It’s the beginning of the month again, and it’s time for yet another monthly update on my financial independence journey.
This month is looking pretty decent all over, so I’m excited to tell you about all the things I’ve been up to this month.
If you are in a rush, I can tell you that my net worth has grown, all my investments have increased and the savings rate is good! I also published my annual study of the fastest growing personal finance blogs to celebrate some of the rising starts in the personal finance sphere and received a lot of positive feedback.
Personal life: What happened in April?
Our wedding is coming up in a few months and this naturally means that we still spend quite some time on planning all the details. We are still enjoying it, but it is going to be a lot more expensive than we initially thought. It is like everything costs twice as much as you expect it to.
For the first time ever, I told a good friend of mine that I run this blog. He was quite surprised, but surprisingly supportive which I guess is a good sign. I’m still not ready to reveal my identity, but I also know from other bloggers that it becomes harder and harder to keep it a secret over time.
My fiancé and I have started talking more and more about financial independence and quitting our jobs. In fact, we are considering taking a mini retirement already in a year or two from now. We are planning on doing it when we have enough money to cover our current lifestyle for four years. I’ll write more about this in the future.
I have been quite busy at work with lots of plans in the weekends, so I haven’t had as much time to blog as I wanted to. For the coming month, I would like to front-load my posts a bit more, so I don’t miss any Thursdays.
Financials: How am I tracking on my early retirement goal?
April’s savings rate has been really good. I managed to get a savings rate at 53% (up from 46% in March) meaning that I am above my goal at 50%.
I still need to increase the savings rate in the coming years to become financially independent in six years from now, but there’s several things that will help me achieve that. I won’t have to put aside money for a wedding every month, I currently don’t include income from the blog and I expect significant salary increases in the coming years.
This means I’m quite happy with my FI progress and quite positive about the future:
MoneyMow savings rate over time (%)
My take-home income was 32,741 DKK (5,457 USD) and I managed to save 17,437 DKK (2,906 USD) resulting in the 53% savings rate. If I included earnings from the blog, it would be slightly higher this month.
My 12-month rolling average is a savings rate at 43%, which has seen a upward trend in the past three months.
Last month, my net worth declined (mostly due to the cryptocurrency landscape being super volatile). This month, I am back on track with a decent net worth increase:
My total assets including pension of 476,662 DKK (78,907 USD) is an increase of 11.5% compared to last month’s net worth. Even without counting the highly volatile cryptocurrencies, my net worth increased 7.8%.
This means that I am now 10.6% of the way towards my early retirement goal of a net worth of approximately 4,500,000 DKK (750,000 USD) up from 9.5% last month.
As you might have noticed, my cash holdings have increased in the previous months, and I have not invested money as I normally do. This is because I expect the wedding to cost a bit in the coming months, which is why I want to keep some cash in my bank account to be able to pay for that.
All of my investments have increased significantly in the past month. Stock indexes are performing well, cryptocurrencies exploded again and peer-to-peer lending is cruising steadily upwards.
Stock indexes increased significantly with 4.5% this month. I am very happy to see this after a few bad months on the stock market.
Peer-to-peer lending grew with 1.2%. As previous months, it is the most consistent investment that is just on autopilot at Mintos.
Pension yielded a positive return of 3.7% in line with the stock indexes. Yay!
Cryptocurrencies is an amazing rollercoaster to ride. Last month it was down with -52.2%, but this month it is increased with 47.4%. I don’t think anyone knows where this will end, but I am just keeping my portfolio and not touching it for a while.
Blogging: How did income and key metrics develop on MoneyMow?
This month was a record month in terms of traffic. I had more than 800 visitors in a single day when I published the fastest growing blogs of 2018 study.
As the previous two months, I am disclosing how much I earn from this blog:
- Affiliate programs: 981 DKK (164 USD)
- Sponsored posts: 457 DKK (76 USD)
- AdSense: 105 DKK (18 USD)
The total blog income for April was 1,543 DKK (257 USD). This is obviously lower than the 7,321 DKK (1220 USD) from last month, but I knew that last month was an outlier due to an especially large influencer deal. I expect it to be a little higher for May.
In April, I also became part of the #SmartMoneySquad at GOBankingRates.com. I am looking forward to seeing how this will work out for the blog.
The metrics for the blog in April were really good:
- Visitors: Visitors are still in four figures, but increased with 60% (!!)
- Page views: Page views got really close to the magic 10,000 with a growth of 45%
- Facebook likes: Facebook likes are at 1,880 up from 1,780 last month
- Twitter followers: Twitter followers are at 790 compared to 743 last month
- Newsletter growth: The number of people following my newsletter continued rising this month with 16% reaching 121 subscribers
I am super happy with the development of the blog this month. The growth in visitors and the fact that I am super close to 10,000 page views is very motivating.
Favorite posts of the month
As always, I like to read my fellow personal finance bloggers’ sites and be inspired. These are my three favorite posts this month:
- Ms Smelling Freedom wrote about the dangers of letting money turn you into a jerk. I experience this quite often in my job as a management consultant. People with power and money are more often jerks. She writes about different theories as to why this is, but most importantly, as someone who pursues FIRE, I will remember not to become a jerk when I get money.
- Ms ZiYou wrote a great post about learnings from a low wage job. I used to have similar jobs myself, and I do believe that you can learn a lot from working less attractive jobs. My favorite lesson is “people can help you through”. For me, a good job always starts with the people you work with.
- Mustachian Post wrote a post about remembering to enjoy life towards financial independence. I have written a lot about happiness on this blog, so the concept of making sure you are not unhappy and missing out on life all the way towards financial independence makes a lot of sense. For me, it is about balancing short-term and long-term happiness.
That’s it for this month.
Thanks for reading all the way down here and for being part of my journey!