Before I get into the 2018 goals, I want to go over my 2017 financial goals and see how I did.
Obtain a savings rate of 65% or better
Achieved = No ❌
I usually do EOFY write-ups that go into details how much we spent and what we spent it on. But just quickly crunching the numbers to give an EOCY savings rate came out as follows:
Total expenses for 2017 (give a day or two): $47,371
Total money made (post-tax): $130,716
Savings rate for 2017 = 64% 😫😫😫
We missed our goal by 1%! 😭😭😡😡
Ahh well. We are still fine tuning as much as possible and finding new ways to save money.
There’s always next year right?
Reach $100K in ETFs
Achieved = Yes ✅
We finished 2017 with over $125K in ETFs with plans to keep adding to that pile in 2018!
Release a Podcast Monthly
Achieved = No ❌
2017 has been the biggest year yet for the podcast. I missed three months (May, June, and November) where I didn’t release a podcast/audio post. 9/12 ain’t so bad. I’ll try to get one out each month in 2018 👊
Achieved = No ❌
Really angry with myself for this one. I redesigned the homepage at the start of the year but I kept on putting it off because it wasn’t ‘perfect’. There are a few days left in 2017 whilst writing this. So I may publish it, but I most likely will have to do it next month. I wanted to make the homepage more user-friendly with a logic flow of what articles to read and a bit more direction.
Write More About Super
Achieved = No ❌
Wow, I’m doing terrible with these goals so far lol. Super was something requested a lot. I’m actually looking for some Super experts out there to come onto the podcast. So if you know of anyone please shoot me a message or leave a comment below.
The big financial goals are similar to last year
- Obtain a savings rate of 65% or better
- Reach $200K in ETFs
- Get to $550K+ in net worth
- Make monthly checks to the above goals as part of my monthly net worth posts
As far as website goals:
- Redesign homepage and whole site
- Find a Super expert to interview on the podcast
- Update the Australian FIRE Calculator
- Get to 500 Facebook likes
That should keep me pretty busy this year.
What about you? How did you go with your financial goals in 2017? And what goals are you setting for the next 12 months?
64% savings rate is still amazing!! even if you did miss your goal by 1%. Well done on hitting your ETF goal as well.
I look forward to reading along for 2018.
Yeah I’m pretty happy with 64% tbh. So close to 65% though haha.
I have a great super expert for you, she works with Jeremy Cooper, who undertook the major review of the system in 2010. I also know a fair bit too, having worked with the industry for a decade or more.
Sounds great. Flick me a message with some contact info please 🙂
Trish power from superguide.com.au is the master. Not sure if she talks anymore though. Congrats on the 64%. We are somewhere in the mid forties going for high fifties this year.
Cool I’ll see if she’s still up for it.
Yeah, some more stuff on Super would be… awesome. I have trouble getting my head around it all, no matter how much I read. Probably because lots of what I read is opinion and speculation about what will happen in the future. I’m about 20 years away from being able to access it, so not sure whether to just ignore it for 15 years or stay vigilant in the meantime.
Another interesting topic is borrowing to invest. I think NAB or someone has introduced an easy way of getting people into the market with big loans, with the benefit being the interest you pay is tax deductible. It does my head in trying to work out whether it’s better to borrow and pay interest (but have larger amount working now), or save and invest only what you can earn.
Thanks for keeping things interesting this year, I’ve enjoyed all your stuff. My goals this year are to get back on track with my FI date as there was a set back of sorts due to unplanned pregnancy (and maternity leave). Surprisingly it didn’t set us back too much, and our net worth kept going up… probably due to gains in super.
My better half went back to work today, so we’ve set a goal for us each to save $1 on 1 January and increase it by a dollar a day till the target is to put $365 into savings on 31 December. I made it as far as 17 September last year, hopefully we can stretch that this year!
Super expert is coming!
Borrowing to invest is an interesting one. If you’re making gainz, borrowing to invest is excellent (as long as the interest rate is acceptable).
But if you make a loss… it’s also amplified. It’s a personal decision and your personal confidence that your investment will perform well.
If it’s too confusing I’d say to not borrow to invest. If you make a mistake and have borrowed large amounts of money…it can be a disaster.
Worst that can happen if you stuff up with your own money is you lose it.
Congrats on the baby :).
Nice challenge to keep things interesting.
Thanks AF! The reason I asked about borrowing to invest is because for years I’ve been subscribed to Noel Whittaker’s newsletter and in his last one he talked about it like it was the duck’s nuts. He didn’t mention the downside and didn’t elaborate on his reasons for spruiking it when I emailed him. Probably good advice to steer clear… no appetite for risk at the moment with a couple of kids to support!
It works wonders in a bull market. But can you survive financially and most importantly, mentally, in a bear market?
With children to support…I’d be steering clear.
Just gave you a like! One step closer 😁
Thank you 😁
Also gave you a like mate 🙂
Only came across Aussie Firebug in December and have already smashed through all the podcast, love ’em! Looking forward to what you bring in 2018.
I agree with Chris above that an episode on margin lending would make an interesting topic.
Keep it up man.
Glad you’re enjoying the podcasts mate. Plenty more coming up!
64% wow you were so close. If only you didn’t have that last beer or that one meal out… regardless 64% is really an amazing amount to be saving so well done to you.
You will really smash this years goals, you are killing it. Well done!
But that beer tasted so good haha.
Nah it’s all good. Just gives us motivation for this year coming up!
Beer always tasted good!
Having just got into FIRE blogs, I am really appreciative of you are sharing with everyone. I just installed pocketbook app, it’s the best! Thankyou.
Pocketbook is fantastic. The app is great but I mainly use the website on a desktop, to be honest.
AFB, you knew someone had to say it – “perfect is the enemy of done”! Just get it up, then tweak the remains. Congratulations on a massive year, really enjoying the podcast and seeing your wealth grow.
I KNOWWW! Angry with myself on that one. I kept saying that too.
“Just get it up mate! Fix it after you get it on. It’s never going to be perfect..”
I’m setting a deadline for this month! Watch this space!
Great FI blog. It’s nice to have one focused on Australia for once.
With the redesign. Do you think you could add some navigation links for the blog. A next article button would be great. I’m having to hit back all the time which is frustrating
Those buttons went missing with the update.
I’ll add them in this week.
In the mean time, have you had a look at this https://www.aussiefirebug.com/all-posts/
It may help you out.
Love the blog – great communication style too, very simple and clear for what is a complex subject. Quick question – is the “money made” part of your 2017 savings calculation your post-tax income (which I assume includes super), or that + the growth in your investments?
Actually, it’s only what we receive from our jobs. No Super or investment income has been included in that figure.
Come to think about it. We probably should include investment income. Not sure about Super.
This is truly amazing, a 60% saving rate with a growth in mental and physical health. Keep this repeating every month and every year. Congratulations for your progress rate and wishing you a great future ahead.
64% saving rate seems great to me. We have the saving rate at around 55% and the rest is on expenses of which bills account for 20%, everyday living expenses like food and petrol account for 20% and fun stuff like holidays, eating out (hardly ever), movies etc 6%. We want to get our savings rate to 65% too but can’t see a way to do this within what we already allocate to other areas. I shop around for cheaper suppliers to keep bills down as much as possible and I try and shop smart at Aldi etc. just wondering where you have cut costs to increase your savings?
Check out this article for the breakdown of our spendings https://www.aussiefirebug.com/savings-review-1617/
Thank you for the link, it was great to compare and I see that we actually spend similar amounts to you on the fun stuff although going out for dinner is a rarity and most of our friends are married so we don’t have to fork out for going to weddings anymore! Instead we now spend the same sort of money on school fees for the kids and sports, kids parties etc. The main area of difference I noticed was the grocery bill. This is an area we need to cut down on. We spend just under triple what you spend on groceries just looking at the $7,451 amount – that was a shock to see! I have worked out if we look at spending $10 a day for my husband and I on food and $5 a day on the 3 kids on food we will save $8,500 a year on groceries alone. I think this is achievable as we throw away a lot of food and could shop a lot smarter! This will move us closer to 60% savings (which is an improvement) with a few other cuts here and there. Thanks again for the link.
Setting goals is so important, even if you do fall a little short.
My goal for 2018 is to invest sensibly outside of super. I have a good super balance and this has been very tax effective for me.
I have a question regarding lump sum investing vs dollar cost averaging (investing in etfs). I am lucky enough to have a large lump sum to invest, but I feel the sharemarket is very high at the moment & is due for a down turn. Even though reading informed me that lump sum investing is often the better option financially, I feel a little afraid of a large loss due to a sharemarket tumble in the next year. But then I suppose that the sharemarket could also tumble after the entire lump sum is invested in say two years time (and dollar cost averaging was used). Opinions anyone?
As the old saying goes
“The best time to invest was YESTERDAY.
The next best time is TODAY.”
Trying to time the market is extremely hard to do. I’d rather just ride the ups and downs and invest consistently over time.