Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Goal Update: End of February 2017

At the end of each month, I post an update of my goals, including a brief discussion of any notable events that might have occurred during the month. The latest month's figures can always be found under the Featured menu in the menu bar at the top of the blog.

Last updated: End of February, 2017
Current value: $29,975
Change from last month: +$688
Percent of Goal:  27.56%

Note that the funds in this account are invested in stock, so there will be fluctuations in value that are outside my control. I never withdraw money from this account, so any dips are purely due to stock price changes.

Events Of Note Last Month:

In something of an unexpected event, I received $7.50 in advertising revenue from my old real estate blog. It's unexpected because I am not writing new posts there anymore and haven't for quite some time. I guess it's still got enough traffic to attract some advertisers. Net income from my online courses was $115.10. My hard money loan generated $133.33 in income. And lastly, I received $3.77 in eBook royalties.

I crossed another milestone in February - I have now earned more than $9,000 from my online courses! Not bad for a total investment of $149.

My hard money loan is due to be paid off any day. My plan is to roll those funds into a new loan and add in the funds I've saved up over the past year.  Those monies were invested in Realty Income stock, which has dropped in value over the past several months. I was worried I might have to sell at a loss to cash out. I put in a limit order several weeks ago at a price that would allow me to more or less break even. I didn't think it would trigger, but a few days ago, the stock price jumped briefly and I sold my shares for a net gain of about $25. Not much, but better than the loss I was expecting. And that figure is not taking into account the roughly $235 I received in dividend income throughout the past year.

Relocation Looms!

Major big news this month! We will be moving! My wife got a fantastic job offer from the University of Washington and it was too good to pass up, so we're leaving the Phoenix area and heading to the Seattle area. In fact, when this is published, we'll be on the road driving up there! After she's set up in an apartment, I'll return to Arizona for a bit with our daughter. We're going to have her finish the school year our here while I work on selling the house.

The housing market in Seattle is crazy. Single family home prices range from $450,000 to over one million. I'm having a hard time getting my head around that. Currently, we've got about $165,000 outstanding on our mortgage and we were on track to have it paid off in 15 years - which was perfect because that would be just about when we hit retirement age. Now we will be going to be back to a 30 year time frame with a much higher balance. The crazy smart folks over at Early Retirement Now are helping me get used to this idea with posts like this one (see item #4).

This is a major life change and the number of things that has to be done to move your entire family and life to another state is crazy, so posts here might be sparse for a while. I also am getting prepared for our net worth figures to bounce around wildly for a couple months. My wife's new employer is giving her a bonus to relocate and that will inflate our numbers one month, then they will decrease as we pay the moving bills when they come due. It will also take some time to adjust our budget as we get used to living in a place with a higher cost of living than Phoenix.

Net Worth Update

For February, our net worth rose by $17,140.

January 2017February 2017
Note: categorizes our HELOC as a credit card debt, not a loan, hence the apparently high credit card balance.

It's not as rosy as it seems. If you look at the numbers above, most of them took turns in the wrong direction by thousands of dollars: our cash dropped, our credit card debt rose, and our property value dropped. What offset all this was a big gain in our investments. Part of that was because I rolled over my pension from my prior employer into an IRA and invested that into an index fund, which saw some solid gains this month. The other part was that Realty Income stock made some significant gains, as I talked about above.

If you have any questions or suggestions for topics, please drop me a line in the comments section!


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