I have two sets of friends with whom I socialise on a regular basis so I ended up celebrating my birthday twice on the town this month!
Why not celebrate with both sets of friends together to save time and money? It has been considered several times in the past but dealing with potential clashes of characters and personalities (with alcohol involved!) really won’t be worth the money saved and is not my idea of fun!
I had a couple of great nights out, and inevitably suffered the consequences afterwards! However, I think I was more worried about my liver/kidneys, rather than my finances!
A Bit About Work
Am pretty settled in now, the days are flying by as I continue to get to grips with different processes, procedures and people.
At the last place I worked, there were quite a lot of folk who were in their 40s or older. At my new place, I’m definitely one of the few ‘oldies’, with most people sitting around me in their early to mid-twenties.
In the run-up to pay day, talk was just of what they were going to spend all their money on – mostly socialising and buying ‘stuff’, with one young chap ordering a pair of shoes costing over £500 (some ‘must-have’ brand I’d never heard of). I didn’t join in when the others had a go at him for wasting his money, for fear I would go into ‘FIRE mode’ haha! Ah to be young and so care
lessfree with money!
With both my boss and the rest of the team not being based in the same office apart from on the odd occasion, I’m working pretty autonomously, more so than in my previous job. I think I will appreciate this more as time goes by, although I have to admit that I am actually starting to enjoy my work – not so clueless any more!
I still think it’s bloody hard – coming from a highly regulated environment to one that is not so (yet) regulated isn’t easy and my boss warned me that it could get a little frustrating but to be patient as things were moving towards more regulations and controls. I look at their processes and see so many things which would fail an audit.
I think I’m one of the few people who actually abides by the clear desk policy, which isn’t enforced but it’s how I’ve been working for the past ten years so I continue to do so. Still, it’s far too soon for me to be making major suggestions of improvements but I’ve been making notes for the future, ideas for projects and such like.
The lifts weren’t working the other day so I had to take the stairs. I realised that walking up to the 5th floor isn’t too bad and is a great workout, so from now on, I will climb the stairs every day.
Anyway, I got paid in full this month so how much of my net salary did I save? (no £500 shoes for me!)
I saved 54.6%! My average for the year is now 47.8% so slowly creeping up to my goal of an average 50%.
The above savings includes £100 from matched betting profits, £25 from my Premium Bonds win, £20 lotto win and £57.08 affiliate income from OddsMonkey (thanks to all those who joined via my link – much appreciated!).
When I saw the my wage hitting my bank account, I was pleasantly surprised. Until I realised that this is my pay without any corporate benefits deducted – I’ve yet to join the company pension scheme (although the contribution will be low) and I no longer have the ‘premium benefits’ I used to enjoy, namely medical, life insurance and critical illness cover. Oh and my corporate gym membership was also deducted via salary sacrifice.
Another birthday celebrated, another year older – although I keep myself pretty fit and healthy and have a fairly balanced diet, age will catch up at some point so perhaps I need to consider my own medical cover seeing as I no longer have it. I was given a quote by the insurers who used to provide my company medical cover but it was nearly 4 times what I used to pay! What a rip off! I’ll do a bit of research, methinks.
I have now shifted what’s left of my severance pay into my Future Fund, giving it a decent boost and it now stands at £119,717. A good step towards reaching my next big milestone!
Dividends and Other Income
Dividends received this month (which will be reinvested):
Last June’s payment of £207.12 was my biggest of 2016. However, I only received £120.03 this month. Seems a bit disastrous but what’s happened is that some dividends which were paid at the end of June last year didn’t hit my account in time, so will be included in next month’s income update.
Total dividend income this year now stands at £667.65. Looks like I’m running a little behind on my goal of £1500 at the halfway stage.
Here’s how things pan out in the graph, which doesn’t look quite as good before:
At least I know that July will be a big year-on-year improvement!
Shares and Investment Trusts
I added to my holdings of Scottish Mortgage IT and City of London IT. I also made a new investment in Scottish American Investment Co.
Current portfolio can be found here.
Matched Betting (MB)
As there’s no football on and I couldn’t be bothered to take advantage of any of the tennis or golf offers, I’ve had to rely on weekend horse racing only.
As expected, a big drop in MB income but I still managed to make £265 in profit this month, with minimal effort and despite social activities taking over two Saturdays!
Total profits so far this year now stand at £3,264, so looking like I might smash my MB goal of £4000 profit if I keep at it.
The matched betting guide I subscribe to is OddsMonkey*. It’s a nifty little 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 offers quality tools including the Each Way Matcher, Extra Place 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 questions. Anyway, you can try it out for free*.
Need to get started on the non-fiction books but really don’t feel like reading any investing/finance/well-being ones right now, so I think I’ll just have a browse in the non-fiction section of the library to see if anything catches my eye.
Hope everyone had a great flaming June – I loved the hot weather we had!
Bikinis and BBQs all the way! 😉
PS – the BBQs meant that I’ve failed miserably in not purchasing any more alcohol for home consumption!