2017 Wrap-up

There are a million things that happened this year and I was so busy I had no time to write about it. The number #1 most coolest thing?

I made more money than I have ever before. For the past 8 orso years I have sat down at the end of the year and made a plan for my budget, set up major goals and estimated my income. For 2017 I expected my net income to be $24,352.44 for the year, which breaks down to $2,029.37/month (26 pays divided by 12). I always aim for the conservative side. :). While I haven’t yet tallied the totals of all my various jobs and income streams, I’m expecting to land somewhere around $60,000 gross for 2017!

I also intended to;

Save $5,377.68 in my RSPs

Save $1881.28 to my house savings

Save $7,209.16 for a vehicle. 

I had anticipated earning an extra $2,000 with my summer employment in 2017. In total I had planned to save $14,468.12…. I pretty much blew all that out of the water!

Since I scored a sweet full-time term job I was able to add quite a bit to my savings.

I usually keep track of my main savings goals in the side bar over there —->>>> and this year my savings finally made some big jumps, I used to update those bars at every dollar of progress but not so much anymore, 😀 too much work! At year end things looked like this;

2017 RSP contributions
Goal: $12,377.68
Total contributed for 2017: $16,808.33!
Total in %: 168%

2017 Extra income
Goal: $4,000
Actual: $23,000+ (net)
Total in %: 575%

2017 vehicle savings
Goal: $12,000
Total for 2017: $1,454.00
Total in %: 9.1%

2017 House saving
Goal: $1,881.28
Total for 2017: $5,000 (approximately)
Total in %: 265%

After adding in the investments I started in Lending Loop, in total I saved and invested approximately $26,262 during 2017. That’s a nice chunk more than the $14,468.12 I had budgeted for. 🙂

You’ll notice I totally abandoned saving for a vehicle, there really isn’t a specific reason for that, the money that should have been directed to that probably landed in the savings categories where I overshot my goals as I anticipate getting another year out of my car. I’ll be revisiting that in my plan for 2018 though.

The number #2 coolest thing? As a result of all dem savings;

I hit a $100,000 net worth! I’ve been working towards this for SO SO SO SO long. Since I sold my house in the fall of 2016, with no more debt holding me down and much lower housing costs I was really able to focus all my efforts on contributing to my RSP’s, TFSA, Savings and investments, and crossed the first 100k! I’m so blessed to be so rich, because man, that is rich compared to much of the world.

My YNAB file recently got corrupted and I lost a few years of data, I do make regular backups but honestly… even with monthly backups restoring a budget file with hundreds of transactions missing and accounts that constantly change (heyyyy travel-hacking) I was too lazy to go through that process. I don’t import my account data from banks, I manually input every transaction I make and keep my budget file completely offline. (I have not adopted the new subscription version of YNAB, I had subscription anything and will use YNAB 4 until I die… or until it really stops functioning) I like it this way, anyway, it does mean that since I hadn’t really kept an eye on or blogged about my networth goals that I don’t really have an accurate picture of how my networth increased over 2017. I do know that my GOAL for the start of 2016 was to have a networth of 72,000 but that I abandoned that goal.

As of today my net worth is at $111,018.64. I found a post back in April, 2014 where I logged my networth at $55,000 so in 3 years and 9 months I’ve doubled that, and sold my house converting its value.

I’m still ruminating on exactly what I’ll plan for in 2018, stay tuned. 🙂

What was your biggest accomplishment in 2017?



Some thoughts today:

Very recently I was unexpectedly offered employment with the Government of Canada. I was in the boonies, middle of nowhere – Costa Rica at the time and had a rickety phone connection that got cut off by a power failure. It took about an hour of frantic waiting to accept the job, and here we are, 3 months into a full-time term job of 6 months.

I love/hate it. I hate being an employee but I love the department I am in and what they stand for. There are many coworkers that I love, and some that I don’t, training has been frustrating as I’m sure is the case in many places; there simply wasn’t enough or much of it.  Many things have been a struggle, and it has also been an amazing opportunity.  I had been looking for “real” work for a very long time, years! I’ve also been selfemployed for many years. Was I not just blogging about the perils of finding actual employment? Did that not last for years, and now I’m 3 months into this cool opportunity? Haha. The grass is always greener on the other side right? I thought that finding work would offer me stability and more income and it has. Having to report to someone else instead of making your own way and schedule… its been a big adjustment.

What this job has also given me is a very nice boost in income that has helped me speed up my savings big time. Where before I’ve only been able to eke out a few hundred here and there to set aside every month, I’m making big steps now. Once upon a time I said I wanted to be a millionaire. I don’t want that anymore, in fact, more and more my focus is drifting to lean FIRE. (linkitylink) I have no visions of sitting on a beach sipping beer, but I want to work on things I enjoy and take on projects because I can because worrying about paying this month bill is no longer a worry. Volunteering and helping out with other people and community projects because I have actual time to do so.

I’m focusing on building my investments, my RSP and TFSA and in the next two months I will restart my Questrade portfolio

I am likely a few years away of any time of “retirement” and that absolutely does not include any real property as I currently rent. Aside from just saving like a squirrel, I have no concrete plans, I also don’t think of it as retirement… more so as a very lean version of financial independence.

If I quit today… What would I do?


Update, kicking bad habits: Tim Horton’s

About a month ago I wrote that I was re-evaluating another habit of mine: my frequent Tim Horton’s stops. While I’ve mostly cut coffee out of my lifeover the past years, initially for cost, then for health reaons, I seemed to have replaced it with a picking up tea habit. Out of… laziness? I usually only get the tea but once a week orso I ended up adding a breakfast sandwich, sometimes a muffin. And yeah they’re good but holy crap I can eat so much more at home for the same nutritional value than one of those calorie bombs.

Good timing for this challenge too, since apparently donuts got more expensive this month. 😉

source below

source below

I could say convenience but I can buy the exact same tea at work that tastes just as fine, or make some at home. Both save me the slight detour in gas as well as time to go to the drive-through Tim Horton’s, are significantly cheaper and by not going toTim Horton’s it means I’m less likely to order the occasional breakfast sandwich or timbits, which aren’t all that great for my waistline. So Tim’s isn’t even convenient, I don’t go with friends, I’m always on my own through the drive-through and it’s more expensive. Why do I do it? It makes no sense. So I quit for 30 days.

I made it! It wasn’t very hard at at all and I only failed once. On a Tuesday I had to leave in a rush and picked up a Tim’s panini, tea and muffin, since I had to go straight to work afterwards I didn’t have time to stop at home and make anything. It was poor planning and procrastination early in the day actually that ended up in a Tim’s run. I COULD have packed a sandwich earlier or grabbed a granola bar and an apple, but I didn’t.

I didn’t care for the sandwich either, it was just food to keep my body going, and more than twice as costly than making something at home that I really like, that would’ve been better for my waistline anyway with a lot less salt. (Another goal this year: health)

I finished the challenge on April 15th and have been to Tim’s twice since then. In April I’ve now spent $75.17 on eating out, half of which was at the farmer’s market and getting some PEI burger love, the rest was convenience food I could’ve had better versions of at home. And that’s what this is about, to create memories and experiences instead of waste money on things, to put more good stuff into my body and less bad stuff, to be healthier and to become a better version of me, year after year. So that is that. No more Tim’s.

It’s not all that hard, there are tons of people that can’t even afford to buy a coffee….

Which leads me to the next question I’ve been pondering this weekend, what does real hunger feel like?