FIRE Progress Report for September 2020 (Garage Door Edition)

This month saw the start of the school year, and another broken garage door. A few months ago our other garage door spring had broke, so it seemed ironic that this month the other one did. We also had a series of expenses related to our dog that we hadn’t anticipated, and of course there were school fees. As for the one larger expense we had partially planned for, that was our daughter’s cell phone bill. While we use Verizon prepaid for our service, financially, it makes more sense for her to use Mint Mobile (use the link and we both get $15 towards in credit at Mint Mobile). We use their cheapest plan and pay it annually to get the best price.

As for our numbers this month. Many of them held steady from the previous month due to market fluctuations. I’ve decided this month to change everything under How Much We Invested because it was all based on my salary and doesn’t take into account money I make through my side business, or money that Julie is making now. That means we could have eventually reported a number over 100%, which wouldn’t have made any sense. I’m now going to report the percent of increase or decrease in the amount we save. There will be two sets of numbers, one for our month to month, and one for the month to month change in our 6 month average. A more detailed explanation is with the numbers.

I’ve also decided to color code the numbers to indicate a positive or negative direction. This should help when scanning to see the overall trend for a month.

How did this affect us?

Below is a breakdown of some of the larger, out of the ordinary expenses this month. Despite these, our spending for this month was almost the same as it was for September 2019.

  • Mint Mobile – $200
  • Garage Spring – $189
  • Dog Expense – $395
  • School Fees – $160

The Money Related Numbers

43.36% to target number (previously 43.75%)

This is our invested assets/target number. Our invested assets span across a variety of investment vehicles such as 401k, HSA, IRA, Roth IRA, ESPP (Employee Stock Purchase Program) and standard taxable mutual funds.

94 months (previously 95)

The number of months until my 45th birthday and our finish date.

66.43 months (previously 65.29)

The number of expected months until we reach our target number based on our current expected monthly contributions, assuming a 10% annual return.

The Expense Related Numbers

12.63 times annual spending (previously 12.76)

This is how many multiples of our annual spending we have saved up towards our goal. For example, if this value was 9.1 and we spent $10,000 annually, we would have $91,000 saved up.

50.51% to minimum FIRE (previously 51.06%)

The minimum number to achieve FIRE is 25 times our annual spending. This number shows how close we are to the absolute minimum.

29.13 times annual spending at goal number (previously 29.18)

We have a goal amount that we’d like to reach. Given our current annual spending, this is how many times our annual spending we’ll have saved when we reach our goal number.

How Much We Invested

-16.15% Month to Month Change In How Much Saved (previously -31.73%)

This number shows the change in what we saved this month compared to the prior month in things like 401k, Roth IRA, taxable accounts, and Employee Stock Purchase Program.

-16.15% Month to Month Change in How Much Saved With Employer Contributions (previously -34.27%)

Same as the prior number, but with employer contributions counted.

-2.32% Month to Month Change in 6 Month Savings Average (previously -9.54%)

This number show the change in what we saved this month compared to the prior month, but on a 6 month rolling average. This helps to smooth out months over time and shows a more general trend.

-3.65% of 6 Month Average Net Income Invested With Employer Contributions (previously -10.17%)

Same as the prior number, but with employer contributions counted.

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