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Home > Archive: February, 2015

Archive for February, 2015

February Mid-Month

February 14th, 2015 at 03:25 pm

So far

Non-Paycheck Income

Swagbucks/Perk/Surveys etc $130.06
Credit Card Rewards $60.60
Storage Rent etc $67.97
Stock Dividends $10.46

Non-Retirement Investments made

P2P Lending Accounts: $260
Loyal3 Account and DRiP Accts: $1047.9
TradeKing Brokerage: $497.15

Balance of Retirement Accounts: $386,014
Balance of Non-Retirement Accounts: $102,039.56
Total Investments: $488,053.71

Note: I am really looking forward to breaking $500,000.

So far in 2015 our Investments have increased by $26,485. Of that $8467 has been from contributions and the remainder from growth.

Organizing DRiP Plans and Purchases

February 10th, 2015 at 10:20 am

I have a few DRiP/DSPP purchase plans going and the one thing everybody complains about with these is keeping track of your cost basis. That isn't always so easy when you have little fractional amounts of dividends being reinvested every month. I've been doing it all on a spreadsheet but yesterday I started using the portfolio tracker at the CBS MarketWatch site. I spent a couple of hours inputting my history in and ongoing shouldn't be as difficult. Since I'm a numbers geek, that was actually kind of fun and as a bonus I got to put off cleaning the bathrooms because I was busy with important money stuff. I'll see how that goes.

Valentines Day this weekend which really is not my favorite holiday at all. I don't know why, after almost 28 years of marriage my husband and I cannot come to some compromise on this but we are always out of whack. I spend big, he doesn't. He spends big, I don't. Or we both spend big and then I spend the next month wishing we didn't have so much chocolate in the house trying to attach itself to my hips.

But whatever. I got him some sort of "Love Gift Pack" of 3 bottles from a winery and a set of Depression Era Glass Wine Glasses from an antique store. I've seen the credit card bill, I think we're about equal in outflows so hopefully it won't be another "But you didn't stick to the agreement!" holiday.

I received some money from surveys and a rent payment so I sent $110 off to my Loyal3 stock purchase account. This is how I divided it up

Berkshire $30
Coca Cola $30
Apple $10
Mattel $10
Intel $10
Unilever $10
Google $10

I am up to a whopping .1155 Shares of Google stock! I think when it gets to the point of owning one full share I might have the family celebrate with a Pizza Night or something. Woo Hoo we own a full share of Google!

Since our Tax Refund is going to be so much larger than expected, I also took $500 that I had saved up to replace our Furnace and A/C system this summer and bought 20 shares of GE stock in my TradeKing account this morning.

My P2P Loan accounts are going pretty well. Between Lending Club and Prosper I have a little over $3000 accumulated in there and it's currently generating about a 7% return. My returns are lower than many of the people who post at places like LendAcademy, but at this point in time I'm still sticking with the higher quality notes rated A, B and C which mostly return 7 to 10%. I haven't decided when I'll feel comfortable diversifying out into some of the riskier loan pools but likely not until it gets to over $10,000.

Ebates and Tax Estimate

February 6th, 2015 at 12:20 pm

Received $52.90 from Ebates today. Haven't quite decided where to send the money but it will go into one of the investment accounts.

We have about 90% of the paperwork we need to complete our taxes, and all of the major items like W2 forms and our Real Estate Taxes. So far our Federal Refund looks to be around $8k. This is mostly because I was extremely busy last December and didn't have time to look closely at all the numbers, so I had husband's company withhold a huge amount of his year end bonus just to be "safe." I guess I hit safe and then some. I haven't looked at the State yet but I've never gotten a huge refund or owed a huge amount on the State return.

The good thing about this is it should cover our heating and a/c system upgrades planned for this summer. Now I can move on to saving for some roof repairs and fixing up our driveway.

Since 2015 will likely be similar to 2014 in terms of income, I'm reducing our quarterly estimated payments.

Loyal3 Stock Purchases

February 4th, 2015 at 10:03 am

I finished getting all my accounts reconciled in YNAB and my cumulative under budget amounts for the month of January was $223.

I made the following stock purchases in my Loyal3 account. In case you are unfamiliar, Loyal3 is a new-ish discount broker that lets you buy choose from a slate of around 50 companies and purchase small amounts with no commissions or fees.

They also let you purchase fractional shares. So you can buy a fraction of one stock for as little as $10. For instance, even though just one share of Google costs over $500, I am able to buy a tiny fraction of a share for $25.

Apple $15
Alibaba $40
Berkshire Class B (I hired Warren Buffet!) $25
Google $25
Hasbro $25
Kraft $18
Mattel $15
McDonalds $20
Microsoft $20
Unilever $20

I am attempting with this account to build balances in some strong Dividend Stocks as well as throw in a few Growth and Technology companies.

Some January Numbers

February 2nd, 2015 at 09:38 am

Amounts Saved:

Retirement Accounts
401K - $1,182.92
Non-Deductible IRA: $300
Employer Match - $591.45
Voluntary Def Compensation: $477.8

Taxable Accounts:
Schwab: $200
P2P Lending: $300
DRiP/DSPP/Loyal3 $1,511

Some Balances:
Retirement Accounts: $368,421
Other Investments: $80,788
Emergency Fund (added $400) - $23,198.79
Furnace and A/C Replacement Fund (just started) - $481.65
Chimney Rebuild Fund - $2147.78

I have applied to start a new DRIP for HCP, Inc. The minimum starting purchase is $750, which I've set aside. However the plan only processes new purchases once a month so my account is waiting for the next batch processing date to fund. I didn't include that in my amounts saved since the money is still in my bank account. But I've already subtracted it from my register.

Unfortunately my husband's company stock has taken a huge hit this year which has reduced our Net Worth. It looks bad on paper but since we had no plans to sell the stock, hopefully it will recover sooner rather than later. The President was golden parachuted away in December and they are now in rebuilding mode.

My husband thinks they will have a much stronger year financially since they just picked up 2 rather huge contracts. There are rumors that the Dividend is going to be decreased next quarter which is important to my planning processes, since we use much of that Dividend money to invest in other places. We'll just have to wait and see what happens. Thankfully I dissuaded my husband from buying more Company stock within his 401K, which many employees have done. They are all kind of nervous now.

I have a 0% Discover balance that is due to start charging interest on the March statement so I will probably pay it off fairly soon. I like to pay those off far in advance so I can be certain the balance is at $0 well before the cut-off date.

For the first time in over 2 years, I don't think we'll have enough Fidelity Investment rewards accrued to cash out for investing this month. But EBATES is supposed to pay this month so I'll get some money there. I received a $25 Swagbucks payment right at the end of January so even with the bonus on the 5th, it'll be a bit of time before I can make a February cash-out.