The goal is to be below the average from last year of $7700, but November came in at $8800… We are over again… But all hope is not lost… Because of the low spending months at the beginning of the year, if we keep December spending under $5700 we could average about the same over the year… Of course, everyone knows that December is the spendy-est month of the year, so I’m not exactly expecting success on this front. Anyway… This total includes our mortgage, utilities and normal monthly costs, but doesn’t count special spending that we saved up for (planned spending as I call it).
We once again had some extra mortgage expenses that I wasn’t totally expecting because I didn’t really take a good look at the dates… We took both the dog and one of the cats to the vet this month, so that was a bit of a bigger expense, and we also got life insurance on both myself and my husband now, so we started the monthly payments on that this month. (Hmmm… Should I do a post about our life insurance?) And another reason for the higher expenses is that we started buying Christmas gifts and we sent some gifts to family overseas.
Last year, November was another very frugal month for us (lowest month in 2015!). We came in just over $6000. But as I mentioned in the last update, I was away for work for a lot of October and November last year, so I am not sure that it is truly representative of our lifestyle or just a fluke…
And now for a quick recap of my finance-related goals for 2016:
Goal #3 – Emergency Fund
Okay, so I had a little set back in November because we paid for some travel tickets for next spring that cost more than what we had in our travel fund at the time, so I borrowed some money from the emergency fund in order to make that happen… Bad me, I know. But, according to the budget we created for December, I have allocated the exact amount to get us to $10,000… So… provided we don’t do anything stupid or go on some crazy Christmas spending spree, this goal will be met! Fingers crossed!
Goal #4 – Save for Planned Spending
Last month I called this goal complete, but as you can see by the stealing from the emergency fund above, I probably should have started to think about next year’s planned spending… Oh well. As the French say, “c’est la vie” and so, before 2017 starts up, I’ll start thinking about what planned spending we need to save for next year.
Goal #5 – Net Worth & Retirement Savings
So… my graph broke… because of the money we took out of the equity of our house for our renovation plans… This giant amount of cash has messed everything up… My goal of a general net worth increase of 12% (1% per month) has been blown out of the water… but most of that money is bookmarked to be spent with our home renovations… So it is only a temporary high value, and I’ll have to take that in to consideration when making my goals for 2017.
But, let’s discuss the categories individually…
RRSP: The goal I made for the increase in our RRSPs was a 12% increase by the end of the year. I really pulled that number out of a hat, so it doesn’t surprise me that we aren’t there yet, but so far it has been an increase of about 7%, so at least that is a move in the right direction. I don’t see us magically getting to 12% in one month, so I will have to think about what is realistic for next year when I make my goals for 2017.
TFSA: Again, I pulled the goal number here out of a hat and didn’t actually make a plan for it, but the goal was an increase of 295%… yup, that’s huge, I know! We have increased it already by 40%, so that’s a pretty big jump, but we are not going from there to 295% in one month!
Taxable Investments: This one I didn’t really have any goals of increasing this one by any more than the market, but with dividend reinvesting, this one just sits here and grows nicely. The goal had it up by 7%, but it has already grown by 22%. (Side note: small investments grow by high percentages without the actual cash values being very big… it’s hard on the brain sometimes.)
Cash: My thought for cash was that I would be decreasing the amount we had in cash and moving it to investments… So my original goal had us actually decreasing our cash savings by 20%. As I mentioned already… the home renovation money has messed everything up. So we’ll just leave it at that… I don’t foresee that cash issue going away before the new year, so my final results for 2016 (in January) will probably be messed up too… Oh well. I can still report on the other stuff…
Goal #6 – Mortgage Renewal & Account Consolidation
How was your November? Is December looking good? Will you achieve all your financial goals for 2016 by the end of the year?