January 2020 Update

The stock market has been up, down, but mostly up. I’d be a fool to think this is going to last forever. I’m investing heavily right now to get compounding working in my favor, not to mention the tax benefits. I hate owing more to the IRS than I have to.

As of 1/22/2020:
401k: $71,078.21
Roth IRA: $4,668.99
HSA: $458.40
Total Retirement: $76,205.60

Car Loan: $4,831.60
Car Warranty: $387.75
iPhone 11 Pro: $1,123.36
Credit Card: $924.22
Total Debt: $7,266.93

In 2019 I made the decision to get brace. So far I’ve paid a total of $2,200.03, out of a total of $2,990. Not 100% sure how much I have left on my braces. Only *4* or $688.92 in payments left until I’m basically free and clear with that. It will be nice to see the money in the HSA actually accumulate and not just get wiped out immediately.

I lost my class action recall Plantronic Backbeat Fit headphones not that long ago. I literally looked everywhere for them, called my gym, nothing. It hurt and after a couple days I said screw it, time to upgrade. That in turn resulted in hours of watching YouTube videos talking about what people thought of different models of sport headphones.

I considered the Apple AirPods, AirPods Pro, Powerbeats Pro and a few cheaper options. My biggest beef with the old set I had was during a workout, static would occur and the connection would disconnect. You try grooving to some Fantasia or Mariah Carey only to go into radio silent mode while you’re pushing a steady 160bpm roasting in the hot 100° degree Texas summer sun. 😛

I have an iPhone 11 Pro so the Bluetooth only options didn’t make a ton of sense. Apple’s H1 chip provides near instantaneous sync up with my iPhone/iPad/Mac, supports Hey Siri functionality. That left the AirPods Pro and Powerbeats Pro. APP has that white glossy plastic that scratches way too easily. My original earpods look like absolute trash all because I dropped them once. Then there is the “will these stay in my ears” factor. Again, I had my doubts. The last thing you want to worry about is losing your expensive gear due to a slightly off fit…Powerbeats Pro were actually in stock at my local store too. The audio quality is good for calls, I can walk anywhere in the apartment (even with the microwave going) without dropping, and chat walking the dog without the other person complaining they can’t hear me. Simple thing that would disconnect my old buds.

No they weren’t cheap. I originally paid $249.95 for them at my local Best Buy store. Got 1% Cashback through a Rakuten in-store coupon code, plus 3% back on my Chase Freedom Unlimited card. Then I saw the price drop by $50. You guessed right, I stopped by the store the next day to get it. That can pay for AppleCare which I definitely am getting for these bad boys. Sweat, heat, electronics, what could possibly go wrong…

Latest expensive purchase – Powerbeats Pro

My computer chair has been slowly disintegrating before my very eyes. Bungie cord to keep the back in check, now I added zip-ties for the arm that kept popping off. I can still get another year from it I tell myself. tweeted Mr. Money Mustache and he tweeted me back. Totally relished in my fanboi moment for a few days after that haha.

Office Depot WorkPro 1000 Chair with Bungee cord and zip ties.

I’ve been eyeing a 4k or 5k display to replace my 2015 27″ Asus PB278Q WQHD LED. The first 4k computer monitors made their debut in 2013, but they still haven’t really caught on. Content creators, prosumers, anyone who spends a lot of time viewing a screen and wants to preserve their vision has a justifiable use for them. In 2020 The most common resolution right now is 1080p HD or 1920 x 1080. My laptop is 3072×1920, my monitor is 2560 x 1440. The Apple ProDisplay XDR is 6mos worth of rent so that’s out, but then I see people complain about LG’s reliability and cheap build quality. After 2 years their $1200 screen just completely goes out. Unless you find a kickass warranty to go with it that sounds like a really shitty purchase.

I have a potentially short February work trip coming up, want to see my mom in New York in May, and possibly two other trips with friends later this year. Cruise and an island vacation potentially. Also throw in another trip with my boyfriend. Do I have enough money saved for any of this? No, but I’ll figure something out. 😀

I do feel very blessed these days. I don’t want to take any of it for granted. I know so many stories of people I’ve met who are strugging in varying capacities. Single mom who lost their husband, recovering drug addict, several depressed people who are struggling just to pay their bills. Guy who got stuck in a car while it burned to the ground. He fights to do even the most basic of things. Then looking at what is posted on GoFundme, I donate occasionally. It really pulls at your heart strings.

My hope is that more people would take time to love and respect one another while they are still here. I remember the storry of Mattie Stepanek, the little boy with a powerful message. He passed away almost a month after my father did which seems like a lifetime ago. Here’s his story if you want to learn more. Warning: You may need some tissues after you watch it.

Take care, be well. Remember to invest in yourself. Subscribe to my YouTube channel if you want. Posted 7 videos so far. Quality isn’t quite where I want it. I can do a great video, or an average one, but sometimes my days are quite busy. So for now quantity rules out.

2019 – The Year In Review

Net worth is an important measure of your overall financial situation. While some choose to ignore debt indefinitely, I have never been one of those people. Even when I had $50k of student loan debt, I knew exactly what my balance was, the interest rate, monthly payment, etc.

First let’s start off with Net Worth. These numbers are estimates and don’t include any depreciating assets I own including auto, phone, computer, etc.
2011:    $-45k
2012:    $-43k
2013:    $-35k
2014:    $-35k
2015:    $-11k
2016:    $6k
2017:    $9k
2018:    $31k
2019:    $62k

Auto Loan:
12/24/2018: $12,224.63
12/31/2019: $5,370.34
Change: -$6,854.29
% Change: -56%

Roth IRA:
12/31/2018: $1,042.96
12/31/2019: $4,545.02
Change: +$3,502.06
% Change: +336%

12/31/2018: $40,124.58
12/31/2019: $68,178.70
Change: +$28,054.12
% Change: +69.92%

Overall it was a great year for me. Things are headed in the right direction. Looking forward to hitting new milestones in 2020!