Image Credit: Lucasfilm LTD. – https://www.starwars.com/star-wars-day, Public Domain, Link

May the fourth be with you! We’re Star Wars fans here, and we’re glad to post on this special day. (Anyone watching The Bad Batch?) In any case, here is our April 2021 FIRE Financial Update. April was a big spending month for us, but the final paychecks from Mr. FD’s former employer came in to help out. We’re doing fine.

Monthly Spending and Income

April 2021

Primary Residence – Property Tax+Assoc. Fees $2,367
Rental – Property Tax+Assoc. Fees $215
Internet $63
Cell Phone $59
Gas + Electric $139
Water/Sewer $0
Food (Groceries/Household) $1,022
Food (Eating Out) $298
Transportation [Gas+Oil Change] $151
Car Insurance $994
Life/Home/Umbrella Insurance $90
Health Insurance $240
Misc/Buffer [Clothes, Netflix/Hulu] $35
Total Monthly Spending $5,632

In April, we paid our quarterly property tax for our primary residence. We also paid our 6-month premium for car insurance.  The grocery/household bill was large again this month. (Maybe we should look for ways to cut down on food spending a little bit.) These three were the big bills for this month. The rest is pretty normal for us. 

Rent $1,400
Hobby Site $60
Mr. FD Salary $4,747
Total Monthly Income $6,207

Rent, hobby income, and Mr. FireDesired’s salary make up the bulk of the income this month. Mr. FD stopped working full-time in March, but he was paid in April for the final few days of March. We received an unexpectedly large amount due to his vacation payout, which was nice. The hobby site pulled in a decent amount, but it incurred expenses which include annual domain registrations and an annual UPS mailbox renewal where he receives related mail.

401k Contributions HSA Contributions
$1,016 $0

Also in April, we still contributed to Mr. FD’s 401k through his former employer. Again, this was for work that was completed in March. This should be the final 401k contributions from his former employer paychecks. Mr. FD is looking to open up a solo 401k for his future freelance work, but that’s still a work-in-progress. No HSA contributions were made this month.

Overall, if you subtract our expenses from our income, we still managed to save this month.

April Savings: $6,207$5,632 + $1,016 + $0 = $1,591

Spending and Savings Summary for the year

To summarize, this is what our spending and savings have looked like for us this year.

  Spending Saving
January 2021 -$4,977 $6,259
February 2021 -$4,288 $3,632
March 2021 -$2,567 $11,802
April 2021 -$5,632 $1,591
TOTAL -$17,464 $23,284

We spent a lot in April, but we’re still saving overall, mainly due to residual income from March. We need the “Saving” column to stay above -$3,777 on average, which is our monthly projected spending for 2021. We’re more than fine.

Also, Mr. FD was able to secure a freelance contract, so we’ll still have some income coming in for a few more months, but it’ll definitely add up to less than his previous annual salary.

Net Worth for the year

For net worth, here’s how we’ve been doing. I calculate net worth near the end of the month, but not always on the final day of the month. Most of our net worth increases/decreases are heavily dependent on the stock market. I’m also including our total FIRE assets, which is arguably more important.

  Net Worth FIRE Assets
January 2021 $2.15 M $1.55 M
February 2021 $2.18 M $1.59 M
March 2021 $2.23 M $1.63 M
April 2021 $2.29 M $1.69 M

FIRE Failure Indicators

We’re not failing at FIRE! Well, that’s mainly because we’re still transitioning to it. Still, here’s our quick sanity check.

  1. This month, we spent $5,632, which is a little more that we would have hoped. However, because we had more than $6k in income, we’re okay. In future months, we might have to look more carefully.
  2. We’re still good for a 3% withdrawal rate. So, we’re not failing here either.

Happiness Indicators

On a scale of 1-10, how would we rate our happiness?

From Mr. FireDesired:

“An 8. We’re pretty happy, right?

From Mrs. FireDesired:

“Still a 7.”

We’re still trying to get health insurance settled, but I just finished my final exam for my grad school course. I have a few weeks of down time before summer session starts. Once everyone gets fully vaccinated, maybe we can feel better about going out more and doing more fun stuff as a family. Kids are healthy for now. Things are okay.

2 thoughts on “April 2021 FIRE Financial Update

  1. I’ve recently started differentiated between my net worth & FIRE assets, not that I’m near FIRE just yet. I like to use Personal Capital exclusively for investment accounts/cash, and any other nonsense I’m into–including car value–stays on Mint. Consequently, I like checking my Mint app more haha.

    • Thanks for commenting! For the longest time, we only looked at net worth. When Mr. FD and I initially started tracking our money, we used Microsoft Money. However, it was eventually discontinued. After that, we stopped tracking for a bit until I started using a simple spreadsheet, which we continue to use today. We only started started separating out our FIRE assets from NW in the past few years, as we got closer to our FIRE number. I think that’s because, initially, our FIRE assets and net worth were pretty similar (before kids and back when we didn’t have a ton of equity in our real estate).

      I’ve heard about Personal Capital! I think that if we were to eventually move away from my trusty spreadsheet, we’d look into using it. I’ve heard good things. Also, it’s interesting you use Mint to separate out “nonsense” assets.

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