March 2017 Savings, plus Other Updates

An ‘action-packed’ month, filled with interviews, lots of matched betting, plus a short trip to Hong Kong to see my poorly Grandma (getting better but not fully recovered).

My ‘income’ this month has been derived from the last of my pay-in-lieu-of-notice (PILON) from my last job.

So, how have I done in March?

After last month’s record-breaking savings rate, it’s back to a good solid savings rate of 58.6%.

This pushes my average savings rate so far to 64%.

As I’m still only at interview stage with regards to my job hunting, it’s highly unlikely that I will have a salaried wage in April.

As I have always worked out my savings rate to be what I save from my normal working wage, this means that my savings rate is going to be a big fat ZERO! I know others calculate their savings rates differently but I’m just being consistent with my own calculations.

I think I’m likely to continue to invest using matched betting and other income – I guess others might not save/invest whist unemployed but I feel that I need to keep the saving/momentum going, even at a reduced rate. At least in the short term, anyway.

March’s savings was boosted by the £50 I won in Premium Bonds, £50 from rent received, £292.40 Jobseekers Allowance (ahem, continuing to make the most of ALL my income while I can), £14.62 from TopCashback*, £250 matched betting profits and I was lucky on the lotto again so another £10 win has been chucked into the pot too.

Future Fund 

As mentioned in my last post, I hit my biggest milestone so far, that of reaching £100k in savings/investments. With Brexit triggered and more Trump shenanigans in the news, the markets wobbled a little but my Future Fund ended up at £100,442.

Dividends and Other Income

Dividends received this month (which will be reinvested): Continue reading

100k Milestone

 

I’ve just returned from an impromptu short trip to Hong Kong (a close member of the family was seriously ill but is now recovering) to find that as of today, my Future Fund has reached the £100,000 mark!  The actual figure is £100,436.

My Future Fund is made up of the combined savings/investments I have in ISAs, SIPPS, P2P, Premium Bonds and cash. It does not include my company pension.

How long did it take?

“The First 100k is a Bitch!”, as supposedly famously quoted by Charlie Munger.

In total, it has taken me 8 years to get to this milestone.

Wow, sounds like a very long time?

Well, the first £30,000 took me FIVE years to accumulate – I only started saving in 2009/2010 after I had finally paid off all of my credit card debts. I thought I was doing pretty well, saving and not getting into further debt, but the thing was, I had no plan and didn’t really know what I was saving for, except that it was a ‘good idea to save’ something.

In 2014, I discovered the FIRE movement, worked out a plan to aim for early retirement, read up on DIY investing, automated much of my savings, cut back on unnecessary/unimportant expenses and have managed to boost my savings/portfolio by £70,000 over 3 years.

A combination of saving hard and luck with favourable markets has helped me achieve this goal. All dividend income/interest has been reinvested to add to the growth of the portfolio.

Note that no money from my recent severance package has been added to my Future Fund – until I secure a permanent job, I’ll be using up those funds gradually so they form no part in my future plans.

No Regrets

I don’t have any regrets that I didn’t start saving harder earlier – what I did (or didn’t do) in the past (spending or otherwise) shaped the person I am today.

No sense in dwelling on ‘what if’, ‘if only’, ‘should have, would have, could have’ – I can’t change the past. All that matters is what I’m doing now and what I do in the future as I continue to chase after my goals.

Of course, when the stock market crashes (and it will), my portfolio could well drop back below £100k as I have most of my money in equities but hopefully, it’s diversified enough to withstand the brunt of such a crash and will be able to recover sufficiently.

Liquidity

How much of this £100k could I get my hands on now (or within the next few days) if I really needed to?

£41,975, so just under 42%.  I’m not sure if the liquidity ratio should be higher or lower? I’ve no need for this money right now but I guess it’s good to know what I could get at immediately that’s not tied up in pensions or long term investments/savings.

Righto – onto the next £100k! 🙂

February 2017 Savings, plus other Updates

Time for another update!

Again, my ‘income’ this month has been derived from my pay-in-lieu-of-notice (PILON) from my last job.

So, how have I done in February?

Well, I achieved my highest ever savings rate –  79.8%! Woo hoo! 🙂

Rather incredible but most certainly a one-off, largely due to the work bonus which I used to purchase my Dogs of the FTSE portfolio earlier in the month.

This pushes my average savings rate so far to 66.7% but as mentioned before, if I’m still jobless in April, my savings rate is going to be at or around 0%….

February’s savings was boosted by £50 from rent received, £229.75 Jobseekers Allowance (ahem, gotta make the most of ALL my income while I can), £63.10 affiliate income from OddsMonkey* and I had a £10 lotto win which I’ve chucked into the pot too.

Future Fund 

The big extra capital injection and the stock markets still being favourable to my portfolios despite political shenanigans means that my Future Fund is now up to £98,642, which is getting rather close to that big milestone!

Dividends and Other Income

Dividends received this month (which will be reinvested): Continue reading

January 2017 Savings, plus other Updates

Ok, the first savings/investment update of the year and things don’t look too different from much of last year.

My ‘income’ this month has been derived from my pay-in-lieu-of-notice (PILON) from my last job.

Previously, my savings rate calculation was based on my net income from my main salaried job, ie net of tax, NI and company pension contribution.  The PILON is net of tax and NI.

So, how have I done in January?

My savings rate was 53.6%, a great start to the year!

That said, if I’m still jobless in April, my savings rate is going to be at or around 0%….

However, next month’s number should get a very big boost as it’ll include my bonus. My highest ever savings rate so far is 70.4%, achieved in March 2015. It’s possible I could better this…watch this space!

January’s savings was boosted by £70.84 from TopCashback* and £50 from rent received.

Future Fund 

With the crippled £ sterling doing a creditable impression of a bottom-feeder, my Future Fund continues to ignore other political shenanigans and is now up to £92.321.

Dividends and Other Income

Dividends received this month (which will be reinvested): Continue reading