The Income Diary

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July Financial Update

If you’re new to Budget Breakaway, each month I reflect on the previous month’s financial progress and calculate my total earnings from side hustles. I analyse any activities that may have had an impact on my finances and check up to see how far I have climbed towards my long term goals.

This month we brought in the newest member of the Budget Breakaway family; you can find out all about our new kitten Bruno and how he’s impacted our budgets here! July was a a successful side hustle month indeed! Here’s the breakdown:

Side Hustle Income – £268.07

Fiverr – £23.74
In June I set up a gig on Fiverr called ‘I will say your greetings message and do a backflip‘. I’ve actually doubled the income on this gig in July by utilising gig Extras including ‘I will complete your order in 24 hours’ . I’m still looking to list another gig so that I can double this income.

Business Consultancy Services – £180
By far the best earner for me month on month, I am currently looking to expand my client base and have a couple of leads lined up to multiply this income.

Parkour Coaching – £63
In my spare time I coach and perform parkour across the midlands.

Blog Advertising – £1.33
As a trial I have installed Google Adsense here on Budget Breakaway.

Total Side Hustle Income: £268.07

Review of My July Goals

1. Generate £250 in Side Hustle income – Complete!

As above, my total side hustle income was £268.07; looks like I’m going to have to set the bar even higher for August!

2. Make my first deposit of £643 into the mortgage fund – Failed

Due to delayed payments in July, I could only deposit £400 into the mortgage fund this month; this puts me £243 short of my target. However, these should catch up with me throughout August so I can set the bar higher in the following month.

3. Post another gig on Fiverr – Failed

Looks like another goal to be set through to August; watch this space!

Goals for August 2013

1. Generate £260 in Side Hustle income

As last month was so successful it’s time to raise the bar again; I’ll be looking to raise £260 in side hustle income next month.

2. Deposit £800 into the mortgage fund

Given I failed my mortgage deposit goal in July I’m looking to make up for this in August. I’m therefore looking to get super frugal and deposit £800 into my mortgage fund next month.

3. Post another gig on Fiverr

A goal that I failed in July but am still super eager to complete in August. Watch this space for my next Fiverr gig!

What were your goals for July? Did you have a successful month?

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June Goals

Hey there! If you’re new to Budget Breakaway, each month I reflect on the previous month’s financial progress and calculate my total earnings from side hustles. I analyse any activities that may have had an impact on my finances and check up to see how far I have climbed towards my long term goals.

June’s Happenings…

In the last week of June, we spent a frugal week in Scotland visiting family, going on long bike rides and enjoying some fantastic food. The best bit? Thanks to the generosity of family it didn’t cost us any more than an average week at home!

In previous weeks I’ve made a real effort to be especially frugal, only buying the bare essentials to ensure I can put as much towards the emergency fund as possible; after all, I did spend two-thirds of it on my car insurance premium last month!

This month was actually my first month without reading and reviewing a book. I must say it was a great decision to take a short break as my side hustle income has increased and I’ve felt more productive and less stressed. However, if you’re on the lookout for a good book to read, you can check out my book reviews here.

I’ve Filled My Emergency Fund!

One of my goals for 2014 was to create an emergency fund of £1950 to cover me for 3 months without work. Last month I set myself a rather ambitious goal of adding £777 to the fund with the aim of fully funding it at the end of July.

With some frugal living, ferocious side hustling and a fine stroke of luck I actually managed to deposit £1490 into my cash ISA this month which means my emergency fund is fully fueled!

Having a reliable emergency fund is very important to me as having no cash in an emergency is exactly what got me further into debt in the first place! A situation I plan on never being in again. Check out this post to find out why you should have some money stashed away for a rainy day! A full emergency fund is a huge step for me as just six months ago I was paying off my debt; I can now set my sights a little higher and begin saving for a deposit on our first mortgage!

Side Hustle Income – £273.42

Fiverr – £11.66

This month I set up a new gig on Fiverr; I had once set up a ‘finance article writing’ gig but as I’m not the fastest writer; I certainly wasn’t maximizing the value of my time. This time around, I wanted to sell something that I could complete in a tenth of the time but would still provide value to my audience. My latest gig? I will say your greetings message and do a backflip – check it out here!

Business Consultancy Services – £192 – By far the best earner for me month on month, finding a client of your own is the perfect earner for anyone that works in the digital industry. This also expands your skills at a faster rate to further benefit you at work. I’ll be looking for another client in the coming month’s to double this income stream.

Parkour Coaching – £12 – For those that don’t know, I spend the occasional Friday coaching parkour.

Blog Advertising – £57.76

Total Side Hustle Income: £273.42

My Net Worth – £2337.28

After clearing my debt at the start of this year I’d say I’ve now been in the green long enough to start tracking my net worth. I’ve began to diversify my assets and despite these meager beginnings I’m really looking forward to seeing my net worth grow over the coming months. The net worth breakdown:

Pension: £142.28 (‘Adventurously’ invested – up to 100% in shares)

Emergency Fund: £1950 (Cash ISA @ 1.75%)

Current Account + Joint Account: £245 (£10 per month generated from reward accounts)

Grand Total Net Worth: £2337.28

My Progress on Goals for June

All in all a very successful month with all of my goals complete and exceeded, needless to say, I’m very happy with this one!

Generate £240 in Side Hustle Income – Complete

Deposit £741 into my Cash ISA – Complete

Calculate My Net Worth – Complete

My Goals for July

1. Generate £250 in Side Hustle Income

Side-hustles were nice and high in June and I’d like to see this continue in July. I’ll be trying to add some more tools to my side hustle belt so keep watch as this all unfolds

2. Make my first deposit of £643 into my mortgage fund!

The next stage in my financial journey and a very exciting one! We’re looking to have built a large enough deposit for a 5% Help to Buy mortgage. For us to hit the target and have enough for furniture and additional moving cost I will be aiming to contribute £643 per month until the end of January. Wish me luck!

3. Post another gig on Fiverr

As well as being a quick and easy earner this month, it has also been great fun to come up with a product that will sell well on Fiverr and also keep me active! My latest gig has gone rather well so I’ll be looking to post another that has an equally low time investment to ensure the maximum return on investment on this platform.

How was your financial progress in June? Any goals for July?

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May 2014
FEATURED: May 2014 Financial Update

Hey there! If you’re new to Budget Breakaway, each month I reflect on the previous month’s financial progress and calculate my total earnings from side hustles. I analyse any activities that may have had an impact on my finances and check up to see how far I have climbed towards my long term goals.

In December 2014 I became debt-free and have since shifted my larger scale goals to building a three month emergency fund and saving for a 5% deposit on a help-to-buy mortgage. I share my progress with you all in order to hold myself accountable for my goals and to inspire other professionals out there to get serious with their finances.

Let’s dive into this month’s financial update…

May Update and Activities

Yet another month has flown by and I find myself sitting here with so much to tell you! In last month’s financial update I was planning my fundraising activity for Leukemia and Lymphoma research. Since then I am proud to tell you, I raised £175 by doing 175 backflips in one night! It was an exhausting experience but worth every second, if you’d like to keep the momentum going and donate to my nephew’s amazing cause, you can contribute to his Just Giving page hereThanks in advance – here’s the video documenting the event…

My First Pension Contributions

In May I also made my very first contribution to my pension pot. This is a big move for me as just six months ago I was in debt and only in control of a current account; I now have a joint account, credit card, cash ISA and a pension – so much has changed! Due to the recent changes in UK pension regulations my employer has just introduced a pension scheme into the workplace. What’s more is they’ve generously opted to match up to 3% of employee contributions! As you can probably tell, I opted to put in the full 3% each month; how could I turn down the opportunity to boost my net worth at a faster rate?! My pension is held by ‘The People’s Pension‘ – what I like about this company is the ease at which you can check your balance online and also the clear options as to where you would like to see your pension invested. Looking forward to seeing this grow over the coming months!

I Spent Two-Thirds of My Emergency Fund!

As I mentioned earlier, one of my larger scale goals is to build a three month emergency fund (£1950) in my cash ISA – well, this month I spent two-thirds of it. That’s right, it’s gone! Is it because I’m a shopaholic? A big spender? Well… not quite.

What I in fact decided to do was to pay my car insurance renewal premium in full. By doing this I actually saved £180 on my insurance over the course of the coming year! This may have been a huge swerve away from my solid plan but I stand by the decision as I know it was too big an opportunity to pass up. My monthly outgoings have now dropped considerably meaning I can also funnel more to my savings to re-build the fund as fast as I can.

Review of My Goals for May 2014

My May 2014 goals were very adventurous especially as we are still settling into our new house and although I may not have met them all I feel as though this month has been very successful!

Read and Review the Four Hour Work Week – Complete!
The Four Hour Work Week was an amazing read, so much so that I am already considering reading it again! The book really motivated in my search for a business concept that I can pursue and although I do quite have an idea yet, I do know what it looks like from a structural business perspective so am just waiting for it to hit me (after some more research of course). The Four Hour Work Week inspired me to de-clutter some of the projects and tasks that weren’t providing me with value – I even hired my first freelancer to help me! To find out more, you can read the review here.

Make £240 in Side Income – Failed.
My grand total for side hustle income for May was £112.99. In all honesty, this wasn’t the most successful month for side-hustles. The majority of the income came from marketing consulting with some coming in coaching. Next month I’ll be looking increase my marketing consulting income and diversify my income streams through freelance writing and maybe even a Fiverr gig!

Read and Review the Four Hour Body – Failed.
I was so stuck into The Four Hour Work Week that I never got around to starting this one. However, if it’s anywhere near as good as Tim’s first book I know I’m in for a treat. Each month I have read and reviewed a new book – you can see all of the book reviews here. This has been a fantastic challenge that has consistently inspired me to take action to improve my side-hustles and my finances. However, there’s only so much time in a day and I feel that I spend most of my free time learning rather than doing. With this in mind I’m going to step down from my monthly reading challenge and use more of the time to focus on my side-hustles and of course Budget Breakaway! I’ll still be reading and reviewing books but at a more leisurely pace.

Deposit £487 into my Cash ISA to Fully Fund My Emergency Fund Goal! – Failed.
As I touched on above, I spent two-thirds of my emergency fund on my annual car insurance premium; I’m confident this is a good decision and I’m going to be funding this even faster at the end of June with a view to fully fund it by the end of July. The emergency fund currently stands at £468 and has a target weight of £1950 meaning I’ll have to find two payments of £741 if I want to get it funded by the end of July.

Goals for June 2014

1. Generate £240 in Side-Hustle Income
May’s earnings were dwindling so I’ve reset my goal and this time I’m prepared and determined to achieve it. I’m looking to earn 70% of this from marketing consulting, 15% from parkour coaching and the final 15% from alternative side-hustles. I’ve even set up a gig on Fiverr to see what I can make of that platform a second time around.

2. Deposit £741 into My Cash ISA
I’m going to have to hit my side hustle target and cut my costs drastically this month in order to reach this goal. It is very important to me that the emergency fund is filled as once it is I can then start to save my mortgage deposit. Wish me luck in my quest!

3. Calculate and Track My Net Worth
Net worth has never been a big focus of mine as I have primarily been focused on clearing my debt. However, now that I’m really starting to make headway with my savings and also found other ways (such as my pension) to diversify my assets I’d like to begin tracking my net worth and also include it as part of my monthly financial updates.

I hope you all had a successful May, wishing you the best success for June. What are your goals for this month?

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dining room leicester

If you’re new to Budget Breakaway, once a month I write a post reviewing my goals from the previous month, logging my financial progress and laying down some new goals for the current month. I’ve been doing this for two reasons:

  1. To document my journey towards financial freedom and share the activities I undertake to get me there
  2. To hold myself accountable – by sharing my goals with you guys it makes me much more likely to achieve them!

Big News In April

dining room leicester
Our New Dining Room!

What a month! We’ve been busy getting ready as we’re moving house in two days – very exciting! Our current tenancy is due to expire with no option to renew so we are moving out of shared accommodation and Fi & I are getting a rented terraced house of our very own! I often forget how much of a headache it is shifting all of the bills, and addresses to a new property but I’ll be glad when it’s all done and we can settle in to our new home.

March has certainly been the most costly month of the year. I’ve spent a total of £650 on my car (petrol, tax, MOT, full-service, insurance); which is an enormous dent in the wallet but as I commute to work this unfortunately has to be done. We have also had to pay out our tenant fees for the new house and a whopping £200 each on a gas and electric bill (6 month total, never doing that again!). As the new house is half furnished we have also had to source some furniture and appliances which total around £130 each.

Despite all of this coming at once I’ve kept my fingers out of the emergency fund and been as frugal as can be to keep on track!

One Courageous Cause…

Over the past few months, my nephew has been raising money Leukemia and Lymphoma research and recruited me to give him some help. So, using my limited skillset I am looking to do one backflip for every £1 that is donated to his Just Giving page. So far I’m committed to 150 backflips which will be filmed on the night of Friday 9th May. If you fancy helping me in an amazing cause, please leave a small donation to the link below and leave the word ‘BACKFLIPS’ in your message:

www.justgiving.com/judith-womble

April 2014 Goals Review

Here’s a review of my goals from April; the side hustles have gone very well but unfortunately my other two have struggled a little.

Read the Four Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferris – Failed

They say a good book is one you can get stuck into, however, I actually like a book that can make you stop, think and apply the principles to your own life. I’m half way in to the Four Hour Work Week and this reason is certainly why I haven’t finished it yet; every time I get to the end of a chapter I want to put pen to paper and adjust some of my own life decisions. I could have easily finished the book by yesterday but I am getting so much out of it that I didn’t want to rush through and miss anything – watch this space for the review!

Generate £230 in Side Hustle Income – £236/£230 – Complete!

Very happy with my progress this month; I have been working on building an e-commerce store for a friend and it is almost finished and ready to be set live! There is still plenty of marketing and SEO to be done once this is live so I’m hoping to keep up the side hustle momentum with this in May. I have also done two days coaching this month which amounts for the rest.

Web Design – £200

Coaching Parkour – £36

Deposit £487.50 into Cash ISA Emergency Fund – Failed

This was going to be the final payment to fill my emergency fund but unfortunately with the cost of car maintenance, moving and bills I haven’t deposited anything into the account this month. Next month I’ll be back with a vengeance!

Goals for May 2014

I try to raise the bar a little each month if I’ve achieved my goals but I’m aware that May has some big costs including a larger rent payment, Fi’s birthday and a deposit on the house. Despite this I’m still going to be aiming high, so here are my goals for May 2014:

Four Hour Work WeekRead & Review The Four Hour Work Week

I still have half of this book to finish and I’m very much looking forward to reading the rest. So far, I’ve pulled some great ideas about future online businesses, and got some good challenges to try out on outsourcing platforms in the near future. Hoping to get this finished my mid next week – keep your eyes peeled for the review!

Read & Review The Four Hour Body

Fi surprised me this month by giving me Tim’s other book The Four Hour Body. Fitness is high on my agenda in May and this enormous book will be a great help in pushing me to train a little harder and smarter to achieve my personal fitness goals and keep my mind clear at work and during the side hustles!

Generate £240 in Side Hustle Income

As I have just achieved my side-hustle goal in April I’m hoping to continue this success in May and have added an extra £10 to the target. I haven’t been very proactive in chasing any leads for my current side hustles so this month I am also looking to allocate 2 nights to reach out and bring some more work my way.

Deposit £487.50 into Cash ISA

As there was no progress on this goal in April I am trying it again. This will be the final deposit that will fill my emergency fund which is the next financial milestone for me since clearing my debt!

I’m looking forward to the rest of May but it’s clear there’s plenty of work to do. I’m going to have to get real disciplined and make the most of the few hours that are left at the end of each working day!

Those are my goals for May 2014, what do you have planned?

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march update

Another month has turned it’s course, I think it’s definitely time to put together my goals for April and give you all an update on my progress in March! In addition to my March goals we were planning on booking our flights to the states and also had to find a new house to rent for the next 6-12 months while we are savings for a mortgage deposit. We’re having to hold off on flights for the moment but this is still in the works!

March saw me apply for my first credit card and we also set up a joint account to make the weekly grocery shopping a little easier to manage. On top of this my car was due a full service and a MOT which set me back £200 this month – the joys of commuting. On the plus we’ve now found a nice place to move into and are looking to put our deposit, agency fees and rent down on the property – April is proving mighty costly already!

March 2014 Goals Review

The Rules of WorkRead and Review ‘The Rules of Work’ – Richard TemplarComplete!

The Rules of Work was a quick and easy read on career development; something I am very interested in at the moment. The book provides a neat list of rules that you should stick to in order to become successful in the workplace. You can read my full review here!

Generate £230 in side hustle income (£54/£230) – Failed

February’s side hustle income came to a massive £326 so I raised the bar again and set March’s target at £230. Unfortunately my side hustles amounted to a mere £54 this month from part-time coaching. I did a lot of work in developing my digital marketing venture but none of this was paid work, let’s hope the time investment pays off in April!

Deposit £775 into my cash ISA – Complete!

I am looking to build an emergency fund of £1950; this would be made up of four monthly deposits of £487.50. In February I undershot my cash ISA monthly deposit goal by £287.50. I wanted to make up for this in March and also wanted to deposit March’s £487.50 too. I’m proud to say that with some disciplined frugality I’ve managed to deposit the full £775 into the cash ISA. Just one more month’s deposit to go and I will have fully funded my emergency fund!

Goals for April 2014

Given that we may be paying out estate agent fees and deposits this month, we will have to keep a watchful eye on our outgoings. I will set out these goals with this in mind.

Timothy-Ferriss-4-Hour-WeekRead and Review ‘The Four Hour Work Week’ – Timothy Ferriss

If you haven’t heard, this year I’m aiming to read and review one book every month. I’ve heard nothing but good things from successful entrepreneurs about The Four Hour Work Week which focusses on developing a business system that allows you to earn an impressive income by doing a very low frequency of work. The book will cover some creative entrepreneurship angles and also explore how you can outsource work to free up your time whilst making a profit. I’m certainly looking forward to getting stuck into this one!

Earn £230 in Side Hustle Income

This was my goal for March which I fell short of. I’m hoping to side hustle with a vengeance this month and smash this goal this time around. This should be made up of 75% digital marketing and 25% coaching. Wish me luck!

Fill My Emergency Fund – Deposit £487.50 into Cash ISA

My emergency fund target was £1950 in four months, if I can deposit £487.50 this month then I’ve made it! Despite the high costs this month from preparing to move house I think this will still be achievable. I can’t wait to have this filled so I can begin to fill my next bucket – the mortgage down payment!

These are my basic goals for April. What are you striving for the rest of April?

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