The eagle-eyed among you may have noticed my amended logo to show the new £1 coin – thanks to The Investor from Monevator for reminding me to change it!
Anyway, I have to confess that I have really felt like not publishing this update.
For the past 3 years, I’ve been saving a large part of my salary towards my goal for FI/retiring early and happily documenting my progress on this blog.
This is the first month I have had no salary in over 20 years and I wasn’t sure what I could say, without coming over all miserable with doom and gloom – there’s still nothing on the work front yet although I continue to actively job-seek.
But hey ho, spare me the pity, I’m a mostly glass half-full kind of person and as I said in my last update, my goal to FIRE is still on, just suffering a bit of a ‘blip’, so without further ado…
Bad News Alert!
My savings rate this month is ZERO!
This is because I have always worked out my savings rate to be what I save from my normal working wage. I know others work out their savings rates differently but I’m just being consistent with my own calculations. I’m now living off my severance pay – ouch!
All Is Not Lost
That’s not to say I haven’t added to my Future Fund at all this month – I made investments using the following income: £400 from matched betting profits, £92.49 from TopCashback*, £138.47 affiliate income from Odds Monkey, £50 rent received and £40 from a lottery win!
This income is by no means guaranteed on a monthly basis so in the short-term, I’m going to try to continue to invest as much as I can for as long as I can, to keep the investing momentum going. I did toy with the idea of investing nothing while I wasn’t working but that didn’t seem to make sense to me, not when I had the means to make some cash which I did not require to live on.
After hitting my big milestone of reaching £100k in savings/investments last month, my Future Fund continues to grow, buoyed by the announcement of our own snap election and the elections in France. At the end of April, my Future Fund ended up at £102,023.
Dividends and Other Income
Dividends received this month (which will be reinvested):
Total income received was £222.66, the most I’ve ever received in a month, smashing the previous record of £207.12 which I achieved last June! In April 2016, I received £94.90.
I’m well chuffed with this income as it’s truly passive (and tax free as all are held within SIPPs/ISAs) and had I not added anything to my portfolio this month from my side hustles, the portfolio would have still grown as a result of these dividends being churned out regardless.
So I’m continuing to make steady steps towards my goal of £1,500. Total dividend income now stands at £454.56.
Here’s how things look in the graph:
Shares and Investment Trusts
I added to my holding of Edinburgh Investment Trust.
Current share and IT portfolio can be found here.
Matched Betting (MB)
As I am free during the day, I’ve continued to do some of the horse racing offers, though with mixed results – some days, I make a small profit, other days an overall loss due to qualifying losses and not getting the free bets. I’ve found that the more offers I attempt, the more chance I have of hitting the free bets so overall, I’ve been making profits but it can be a bit of a grind placing 20-30 bets a day and I’m only attempting a handful of the offers available.
I’ve also continued with the football accumulators (accas). I’ve been doing these a while now but I guess I got a bit complacent the other week and lost over £70 because I ended up backing and laying the wrong ‘Milan’ in three accas – both AC Milan and Inter Milan were playing on the same day and I messed up – oops! Despite what is said about MB, it’s not risk-free, as human error is probably the biggest risk, as I’ve experienced on numerous occasions.
Anyway, MB profits totalled a respectable £682 this month. This was all from football and horse racing offers only.
Total profits so far is £2,361, so already half-way to my MB goal of £4000 profit. It looks like I’m on course to smash it but bear in mind that I get most of my profits from football and the season ends in May. The summer months are going to be a bit lean, with no major sports events taking place this year.
The matched betting guide I subscribe to is OddsMonkey*. It’s a brilliant website for beginners and experienced matched bettors alike – for beginners, there are plenty of tutorials which provide you with step-by-step guides on how to make profits and to work through special offers. They also offer one-to-one sessions for those who need a little more help. For the more experienced, OddsMonkey offer quality tools including the Each Way Matcher, Dutch Finder, Racing Matcher and Acca Matcher, all of which I have used successfully. There’s also a friendly forum for you to ask any questions. Anyway, you can join for free* to try it out.
Here’s how things look:
I know the savings rate goal is supposed to be for me whilst I’m employed but I feel that I should account for the 0% somewhere to reflect that I wasn’t working.
Hope everyone had a great April and had an enjoyable bank holiday (in UK).