I started this series to reflect on our goals, summarize blog developments and share some things I learned this month.
I hope you get some value and enjoy following our journey. If you haven’t already, join the Flexcents community as it continues to grow!
We discovered the financial independence retire early (FIRE) movement in January 2018. Before this, we were good about saving money, but we had no idea how to make out money work for us and how it could change our lives.
After much research, we became more financially literate and are now learning how to invest our hard-earned money.
We use Personal Capital, a powerful application, that keeps track of our budget, assets, net worth, and cash flow.
We then input all the data into our FIRE spreadsheet to track our income, expenses and investment growth.
One of the many things we also track is our progress to FI.
Progress to FI formula: (net worth / projected FI number) x 100
The closer you get to 100%, the closer you get to financial independence and have the option to retire.
Our Progress to Financial Independence
We’re now 24% away from our FI number. Our FI number does change according to recurring goods or services we decide to either add or subtract from our lives.
Learn More About Financial Independence
Toggle through to learn what Financial Independence (FI) means and the VITAL role it plays in allowing you to live your best life.
I finally got my subscription bar working again. It turned out to be a problem with the theme which fixed itself during its last update.
With more content on the site, I actually had to upgrade my hosting service through BigScoots. They’re not as large as some of the other hosts, but I think they’re one of the bests with their customer service and fast servers.
You still can’t go wrong with hosting through SiteGround. They give you a large amount of space for a low cost, but after the promotional contract period is up, the price will hike.
As far as content production, I published 3 articles in the month of March.
- February 2019 update: Our Most Expensive Vacation & Goal Updates: If you missed last month’s update, here’s another reminder to see what some of my developments were in February.
- Visiting These Doctors Saved Me & Can Save You Too: This article talks about the health professionals I have seen this year that provided me valuable insight that inspired me take action towards living a healthier life.
- The 10 things exercise: This article describes a self-reflection exercise that can lead to lifestyle changes for the better. My wife and I also went through this exercise.
DIY Phone Repair – Saving $212.21
Unfortunately, my wife got pick-pocketed while we were in a large night market in Vietnam and was without a phone for the remainder of the trip. Thank goodness she barely uses her phone as it is.
When we came back to the U.S. she was going to settle for a phone on Amazon.com which cost $222.79. The only thing is that she had a tough time finding a newer phone that wasn’t too big for her hands.
I then remembered I kept my old Honor 8 which was identical to the one she lost. The only problem was it couldn’t hold a charge.
Too bad battery replacements aren’t as easy as popping out the back and popping in the battery. That didn’t stop me though. I began looking up tutorials online, then ordered a battery replacement kit.
Battery replacement kit – $15.58
When this battery replacement kit arrived, it took me around an hour from start to finish to install the battery. I crossed my fingers and it powered on! My wife loves that she has a phone that she can hold comfortably and that we were able to save a couple hundred bucks. Needless to say, I felt like a nerdy superhero.
Employee Mobile Phone Reimbursement – Savings $27/month
As I am a home care physical therapist, most of my mobile usage is for patient care.
When I heard my employer provided a company phone or a cell phone reimbursement benefit, I hopped on it as quickly as I could.
I had two choices: Company flip phone or $27.00/month reimbursement
I was much more excited about decreasing my monthly expenses rather than add to my tech clutter. The last thing I want is another device to charge or another device to account for when I leave the home.
The reimbursement I receive each month is $27.00. This is the entire cost of my line alone! What a win this was.
Trash for Cash
I have a running list of things that I post on ebay and the facebook market place. These are items that I no longer find useful, but they are also things that I find on the street while driving around my town treating patients.
I found an old sauce dispenser in my home and saw the market value for something similar would be $10. I placed it on sale a couple of months ago and finally sold it on eBay. The buyer paid for the shipping too! Now I’m really wondering what else can I sell around that house that isn’t providing any value? This project now is really just for fun.
- Old office desk: $45.00
- Old college textbook: $49.00
- Music Stand: $10.00
- Sauce Dispenser: $9.99
Alright, it’s been a little over a month since I came back from vacation and my healthy routine is still thrown out of wack. My workouts have been sporactic and I have been unintentionally skipping my lunch during week days. Part of this was due to getting a case of bronchitis. The other part being that I almost forget to eat because of my busy work day seeing patients.
My mother is a dedicated mail carrier and I can now see how easy it is to get caught up in work and forget to eat.
While she is inching towards retirement, she is also losing weight due to insufficient caloric intake based on her activity level. One thing my mom and I have agreed upon is to call each other during lunch to make sure we eat.
My goal is to reach 140 lbs at 10% body fat by the end of the year is looking more and more difficult as my list of things to do is growing, but I’m not going to give up. I’m down to 134 lbs and hovering around 13% body fat.
Thank you for tuning in for another update.
Art is the founder of Flexcents, a blog created in 2018 to help others reach their fitness and financial goals through sharing insights as a physical therapist, personal finance nerd, and self-directed investor.