July 2018 Savings, plus other updates

So it was back down to earth again this month – back to work, back to a mix of sunshine and rain – a great British summer!

I’ve had my sister and nephew staying with me, spent a nice weekend with them, so while they’re visiting friends, I’ve been able to update the blog, do my numbers and also catch up on a bit of blog reading.

My fridge freezer finally arrived and so my kitchen is complete at last! However, I keep inadvertently going back to the old fridge which is now empty – I guess it will have to revert back to being my ‘beer fridge’!

Anyway, how did I do with my savings in July?

I saved 40.3%, which sees my average savings rate going down to 46.2%.  A little higher than expected but some costs are on my credit card which won’t be settled til next month.

The above savings was topped up with £64 matched betting profits (from last month), £50 premium bond win – woo hoo! 🙂 and £63.98 affiliate income from OddsMonkey (thanks to all who signed up via my links!).

Shares and Investment Trusts

No new investments, I just topped up existing ones.

Current share/IT portfolio can be found here.

(Entire portfolio here)

Future Fund 

The markets mostly went up for me this month and with the extra capital, my Future Fund now stands at £147,993, still steadily making progress towards my next big milestone.

Dividends and Other Income

Dividends received this month:

A record-breaking £537.51 was received! This amount pretty much covers all of my household bills, although alas, I won’t be getting this much every month!  Total dividends now stands at £1,810.15, so back on target to reach my goal. All dividends are reinvested, bundled up with whatever extra capital I invest monthly.

So here’s how things look on the main dividend income graph:

Matched Betting (MB)

Considering I was away for the first week of the month and I’ve had family staying with me for the past week or so, thus limiting my MB activities, it’s not been a bad month, with my profits coming in at £295.

Total MB profits so far this year stand at £1,749, still well below target but I’ll keep plugging away – am hoping the football season will change things! Mixed results with my Each Way betting – I had a really bad run but managed to turn it around.

For those interested, here’s a graph of my EW betting so far:

Those dips don’t look very big but much like the stock market, the losses feel horrible when you’re on that downward slope! Note that variance was minimal in the early days because I was on really small bets, just trying out the strategy.

The strategy works (my ROI is currently 9.1%), just need to have a stomach of steel to ride out the variances! By the way, that flat-line in July was when I was on holiday!

As mentioned in my last update, TheFIREStarter has written an excellent piece on his Each Way betting strategy – my strategy is very similar, except that I’m not doing big bets (max £5 each way) so my profits (and losses) are smaller.

I realised recently that I haven’t been very consistent with what I did with my MB profits so starting from this month (and for the rest of the year), I will be chucking 50% of the previous month’s profits into my ISA. I’ll review this at the end of the year.

As mentioned before, the matched betting guide I subscribe to is OddsMonkey*, which is great for beginners and experienced matched bettors alike with quality tools such as the Each Way Matcher, Extra Place Matcher, Dutch Finder, Racing Matcher and Acca Matcher. There are step by step guides and also a friendly forum for you to ask questions and get help on any of the offers. Anyway, check out (with no obigations) the free trial*.

Goals Update

Here’s how things look right now:

In the ‘passive vs active income battle’, dividend income has overtaken my MB profits – great that the dividend income can just roll in while I do nothing but I need to keep at the matched betting to keep that side up!

Still struggling with that non-fiction book I’m reading but the end is near! It’s dragged on so long that I’m now in ‘library fine’ territory so need to finish it ASAP (I can’t renew it any more!).

Am so behind on the rest of my reading too, so must start making time again for my books.

And that’s it really – apparently the weather’s going to lighten up again from the weekend, which I’m glad as I don’t want the summer to be over just yet and I’ve got a social outing with friend and want to wear my sunglasses!

Hope you all had a great July!

[*referral/affiliate link]

23 thoughts on “July 2018 Savings, plus other updates

  1. Hey weenie well done on the dividends.

    I’ll fill my isa this year thanks to an unexpected inheritance (thank you grandad) and keeping some cash for changing cars and doing some house work I’ll have about 10k left over. I’m debating whether to just carryon investing in lifestrategy 100 outside of an isa(I’ll have about 40k in this now) or whether to try a couple of satellite funds or even potentially buy a couple of shares I’ve had my eye on (looking at Greg’s big yellow storage and paint possibly admiral insurance or lloyds) can’t decide whether to take the risk of seeing how good my stock /more concentrated fund picking is. Also unsure whether its even worth buying shares when i may only buy 1000 worth

    • Cheers FBA.

      It’s always risky with stock picking so perhaps just getting a small amount ie £1k worth does make sense, with the rest/bulk more diversified in the Lifestrategy 100%?

    • Yes it is! In the early days, it felt like I was never going to get any significant income but just reinvesting and adding extra capital has slowly built it up. All the best with your dividends!

  2. Hi Weenie – great news on the dividends. So satisfying when the passive income ramps up. I’m with you on the EW strategy – small bets all the way for a smoother ride. I’m not even at £5 stakes yet, I’m building up to it slowly.
    Why is there never enough time to do everything? So many books to read, so little time…

    • Cheers FT9T5.

      Not sure I’m going to go much higher with the EW betting – perhaps once I’ve banked a decent amount or having a particularly good month!

      Work is getting in the way of being able to do everything – good job all of us here have a plan! 😉

  3. Hi Weenie,

    How does the matched betting fair with work? Does sloping off to the loo or kitchen every five minutes to place bets raise suspicion? If so, could it be possible that the profits gained from MB are offset against any missed promotions you may have had? I don’t know your circumstances…

    I have spent five days of my summer holiday trying out the EW system the fire starter blogged about. I put £50 in three accounts (bet fair, ladbrokes, bet365) and walked away with around a £20 loss. I made a £8 profit on day 1, but then lost a steady amount each day therefrom. This of course isn’t an MB strategy, more of a value strategy. Some of my bets were being placed up to four hours out of the race and the “value” is assumed on the exchanges being “efficient” at that point. I only think the exchanges are efficient at setting a probability in and around the minute before the off. So I am yet to be convinced. It seems a lot of effort and as a teacher, I can’t slope off to the loo during a year 9 bottom set lesson, no matter how much I’d love too!!
    Anyway, personally I don’t think the practicalities of the strategy that requires me taking time out of my teaching to place bets works for me! Weekends maybe…but then I need to do enough to cover the odds monkey subs…side hustles are great but could this time be spent better with my family or focussing on the day job and all the promotions that go with working hard? Thoughts?

    • Hi QT

      I’m always in the office 30-40 mins before my work start time so I do a bit of MB before the boss comes in and a bit more during my lunch hour. Like TFS, I’m fortunate to be in a job where I can look at my personal phone periodically during work time, as long I still get all my work done and hit my deadlines. EW betting shouldn’t take up a lot of time as you’re not having to lay the bets, just back EW and that’s it.

      All in all, my MB time at work is far less than the time the smokers spend on their cigarette/vape breaks!

      The EW strategy is a long-term one so a bit difficult to guage it’s validity with your 5-day experiment, although conversely, you may have been lucky and those bets could have made an overall profit and you might have had a different view. It’s like the stockmarket though, up and down days but in the long term, mostly up, given time.

      Weekends, I choose to spend a bit more time on my MB but again, you too could perhaps just spend 20-30 mins on a Saturday morning to place a few bets and then another few mins in the evenings to check if you have any winners?

      Still, as with any side hustle, if it doesn’t fit in with your lifestyle, then you’re probably best off doing something else.

    • Thanks Mindy.

      Well done on finishing Les Mis, I may have mentioned that it’s one I do want to read, but am putting off attempting it for a while!

      Thank for that Guardian list – haha, the book I’m currently reading is actually number 3 on that list and it’s described as not being ‘an easy read!’.

      I also have book number 2 (‘Sapiens’) on my to-read list and will check out a few of the others but I might just leave these ‘brainy’ books for another time!

  4. Looks like a good month financially Weenie – those dividends are fair ramping up now – a fabulous trend.

    And on the books are you not enjoying reading them, or are you not finding the time?

    Congrats on finally finishing the kitchen and now being an owner of a beer fridge – you are going up on the world!

    • Thank Ms ZiYou and yes, that trend is looking great. I’m going to put more into my index trackers from next tax year so the growth may slow down a little but will still continue to head in the right direction.

      In answer to your question, a bit of both – I’m not finding the time to read and while I’m enjoying the topic of my book, I’m not enjoying the ‘reading experience’ – that’s just me and my relationship with non-fiction books! As mentioned in my reply to @Mindy’s comment, it’s not just me that finds the book a tough read!

  5. £295 in July sounds great to me weenie!

    I had a total of about £400 but I’d imagine that was risking around 10x the stakes you were.

    August is going much better already so hopefully that will keep going 😉 hope you are experiencing the same.

    @QT –
    July was terrible all round so not surprising you lost. Sorry for my bad timing on publishing the post. In terms of work for me I can get away with being on gambling sites in plain view so it’s not an issue but I can imagine this could be an issue for many. Nonetheless I think even if you spent 10 minutes a day on this in your lunch break or any other breaks you might have, you could easily get 5 bets on per day. Let’s say you were bold and
    Went £10ew that’s £100/day or about £3000/month. At a conservative ROI of 10% that’s 300/month for 10 minutes of “work” per day. That’s £60/hour, tax free.

    YMMV of course on time it takes and ROI etc but for me this is a great side hustle that you can pick up and put down at ease and it doesn’t have to encroach on your current lifestyle at all if you don’t want it to. It’s not an all or nothing proposition!

    For the record after 5 months I’m on 20% ROI.

    Maybe you could involve a maths class in a live oddsmonkey session to teach them about fractions, percentages and so on? 😉

    • Hey TFS
      I hope we don’t get too many months like July – I can’t even imagine what it was like for you riding on those losses, but great news on the pull back to get back into profit!

      That’s a great ROI you’re getting, I think I’ll be really happy with around the 10% mark overall, if only I could keep it consistently above this!

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  7. Holy Moly, your dividend income graph is on FIRE! Looks like you got the snowball rolling. Imagine what that will look like just 10 years from now.. You’re really onto something here.

    • Hi FF

      Haha, yes it is! I won’t get this every month but every month, the income is increasing bit by bit for that snowball to grow!

  8. Well done weenie on getting close to the £150,000 mark for the future fund. It’s interesting as my value is only like a few hundred in difference :).

    I keep thinking about giving matched betting a try in terms of the each way sniping etc but I think my psychology will screw me over and it could do me harm if I’m honest. Still pondering on it.

    Chris @ The FI Journey

    • Thanks Chris and yes, I recall that you were pretty close to the £150k mark too – great stuff!

      If you follow specific set rules for the EW betting and do not deviate, then I’d say most people should be fine. The hardest bit is how you react when there is a negative variance – some people don’t have the stomach for it and will give up on the loss but like investing, it’s a long term game.

      The best way to try is to not place any actual funds but document on a spreadsheet to see for yourself the wins and losses. Next would be to try very small stakes – I started off 25p and 50p each way.

  9. Hey Weenie,

    Nice to see your overall passive income winning out in the battle against active income, because after all, passive income is what it’s all about!

    Your EW variance graph is cool. I’ve been reading along with your and TFS posts about EW betting with interest. Regular matched betting felt too time consuming for me, EW betting sounds a lot more fun way to make money, and your ROI is impressive. Not sure I’m ready to stomach the losses when they come though! Maybe once I’ve got a bit more passive income coming in from books and blogging I might have a dabble!

    Hope your August went well and good luck for September.


    • Hey Corinna

      I have to admit I’m slightly disappointed that passive is beating active because of the targets I’ve set myself but of course, in the scheme of things, I’m happy that I’m getting money for doing nothing!

      I’m not sure I would ever describe EW betting as a ‘fun’ way to make money! Fun when you’re on a good run, really not fun when you’re on a losing streak! I’m in the middle of adding up my numbers and I had a good month but have already started September on a negative! Go figure, as they say across the pond! Thanks and all the best to you too!

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