Financial Independence Update- March 2021

We spent the beginning of March in Cozumel, Mexico before flying to the west coast to spend the majority of the month in Puerto Vallarta. Cozumel and Puerto Vallarta actually ended up being our two favorite places that we visited in Mexico. We had a great time in both places, full of great food and exploring. On the last day of March, we left Mexico and flew back home to Virginia. This rounded out our two month Mexican Adventure. For our flight back home, we decided to use some of our American Airlines miles to fly first class for the first time which was a cool experience!

In March, we spent less time working on the websites in favor of exploring, but still got quite a bit done. We were able to write a few articles, make some live videos, present via Zoom at the Midwest Physical Therapy student conclave, and answer a ton of emails and messages. We also began looking into some additional sources of revenue including sponsored social media posts and other types of sponsored content/ads. We aren’t sure how any of this will work yet, or if we’ll be able to find sponsors that we use regularly and believe in, but after having several brands reach out we decided it was worth considering.

Income

Income from our websites (FifthWheelPT and Travel Therapy Mentor) for March wasn’t as good as February but was still very good overall. The travel therapy job market continues to pick up, which is the main source of our revenue; our affiliate income is gradually increasing; and total website views are at all time highs- which means a little extra ad revenue. We’ve also continued to get a little extra money each month by renting out our basement back at home. We have a roommate moving out since she is finished with her clinical internship and another moving in at the beginning of April.

Expenses

Expenses for the month of March were about the same as February, still much higher than usual due to traveling and spending pretty liberally in Mexico, along with having fixed housing expenses back home. Check out my expenses from the first half of our trip here. Although I’ve been spending quite a bit more than usual each month lately, having income increasing means I still have a pretty high savings rate each month. I estimate that my savings rate for the month of March was around 60%.

Investments

The S&P 500 was up about 4.3% in March and set another all time high during the month. Meanwhile Bitcoin was up about 29% on the month, also setting a new all time high of $61,750. After selling some crypto in February, I held strong in March without any buying or selling. With the quick growth in crypto over the past 6 months or so, it now makes up about 50% of my total investment portfolio. If you missed my article on why I changed my opinion on it in 2020 and decided to start investing in it, check that out here. I have a smaller percentage of my assets in alt coins which did pretty well in March too. Unfortunately, a decent amount of my crypto holdings is invested in GBTC and ETHE in my Roth and traditional IRAs. Even though those funds have done well, they’ve significantly underperformed the underlying crypto, which drug down my returns slightly. I plan to further reduce my crypto exposure in April coming exclusively from the GBTC and ETHE holdings.

My investment portfolio return was about 11.5% in March, mostly from my Bitcoin exposure.

Financial Independence Progress

My net worth increased by just over 12% in March! This is my largest ever monthly increase in both percentage and dollar terms! This increase leaves me with assets equal to about 47.5 times my anticipated future annual expenses. That’s an increase of five years worth of expenses added to my net worth in just one month.

My net worth has now actually more than doubled (103%) in just the last two years. The most amazing thing about this is that I haven’t worked full time at all in that two year span! Two years ago I was finishing up a travel assignment before heading to Europe for four months and would have never believed so much financial progress in such a short time was possible.

Next Month

We’ll be spending the month of April at home getting our taxes done, catching up on some business, taking care of doctors appointments and personal errands, and spending time with family and friends. The spring is one of the best time to be in Southwest VA, so we’re excited for some nice weather and outdoor activities. April is historically a very good month for crypto as well, so I have high hopes for the month in terms of investments. My income should be about the same or slightly higher than March, and my expenses will almost certainly be less since we won’t be traveling. This should mean another great month for my net worth, but we’ll see how it all plays out!

How was March for you financially? Let me know in the comments!

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