Each month, I share a net worth update for the Brewing FIRE household. This brief summary of our financial standing serves as a progress report on our journey to financial independence.
In addition to giving a snapshot of our net worth, I will take a brief look at our spending, saving, and investing activity for the month.
December 2021 Net Worth
After all the big changes and excitement in my December update, it would be hard to top this in January. Alas, this month was much more low-key. It almost feels like we’ve been hibernating the last few weeks.
As mentioned last month, our household expanded from 4 to 6 in January, as Mrs. BF’s cousin and her boyfriend have joined us in Virginia. We definitely welcome the addition: balancing our jobs, our kids, and everything else in life is draining. Having family around to help with the dinner, domestic duties, etc.. has already been a huge benefit.
January was pretty cold down here in the northern part of the south (or is it the southern part of the north?). We had multiple minor snow storms and temperatures down to 10F, but of course nothing like a New England winter. We probably only have 4-5 more weeks until it start to feel like spring. Can’t wait.
We spent much of January prepping to close on our house, including writing the biggest check of my life. We won’t actually be moving until April, so it’s only paperwork and bank stuff to deal with right now.
Crap, that’s a lot of red! As most people know, the market pulled back a bit in January. It’s actually surprising that, after weeks of headlines suggesting crashes and financial panic, we’re only down about 5%. If you own high-flying tech stocks and NFTs, you could be feeling a lot more pain, though. Thankfully, I’m still staying away from chasing individual stocks.
Spending and Not Spending
|Utilities||$212||electric, internet, trash, gas|
|Subscriptions||$198||some annual fees|
|Total||$8,099||minus the donation|
Transport: our auto insurance went up about $200 after we added the minivan. Also, we brought the cars in for multiple small repairs and maintenance this month.
Food: we fully expected the food budget to go up with our household expanding from 2 adults to 4. This is probably artificially high, though, because we did some major stocking up in January.
Shopping: we bought a new chair-and-a-half for our living room. Of course, it was used and only cost us $85, because we’ve never bought any new furniture. It’s much cozier in here now, but we have to fight the dog off of the chair most nights.
Income and Investing
We earned our normal W2 incomes in January. The expanded child tax credit was not renewed in 2022, so no more Biden bucks hitting our bank account.
We maxed out our Roth IRAs on January 2nd, which I like to refer to as “IRA Day.” This is why our cash balance dropped by about $10k this month. I’m also front-loading my 401k contributions, but not to the extent that I did in 2021. Last year, I wasn’t sure how much longer I was going to stay employed, so I was in a hurry to max out my 401k. This year, I know I’ll be employed as long as I want to, so I’m not in such a hurry this time around.
That covers our quiet January. How was your January? Do you hibernate during the winter as well? Got any vacation plans? Let me know in the comments.