Budget January 2016 ~ Stock market craziness and home renovations

21 thoughts on “Budget January 2016 ~ Stock market craziness and home renovations”

  1. Just an idea. I believe without too much effort or time taken from joyous living, you guys can develop some kind of additional income stream, which us along the lines of your interests. This won’t be “work” but will bring in another easy $5000-$10,000 a month… Perhaps even in cash. I did this, and by accident, effortlessly, created income streams which will go on like an annuity for me Best E

    Ps, love this blog

    1. Thanks E – yup, I wouldn’t be surprised if this happens in the future. The more time that we spend on the road, the more we’ll be able to determine exactly how much we’ll be willing to take on as we go. It’ll be a fun process to go through, no doubt!

      1. Btw took your advice, read and bought audio. “Stop Acting Rich, Start Living Like a Real Millionaire”… Wow! So many really good people who could be peacefully happy and living great lives, are not. Because of their addictions to consumerism and low self worth, they’re not. That guy leasing the $900 a month BMW that he can’t really afford. Yes he can pay for… But that’s not affording something. I used to be him. I used to criticize him. Now I just feel sad for him. He’s in a rat race and on a treadmill… And he could be happy…. And eventually actually rich. Paradoxical.

        1. It’s true, so many of us have an opportunity to live much more satisfying lives outside of the demands of “stuff”. Before we decided to pursue the FIRE path, I wanted a BMW 750, bad. That was my “dream car” when I was able to…afford it.

          Needless to say, that isn’t my dream car any longer. In fact, I no longer even have a dream car, and it’s great!

          1. Lol …You’re awesome. I drove the “dream” cars once…. And I was very “important”… Lol. If you want to be in love with a gold digger girlfriend, who isn’t really in love with you, it’s a great way to get that. Now I sleep peacefully when I dream at night. Btw… I love my 2010 Corolla. Btw when I bought the Corolla, she left me and said “I’m sorry baby. But I just can’t ride in that car with you”… Lol. True story… Peace!!!!

          2. Woooooooow. Looks like that car was the best thing that ever could have happened to you. You got a cheap car and got RID of a cheap girlfriend! 🙂

    1. Yup, I hear ya! Most of the changes are fairly small (like switching out brass door fixtures with brushed nickel). I have a couple pics in my article about moving up our move-out date. Switched out a couple of the bathroom fixtures and a new vanity. 🙂

    1. Hey Fervent – mainly just the doors and bathrooms. We also need to sand down the backyard iron fence cause it’s getting a bit rusty. New light fixtures here and there as well. It’s pretty simple stuff, but it takes some time.

      We have an Airstream picked out at nearby dealership. In about a month, we should have that bought, which will be a giant step towards our next lifestyle. 🙂

      1. You guys are killing it from a net worth perspective. You are definitely in the top 1% or PAW’s as the Millionaire Next Door book would describe. Great job!

        Now onto that Airstream trailer: Is the plan still to buy used and do some work on your own to fix-up? We have a trip to Lake Pleasant in early March and would be great to have you there for a “shake down” trip.

        1. Thanks Bryan! Although the stock market took $26k away from us in January, we’re still hanging in there.

          The plan is definitely still to buy used, but not a fixer-upper. The plan is to move into the Airstream about a month after we make the purchase (which will be in early March), so we won’t have a lot of time to fix it up.

          We probably won’t be in the position to take the trailer out in early March, unfortunately. We plan to move in some time in early April at a camp site down here somewhere, but after that point, we should be more free to travel a bit, especially on the weekends because we won’t yet be retired. Selling our current home will be something that we’ll need to juggle during all this as well.

          Should be fun! 🙂

  2. January was a tough month for the market, but it also presents us with some buying opportunities, either for new investments or rebalancing. Months like this are exactly why we have a written plan for investing…..to help us stay the course when the human temptation is to run for the hills!


    1. That is exactly right, John. We have good months and bad, and everything can’t just be rosy and bright. But with determination, we can definitely ride out these periods of negative growth fairly easily, and if we buy during them, we are setting ourselves up for greater profit potential in the future. All good things!

    2. Footnote friends: The “market” is overvalued by 40-50%. The climate is similar to 1929 and 2008 and other times too. Companies are “trading” in some cases at 30x or more of what they’re actually worth. In healthy times companies trade at no more than 15%. Frugality is sexy! It’s also sanity 101. Hyper consumerism will not hold up a casino mentality (sadly what Wall Street has become). Smart people are living within their means and below their means.

  3. Understandable, but it’s always amazing to me that we always renovate and repair our homes before we sell them rather than while we’re living in them.

    I keep a home project list and aim to knock off one thing a year so that I get to enjoy the improvements while I’m still there. Most recently – double paned windows. Next on the list – replacing the front door / frame.

    1. It is interesting…and it always seems to happen. We tend to live with things while we’re in the house, but when it comes to getting maximum value, THEN we decide to upgrade some things. Good on you for not waiting before you sell your home!

  4. Really enjoyed coming across your site today. Curious though…and I do mean this in all sincerity…with a net worth of $692,000 (and THANK YOU for the transparency), and plans to retire this year…is it really possible to retire and live on only that? Maybe it’s somewhere in your blog, I’ll still be looking. But insight would be so appreciated!

    1. Hi PK – I completely understand your concern. When we retire, we will have north of $800,000 of net worth, so we will have more to work with. But, combined with our very low living expenses and our ability and willingness to be flexible and earn some dough here and there, we think that $800k or so will be a fine number for us. I’ll be sure to update everyone on the blog about how successful we are at keeping our net worth growing rather than shrinking! 🙂

  5. Oh my GOSH!!! I found out about your blog from my friend Bobby who runs Millennial Money Man (we went to high school together and both played in Drum Corps) and am so freaking excited to be reading about this. I feel like I need to give you and your wife a pretty intense virtual high-five.

    My husband and I are both in the same boat that you were in. We are rolling in the high-income-no-kids life, but luckily realized these careers aren’t fulfilling us in the long-term at all prior to running out and spending tons of money. I watched my parents go through a financial collapse from over-spending and “keeping up with the Jones’s”, and promised myself I’d never let that happen to me. I’m 26, my husband is 31. We make >$150k/year and live an apartment with two paid-off cars and student loan debt. We are budgeting like crazy.

    What is amazing to me is that we have been planning to move into an Airstream too, but couldn’t find anyone in this neck of the woods doing the same thing. Everyone here thinks we’re crazy. “Why aren’t you buying a house– having kids– blah blah blah”. “You deserve to treat yourself…”.

    The fact that you and your wife are doing this is such a breath of fresh air. We also have two rescue dogs, we are VEGAN, and we love to cook, hike, and camp. This seemed like the perfect option for us, but pulling the trigger has been a bit scary to even think of.

    Nevertheless, planning on having a custom vintage Airstream built starting next spring. We are saving the cash now. Any advice for loans for full-time RV livers? Or did y’all pay cash right away?

    Would LOVE to meet you both if you are ever in Texas. <3


    Paige Bombardier

    1. Wow! Super cool, Paige. I’m glad that we stumbled upon each other through Bobby’s blog. Sadly, I’m not surprised that so many people are encouraging you to…*ahem*, choose a more “standard” lifestyle of kids and homes, but good on you for staying true to your dreams. A custom vintage Airstream sounds absolutely awesome, too. Those suckers shine like nothing else out there…including NEWER Airstreams like ours (we have a 2005).

      We paid cash for ours, so unfortunately I can’t give you any tips or pointers regarding a loan. We had just sold BOTH of our homes and finally shed the mortgage payment (hopefully forever), so the last thing that we wanted to do was get ourselves right back into that situation with this.

      And yes, we’d love to meet up if we are ever in Texas! I know that we will be at some point, just not sure when yet. I’m sure we will find ourselves in the area eventually, especially during winter! 🙂

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