FIRE Progress Report – May 2024

No horsing around – Highest expenses yet, highest investment balance yet

What happened this last month?

This month our investments have been able to achieve their highest number yet. That means most of the numbers below are green, except for one. That is because our expenses were also very high this month.

First, we bought a horse. (A real picture of him is on this post.) That cost includes not only the purchase price, but transportation costs and a vet exam. We also had to pay medical expenses incurred in the previous month. One of our daughters got mono, and while we tried a variety of options to discover what she had, eventually we opted to go to the emergency room to just get it figured out once and for all. Fortunately, once we knew what it was, she started to recover quickly.

For our trip to Walt Disney World, we finally purchased plane tickets. The unfortunate thing is that the tickets were probably about $400 more than they were the first day I checked. It didn’t seem they were going to go down, so I finally decided to just buy them before the prices went up more.

Where did we spend the most?

Our monthly expenses were up considerably compared to last month. Annually, they’re up about 25% compared to last May.

  • $14602 Horse purchase
  • $3012 Medical expenses
  • $1508 Plane tickets
  • $440 Life insurance
  • $401 Dance competition
Current and future value against Minimum FIRE Goal and 25x Expenses Goal

86.30% to target number (previously 81.56%)

This is our invested assets (401k, HSA, IRA, brokerage, etc.) divided by our target goal number.

50 months (previously 51)

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

9.29 months (previously 13.17)

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

12.24 times annual spending (previously 11.97)

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.

48.95% to minimum FIRE (previously 47.86%)

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

14.18 times annual spending at goal number (previously 14.67)

We’d like to save 25 times our annual spending. This is how many times our annual spending we’ll have saved when we reach our goal number. If it’s 25 or greater, than our goal number will be enough to cover our expenses. If it’s lower than 25, we’ll need to either cut our expenses or increase our goal number.

How Much We Invested

137.93% Month to Month Change In How Much Saved (previously -21.93%)

This number shows the change in what we saved in our investment accounts this month compared to the prior month.

130.92% Month to Month Change in How Much Saved With Employer Contributions (previously -26.26%)

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

8.54% Month to Month Change in 12 Month Savings Average (previously -1.68%)

This number shows the change in our 12 month rolling average. This helps to smooth out months over time.

8.48% of 12 Month Average Net Income Invested With Employer Contributions (previously -1.76%)

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

How we track the numbers

I’ve been using Empower (referral link) to track our numbers. I put them into a spreadsheet that calculates the numbers you see above.

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