I don’t know about you, but I am glad July is over. It was one of those months where everything seemed to happen at the same time which always equates to EXPENSIVE.
Of course July 15th was the new COVID-19 tax day which was already bad enough. We added to the pain by paying California registration for our RV AND Jeep, buying clothes and supplies for our son and prepaying for the campsites for our road trip. To top it off we decided to book a return flight home for him for the winter break since prices are way down. We got an amazing deal on a cross country flight for under $200! I guess that’s one positive out of this whole ordeal. But we certainly busted the budget in July.
We had yet another record month on the business side despite taking a few days off for some R & R. It’s good timing for that as we should receive some nice checks prior to departing on our road trip. The downside of self employment is you don’t get paid vacations or paid time off. But that is offset by being able to make your own schedule and go on the road for a month without having to ask permission from some schmuck. More than a fair trade off in my humble opinion.
We continue to prepare our road trip by working off items on our to do list. It’s actually a little easier and cheaper to prepare for a long trip than for a shorter one. On short trips we tend to stock up on supplies and food to cover the duration of our trip. The shopping bill is usually quite large as we typically purchase a lot of items we don’t normally buy. For a longer trips we just do our regular grocery shopping before we go. There is no reason to try and load up with a months worth of food and take up valuable space. Plus it’s much easier and more cost effective to stop for groceries on the road and restock as needed. Also, everything is cheaper outside of California.
One thing I’m looking forward to doing is using this trip as a test run for our future. While this is a vacation and we will have some vacation expenses we will also be living the life we are planning for. It’s a good time to see how some actual living expenses align with our planned budget. I tend to over budget and feel we could probably live well below our current FI number of $1.5m. This trip will give us an opportunity to test that theory on a limited level and possibly make some adjustments to our proposed budget and maybe even our RE timeframe.
Here is where we ended the month of July 2020:
Portfolio = $1,068,736
Portfolio Goal = $1,500,000
Amount needed to reach goal = $431,264
Our portfolio increased by $47,471 or 4.65% from the end of June
Year-to-date our portfolio is up 2.03%
Net Worth = $1,285,259
This is an increase of $45,968 or 3.71% from the end of June
Year-to-date our Net Worth is up 2.75%
While expenses did have an impact to our cash on hand it was offset by a nice increase in our investment portfolio. As such we are back in positive territory for the year which is amazing considering how bleak the markets looked just a few months ago.
I’m still reluctant to give any outlook on the markets because there are still too many variables at work. Many public companies are reporting positive earnings surprises which is great but the labor market is still not recovering. This is largely due to small and private businesses being held back by continued state lockdowns. I understand the reason for this but it is very detrimental to the employees, the companies and the economy as a whole. Until these variables work themselves out and people are able to get back to work the markets will continue to be choppy and volatile.
The best news of course will be when a vaccine is approved which sounds like it might not be too far off in the future. The fact that there is even a conversation about a vaccine this quick is amazing. These things typically take years to develop and credit needs to be given to the companies involved and the even the government for cutting out some of the useless bureaucratic red tape that stalls important research and development.
For now we wait and see how everything plays out. None of this is within our control so we do what we do best. Stick to the plan, invest and move forward.
Thank you for your time and continued support. We have an exciting adventure planned over the next month as we start a new chapter in life. We will share as much as we can and hope you enjoy the ride along with us.
Until next time…………………..