My main goal* was to build an investment and cash portfolio of $1,120,000* ($1,000,000 to retire on and $120,000 to pay off the house) 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.
2020 started out with a bang in the 1500 household. Our portfolio was up over $83,582 while the S&P 500 was down. Craziness.
Tesla was responsible for almost half of that big gain. My 168.15 shares of Tesla started the month at $424.50 and ended at $650.57 for a gain of $38,013. Craziness. I wrote a post last week about my thoughts on Tesla, so I won’t elaborate more here.
January Spending: $9,372!!!
Whoah, what a helluva way to kick off the year! Older Daughter needed braces and we paid for them upfront to save some money. They still set us back $3,763. Arrrgh!
One thought I’ve had recently is that my initial goal of retiring on a $1,000,000 was off. And by “off,” I mean too low.
When I made my $1,000,000 ($40,000 per year) goal, we hadn’t kept close track of our spending. When we did start keeping track, we discovered that we spent over $40,000 per year, even after subtracting our mortgage which we had since decided not to pay off. I found it’s the unplanned, one-time expenses that crash the budget.
Oh well, I’m glad we overshot our saving and still have income. I lose no sleep over our numbers. Thankfully FIRE life worked out way better than planned in every way including money.
Most Fun Expense
I joined a group of friends for adventures at a mountain cabin. It was a fantastic way to start the new year.
January Performance Update
Our investment portfolio (stocks, rental home, coworking space, trailer park, and other real estate deals) started the month at $2,035,040 and ended at $2,118,622 for a gain of $83,582. Add in our primary residence and our net worth now sits at $2,483,622:
2020 (as of 1/31/2020)
- Days elapsed: 31
- January gains: $83,582
Since the Start (1/1/2013)
- Days elapsed: 2586
- Gains since 1/1/2013: $1,532,579
Portfolio and Net Worth
- Investment portfolio and cash value: $2,035,040
- Net worth (primary home included!): $2,483,622
January Real Estate Income: $8,131.02
- Syndication deals: $4,000
- Rental house: $1,800
- Coworking space: $1,000
- Mortgage notes: $433.34
- Private loan #1: $541.67
- Private loan #2: $293.51
- Private loan #3: $62.50
I always worry when I write posts about stocks like Tesla because I don’t want to inspire anyone to do anything crazy. I’ve done well as a stock picker, but I’ve also had a lot of luck. Buying Google in 2004 was speculative. So was buying Tesla in 2012 when it was weeks away from bankruptcy. And I’ve made some really bad moves too:
- Selling Apple about 3 years ago was a horrible mistake
- I got caught up in the DotCom insanity. I had a fund called NetNet which went from $10 to $120 before $0. I held CMGI too which went bonkers before going broke.
Index funds aren’t quite as sexy, but the strategy is solid. So, that’s where almost all new money goes now.
Just like skateboarding, index investing is not a crime.
*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. Since my investment portfolio now sits at $1,550,000, I can spend about $62,000 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 (LOOK at the MONEY I’m MAKING!). My compromise was to have enough money put away to cover the mortgage at the time of retirement.
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