Today's Focus

Current Goal: Automate Savings and Mortgage Paydown

1) Extra $1,100/mo. to mortgage
2) $1,000/mo. to short-term savings
3) $400/mo. to investing

Previous Goal: Eliminate Mortgage on Rental Property
Interest Rate is 5.125%!

January 1, 2019: $59,592
August 11, 2020: PAID!


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Saturday, October 17

Cutting More Expenses, New Diet, Update on Goals

 Much has been going on in the Frugal Miser's life.  

Diet

I've struggled with my weight my entire adult life.  I've successfully lost weight a couple of times and then gained it back.  But it's been 15 years since I lost any meaningful amount of weight.  I started on the keto diet on Wednesday, October 7th.  So far it has been very educational.  I had no idea how many carbs are in the foods I love.  The first few days was an adjustment period - learning what I can eat, trying to make the food I already have work (much of it did not), and getting used to eating more meat and fat than I have ever eaten. Now that the weather is starting to cool off I will start adding in exercise.  I plan to post progress updates regularly.

Reducing Expenses

A keto diet will probably cost more, but because it is really hard to follow this diet and eat at restaurants I am hoping to save money by rarely eating restaurant food.

I cancelled the satellite radio subscription.  I will receive a refund for the payment I made in September and the company offered me three months for a flat $2, so I don't even have to give it up.  I just have to remember to cancel in 3 months.

I also cancelled the Sling subscription ($56/mo).  My HOA approved a new package with our Internet provider that includes cable (I voted against it, but it was approved anyway).  I should be able to use the Spectrum app on the TVs at the Airbnb so that our guests continue having a cable TV option.  The HOA dues increased by only $20/month which means a net savings of $36/month.  Bonus:  after I cancelled, I found out I still have access to Sling Free.  The same app we had been using will provide free access to thousands of shows and movies.

I am looking at what else can go.  Just like recurring income can be your best friend, recurring expenses can be your worst enemy.  We lull ourselves into complacency when bills are just automatically paid as they come due.  
  • I have a few recurring charges for entertainment:  $9.76 for Netflix, $48 for 2 AMC A-List memberships, and $119/year for Amazon Prime.  With the state of the exhibition industry and few new releases, it's possible we will cancel our A-List subscription.
  • My alternative health insurance, Liberty Healthshare, just enacted a massive price increase.  I am now paying $479/mo for a plan I've never once used.  I will take another look at the ACA plans for 2021 to see if I qualify for something more affordable.
  • It's time to revisit landlord insurance.  I would love to just cancel and "self-insure", but the management companies require I have insurance.  I plan to shop my business to find cost savings.

Goals

I set 3 financial goals:  $400/month deposited to my investment account, $1000/month to short-term savings and $1000/month to my home mortgage.  It's been two months since setting that goal and I am meeting it so far!  To force accountability, I automated two of the three goals to that the transfers happen automatically.  I plan to automate the last transfer once my checking account balance has stabilized.

2 comments:

  1. Keep us updated on how the keto diet goes. I've thought about trying it, but I doubt I'd be able to stick to it.
    It seems like Hollywood isn't going to release any major movies for a while so you wouldn't miss much if you paused or canceled the AMC membership. I canceled my Regal unlimited subscription and then a few days later they closed their theaters which confirmed that I made the correct decision.

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    1. I'll keep you posted. I really like bread, rice and noodles. The first couple of days I craved those things. Now, not at all. Hopefully I can sustain it. I agree with you about the theaters. I got excited because the theater right by my house was just bought by AMC and it's a really nice theater. However, we've barely used A-List because there is hardly anything showing.

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