The Income Diary

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Hey all! I hope you’ve had a successful February!

So it’s the 9th March and only now am I finding the time to sit down and reflect on the February financial happenings and set out my goals for March – whoops! February was a mighty busy month for three main reasons: I had plenty of work from my efforts in business consultancy which more than met my goal for side hustle income! Secondly, there has been a large organisational shift at work which has put me in line for a promotion in the coming months!

Fi has also been super busy setting up her craft shop on Etsy, be sure to check it out here! Here at BB we have also been considering heading back to the states for a few weeks rather than interailing which has meant we’ve had to play around with our budgets a little!

February 2014 Goals Review

The Naked Trader Book

Read the Naked Trader by Robbie Burns – Complete!

I chose this book as from reading Robbie’s blog I thought this would be a great guide for me to get to grips with trading shares. With a very limited knowledge of the stock market I wanted a book that could describe the ins and outs of the topic without losing me with technical jargon and I can happily say this was well achieved by Burns! The Naked Trader is a book that encourages you to act on the information you are given and presents plenty challenges and examples to keep you reading more and more! This is a must read for any aspiring trader so read the review here!

Begin Paper Trading – Failed

When setting this goal I had the aim of executing my paper trades as I read the above book. However, The Naked Trader gave me more than enough reading and activities within a month and although I set myself a budget for paper trading, I didn’t get round to marking my first trade!

One thing that has become clear from reading the NT is that for me to commit to trading shares I will need to make time in the day to monitor, buy shares. This is something that I could only be comfortable with if I had a considerable amount of cash to commit to trading due to the impacts this would have on my current work. I am therefore going to be delaying trading shares for at least another year and funnel my savings into a mutual/index fund this year. Don’t get me wrong though, I’ll still be keeping my eye out on the market in coming months!

Generate over £210 in side hustle income – Complete!

Total side hustle income for February came to a massive £326! My work in the evenings doing some business consultancy totaled over 90% of this income with the remaining income coming from coaching. I’m very proud of this figure which has really set the bar for what can be achieved with enough hard work during the evenings and weekends. I’m not confident that I can meet this figure again next month but I’ll certainly be looking to increase the amount of my objective for March!

Deposit £487.50 in my Cash ISA – Failed – £200/£487.50

Now I know what you’re thinking… how could I fail this goal when my side hustle income was so high? Well here’s the spiel; back in September 2013 Fi and I decided we wanted to go interailing in 2014 and would likely be budgeting around £750 each to travel Europe for three weeks. We’ve since had a little change of heart and now like the idea of jetting off to the states again and spending some more time in New York and Miami. Obviously we’d have to fly out  which means (here’s the clinch), we should be looking to book our flights around now. I therefore have made a smaller deposit in the ISA and have a cash reserve in place in case we decide to book our tickets any time soon. I’ll be sure to pay the full amount in at the end of March, plus the missing figure from this February.

Goals for March 2014

So here’s what my goals are set to look like this month. I’m still fighting hard to stick to my new years resolution of reading one book a month, driving up my side hustle income each month, coaching parkour, advancing my career in marketing and having fun blogging! I only have three goals for this month as I feel that two of these are particularly challenging and want to try my best to succeed at them. Persistence is key and I’m certainly enjoying the challenges of 2014 so far!

The Rules of WorkRead ‘The Rules of Work’ by Richard Templar

Up to now I have read a book on the rituals of the rich and a guide to trading shares. To keep the balance in my work life, my next book is titled ‘The Rules of Work’. This is a book based on developing your personal success in the workplace; it is a list of ‘rules’ that you can use to leverage your effectiveness at work in order to advance your career trough promotions and salary. This is quite a short book that I am very excited to read!

Generate £230 in Side Hustle Income

Despite the success of February’s side-hustles I think this month will be a little trickier to generate extra income I’ll have to look to get mighty creative to hit this target. I have increased my monthly target from £210 to £230 and will likely have to put together a mix of business consultancy, online income, coaching and online sales to get this one together. Wish me luck!

Deposit £775 into Cash ISA

This is a mighty ambitious goal but if I can keep expenses low for this month and side hustle income high it might just be possible! My instant access cash ISA is going to hold my emergency fund of £1950 and to get to this amount by the end of April I was looking to deposit £487.50 into the account each month. However, with February being £287.50 short of the goal, I will be looking to make up for it this month despite the potential cost of our flights to the states!

What are your goals for March? Any big plans for this month?

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February 2014 Goals

The first month of this year is over already! It only seems like yesterday that I was writing my goals for January 2014 and scanning my twitter to see everyone’s new year resolutions. January was the first month of living out of debt and boy it felt good; now I can look at financial opportunities and feel like I’m only a few more steps away from taking them on.

Time to Catch Up!

Now that I have a positive net worth (wahoo!), this month I have really been looking into the various avenues that are available to me and the big financial decisions that I should begin to plan for. This includes looking into the size of the down payment on a mortgage we should be saving for, my larger career goals and the various investment options that are available to me. This month has been about filling my mind with financial education in order to make tactical decisions in the future. We have lots of dreams such as remodeling a house and travelling Europe so I will need to think about building some scalable revenue streams aside from my paycheck.

Let’s take a look at how I have done in when looking at my goals for January:

January 2014 Goals Review

Open a higher interest savings account – Complete!

I did this at the beginning of the month; opening a cash ISA with Virgin Money that provides me with 1.75% interest paid monthly. When I have fully funded my emergency fund in here it should generate £30 per year.

Build over £200 in side-hustle income – Complete!

Very almost failed this one! On the 31st Jan I managed two secure some additional coaching time which brought me to a total of £204 in side-hustle income. So glad to have made this challenge and looking forward to exceeding this next month! Here’s how my side-hustles have been split:

£48 – Part-time Coaching
£70 – Overtime Pay
£30 – Online Income
£40 – Business Consultancy
£16 – Amazon Sales

This was a close attempt, but I feel I could have tried a little harder. I am hoping to near double my business consultancy income next month.

Read and Review Rich Dad, Poor Dad – Complete!

This was a great book and a fantastic start to my financial education. Rich Dad, Poor Dad teaches a great deal about the psychology of the rich. A wise lesson from this book is to protect your assets even if it means finding alternative methods of gaining cash as your assets are there to generate income and create your money machine – you don’t want to break your money machine! Read my review here.

Deposit £487.50 into my Cash ISA – Complete!

This was my first step in building a positive net worth! They say the basis for a financial foundation is an emergency fund; this is therefore my first goal and I plan on filling this fast! I’ve worked out that if I can deposit £487.50 into my ISA once a month for four months I should have an emergency fund to cover me for three months without work. First deposit done! Any money left in my current account at the end of each month will also be transferred into here.

Goals for February 2014

1. Deposit £487.50 into Cash ISA

Yet again time to fuel my emergency fund, I’m ensuring that this comes out even before my rent to ensure there’s nothing stopping me from completing this goal!

The Naked Trader Book2. Read The Naked Trader by Robbie Burns

This is a real big (yet easy to digest) book about spread betting. I have always been interested in investing and Robbie’s book is very highly recommended given it’s simplistic breakdown of a complex topic and the fact that he has become a millionaire by spread betting over the past 8 years! Very much looking forward to reading this one and have already got 100 pages in!

3. Begin Paper Trading

This goal falls in nicely with my above reading.  The way I see it, I will likely need to wait nine months before I have enough accessible capital to begin investing (I’m aiming to spread £3000 as my starting investment capital). The impatient man inside me isn’t happy with this wait but the huge benefit for the logical me is that I can gain months of experience monitoring the market before I invest. I will give myself an allocated amount of capital to ‘paper invest’ and see how this pans out over the course of a few months.

4. Build £210 in Side Hustle Income

This was quite a tough goal in Jan so I am raising the bar by just 5%. I am going to focus on making this income through freelance marketing and online income. Wish me luck!

How have your financial goals unraveled this month? Any new goals for February?

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I hope you’ve had a wonderful 2013 and I wish you all the best of luck in your ventures for the new year! In traditional fashion I’d like to reflect on last year and set goals and resolutions for the new year. 2013 has been a great year with huge changes for my finances, career and fitness. If there’s one lesson that has been valuable to me it’s to replace unproductive habits such as procrastinating and spending money with productive habits like monitoring finances and working towards your long term goals. And now I really do enjoy these new habits more!

2013: The Highlights

Rich dad poor dad front coverA New Years Resolution

My new years resolution is to read one book every month; there is a lot to learn about the footsteps of others and I plan to commit myself to a great deal more reading to drive my personal development. My aim is to write a review of each book as I finish them – the first of which is ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ by Robert Kiyosaki.

 

Goals for 2014

I have taken a couple of leftover goals from last year to complete and added a few more to the collection for 2014.

1. Spend some time abroad  July 2014

We love to travel and want to go interailing sometime this year. We are looking to plan our trip this month so that we have plenty of time to budget for it!

2. Open a higher interest savings account  – 2nd January 2014

This has taken a little longer than expected as I have been shopping around for the best place to put my emergency fund. I have decided to allocate funds to an instant access cash ISA from Virgin Money. The advantage here is that I can benefit from a tax free interest rate of 1.75% and can withdraw my money at any time.

3. Save an Emergency Fund of £1950 – 28th April 2014

The first stage in building my wealth now that I have a positive net worth will be to create an emergency fund in case of any more car trouble or moving costs etc. The emergency fund will give me a three month buffer of £650 in the case I stop working. To create the emergency fund I will be depositing £487.50 into the cash ISA for four months. I will pay into my savings as soon as my paycheck comes in.

4. Increase my Salary by another £4,000 – December 2014

In the past 6 months I have managed to increase my salary by £4k, my goal for 2014 is to increase my salary by another £4000 as well as continuing some side hustles to add to my income.

5. Invest in a Stocks and Shares ISA Begin Trading Shares

My investment goals are currently quite flexible as I am constantly researching various avenues where I can invest my money. Inspired by the Naked Trader’s approach to trading I am interested in exploring this avenue of investment to see where it can take me. I have received Robbie’s book for Christmas which I am intending to read in February.

Goals for January 2014

Open a higher interest savings account – I wanted to tackle one of my broader goals for 2014 nice and early so as I write this post I have just applied for an Easy Access Cash ISA. This should hopefully be ready to use within a week so that I can complete this goal.

Build over £200 in side hustle income – Through coaching, business consultancy, online sales and overtime I want to generate over £200 in side hustle income.

Read and Review ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ – I am currently reading Robert Kiyosaki’s book about the psychology of the rich, I will write a short book review of this on here when I have finished.

Deposit £487.50 into my Cash ISA – This is the first deposit in securing my emergency fund.

Thanks for stopping by BB, all the best for 2014! If you fancy a financial challenge, check out Savvy Scot’s new year financial boot camp for plenty of tips to save money this year!

What are your goals and resolutions for 2014? Any big steps you are taking to control your finances?

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I’m counting the days down and I have 16 days until I am debt free! So I thought I’d share some of my exciting plans and goals for when I’m free from the chains. I want to start building on my net worth and have some ideas about the foundations that I want to put in place for this…

  • Switch to a New Current Account
  • Switch to a New Savings Account
  • Save an Emergency Fund of £1950
  • Invest in a Stock & Shares ISA

Switch to a New Current Account

My present current account offers no benefits other than an interest free overdraft; but once I’m debt free I’ll have no interest in an overdraft anymore! Fi has recently switched to a Halifax account that gives you an instant £100  plus an extra £5 per month. This is an obvious improvement than my current set up so as soon as I am debt free I will make the switch. This will be my first step to make my money start working for me!

Target completion date: 14th December 2013

Switch to a New Savings Account

The savings account I am currently using is only supplying a measly 0.01% interest, I am yet to choose a new savings account but I am looking for an account that offers a minimum of 1.3% interest. After my current account switch is complete I will find an account to be switched over for a greater return on savings.

Target completion date: 1st January 2014

Save an Emergency Fund of £1950

One of our goals is to save a 3 month emergency fund in case of emergencies; this works out as £1950 each. I estimate that given my current expenditure, I could live on £650 per month if I had to leave work tomorrow. As much as I hate to say it, my car has been making some creepy sounds recently which I imagine could mean an expensive gear box repair. Situations like these would be much easier with an emergency fund as a buffer. I will be saving a third of my income plus anything that I make on the side; I have recently been making some extra money through Fiverr gigs, coaching and Amazon sales which should hopefully continue!

Target completion date: 28th April 2014

Invest in a Stocks & Shares ISA

The past few months I’ve been eager to delve into the world of investing, having the weight of debt has held me back from diving in; has allowed me to be conservative and do my research. I’m aiming to keep my eye on the markets and continue to do some research; as well as I am currently reading Tony Robbins: Awaken the giant which provides some great advice for forming success strategies and making the most of your money and investments.

Target Completion Date: 28th April 2014

What are your goals for the next few months?

Update: July 2015

Hi all! Thought I would check back in on this post to review my performance against these plans. All but the stocks and shares ISA objective were completed on time. I actually decided to power fund a mortgage deposit after this so wanted quicker access to the funds and just went for an easy access ISA. To see how you can get out of debt too, check out the guide I put together here.

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…the Beetle crashing into me at 40mph or swallowing a dose of pride and borrowing money.

Fi and I had just returned from a luxurious (but rather expensive) holiday in Tenerife, all was well and I was eager to begin the first day of my career in digital marketing. However, little did I know that before my first paycheck, I’d be standing in the rain next to a smoking, crumpled Clio – how to lose £1000 in five seconds.

Since then we’ve realised that if we want to finance our many travelling plans and purchase our first home we need to buck up our ideas and create a plan to stack up our savings!

First thoughts: Our Goals and Dreams:

In the short term our goals are about becoming financially secure and assuming a comfortable position to take on some risk. We also love to travel and look to go on some sort of adventure each year.

Short Term Goals – by June 2014 (8months) we would like:

  • To be Debt Free – Current debt stands at £3400 
  • An emergency fund – £3900 (3 months living costs each)
  • We are looking to go interrailing across Europe for two weeks next Summer – Estimated cost of £1500

So in total we have 8 months to save £5400 (£450per month) and eliminate £3400 worth of debt.

Longer Term Dreams – we would like…

  • …to own our own house!
  • …to create multiple streams of revenue and eventually become financially independent
  • …to travel the world and spend some time living in another country
  • …a range rover (and a puppy)!

These are just are initial ideas, but first let’s get debt free! Time to get this plan in motion…

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