Another month in the books. Whitney and I have been working and traveling a lot lately, so time really flew by this month. Since starting our new jobs I’ve averaged eight hours of overtime per week through the first eight weeks. This would really be awesome if overtime pay was truly 1.5x our normal hourly travel pay, but unfortunately that is not the case. I’m planning to write a blog post regarding overtime pay as a traveler soon, but we effectively earn only half of our normal pay when we work overtime due to how our pay is structured. Even though it isn’t as much as our normal pay, I still am fine with making the extra money, although it is draining to stay at work until 7-8 PM or later most nights. One day this past week I actually had 13.25 hours on the clock which is definitely a record for me. As far as weekend trips go, we traveled to: Charleston, SC, Philadelphia, PA, Atlantic City, NJ, and Shenandoah National Park in Virginia all in the month of May. We spent every weekend out of town this month which meant a lot of packing and unpacking. Our trip to Shenandoah National Park was to hike Old Rag Mountain with Chris and Kim who write for the blog “Eat the Financial Elephant.” It was awesome to meet up and talk with them after Chris recently wrote an amazing guest post for us that ended up being the most popular post on this site to this point.
Due to all the trips out of town and late nights at work (leading to eating dinner at restaurants way more than we should) my expenses were up quite a bit this month, but luckily this has been more than outweighed by the overtime. The extra hours have led to me being a little more liberal with my spending, which has actually been a bit of a relief since I’m usually so adamant on spending as little as possible. The market continuing to rally, combined with these higher paying jobs and the addition of overtime pay has led to a drastic improvement in my net worth this month. I decided to make some adjustments to my Excel spreadsheet that my charts are based on due to consistently overshooting my savings goals each month. I added an additional $200/month to my “savings per month” category, which should make the projections a little more realistic. The increased net worth from this month and the extra $200/month projected into the future has moved my projected financial independence date up by two months! It’s likely that I will also make some adjustments in the future on my projected spending per month. I purposely made this number higher than it needs to be when I first started my spreadsheet in order to account for increased expenses in the future but, after reconsidering, I think I estimated a little higher than I needed to. If that amount is adjusted to a more realistic number, then that will put me even closer to my FI date.
Even with my future expenses likely exaggerated a little, I am still on pace to reach financial independence in April, 2020 based on my projections. The surprising part about that to me is it means that I am nearly halfway through my full time working career and I have been working for only two years. I am continuing to stockpile liquid assets right now in anticipation of purchasing my first rental property in the near future. The rental property should be an awesome way to put my money to use while diversifying and hedging against my stock market and personal loan investments.
June should be an interesting month because, although I will be receiving five paychecks, I have some big expenses coming up that will likely negate the extra paycheck. Nonetheless, I am optimistic that I will reach, or hopefully surpass, my savings goal for the month and continue to push my FI date closer and closer.