February 2014 Expenses

 

Category

Total

Notes

Mortgage

793

Taxes

320

Groceries

183

Restaurants

34

3 meals out w/friends

Utilities

288

Oil, Electricity

Cable

75

Phone, ISP, Cable

Cell

17

Medical

0

Pharmacy

0

Fitness

17 Fitness Center

Gifts and Donations

0

Café/Coffee

14

Entertainment

30

Concert

Gas

64

Other Auto

141

Excise tax, AAA Membership renewal, Yearly Registration Renewal

Vitamin A(lcohol)

17

Misc, see notes

20

Haircut

Total

2013

 

Sticky notes on expense tracking

  • You’ll notice that there is no mention of car insurance here.  I pay auto insurance once a year in may when my premium is set.  There’s a 10% discount for paying 12 months in advance, which is a pretty good return on investment.  It’s been coming out to about $60/mo lately pro-rated.
  • Same goes for homeowner’s insurance.  This bill comes due in April and I pay the entirety of it on arrival — no escrow account for me.

 

Notes for Feb:

  • Yes, I’m still getting $20 haircuts some months.  My wife’s parents cut hair so if I can work it out, I’ll have them do it, saving a bit of money.  But this month it just didn’t happen.
  • Another expensive month for oil, running me $245.  Heat is pricey!  I keep my programmable thermostat at 60 during weekdays during the day, then up to 68 between 3-10PM, and back down to 60.  On weekends the house is left at 68 since we’re around to enjoy the heat.
  • A bunch of yearly-car-related expenses came in.  Registration renewal, AAA w/roadside assistance, and excise tax:  $141.  More proof that owning a car isn’t cheap.

 

Net Worth Update

Taxable 299K
Retirement 401(k) 274K
Retirement Roth 92K
Home Equity 120K
Total  785K

The above calcuation was done on 2.27.2014.  Markets have been performing admirably.  I think we’re due for a correction — P/E ratios are still too damned high — but I don’t believe in timing the market.  The course will be maintained.

Got my tax refund today, about $1900, which has been cycled back into my funds and is represented in ‘taxable’ above.

Personal Rant

I’m starting to think it’s insane I’m still working.   If I execute my plan to downsize my house with my wife — to own a 300K residence instead of 650 — my net worth will remain approximately the same but my monthly expenses drop from an average of 2.1K to probably 1.1K — actually about 1.3 K after health care costs.

1.3K over 12 months is about 15K a year.  It’ll end up being 17 after my charitable donations and some other misc. expenses but still.  A 17K burn on 650 in invested assets is nothing.  If the markets simply kept pace with inflation — assuming my burn rate doesn’t increase — this would last me 38 years.

Maybe it’s time for me to re-evaluate my 1-more-year plan and accelerate this.  I just went through a busy month at work that’s made me more eager to leave.  My industry (IT) requires that you work a few off-hour shifts to put changes in place when users are not on the systems (i.e. get stuff done during maintenance windows) and it’s getting old.  5AM project work leads to a very grumpy dude.  Also I’ve been doing a lot of end-of-year reporting and other paperwork (self-review, etc) which completely sucks and reminds me why I don’t want to work for anyone.

The first part of the job is to do your job, which isn’t usually so bad.

The second part of the job though, is to tell everyone about what you did in part 1.  Justify your existence.  Or the existence of others, maybe your teammates.  Report on what you’re up to, every which way.  Fill out project plans, update timelines, get approvals on changes, do your self review, do some peer-reviews.   This is mind-numbing suckitude.

When I have excel spreadsheets open in front of me and I’m entering various projects to which I’m “booking time” to, all I can hear Peter from Office Space in my head, sounding off.

“We don’t have a lot of time on this earth! We weren’t meant to spend it this way. Human beings were not meant to sit in little cubicles staring at computer screens all day, filling out useless forms and listening to eight different bosses drone on about about mission statements.”

Exactly right.  Christ Almighty, this phase of my life needs to be over.

 

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