My main goal* was to build an investment and cash portfolio of $1,120,000* in 1500 days**, starting from 1/1/2013 and ending in February of 2017. I made my goal in 2016, my 1500 Days are over, and I’ve left my job. In the interest of openness, I’ll continue to share my numbers.
Last December, I wrote about how Mrs. 1500 and I bought a trailer park. It’s time for an update…
Trailer Park Troubles
When I first wrote about our new investment, a reader mentioned that the term “trailer park” doesn’t go over well with some folks:
I was scolded by a Council Member one time for calling it a trailer park. It is definitely a mobile home park…never forget.
The term “trailer park” has bad connotations. These living arrangements have attracted some unsavory people who do unsavory things. Our trailer park has been mostly drama free. Mostly…
The Pseudo Prostitute
Over the summer, someone called the manager of our park with some interesting news. The call went something like this:
I can’t go to the police for reasons that will soon be obvious, but I thought you should know about what happened to me. I responded to an ad on craigslist for adult favors at your trailer park. When I entered the trailer, the woman’s husband appeared and robbed me.
I got screwed, but not in the way I expected.
That hasn’t been the end of the trouble:
- We have a rule prohibiting dogs over a certain size. Tenants have figured out they can get around this by way of the emotional support animal.
- In one of the units that had been recently vacated, a pipe burst which ran up a water bill of $3,000 before we figured out what was going on.
- Some of the trailers are in rough condition, so we’ve had to rehab them. Finding contractors who do quality work isn’t easy. Hell, finding contractors who show up isn’t easy.
- We’ve had to evict some tenants who stopped paying.
Financially, we planned for most of this. We knew that the park was in rough shape when we bought it and barely paid more than the land was worth because of it. The partners agreed that we’d reinvest all money back into the park for the first year to stabilize it.
After a tumultuous year, things are now looking up. The Pseudo Prostitute is gone. The emotional support pit bulls haven’t eaten anyone. We have rehabbed all of the bad units and are on the hunt for used ones to fill the empty lots. We have sold almost all of the park-owned units to occupants. We’ll start drawing money from the park early in 2019.
October Performance Update
Our net worth started at $2,171,793 and ended at $2,107,627 for a loss of $64,166:
The markets were down in October, but I was down more. This was mainly due to my tech stocks which got whacked silly:
One of the first things I’ll do in 2019 will be to put in a sell order for some of my tech stocks. I’m waiting until 2019 so that I can sell them with little or no tax hit. The good thing about not making a lot of money anymore is that it’s easy to come in under the capital gains threshold.
2018 (as of 11/1/2018)
- Days elapsed: 305
- Investment portfolio gains: $64,926 (including 401(k) contributions**** of $32,918)
- Net worth gains: $114,926 (investment portfolio gain of $64,926 + home appreciation of $50,000)
Since the start (1/1/2013)
- Days elapsed: 2129
- Investment portfolio and cash: $1,592,627
- Gains since 1/1/2013: $1,009,584
- Needed to quit work ($1,120,000 in investments): Mission accomplished!
We have a diverse portfolio that includes real estate:
- mobile home park (elevated home living to the easily offended and politically ultra-correct)
- private loan (only one outstanding)
- syndication deals
And stock market holdings:
- individual stocks (old thinking)
- index funds (most money goes here now)
Both sides of our portfolio saw a decline again. Regarding the real estate side, all deals (trailer park, syndications, private loan) are performing as expected, but the Vanguard REIT got taken down hard in October leading to a small loss.
- Stock market: $823,553
- Monthly gain: –$64,146
- 2018 gain: $33,765
- Real estate: $749,074
- Monthly gain: –$20
- 2018 gain: $31,159
- Cash reserve: $20,000
Mrs. 1500 and I have been looking at another interesting real estate investment. This one is much different than the trailer park and I didn’t see it coming until very recently. If we decide to invest, we’ll be working directly with others to help build something cool in my town. I’ll spill the beans when I have the beans to spill.
In the meantime, don’t seek “love” on Craigslist…
*My goal wasn’t to have $1,120,000 at the end of 1500 days, but at any time before the day count was up. Why? It all goes back to the 4% Rule. Remember that our little friend, Mr. 4%, is nothing more than the most conservative safe withdrawal rate. So, if I were to quit my job now, I could spend about $60,000 in my first year of retirement.
**My original goal was $1,000,000 and no debt, I later raised the goal by $120,000 to $1,120,000 because I will have debt in the form of a mortgage and I firmly believe in not paying it off. My compromise is to have enough money put away to cover the mortgage at the time of retirement. So, to retire today, I would need about $1,120,000.
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****My 401(k) contributions include my own, Mrs. 15oo’s, and the contributions from my corporation. Self-employment with a solo 401(k) is a very powerful savings tool. I should have done this years ago.
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