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Monthly Financial Snapshot: December 2016

You can also track my all-time progress on the aptly-named Current Progress page.

Pretty good overall for the month, considering the accelerated spending I did on travel. I bought about $950 worth of hotels.com gift cards, some at a 15% discount, and some to earn 10x Chase points during the Chase Pay Best Buy promotion. I value the 8,000 points I earned from that at about $136, so not a bad return on investment there.


CategoryDec-17CommentsRent$768.75$750 for rent + $18.75 Plastiq feesInternet$55.92Internet is kind of expensive.Cell Phone$0.00Already paid for 1 year of service through MintSIM. = $15.51 / month!Natural Gas$19.71Below average. Not entirely sure why...Electricity$24.48About average for the month.Water$36.09Below average. Not entirely sure why...Groceries$129.59Below average. Spent the second half of the month visiting family, so not as much grocery spending.Car Insurance$0.00I pay every 6 months in April and October. Payment went up slightly compared to last time.Gasoline…

Monthly Financial Snapshot: November 2017

You can also track my all-time progress on the aptly-named Current Progress page.

Not a whole lot happened this month. I had a work trip that was previously postponed due to a hurricane in September. Fortunately, some friends were visiting from out of town and it aligned nicely with my work travel plans, so I was able to meet them for dinner without going too far out of my way. Chase is also running some promotions with Walmart and Best Buy, which I will be using to get 10x rewards for gift card credit. Walmart will own my grocery shopping for the next couple of months, but at least it probably isn't that much worse than Aldi.
I also was able to attend a meetup in Chicago focused mostly on travel rewards, where I learned a few new tricks. Hopefully I'll get to apply them over the coming years in my future travels.
Other than that, it was a pretty ordinary month.

CategoryNov-17CommentsRent$768.75$750 for rent + $18.75 Plastiq feesInternet$55.92Internet is kind of expensive.Cell …

Monthly Financial Snapshot: October 2017

You can also track my all-time progress on the aptly-named Current Progress page.

Another month gone! Maybe it's just the season, but time really seems to be flying by lately. Been very busy at work so the days and weeks have started to blur together. Nothing super exciting to report out for this month, other than the stock markets continuing their great performance for the year. It's weird having months where capital appreciation is actually more than how much I spent during that month. I guess that will be the norm once I am fully FI and the market isn't crashing. I sometimes find myself wondering how much longer the markets can keep it up until the inevitable downturn for which we are "overdue," historically speaking. Nobody can predict it with precision, but it is almost certain that it will happen eventually. Or maybe not. Who knows? Nothing to do except to keep on investing!

Oh, yeah. I got a small raise at work this month! Higher salary goes into effect ne…

Monthly Financial Snapshot: September 2017

You can also track my all-time progress on the aptly-named Current Progress page.

Had some extra spending this month on travel due to my sister visiting me for a weekend, as well as purchasing plane tickets and airport parking for my annual trip to visit family. I paid cash for 2 of the 3 flights because I found a good deal on one of them and the second one wasn't really expensive enough to justify using points, as well as the lack of seat availability since it was the holiday season. I did redeem points for the 3rd flight because Southwest had a sale and thus had redemptions available for a good price. Besides this, my expenses for this month were fairly ordinary.

My newest credit card reward scheme which I put into action this month was inspired by this post over at the Wealthy Accountant. This month, I made an estimated federal tax payment for 2017 of $3,000 over at Pay1040. This allowed me to meet the first tier of minimum spending on my BA card (earned me 50,000 British Airwa…