Thursday, August 10, 2017

Mid-Year Financial Goals Update!

Hello all! I wanted to take a few minutes to review my 2017 Passive Income Goals, since we are now just over half-way complete with the year. 

And what a year it has been thus far! It looks like I have completed 5 of my 10 goals, which I’m thrilled about, and will detail each one below:

2017 Income Investing Goals (age, 31) 
1) $13,000 Annualized Income - INCOMPLETE.

This is my most important “financial” goal, and unfortunately I am very behind pace at the moment.  Take a look at the chart below:

As you can see, during the first half of the year I’ve been significantly lower than the monthly average I need to be at (~$1083/mo), in order to maintain a uniform pace per month and at the end of the year achieve $13,000 in passive income. 

Last year I had a primary passive income goal of $10,000 in completely passive income and I didn’t achieve that goal either, so we will see what happens this year. Unfortunately, getting to $13,000 from last year’s total (of $8,841) means I need to acheive 47% growth this year, which frankly, is ambitious.  Still I expect to have a monstrous September and December, so I haven’t lost all hope yet, but this one is starting to look pretty challenging. I knew the second half of the year would be where I made up a lot of ground though, so we’ll see!  Chance of success: 49%

2) Pay off Credit Card Debt (~$9000 at 0% until SEP 2017) - COMPLETE.

Wow it feels great to have this goal complete! $9000 in debt gone! I just completed it several days ago; just in the nick of time! What a drag debt has on your ability to invest and do things.  I’ve written about debt many times before (here), and so it is very nice to see this balance at zero.  And what diligence it took to pay it off before the interest charges started occurring! (I hope you don't mind if I pat my family's progress on the back! :)

      3) Family Debt Paid Off (Started year at $5000) - COMPLETE.

This one is also complete and is another great feeling.  $5000 in debt gone! At one point I owed my family $34,000, which is a massive sum of debt (at least for me!), and so climbing out of that major hole the last few years has been quite another test of discipline!  Glad to be done!

      4) 800+ FICO Credit Score - INCOMPLETE.

This goal is still far off.  We’ll see what happens the rest of the year, but I imagine currently we’re around the high 760’s.  I think if I can continue to pay down a few things, and continue my mortgage payments, and perhaps increase a few credit limits, that this one will be achieved just in the nick of time as well.  Chance of success: 70%

5) 28% Average Savings Rate per month - INCOMPLETE.

This goal is also not complete, and I’m slightly behind where I need to be.  Take a look at the chart below:

As you can see, I’ve made up a lot of ground the last two months, and I anticipate this will only improve during the ‘home stretch’ this year.  I expect some major savings months before a Christmas low, JChance of success: pending some major disaster, 95%

      6) Max My Roth IRA - COMPLETE.

Yes! I have been slowly but surely adding to my ROTH IRA this year, and I just completed this goal several days ago as well.  Now on to completing goal #7!

     7) Max Wife Roth IRA - INCOMPLETE.

This goal is still relatively far off. I have $3000 left to contribute this year in order to max my wife’s ROTH IRA at $5500, and so we’ll see what happens.  There are several other things in front of this goal in terms of priority (hint…new debt thanks to NC rental property purchase #2) and so this one most likely will come in as a photo finish. Chance of success: 60%

8) 1% Saved in TSP per month - INCOMPLETE.

This goal is a guaranteed failure. I actually achieved 1%/mo for the first 6 months of the year, but then realized my money could be better “spent” elsewhere (on attacking debt!) and so I stopped contributing in the beginning of July.  Next year! Chance of success this year: 1%

9) $25 Saved per month in Kids College 529 Plan - ON TARGET.

This one is guaranteed to happen I think.  I’ve got the automatic contribution in place, and so I’m pretty certain this one will happen.  We’re behind our college savings’ pace currently, with two kids’ colleges and perhaps a third kid someday soon, but we’re not behind by too much actually, and I feel good where we are at with the oldest only at 2 years so I’ll ramp this goal up next year maybe.  Chance of success for this year’s goal: 99%

10) Pay back TSP loan (Started year at $6800) - COMPLETE.

Complete! Goal #10 is done as well; just finished it in July! $6800 in debt gone! What a great feeling.  So much debt being eliminated in the first half of this year! Debt elimination was the focus of the first half of 2017, and thankfully that has been what has actually happened.  

Well I think that is it! Glad to see a lot of these debt-related goals wiped out. Time to finish the year strong! …Big things ahead.

"Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal…" Philippians 3:13-14

      Thanks for reading!

      Passive Income Dude


  1. Great work Dan,

    Debt is the worst and you have squashed it- big time! Your monthly gains are really starting to grow.

    1. Hey thanks Steve! I appreciate it. I've missed your posts brother...what's up? :)

      And yea, I think there should be some solid progress soon. Real estate investment is a big upfront cost, but I think the returns can be worth it. Time will tell I guess. Take care!

  2. Some hits and some misses, you can't win them all. However, now that you've paid the debt off, I suspect you'll be doubling down to hit that $13k goal. Best of luck.

    1. IH you sound kind of negative! :) C'mon man it's only half-way through the year!

  3. Good job paying off debt first. Lots of weight off your shoulders. The portfolio and dividend income will grow over time.

    1. Thanks Korb, yea there was a significant amount of debt I took on to get my 3rd NC house. Though it really isn't debt if it is money I 'invested' as equity in the form of a downpayment to get a house. That's a key difference that I probably should mention more clearly. I borrowed money to buy an asset, where I still technically have that money if I sell for at least the price I paid for it. Anyway, thanks for commenting and I do hope that both the portfolio and dividend income grow!

  4. That's just awesome. Paying off debt is always a great thing. It really keeps you from building wealth, so congrats again. And, you can absolutely pat yourself on the back because you deserve it. Great goals man and you're making significant progress towards achieving them.

    1. Thanks DivPortfolio. As I mentioned to Korb above, I should be careful describing debt as "preventing wealth" like you say, because I am mostly using that debt TO create wealth via rental properties. So it is kind of incorrect for me to think of this debt as a 100% negative.

      And thanks for your enthusiasm! It does feel awesome to knock out goals, especially when you can see real progress, but you don't 'feel' it yet in your day to day life/spending. Take care bro!

  5. Hi Dan,
    It's great that you're reviewing and adjusting your goals throughout the year. I've not been doing that and really should be.
    What's the main thing that's been slowing your passive income targets? I'm much more conservative on mine so I won't put up a target goal that I'm not confident of reaching.
    Best wishes,

    1. Hey DivLife, thanks for asking and sorry for the few days to respond! I think that nothing has been slowing me down really. If you look at my YoY growth per month, it's actually been fairly high (I'm averaging 19% per month through August, which is great in my opinion). And to be honest, my goal was 47% higher than last year's total, so I was really stretching myself. Nothing wrong with not hitting a goal in my book. Thanks!

  6. Very thoughtful post on Goals. It will be very much helpful.