The last four weeks have been some of the most exciting in my life.
With growing hysteria surrounding the coronavirus, staying in China meant facing travel restrictions. As a person who’s chasing financial independence to gain ultimate flexibility, the idea of being “locked-down” in a Chinese city doesn’t seem too appealing.
Therefore, I left China, temporarily. I have every intention of returning once there is a realistic solution to this virus.
I’m not concerned about my health. At least not when I glance at the reported statistics.
However, when I read an article on the news or social media, I walk away thinking this is the beginning of the next zombie apocalypse. I have to stop myself from panic buying water, guns, and bullets.
I could be wrong, but I think we are far from a reenactment of the Walking Dead.
I’m only 26, and I’ve survived several media cycles of deadly viruses; West Nile, Zika, Ebola, Bird Flu, H1N1, SARS, MERS, and now COVID 19. They all seem to come and go with the seasons.
I plan on taking all the precautions I can like washing my hands, not touching my face, and even wearing mask. Other than the mask, I tried to take these precautions before the virus.
Therefore, I’m writing this post from an AirBnb in Chiang Mai, Thailand!
I’ll write another post to sum up my vacation in Thailand, but I have to say that this is a beautiful country! Beautiful beaches, mountains, and elephants are all a $50 plane ticket away.
This post is to update my Net-Worth for January 2020. It’s my pleasure to announce that my Net-Worth increased to $3,660. That’s a $1,068 growth over last month!
Not a bad start to the new decade!
Now, let’s get into the details.
The total balance in my investment accounts is $11,744. This balance increased by $209 in January. The increase stems from $200 I contributed, and low portfolio growth of $9.89.
For the new readers, I have three types of investment accounts; a traditional IRA, Roth IRA, and a brokerage account. I contribute most of my money to the Roth IRA because of the long-term tax free growth.
All of my accounts are held with Vanguard, because their funds typically have the lowest fees.
In 2019, I made the mistake of not contributing to my tax advantaged IRAs. I assumed I was ineligible because I didn’t earn a US income. Boy was I wrong! Not only do I earn a US income, but if I did contribute to the IRAs I would’ve saved money on taxes.
I’ve learned my lesson the hard way. In 2020, I will be contributing to my tax advantaged investment accounts first.
I have $2,575 in cash. That’s $660 more than last month.
I hoard cash when life gets uncertain. When news of the coronavirus broke, “Operation Hoard Cash” began creating the $660 surplus for this month.
I plan to keep my cash accounts growing for the next few weeks, or until this virus subsides.
My student loan balance is $10,666.19. That is $198 less than last month.
When I first started my journey to financial independence I was very aggressive with paying off my student loans. Paying off my loans has become less of a priority overtime, because I was nervous to about missing out on investing in the stock market. This is typical “FOMO” [Fear Of Missing Out]. Fortunately, as the stock market continues to grow, I don’t regret the decision.
I have two loans remaining; the first with a balance of $10,406, and the second with a balance of $254. My lower balance will be paid off in the next few months giving me even more money to contribute to the largest loan. Both loans have a 6.210% interest, which isn’t terrible.
One of my goals for 2020 is to not pay a dime in credit card interest. I accomplished that in January! My credit card balances were payed off in 2019 and I intend on keeping them that way.
My net-worth increased to $3,660! It’s a slow start to my journey to financial independence, but I’m moving in the right direction. I’m happy as long as my Net-worth grows every month.
Continuing to save, pay down debt, and invest will always increase my Net-worth long-term, and that’s all that matters.
Thanks for joining me on my journey to Financial Independence, and I’m very happy that my net-worth increased.
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