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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Friday, December 4

My Frugal Miser - November Expenses: $13,660


November expenses were above-average once again.   One reason is because every year around Black Friday I buy discounted gift cards for future purchases.  
  • Airbnb expenses were high as we continue to prepare for peak season.   The biggest expense was the annual property tax bill.  I received a 4% discount by paying in November.  I bought a new set of pots and pans.  I also replaced the vinyl flooring in part of the house.  Lastly, I bought a few gift cards to take advantage of a special credit card offer.
  • Rental expenses include the property tax bill for the condo in Birmingham.  At just under $500, it is my smallest property tax bill.  Alabama has the lowest property taxes in the country.
  • The household expense also includes the purchase of gift cards.  This year Citibank offered a 5% Black Friday rebate on online purchases, so I bought gift cards in both Citi accounts to max out that offer.
  • Spending on food should start to go down in December.  I did a lot of stocking up on keto-friendly foods that will last a while.

Fun

The "fun" category is still hefty on fun, and I'm really excited at how far my travel dollars go right now.  I think by April of next year the pandemic will be well under control and that this will cause a huge spike in leisure travel.  Prices for flights and hotels will normalize.  I booked several trips for 2021 so that I could "lock in" COVID-discounted rates.
  • I plan to end my keto diet at the beginning of April, and since Frontier was having a big Cyber Monday sale (plus I was able to status match with my SWA Companion Pass, so our bags and seat assignments are free), I booked a flight to Austin.  We went there once before, but I had a massive toothache which ruined the fun.  Time for a do-over.  Two roundtrip flights were $84.  
  • We booked a December flight to Asheville, NC ($88 for 2).  
  • I rented a car to visit my mom.  
  • Finally, the most exciting of them all... I paid deposits for 2 trips later in 2021:  an Australian cruise in August and another trip to China in November.  The China trip is the same unreal deal we booked 2 years ago:  $299 each for a package that includes flights, hotels, breakfast, transportation and some tours.   The Australian cruise fulfills a bucket-list trip, plus the value was solid.  I paid $148/night for a balcony stateroom.  I will receive a $1,000 onboard credit and we both get free drinks.  That onboard credit and the free drinks are worth as much as the cost of the cruise.  Insane value. 

November Business Spending:  $6,169
November Personal Spending:  $7,491

November Expenses:  $13,660

$762 Auto (service, gas, insurance, AAA, etc.)
$550 Bank Fees
$46 Clothing/ Personal Care
$1,130 Fun (vacations movies, gambling, alcohol, concert tickets)
$957 Food
$581 Health and Dental
$2,965 Household/Mortgage Payment/Home Repair
$0 Interest Expense
$80 Miscellaneous
$92 Taxes includes quarterly tax payments
$0 App Jobs Expenses (tolls, car washes, etc.)
$0 Unreimbursed Job Expenses
$0 Reimbursed Job Expenses
$327 Utilities
$1,118 Rental Property Expenses
$5,050 AirBNB Expenses

Wednesday, December 2

My Frugal Miser - November Income: $8,186

 November was a decent month, especially since the meeting industry is still shut down.

Amazon work picked up a bit at the end of the month but has generally been slow.  

The Airbnb continues to be a bright spot.  It was booked 27 days in November, and income exceeded $3,000.  Not bad for a house I bought in 2014 for $45,000!  

The condo tenant did not pay rent in November.  All the other rental properties are current.

November Income: $8,186

$0 Mystery Shopping/ Merchandising
$0 Meeting Jobs
$39 Gig Apps (Rideshare, Food Deliveries, etc.)
$1,608 Amazon Deliveries
$2,400 Rental Income
$3,178 Airbnb Income
$23 Interest Income
$938 Other Sources

Investment Accounts Change in Value:  ($24,102)

My investment accounts did well.  Since Vereit is my biggest position, it doesn't take much to move the needle.  Last month Vereit shares were up.  My put options for AMC declined a little, but I still believe bankruptcy is looming.  Carnival Cruise Lines gained some, and I sold a portion of my shares in one account.