It has been a month since I have last posted. I could make excuses but it is in reality that I was on sick leave due to surgery and I needed time to recuperate. Now that things are back to normal I will be posting as normally!
This post does have some affiliate links, which help the blog continue running.
I would count this as a successful month overall. There were some hiccups, for instance, I was called for surgery with a couple of days notice. So, I was scrambling to amend my budget to it. This included ensuring I had more money so I could order food delivery as I knew that I most likely would be in too much pain some days to cook for myself.
Fortunately I live in Sweden, this means I did not have to allocate much money for surgery as I had reached the ‘deductible,’ for lack of a better word. In Sweden, once you have spent 1,000 SEK (approximately $100 US) on some healthcare related expenses then it is all covered by the state.
This is the month that I really saw the benefits of dividend investing. I prefer this way as I earn a bit of money that in theory I can use for living expenses.
The goal of growing in dividend investing is to earn enough monthly to pay 1 bill. This month I earned enough to pay that 1 bill plus a dinner.
I received my stimulus check and a insurance check. I allocated these monies to various sinking funds, which I have used to purchase something I will talk about next month.
I also received a decent paycheck which included the retroactive salary increase. This means that my salary is increasing at the rate of inflation and that I am nearing the 75% mark of my PhD studies.
My rent stayed the same but I paid a little less on electricity, not much. This month my total expenses for housing was 4,507 SEK (~523 USD).
I did use an Uber once and have to pay for a single metro pass but this month I did not have to travel around town, so my total was a lowly 379 SEK (~42 USD).
Food was a bit more than I hoped this month. Mainly due to the aforementioned surgery. I did order delivery a couple of times and I had a large grocery delivery that was filled with mainly processed foods so I did not have to stand up for long in my kitchen.
Total: 2,956 SEK (~343 USD)
I ordered a few things from Clas Ohlson (a Swedish version of Walmart), did I need these items. Probably not but I am happy with them. Among them was a Last Swab, which is meant to replace your disposable cotton swabs. I have mentioned before that on my way to Financial Independence I have found the minimalist movement and have become eco-frugal. This was one of my most popular blog posts.
Total: 715 SEK (~81 USD)
Same old, same old. I still have my Disney +, Hulu, and Spotify accounts.
Total: 332 SEK(~36 USD)
I was able to save quite a bit, but that is also because I had an inordinate amount of income, which was great for me. However, considering that it is unusual I decided to save the majority of it.
I will separate this into US savings and Swedish savings.
- Sweden: 14,532 SEK (~1,693 USD)
- US: 2,220 USD (~18,787 SEK)
Assets and Debts
Really that should be singular, as I only have one debt. My student loan. I never have any credit card debt as I pay it off every month.
Considering my student loan, I have not been paying it down due to the moratorium. Instead I have been depositing the money I would have been using to pay it down into a sinking fund. Once the moratorium ends and if they are not forgiven I will apply the whole amount to the loans, bringing the amount owed down significantly. This would also cut down on the daily interest accrual which has been the bane of my existence.
At one point it was $10 a day! The day I got it down to $8 a day I celebrated.
I love seeing these number and I love watching them change on a monthly basis. The one that is most surprising is the crypto.
I use Coinbase to buy all of my crypto, mainly BTC and ETH. I have inserted an affiliate link, we will both earn $10 in BTC once you buy or sell $100 work of crypto.
Anyway, I started buying them in 2017 and I have watched the amount skyrocket in the last year. I initially allotted less than 10% of my assets to it, as it is extremely volatile. It has seemed to have steadied but I still think 23% is a bit much, so I have been increasing my investment rate into my brokerage account (M1 Finance). The benefit of M1 Finance is that you create your own portfolio and you can set up a deposit schedule and based on the percentages you set for each part of the portfolio, it is automatically invested for you. Perfect for the hands-off investor.