an idea of what I usually have for cash flow, not included in my net worth calculation)

Car $15,062 (checked Kelley Blue Book value this morning, also not included in my net worth calculation)

My investments gained another $14,000 just one day later. I'm less than $9,000 away from reaching one million in my TSP. So close!

Savings

December 1st, 2023 at 12:49 pm

I had an alert set on my phone to open another CD at Capital One today, but have been thinking that I would just keep it liquid while looking for a house. I have two CDs maturing on January 2nd and February 1st and those are both set to transfer to savings rather than renew. That will give me a nice cushion for the new home purchase. Also, I checked rates this morning and the 5.30% 10 month CD is now 4.30%, which is what their savings account is paying. I can go to 12 months for 5.00%, but I think it's better to hold on to cash.

Net worth looks great for November. I'll post final numbers today or tomorrow. Investments are almost to July 2023 numbers. I have exceeded the high of 2021 Q4, but only because of added contributions. I am on track to max out my retirement plans.

Auto Insurance

November 26th, 2023 at 10:50 pm

When my auto insurance renewed in Septmember my rate was raised by 30% with no changes to my driving record. I know that USAA has never been cheap, but this rate is almost triple what I get when I look at Geico or Progressive. So after 23 years solely with USAA I am thinking about leaving them. Who do you have auto insurance with and what do you think about their service?

September 2023 Net Worth

October 5th, 2023 at 02:26 am

Investments $1,277,331

Cash Savings $29,599

Total $1,306,930

Monthly Loss/Gain -$55,424

Quarterly Loss/Gain -$33,096

July was such a promising month, but it's been downhill since then. At least the interest rates on savings is paying a little more. I may lock in some more money in CDs before interest rates start dropping.

Wine Country 🍷

August 28th, 2023 at 12:57 pm

Not much to say about the stock market. I hit my high July 31st & it's been down since then. Oh well.

Looks like my cash surplus will be double what it was at the end of last year so I'm starting to think what I should do with it. Fully fund my IRA in January or pad my home down payment? I could do both actually.

I am looking forward to Napa Valley & Lake Tahoe. Flights & hotel have been booked. I booked the rental car yesterday. Now just to reserve the wine train.

For those that have been to either destination, what did you enjoy doing?

Capital One CD Rate Increase

August 10th, 2023 at 11:47 am

The 18 month CD rate at Capital One is now 5.15%. I don't know if I want to lock up my cash right now as I think about buying a home, but it's very tempting. I don't quite have the $10k that I like to have as I ladder my CDs. I'm at right about $8k. If they still a have this rate at the end of the year I may consider the longer term. Right now I have two 11 month CDs at 5.0%.

July 2023 Net Worth

August 2nd, 2023 at 01:55 am

I can claim an all time investment high this month.

TSP $985,217

IRA $292,627

brokerage $86,464

Investments $1,364,308

Savings $28,372

Total $1,392,680

That is $52,044 in investment gains & $52,655 gains over last month. Maybe August will be the month I see one milllion in my TSP? I'm also not far off from $300k in my IRA. I will hopefully see that sometime next year, if not this year.

In other news, I applied for a pre-approved mortgage loan so my credit score took a hit of a couple of points due to credit inquiries, but I'm still well over 800.

Contribution Limits 2024

June 24th, 2023 at 01:08 pm

I was wondering last night if the Finance Buff had released their 2024 predictions on contribution limits for various retirement & tax advantaged plans. It is usually released in June. Sure enough when I looked this morning they had released them last week. Again, these are just projections.

There is a lot to look at, but for me being under 50 with no HSA, I focus on the 401k & IRA contribution limits. The FB projects that both will rise by $500 next year for $23,000 and $7,000. I did glance & see that they did not predict an increase in the catch-up contribution limits. 

https://thefinancebuff.com/401k-403b-ira-contribution-limits.html#:~:text=in%20these%20limits.-,2023%202024%20Traditional%20and%20Roth%20IRA%20Contribution%20Limit,same%20at%20%241%2C000%20in%202024.

 

May 2023 Net Worth

June 3rd, 2023 at 01:08 pm

Yesterday the markets went wild on the news of the debt ceiling deal, but too late to improve my May numbers which show a loss from April. Again, this does not including my checking account cash which hovers around $15k or my car value.

Investments $1,230,403

Cash (not including checking) $27,157

Total $1,257,560

Loss $6,985

Additional contributions in April $3,250

Got two notices that my rent will rise by $20 on July due to increases in water collections from two elections. Not an issue, especially considering my recent raise. I just wish they would do something about my noisy neighbor, who thinks his apartment is a music studio. 

Another Raise!

May 27th, 2023 at 06:41 pm

I really can't believe it, but we had another raise announced this week. It was 5% this time. I never would have expected another raise after the 16% raise we received last year & the 4% annual raise we got in January. I think we are also going to get retroactive pay for the raise back to April. What makes this better than the 10% retention is that it goes toward your pension calculation & your match calculation.

I have no plans to increase savings. If I end up with a lot of cash in my checking account - like I did last year - I will make a contribution to my brokerage account, but otherwise I just plan to enjoy the money for once. I max out my TSP & IRA every year. I contribute monthly to my brokerage & savings. This time I'm going to learn to relax & enjoy the present rather than save for the future.

My Monthly Budget

May 10th, 2023 at 01:23 am

I enjoy following your budgets so much that I thought I'd give it a go at sharing mine. I know that I put more on credit cards than this budget accounts for, so I really need to get better at actually accounting for my expenses. Now that I write that, I realize that I had nothing in my budget for travel or shopping, which is definitely not correct. In fact I just spend $800 on booking ballet & plane tickets for NYC in July. 🩰 ✈️ 🚖 

rent $1712

utilities $100

auto insurance $143

cell phone & internet $143

food $400

travel $300

shopping $300

church $100

charities $100

Apple $1

IRA $500

savings $500

brokerage $500

Expenses $3399

Savings $1500

Total $4899

I now realize that in posting a budget how vulnerable you feel opening yourself up to others' scrutiny.

 

April 2023 Net Worth

May 10th, 2023 at 12:59 am

Since I don't know if I'll be able to recover my lost entries, let's try this for a third time. Third time's the charm, right?

Retirement investments $1,156,452

Brokerage investments $81,542 

Savings $26,551

Total $1,264,545

My brokerage account is set aside for a future home purchase and my cash savings is earmarked for future car purchases. I put $500 into each every month.

I hope to not have to buy another car until 2032, which is when all cars are projected to be electric. I know a hybrid CR-V today will cost approximately $35k with the trimmings I desire, which are nothing extravagant.

Not included in my net worth is my cash in checking accounts and car value, which amount to approximately $35k.

Interest Rates

April 23rd, 2023 at 10:07 pm

I just checked Capital One's 360 performance savings went up 0.10%. I think it was 3.20% when I first opened my account then it went to 3.30%. So far it's just been very small incremental rates increases. I also noticed that their CD rates have not gone back up to 5.00%. I was worried when I opened my two accounts, after listening to Suze Orman speak, that they would have big rates increases right after I opened my accounts. The term was only 11 months, so it's not like I'm locked in for a long time either way.


I wish I had gotten some I-bonds when the past two years. Now it seems like inflation is finally slowing down. I can't remember exactly why, but there was a reason I was hesitant to invest in them initially. Maybe I was worried about cashing them out early? Not quite sure.

March 2023 Net Worth

April 2nd, 2023 at 05:52 pm

The stock market ended on a high note Friday to end the first quarter.

Net worth for March was $1,247,432

Investment savings $1,221,478

Cash savings $25,954 

Contributions were $4,125 for the month

Total gain was $28,593

Obviously still off from the highs of late 2021, but headed in the right direction this quarter. I haven't seen that the latest interest rate increase affected any of my savings accounts, however. 

 

February 2023 Net Worth

March 3rd, 2023 at 01:46 am

My net worth was down for February, though not as much as expected. My investments were down & cash savings slightly up.

Net Worth: $1,218,479

Change: $-27,325

I don't include cash in checking which is about $15,000 between the two accounts. Nor do I include depreciating assets like my car.

Capital One paid my promo bonus of $100 for opening my savings account, so I took out another $10k to open a second CD while the rate is at 5.00%. I didn't want to pull anymore until I was sure that I would earn my bonus. 

My paycheck tomorrow will be my last paycheck with the 10% retention bonus. I will be fine financially, but it was a nice boost while it lasted. I'm happy that we're now recruiting & retaining staff, and we now need to focus on recruiting & retaining other positions. On the bright side, if things go as proposed we will get an 8% boost in January. Yes, it's a while away, but it's nice to know it's in the works.

 

New Checking Account

February 16th, 2023 at 06:43 am

In my new efforts to make my money work for me, I opened up a new checking account at my credit union. This new account is paying 3.01% APY, dividend rate of 2.97% on balances up to $10k. I haven't closed my original checking account. I will still use my old account for deposits & check writing, but I may eventually migrate it all to the new account. As long as I maintain a $5k balance across all accounts I avoid any fees. That should be easy to do as I currently have close to $12k. I had $15k at the end of last year & moved $5k to my brokerage account. So I have accumulated another $2k in less than 2 months. I will try to keep around $5k and send the overage to my new account periodically where it can make a little interest.

Capital One CD

February 2nd, 2023 at 01:47 pm

Well after finishing my last blog I checked Capital One & saw that they had a 5.00% 11 month CD rate until 3/14/23. I moved $10,000 in and will hold the rest on my 360 savings until I get my sign-up bonus.

January 2023 Net Worth

February 2nd, 2023 at 01:38 pm

Happy Black History Month! The January market was good to us. I'm not at my highest number, but I'm not terribly far off either. I gained $86,805 last month including contributions which were $3,750.

Net Worth $1,221,125

I am reading that we can expect the feds to continue raising interest rates into the late spring/early summer. If Capital One has paid my bonus for opening my 360 savings account by that time, I can move some money into CDs which will hopefully be at their peak rate. Their 360 account seems to be stuck at 3.3% while CD rates continue to rise. I may need to move back to my credit union.

2023 Goals

January 12th, 2023 at 03:51 am

I am updating my goals for 2023, which actually haven't changed from year to year. One thing that I did not do at all last year was to give to a church. I did end up joining a church. I'm still trying to make it feel like home. I joined a ladies group & we had a nice belated holiday party this week. I don't end up attending my new church often between working every other weekend & traveling home other weekends.

I did give to charity regularly, but I would like to give more & give to local charities more often - specifically food banks.

My 2023 savings goals looks like:

$22,500 to TSP

$6,500 to IRA

$6,000 to brokerage account (taxable investments)

$6,000 to savings

$41,000 to save in 2023

I saved $39,500 in 2022 so I'm confident that this is an achievable goal.

End of Year 2022 Part 1

December 31st, 2022 at 02:30 pm

I expect that I'll keep coming back with year end blogs so I'm calling this part 1. I forgot to bring home my paycheck information yesterday evening, but I made approximately $119,500 gross last year from my two jobs. 

I checked my checking account yesterday & I had a balance of $15,740. Well over the $5,000 balance I need to maintain to avoid fees. I transferred $5,000 to make an end of year buy to my brokerage account to bring up my savings for the year to $39,500. With the market down yesterday it turned out to be a good day to buy.

The goal was to save $32,500 for 2022: $20,500 to my TSP, $6,000 to my IRA, and $6,000 to savings. I accomplished all that & added $7,000 to my brokerage account. This was the account I had opened to invest the profits from the sell of my condo.

I saved 33% of my gross income for the year. Pretty good even with a high rent of $1,632. I used to pay $617 a month for my mortgage. And honestly, it didn't even hurt to save that much. It's amazing how you can go from scrimping & saving to feeling such a generous income flow. I am very blessed.

My savings goal for 2023 is a little more ambitious: $41,000 for the year. I have allocated $22,500 to my TSP, $6,500 to my IRA, $6,000 to my savings, and $6,000 to my brokerage account. My parents gave me a check for $500 for Christmas so I will start the year off by contributing $500 to my IRA. I already have automated monthly contributions of $500 to meet the limit.

Now I'm off to have my first pedicure since sometime in 2021! I've been taking care of that myself, but lately I haven't been able to keep up so I'm treating myself today. I might even have my eyebrows done. I've avoided that in the pandemic but since I finally got Covid in November, I'll be happy that I have the antibodies to fight it for now.

 

Birthday 🎂

December 17th, 2022 at 07:55 am

My birthday was on the 5th and I had a very low-key day. I accompanied my mom to a doctor's appointment, we had a nice brunch, went grocery shopping, then my dad & I decorated their Christmas tree. 🎄

That weekend I also had attended a sweets Christmas event at church as well as saw the musical Six, which I loved. It's an interesting musical as it is only 80 minutes with no intermission. But it was entertaining & fun, with great songs & costumes. 👑 

I ended up not changing anything with my health insurance. I stuck to the same plan & increased my FSA contribution. I also didn't opt back in to vision coverage which I had thought about doing since I am considering getting LASIKS again.I'm not a fan of glasses, especially when I have to wear them all the time now. 🤓 

I did increase my TSP contribution to $875 per paycheck for the new year. I really wanted to go to $900, but that would have me top off at paycheck 25 and I would miss out on my match for the last paycheck. Maybe the following year I can move to $900 per paycheck. 

I will resume monthly IRA contributions as well. Doing a lump sum contribution felt like a bad move this year what with the market falling afterwards. I'll contribute $500 monthly then another $500 to max out.

I almost forgot! I got notification of my performance award which is $1,050 this year. A nice little year end bonus. Plus we can expect a raise of around 4% in the New Year.

I'm looking forward to family being home for the holidays. Even without having kids of my own gift-giving & the holidays can feel stressful, so I'm just trying to focus on time spent together. 🎁 

Raise!

September 17th, 2022 at 07:12 am

I walked into my office Friday morning & the first thing my co-worker said was that we got our salary increase. It turned out to be a little over 16% which is better than I expected. I had hoped for at least 10% to make our current (temporary) retention pay of 10% a permanent increase. Once we start being able to fill vacancies due to the increased pay, we'll lose the retention pay. The increase to salary is more important as it impacts your retirement pay, matching for retirement contributions, and more. I am very excited & so thankful. 

I had made some stretch savings goals when I started looking at my budget for next year. I am going to be able to meet that & more. People that were looking to retire are also reconsidering as their retirement pay is based on their high 3 years of salary. We'll be able to retain employees when we've been losing them. Everyone seemed to be in a jolly mood all day.

We federal employees should get a 4.6% increase in January. It will be slightly less for us as we are on this special salary scale, but that is another added bonus. I'm glad that retirement contribution limits are increasing so I can take advantage of this increased income to save for my future.

 


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