Income & Expenses – May 2015


I’m a little behind on getting these Income & Expenses reports out. Thank you for staying with me. The write ups will be a little briefer, as I’m having to test the memory bank on why I bought things and what happened, but crucially I want to get the numbers out there. 

My lack of Blogging has not impacted on my lack of tracking expenses. I continue to track everything! My challenge has been finding time to write up my expenses on top of my ongoing Kindle Publishing. 

Here we go folks:

I started tracking my Income & Expenses in March 2014. By committing to tracking these numbers and sharing them with you all on a monthly basis, I benefited from questioning every single penny I spent. For the rest of 2014, I managed to keep my expenses under £10,000 a year or £833 per month.

I will continue to record my income and expenses for 2015, but I don’t intend on setting a goal for a specific saving % or an amount for keeping expenses below. I noticed that in 2014 my goals were effective in keeping my costs down, but they also influenced me not to spend money on certain things. That might sound good, but it impacted everything, including charitable donations and personal development, which are usually really important to me. 

My priority for 2015 is making money. I want to challenge myself to earn a lot more. I’m hoping that by having more disposable income, I’ll have more money to invest with. This should then speed up the process to becoming FI. Easy right! I want to call Tom Cruise at the end of the year and shout “Show me the money!”

Here’s a quick breakdown as to what goes into numbers below:

Income

I will rarely have the same wage each month as I have a commission based job. I might also be eligible for bonuses at certain times of the year, which will impact on the total of my wage. My wage figure will be the net sum I’m paid after tax, national insurance, company pension, salary sacrifice for pension, and student loan. I will only include one figure for my wage but I will mention if my commission is high or low and I will also let you know if I’ve triggered a performance based bonus.

Expenses

The first two expenses are fixed amounts. ‘Mortgage/House Bills’ is an account where Miss FFBF and I pay into each month (£490 each) to cover mortgage payments, council tax, water, TV licence, telephone, electricity, and broadband. ‘Food Account’ is another joint account we use to contribute a fixed amount (£70 per month) for food shopping. 


Here’s a breakdown of my Income and Expenses for the previous month:

Income from May 2015
Wage £1,673.92
Dividends £339.89
Interest from Savings £2.10
Kindle £101.03
Ebay £5.75
Total Income £2,122.69
Expenses from May 2015
Mortgage/House Bills £490.00
Food Account £70.00
Mobile £8.22
Petrol £0.00
Birthdays £10.49
Groceries £49.00
Alcohol £20.09
Eating Out £20.00
Fast Food £9.40
Charitable donations £20.00
Heating Oil £207.18
Gifts for work £1.00
Kindle Coaching £272.88
Total Expenses £1,178.26

Income

May’s wage was predictably lower for me. It was my second lowest of the year. But there was a silver lining in my lighter wallet……. Dividends! 

I hit an all time high on dividend payments in May. £339.89. My previous high was £172.36 a couple of months earlier. 

Kindle sales jumped up significantly again, and for my Sales in March I got paid £101.03 in May. This is my third month of payments from Kindle, and I’m close to my average payment from Dividends now. There won’t be many months that my dividends will be level with Kindle sales. Perhaps June will be the last month. 
I’m hoping that Kindle and Dividends payments are going to provide more than enough money to cover my expenses in time to come. I have a goal to increase the Kindle Income to £1,000 per month by December, which I’m now very confident of reaching. My new ‘unofficial goal’ is to bring in enough income from Kindle to cover my income from my current employer. I’m not sure if I’ll achieve this goal but I’ll give it a bloody good go! 


Dividend & Kindle Income – 2015
Kindle CreateSpace ACX Dividends Total
January £83.47 £83.47
February £56.22 £56.22
March £9.50 £172.36 £181.86
April £51.47 £101.80 £153.27
May £101.03 £339.89 £440.92
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
2015 Total £162.00 £0.00 £0.00 £753.74 £915.74
2015 Average £54.00 £0.00 £0.00 £150.75 £204.75


May produced the most income I’ve received outside of my salary – £448.77. This is now over half of my monthly expenses. I can’t tell you how pleased I am with this result. I’ve been Blogging since March 2014, and I didn’t think I’d be in a position where half of my expenses would be covered outside of my salary. I haven’t done anything out of the ordinary either. It just goes to show what consistent monthly progression can lead to. 

To summarise, my salary income was the second lowest of the year, but my total income was helped significantly by my Kindle and Dividends, and is now the second highest payment of the year. 



Expenses

Now that I’ve proven to myself that it’s possible to live on less than £10,000 a year, I feel like I can challenge myself in other areas. This doesn’t mean that I’m going to go on a mass spending spree, but I’m not going to decline Personal Development opportunities to keep my expenses below a set figure this year. 

May was my highest spending month since I started recording them. Yet I remain calm…. kind of.

My spends were fairly standard apart from 2 significant one off spends. The first one was for heating oil, which we get every year. This amount is my half of the total. It’s a must spend and although it’s high it does allow us to keep our total electrical bill down over the course of the year. 

My second big one off spend was Kindle Coaching. I approached a very successful person in America and asked if he would be willing to coach me. He replied to my email and quoted his rate. Once I had wiped the water up which I spat onto the laptop and thought about it, and I decided I was going to go for it. In the spirit of Personal Development and learning. Why not!

This chap earns over $15,000 a month (£10,000) via kindle sales or to put it another way, my annual expenses in a month!

I have learned so much from him, as far as processes, techniques, how to develop a success mindset, and best of all, I’d like to think that we’re now becoming friends (where’s the sick bucket?). We have one final coaching session left, which we’ve both decided to defer until I’ve put his processes in place. We’ve decided to keep talking to each other via skype every Friday evening to keep accountable to each other on what progress each of us are making every week, and we help set weekly goals for each other. If I were to stop working or communicating to him now, I would undoubtedly say I’ll earn my money back and then some in the long run. The Huw of last year would not have signed up to this coaching rate as I was so keen to keep my expenses low, and unfortunately I missed an opportunity to earn more money last year. I’m glad I’m now more open to develop myself and look at the bigger picture of earning more money in the future.

I also want to point out that I don’t regret focusing on driving my expenses down and investing last year. I feel I have a good grasp of ‘Money Management’ or Personal Finance now, and once my income continues to rise I’m going to be much better placed to handle that money in the right way. 

Income/Expense Average

I don’t have an expense goal for 2015, but I receive a lot of questions about my expenses, perhaps more than most other things I write about. I thought I would keep tracking them as people are interested, as am I. Whilst I was tracking the average for that, I thought it would be worth doing the same thing for Income, as it’s an important goal for me this year.


2015 Expenses Income
January £728.45 £2,030.19
February £725.03 £1,793.69
March £1,181.06 £1,747.98
April £785.60 £2,556.02
May £1,178.26 £2,122.69
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
2015 Total £4,598.40 £10,250.57
2015 Average £919.68 £2,050.11


My average spend at the end of April was £855.04. After a Massive May, my expenses increased to £919.68

My income average was £2,031.97 at the end of last month. It’s now up to £2,050.11. 

I know that ‘2 out of 3 ain’t bad’, but what do you class 1 out of 2? 

I’d prefer it if the income went up more than what the expenses went up by, but it’s not too bad. My expenses were both inevitable (heating oil) and an investment (Coaching), and although I’m more free thinking with my spending it should be much lower than this in upcoming months. 


Saving Rate Average


Saving Rate 2015 – %
January 67.3
February 62.8
March 65.5
April 74.6
May 68.5
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
2014 Average 67.7%

I managed to save/invest £1,454.43 in May which was 68.5% of my income. My saving percentage for 2015 is currently 67.6%. I think this figure represents a solid average for me at the moment. In the next few months, my dividend and Kindle income should increase this figure above the 70% mark on a more regular basis up until the point I leave my job and where I’ll have to build it up again. 

Thank you all once again for your continued support. It means a lot!


0 Comments

  • Dividend Drive

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Well done, Huw! 68.5% savings rate is another good performance indeed! You must be delighted. If you can oush it above 70% that would be a fantastic result.

    Your dividend income was stonking as well. It is quite a jump from your last highest monthly total. With your growing Kindle income as well you're other income streams are really starting to show their power!

    Also, great to see that all those investments in yourself seem to be paying off big time.

    Keep up the excellent work! Very impressed!

  • Huw Davies

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Thanks D2!

    I am pleased with current the saving rate. I feel optimistic that whilst I'm still employed in my current role and my Kindle income grows over the next few months I should be hitting very high numbers indeed. However, this will all change when I take the plunge and decide to go alone and quit my job. Initially I won't have a savings rate or it'll be very low, but I'm hoping over 3-6 months of working full time for myself, I should start earning more money than I was earning in employment. Then I can build on that amount and get it to a level I've never reached before. The sky's the limit!

    I'm currently earning more than I ever have done, and over the next 3 months at least I'll be seeing big numbers from my salary, Kindle and dividends. Psychologically it'll be hard to walk away from that, but I need to take 2 steps back, or maybe 5, to take 10, 20, 50 steps forward. I'm in a strange transition right now as you can tell.

    My dividends were outstanding, and it gave me a lot of joy writing down the total for the month. Especially considering the YOY comparison, and how far I've progressed since doing DGI.

    Kindle income is a force to be reckoned with. I initially predicted an income of just over £500 for June, but my sales are looking like they'll surpass £600 across all formats, which is closing in on my monthly expenses. I predict I'll cover my monthly expenses with Kindle income alone in August (which I get paid at the end of October).

    It's just a case of assessing what point to leave my job. I really like my job, but it isn't my future. It's currently the biggest obstacle to holding me back on Kindle success too, due to it's mon-fri, 8-5 nature. I have to do everything on Kindle in the morning, evening, and weekends.

    I really appreciate the kind words. I've been working hard over the last few months, and it's motivating and satisfying to hear such comments!

    All the best!
    Huw

  • Laura

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Nice to see your dividend income increasing and your Kindle income is coming along nicely. I am sure you can easily get to a point where these two cover your monthly expenses especially now that you have a kindle coach.

  • Huw Davies

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Thank you Laura!

    Absolutely. I predict my Kindle Income will get there in August sales, which I'll get paid in October. It's all very exciting!

    Cheers
    Huw

  • Dividend Diplomats

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    FFB40,

    Incredible savings rate and looks like you have more than double on average of income to expense going forward – doing an incredible job this year hands down. Also – congrats on the record dividend income month, always fun to see that number get bigger, no doubt : ) It also seems that the increase in expenses this month on learning/training will pay you dividends down the road.

    Congrats on the month!

    -Lanny

  • Race2Retirement

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Great job Huw saving more than 67% in a single month, not many are able to do that! I've put a significant capital of $10K+ this month of June for my race to FI also.

    Race on to freedom!

  • Huw Davies

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Hi Lanny,

    Thank you very much! I'm really pleased with how everything is progressing.

    Cheers
    Huw

  • Huw Davies

    Reply Reply 28th June 2015

    Thanks R2R!

    That's an unbelievable amount of money to not only earn, but save in a month, congratulations!

    If you're saving that type of money you're likely to be closer to FI than I will be! I'm hoping to quit my job this year, but I'll be working for myself, not FI, which I think is a big step towards it.

    Best of luck!
    Huw

  • Chris

    Reply Reply 29th June 2015

    Nice one, Huw

    Just one thing – I think you are presenting your regular income as after tax and the remainder as before tax, is that correct? If that's the case, I guess you need to be setting aside 30% of that to pay HMRC……
    Great to hear about the continued Kindle success… I have a few more questions for you next time you post specifically on that topic 😉

    Cheers

  • Huw Davies

    Reply Reply 29th June 2015

    Hi Chris,

    Yes, you're spot on. I report my income as I receive it – From my employers post tax, pension, student loan etc – From Kindle before tax. I currently don't earn enough to pay tax on it, although I will shortly. I will be saving money from my earnings to cover the tax bill too, and the accountant fee to mention that.

    Thanks for stopping by, and feel free to fire questions at me. I'll do my best to help!

    Cheers
    Huw

  • Technically you should ashtray be passing tax on your kindle earnings, as your tax goes on your entire earnings together, so your gross salary + kindness earnings = gross income, from which your tax would be deducted

  • Huw Davies

    Reply Reply 2nd July 2015

    Hi M,

    You're absolutely right. I hope to get my company set up over the next few months. Self assessment, tax and deductions are all new to me so I have plenty of learning to do during that period.

    Cheers
    Huw

Leave A Response

* Denotes Required Field