My credit card spend is much higher lately because of holiday travel, dining, and gift expenses as well as medical costs from physical, dental, travel, lab, and eye appointments. I got health checkups, flew to Korea, and spent $1K over 9 days in November. I flew to my parent’s house in December and gifted my mom a Fitbit. I expect it to be high again for January or February since I’ll pay for 6 months of car insurance and I’m contemplating spending time with friends for MLK day and/or President’s day. It will go back to normal around March. I also need to add the payment information for my new credit cards into my online accounts like Amazon, Uber, Comcast, etc. Right now they just have my old credit card information so I end up making purchases on it when I really should be using my new credit cards which give better rewards.
What I really need is more cash to both pay off the credit cards and for cash flow. I pay all the rent and bills for my 3 bedroom apartment and my roommates pay me back. But that means I am cash strapped for 7 days at the end of the month because I pay rent three days early, my roommates pay me on time, and it takes 3 days for my roommates’ Venmo’d funds to get to my bank account. I have recurring transfers automatically moving money from checking to savings to brokerage and I cancelled the next few occurrences so funds should slowly pool in my checking account.
I’ve always tried to automate my retirement savings and personal savings by setting up paycheck deductions, DRIPs, etc. I recently realized my 401K has an automatic rebalancing feature. But there’s still a lot that happens manually. Here are the manual money tasks I do monthly, ususally when I make a Networthshare entry:
1.) Schedule paying $3K rent to my landlady at the end of the month.
2.) Cancel the auto-transfer to savings or make purchases using transferred cash in my brokerage acct as needed.
3.) Review my credit card purchases from the previous month and dispute transactions as needed. Nowadays I also make note of whether I would have gotten better rewards had I paid using a different card so I can improve in the future.
4.) Put bills from the previous month on my roommate Splitwise group. My roommates Venmo me $2K for their share of rent so I pay back my friends from my Venmo balance and transfer the rest to my bank account.
5.) Schedule paying off the cash rewards credit card, the bank mailed me a form to set up auto-pay but I haven’t filled it out yet.
6.) I sell ESPP stock once a quarter. Starting 2018 I’ll sell RSU stock quarterly as well.
Out of curiosity, I went on Creditkarma while making this entry. My credit score is ~790. I also logged into Personal Capital and saw my asset allocation, this was an impetus to sell ESPP stock and rebalance a little. One year ago my asset allocation was 100% US stocks. Now I bought some IXUS, with the goal of getting to a 70-30 US-international allocation. I’m currently around a 90-10 allocation.
I exercised 14 times in the first three weeks of December, whereas on average I exercise thrice a week. I caught up on workouts I’d missed over Thanksgiving and kept doing extra workouts knowing I’d inevitably miss them over the holidays. I hosted a friend over Christmas weekend and was at my parent’s place from Christmas to New Years Eve.
I had a long distance relationship for all of December. It was actually really refreshing because we often get distracted by minutiae like “Wow! You look stunning!” or “Can we turn the fan down?” when we spend time in person. Our phone conversations were on much longer term topics like “How do you plan to take care of aging parents in 10 years?”. My boyfriend got back to California after I left for my parent’s house. I came back at night on Dec. 31 and he met me at the airport. We celebrated New Years in the back of an Uber riding back from the airport. Today he told me he still hasn’t met his hair goals. I exclaimed, “OMG I have a boyfriend who has hair goals!” and he called me out as being sexist. ;-D
Monthly Networthshare Entry: https://www.networthshare.com/user/labangel/2017/12