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At the end of each month I provide a recap of all the income I earned from dividends (brokerage account only), blogging, and working at my good ol’ 9-5 as a data analyst.
Related: November 2017 Income & Expenses
The reason I share my raw monthly income and expenses is because I have always found it insightful to see the real numbers behind a blogger’s financial journey. I love talking about how to earn more and save more, but it’s helpful to provide a behind-the-scenes look at how I’m actually managing my own money.
Here’s what my income looked like in December along with the previous three months. All numbers are post-tax.
|Monthly Income Streams|
|Ally Bank Interest||$6.37||$4.42||$5.27||$5.98|
*I received one extra paycheck in November and also worked overtime the weekend before Thanksgiving, which explains why my 9-5 income was much higher than usual.
Here’s my December income according to type:
Here are my December expenses:
|2018 Fincon Ticket*||$249 🙂|
*The only time I have been happy about spending nearly $250.
**This number is artificially low because Christmas gift cards covered the majority of my Chipotle expenses this month. Fear not, I’m still an addict.
Here’s what my total income, expenses, and net savings looked like in December:
December Savings Rate: 73%
My savings rate dipped slightly this month (73%) compared to last month (80%) mostly because my day job income was lower. Unfortunately, I’m a contractor at my company and I don’t receive any paid leave for the first six months so I didn’t get paid for holidays.
My expenses were typical at $1300 this month. I spent less on groceries because I stayed with my parents and brother for a couple weeks this month for the holidays. I also spent $249 on my first ever Fincon ticket, which I’m pumped about. I can’t wait to meet everyone who I have had extensive conversations with online, but have never met in person. This is something I’ll be looking forward to all year.
This was a low month for dividends ($72) from stocks, REIT’s, and index funds in my brokerage account this month, but January should be a massive month to make up for it.
My blog income ($207) also dropped this month compared to previous months. December is notorious for low traffic and low earnings in the blogging world, so I’m not worried at all about those numbers. Blogging income ebbs and flows, it’s just the nature of the game.
My financial plan for 2018 is fairly simple. I’ll continue to bring in my steady 9-5 income, invest in dividend-paying companies to grow my passive income, and continue blogging to grow some side hustle income.
I’m also looking to dip my toes into the freelance writing world in 2018. I think it could be a great way to earn some extra money doing something I enjoy. (If you have any advice on freelancing, any connections, or recommendations, feel free to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org)
My short-term net worth goal is still to reach $100k by summer. With a consistent monthly savings rate of 70 – 80%, I see no reason why I shouldn’t hit this target.
One of the most important lessons I learned in 2017 is that having goals is wonderful, but real growth comes from daily habits. I have a vision of where I want to be financially in the next 3-5 years, but the majority of my energy is focused on just doing the little things right each day.
Consistent investing, cooking meals at home, writing blog posts, practicing daily gratitude, reading each day, listening to podcasts – these are the little things and they make all the difference. If I can do these things right, my long-term goals will take care of themselves.
If there’s any reasons to believe I might succeed, it’s that I enjoy the process of getting better each day and I have no interest in competing with anyone my age on social media. I’m more concerned with actually making progress than convincing people that I’m making progress.
That’s all for this month, thanks for reading 🙂
My favorite free financial tool I use is Personal Capital. I use it to track my net worth, manage my spending, and keep an eye on my monthly cash flow. It only takes a few minutes to set up and it makes tracking your finances simple and easy. I recommend trying it out.
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