Welcome to Aprils’s update! This month had the ups and downs all in one. Mrs MoneyPlant and I went to Melbourne with friends of ours for a few days and had a blast (Melbourne was absolutely buzzing, wake up Brissie!) Then we got home and I got COVID, so we’ve experienced the highs and the lows all in one month 😀 Alrighty, let’s get into it!
Highlights of the month
- Holiday in Melbourne!
- More dividends <3
- I got COVID 🙁
- Full steam ahead with renovations!
Total Net Wealth = $1,122,005
This month we finally managed to get away for a much needed holiday!
We actually had a bit of a disaster when we first arrived in Melbourne!
We checked into our hotel room and upon walking through the doors, were utter confused as the pictures on booking.com where completely different to the room, and the room was absolutely disgusting. Turns out the images they use are for ‘marketing purposes only’ LOL! Not even sure how legal that is, but the manager promptly got us a full refund and then we frantically found last minute accommodation for our stay (Thanks @Marriott for the rescue!)
What’s a holiday without a little drama? The rest of the trip was absolutely amazing. We went with another couple and definitely enjoyed ourselves WAY more then if we were to go ourselves.
Expense vs Experience
This month highlighted to us that money is there to be enjoyed, and we experienced some memorable events that we usually wouldn’t. Naturally, we’re both savers so this continues to be a delicate balance between spend& enjoy vs save & invest. I’m finding we are pulling the trigger a lot more on higher quality products and avoiding buying cheap items that have to be replaced more often, but spending money on experiences ..not so much. It’s funny, we’ll spend thousands travelling to other countries and then travel frugally once we get there… that being said we do tend to stay much longer and get caught up in the less touristy side which is really fun as well.
Income and Expenses
Finance wise, we’re up $7k this month, which we’re both quite happy with. We are enjoying the dividends rolling in this month, around $6,195! (If only we got this every month haha) Our largest expenses were the holiday ($2,000), health insurance ($2,200) and then the mortgage ($1,810). which is simply crazy talk. That’s including franking credits as all of our income that is displayed on MoneyPlant are gross figures.
One of the comments on Instagram actually said ‘that’s crazy money’, and while we both earn a decent wage ($107k and $85k per year) it’s nothing in the realm of stupid, and it DOES look like a tonne… $23k per month, but that includes absolutely everything that is coming into our possession (including employer super contributions of 9-12%) as typically this is income in the sense that we own are legally owners of it and it ‘came in’. On the flip side of that, we list tax as a expense that we pay, which for this month was around $4,000. That includes tax on our salary that our employer takes out, as well as tax that the government takes our of our super when it receives contributions (Seriously can’t believe the government taxes super when it literally exists to take pressure of the social welfare system at retirement haha ah… oh well)
Nothing else too crazy this month 🤪
Recent rise in cash rate to 0.35%
Fortunately, we locked in the majority of our mortgage for 3 years fixed about a year ago, so we still have two years to enjoy a low fixed rate. Our variable portion has an offset facility which is nearly completely offset with our cash reserve so we shouldn’t notice any difference to our finances as a result of the rate rise.
This month our builder started putting up the exterior frame, we got the openings for new windows measured, and Mrs MoneyPlant and I went nuts on installing the kitchen! We’re saving ourselves a tonne of cash, especially in this climate where labour rates are through the roof.
So far we’ve managed to:
- Assemble all cabinets
- Remove all the plasterboard
- Install insultation
- Install new plasterboard
- Install the IKEA Kitchen rail system
- Mount and level all the cabinets
- Fix the island bench to the floor
- Install custom handles on all the cabinets
- Buy a new oven and get it delivered
- Score a free brand new IKEA dishwasher from FB Marketplace
- Cap off the plumbing
- Remove old electrical cables (they aren’t connected to the switchboard..)
This is just for the kitchen space, and I have ZERO experience in being a handyman. So is this a brag or what MoneyPlant? Well kinda, we’re pretty proud of what we’ve managed to work out.. so this month I challenge you to learn a new skill. Anything. Cook a new recipe. Fix a broken item instead of throwing it out (Or at least take it apart and give it a go). Turn off the GPS and go a different way home. Make something new.
What does this have to do with finance? I’ve seen so many people pay some serious cash towards such simple projects. Spending $100 to replace something is the same as earning $100, right? So… give it a go!
Full disclosure…I’m an IT guy… I call the spirit level the Water Ruler if that gives you any indication of my previous experience
None of this has been hard, just time consuming as we watch lots of YouTube videos and do lots of reading, but when you’re in lockdown you have plenty of time on your hands.
Have you taken on a huge DIY project before to save money? Would love to hear what you’ve managed to do, connect with me down below or via IG
That’s enough writing for me for now. I really appreciate you reading my blog, thank you for your support. Any if you try something new or learn a new skill, I’d love to know about it 😁
“Slow and Steady” – Mr MoneyPlant
Till next time…