Nice Commission

My wife just got word today that the commission she is expecting on 4/20 will be more than we thought. She’s getting $1,599.68 ($1,147.24 after taxes)!We have earmarked the money for the following:$656 to pay off American Express$200 to Emigrant Direct emergency fund$171 to church$120 to buy wife new jeans (she earned it)What a blessing! Read more [...]

Prosper.com Update

I posted last month about how we were gambling with some play money in Prosper.com. We currently have $100 spread over two $50 loans and an average return of 12.21%. Both borrowers are current with their payments.Loan 1: https://www.prosper.com/lend/listing.aspx?listingID=109590Loan 2: https://www.prosper.com/lend/listing.aspx?listingID=112548That all sounds pretty good, but one drawback of the system is that you do NOT earn interest on money in your prosper account (where the borrower’s payments Read more [...]

$25 For Opening An ING Direct Savings Account

One of the simplest ways to get your money working harder for you is to open a high yield online savings account. We use Emigrant Direct and ING Direct because I have read many good things about both banks in online forums, and have been very happy thus far. These banks are FDIC-insured and pay a much higher interest rate that your typical brick and mortar bank.If you would like to receive $25 for opening a high yield ING Direct savings account, send me an email and I will forward a referral link Read more [...]

Counting Easter Egg Before It Hatches

My wife just did some back of the napkin calculations for her commission check this month. If all of her orders go thru as expected, she should receive a $1,033 commission check (less taxes) on 4/20. This would be a sizeable boost to our net worth for April. Go wife and thank God! We’ll use the money to immediately pay off our American Express credit card, leaving us with just one credit card balance of roughly $1,800.I love counting our eggs before they hatch. Happy Easter! Read more [...]

Stong Financial Foundation

Simple ideas for a strong financial foundation:Live below your meansI believe this is one of the most important steps to a strong financial foundation and, for me, one of the hardest. If you try to keep up with your rich looking friends and associates, you may end up like most of them: lots of nice stuff, but a low net worth. Every dollar that you save is worth more than an extra dollar earned because the extra dollar earned is taxed.Start an emergency fundJob loss, health issues, and expenisve repairs Read more [...]

Target Retirement Date

Our ideal target retirement date is 2027, twenty years from now, when I am 52 and my wife is 43. Realistically, this goal is going to be a stretch, but we have a long enough time frame that I think it is possible under favorable conditions.If we believe that we can live on $60,000/year when we retire, then using a 4% Safe Withdrawal Rate (SWR), our nest egg goal is $1.5M. However, with inflation averaging 3.43% annually, our nest egg may need to be substantially larger.We will refine and better define Read more [...]

Frequent Flyer Miles

I have been traveling for business for 6 years. It took me 5 years to finally bother to sign up for frequent fly miles, even though I have had plenty of co-workers and friends recommend it. I felt like I didn’t want to have to arrange my schedule to fly with a certain airline. That was very, very dumb.In the last 12 months, I have accumulated 31,368 miles on Delta SkyMiles and 11,316 on American Airlines Aadvantage. .. . for doing nothing more than enrolling and entering my account number when Read more [...]

Short Term Financial Goals

Below are some of our short term financial goals (1-5 years). I have checked off the items we have completed. a Pay off 401K loana Pay off credit card debt with rate interest over 0%a Save up 2 weeks worth of vacation (in case of job loss / unable to work)Pay off 0% interest rate credit card debt Open and fully fund Roth IRA for wife Open and fully fund Roth IRA for husband Sell Car 1 Pay off Car 2 10% (of gross income) contribution to 401(k) Build emergency fund to $12,000 We’ll be selling Car Read more [...]

March 2007 Income Statement

We had a great net worth increase in March, but did a poor job staying within our budget. We were sadly over budget $775.68 in March (click on spreadsheet below).A lot of non-monthly bills hit in March, such as both cars needing servicing, buying a baby shower gift, enrolling wife in new insurance program, and a mini vacation. That's not a good excuse though because we also went over budget for some of our standard monthly bills.Time to take back some ground by coming in under budget next month!Stay Read more [...]

March 2007 Net Worth Update (+$6,462.28)

A lot of progress was made since our February 2007 Net Worth update. We have a positive net worth! Thank God! It’s a great feeling to finally have a positive net worth, even if it is only $3,293.43.I can’t believe we were able to post a $6,462.28 change (click on spreadsheet below) to our net worth in one month. Over half of this increase was due to our Federal and State tax refunds ($2,044) and my wife receiving a $1,463 tuition reimbursement.Here are the highlights from March:Our 401(k) has Read more [...]

Our path to financial independence and retiring early.