April 2022 FIRE Update
Hey, everyone. Did you have a good month? I’m back in Portland and it’s great to be home. The weather was very uneven in April. We had a snow day in mid-April! It was the latest date snowfall ever recorded. The trees were full of flowers and held the snow much better than in the winter. As a result, branches fell down all over the city and caused blackouts. RB40Jr’s school was in one of these zones and they had no power for three days. So he got to enjoy some extra days off. Anyway, I’ve adjusted to the regular routine in the US. I’m back to driving our son to school and cooking dinners. Life is back to normal until school is over. Then Mrs. RB40 will take a sabbatical and we’ll go on a long summer vacation.
On the personal finance side, April was not too great. Our net worth took a big hit along with the rest of the stock market. I’m not too worried, though. The stock market will come back at some point. The bigger issue was that we spent more than we made. I purchased our round-trip tickets to Thailand for our summer vacation. We also paid a lot of taxes in April. Unfortunately, it’s one of those rare months where our expenses were higher than our income. I had to borrow some money from our savings. You can see the details below.
First, I’ll share how I’m doing on my New Year goals. Then, I’ll show you our monthly cash flow. Here are the details.
Here is my 2022 goal spreadsheet. It works really well. Try it out if you can’t keep up with your New Year goals. The key is to go over the spreadsheet at least once a month to track your progress. That way, you can see which goals need extra attention.
I’m not doing so well on my goals this year. I already failed 3 of them. See the reason below.
- Real Estate Crowdfunding $200,000. This goal was a bit too ambitious. I need to extend the timeline to 2023. Also, we have an unexpected expense. We are building a beach cabin in Thailand. So, I’m not sure how much we can increase our investment in RE crowdfunding this year. Anyway, the projects on CrowdStreet finish their funding phase quickly. Investors are taking money off the stock market to diversify. It’s a great way to passively invest in real estate.
- FI Ratio > 110%. This is my main goal for 2022. The FI ratio is passive income divided by expense. So far, our FI ratio is 119%. It came down a lot since last month due to a big bill this month – travel. I just got flight tickets for a big summer trip. This year, I’m less focused on our passive income because Mrs. RB40 plans to work longer. However, I’ll try to keep our passive income above 110%.
- Sell rental condo. Our tenant decided to stay for another year. He’s a great tenant so I’m okay with it. The price isn’t great in that area anyway. Portland is still struggling with a lot of issues. Hopefully, the city will improve soon. Anyway, I failed this goal.
- Speculate crypto $10,000. This isn’t going too well. Crypto seems to track the stock market closely. I need to do more research and see why. Cryptocurrency will be very volatile in the short term so hang on if you have a lot of money invested. Currently, I have about $2,200 in cryptocurrencies.
- Unfortunately, I lost my fitness tracker in Bangkok. I have no idea how it happened. It probably just popped off my wrist. Oh well, I’ll see if I can pick up another tracker when I get home. But I lost all motivation for now. I’m eating like crazy in Thailand because the food is so affordable and delicious. I’ll lose weight later. At least, I’m walking a lot so I’m burning calories.
- Travel 180 days – I was away from home for 85 days since the beginning of 2022. We’ll travel more this summer when Mrs. RB40 takes a sabbatical. She could retire if she wants, but she chooses to work this year.
- 1,000 subscribers on my YouTube channel. Currently, we have 781 subscribers on our YouTube channel. I was publishing several clips per week, but I ran out of steam. I need to make some new clips soon.
- Hot air balloon ride, zipline, and Disneyland. I’ll work on this when I get back to Portland. Hot air balloon ride near Portland. Zipline in Thailand in the summer. Disneyland in the fall.
- Happiness level > 8. I had a great time in Thailand, but I’m very happy to be home. April was good, but I watched too much YouTube. The geopolical problems are troubling. I still had a good month, though. April was an 8.5.
Net Worth (-8.6% YTD)
I’ve been tracking our net worth since 2006. It is very motivating to see our progress. The power of compounding is unbelievable. Our net worth increases more than we earn almost every year. However, 2022 is turning out to be a stinker. The S&P 500 index decreased by ~14% already. Our net worth followed the market down and dropped 8.6% so far this year. We have diversified with real estate and other holdings so our portfolio is a bit more stable than the stock market. Down is down, though.
***Important*** Don’t stop investing. You need to keep investing when the stock market is down. Eventually, the stock market will recover and you’ll do very well as long as you keep investing.
Here is a chart of our net worth from Personal Capital. Sign up for a free account at Personal Capital to help manage your net worth and investment accounts. I log in almost every day to check on our accounts. It’s a great site for DIY investors.
2022 Passive Income ($17,166 YTD)
Here is a quick summary of our passive income. You can see all the details on my Passive Income page.
April was a good month for passive income. Our FI ratio decreased a bit due to a big bill. I got the tickets for our summer travel. See the expense report below for the detail.
*FI ratio = passive income/expense
April 2022 Cash Flow
Our cash flow was good last month. Our income was solid on all fronts except for side hustles. I’ll take a break from side hustling this year because we plan to travel a lot more. Last month, we didn’t spend much. Overall, it was a good month financially.
Here is the Sankey diagram of our March cash flow. You can get a quick overview from the diagram and see the details below.
Gross Income: $13,687
Our gross income will be lower than usual this year. We plan to work less and travel more. No side hustle for me this year.
- Mrs. RB40’s job: $9,062. Mrs. RB40’s income was normal.
- Blog income: $1,830. My blog income was lower than usual. Times are tough in the blogosphere.
- Real estate crowdfunding: $1,149. It was a nice month for Real estate crowdfunding. You can read more on the RE Crowdfunding Passive Income page.
- Rental income: $735. We had a nice month at the rental. I think we’ll have a good year with rental income. Things are smoother than the previous year.
- Dividend Income: $905. See more details on my Dividend Passive Income page.
- Interest Income: $7
- Side hustle & Misc: $0
Monthly Spending: $5,282
This year, I plan to spend about $50,000. So our monthly spending budget is $4,166/month. In April, we went over that budget due to our travel expense. I got 3 round-trip tickets to Thailand. I was there earlier this year, but I want to bring my son to see my mom one last time. Here are the details.
- Housing: $1,257. This category includes mortgage, home insurance, HOA fees, property taxes, utilities, home improvement, repair, and furnishing.
- Parents: $250. My brothers and I each sent $250/month to my parents. They don’t have much retirement savings. Fortunately, they live in Thailand so it is enough. I also own the condo they live in so their housing expense is minimal.
- Groceries: $468. Usually, we spend about $500/month on groceries. I’m enjoying cooking for the family. It’s nice to be home.
- Bills: $23. (This is just life insurance. Water, gas, and electric bills are included in the housing category.)
- Transportation: $176. This category includes gasoline, insurance, public transportation, and car maintenance.
- Entertainment: $183. We ate out a few times. Yikes, this category is spiking.
- Kid: $0.
- Travel: $2,629. I got tickets to Thailand this summer. It was around $3,500. I also got a refund for our Maldives hotels. Unfortunately, they didn’t have any availabilities in July or August. 🙁
- Health: $108.
- Clothing: $187. Mrs. RB40 purchased some stuff.
- Misc: $0. Donation.
I don’t count these as personal spending.
- Taxes and deductions: $5,955
2022 Savings ($37,811 YTD)
I don’t think we’ll save as much as usual this year. We plan to travel more and relax a bit. We’ve been saving for so long. I think we deserve a break.
- Joe’s 401k: $12,300.
- Mrs. RB40’s 401k: $9,000.
- Roth IRAs: $4,000.
- 529 College Savings: $0.
- Extra savings: $12,511
YTD 2022 saving rate = 52%
April 2022 wrap up
April was a pretty turbulent month. The weather was crazy, the stock market was volatile, inflation was high, and there was a lot of bad news on TV. However, don’t be discouraged. You need to keep investing. When the market is down, you can buy more shares with the same amount of money. Eventually, the stock market will come back and you’ll come out ahead. If you’re near retirement and can’t deal with the volatility, real estate is a great option. Check out CrowdStreet. You can invest in apartments, hotels, and many other commercial projects. It’s a great way to generate passive income and add some stability in your portfolio.
That’s it for this month. I’m looking forward to nicer weather and summer vacation. It’ll be a busy summer. Everyone has been cooped up too long and we are all itching to travel. Reserve your flights and hotel rooms now if you haven’t done it yet.
How was April for you? Did you have a good month?
Disclosure: We may receive a referral fee if you purchase or signup for a service through the links on this page.
Passive income is the key to early retirement. This year, Joe is investing in commercial real estate with CrowdStreet. They have many projects across the USA so check them out!
Joe also highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. They have many useful tools that will help you reach financial independence.
(LEFT) BLUEBERRY PECAN BREAD, (RIGHT) SOUR CREAM BLUEBERRY BUNDT CAKE. EXCERPTED FROM BLUEBERRY LOVE (C) BY CYNTHIA GRAUBART, PHOTOGRAPHY…