$133, 572 (+0.6%)
I’m quite surprised I eeked out in the positive territory this month because it certainly felt pretty rough (again!). We had to pay the property taxes (hurrah to that!), and I spent about $200 in gifts for birthdays and wedding presents. I am finally getting to do my budget and categorizing all my spending in different categories (e.g. groceries, gifts, entertainment etc.) and found that this month, a lot of my spending was on gifts. Perhaps I am being too generous? Am I spending too much on friends? Perhaps I need to have fewer friends I get presents for? 🙂
Okay, so here’s the breakdown for this month:
CASH: $10959 (+2.0%)
- Boyfriend and I have a joint account which our mortgage is deducted from, and our own personal accounts
- I added up my chequing and savings accounts (High Interest Savings Account). I automatically deduct money from my chequing account and have it siphoned to the HISA account (paying yourself first)
- I have $1892 saved up for my goal of climbing Mt Kilimanjaro (highest peak in Africa) within 1-2 years. If you want to help contribute to my personal lifelong dream, feel free to sign up for an ING account with my orange key. You’ll get $25 if you start an account with $100, and I will get $25 too. 🙂
STOCKS: $18153 (+0.6%)
- These are stocks that capture the “moment in time”, including unrealized gains or losses in my BMO Investorline and Questrade accounts. I added up USD and CAD stocks as “Canadian” money to be simplistic (even though our dollar is high now)
- I’m surprised this is in the somewhat positive territory this month as stocks have continued to take a beating. I didn’t add to any positions this month or buy any more stocks.
RRSP: $11392 (+1.3%)
- This includes the pre-authorized monthly contribution into my TD E-Series account, a GIC in my ING Direct Account and my new Questrade RRSP account.
The RRSP is maxed out for this year. I am seriously thinking about maxing out my TFSA instead (read my TFSA vs RRSP great debate over here) from now on, as I will expect to have defined benefit pension when I retire.
- I owe about $16,000 to myself in my RRSP because I used the Home Buyers Plan, but I won’t have to start repaying until 2012.
OTHER INVESTMENTS: $2843 (-13%)
- If you’re wondering what I hold in my Other investments- check out my post long story
- I have some investments that were poor choices (I signed up for them before I became self “edumacated”) that were losing money big time. In order to receive a tax credit, I got persuaded into buying some flow through shares, Venture investments that gave out a tax credit, and some more mutual funds about four or five years ago.
- Wow… this month, I was quite astounded as I checked my balance with this venture mutual fund. It went down by 13% in a period of 30 days, when the rest of the market didn’t even drop that much! And I didn’t even get a call or an email from the financial advisor I bought it from to perhaps explain why there has been such a big drop. I think I’ll email her and see what she says. I guess this is another example of why managing your own money and choosing your own investments be it dividend stocks or index funds is the better way to go. Once I hit January 1, 2012 I’m going to move that money elsewhere
TFSA: $7507 (-2.1%)
- This month, my TFSA stocks got hit pretty bad, but I’m holding strong! 🙂
- I haven’t gotten off my butt to start a DRIP yet, I need to send some papers to Questrade to start that. The only reason why I haven’t taken advantage of it earlier is because with Questrade, unlike other brokers, you don’t get a discount on the DRIP.
- I signed up for a Tax Free Trading Account with Questrade and my TFSA consists 100% of stocks
- I have about $8,000 I can put back in this year to avoid the penalty from our good friends at the Canada Revenue Agency. We are allowed $5000 contribution a year-and this is year 3 of the TFSA, so one can have $15000 in their TFSA. I haven’t contributed any extra to my TFSA account yet.
- I am not counting this in my net worth, because it’s 11 years old.
PRINCIPLE RESIDENCE: $387,500
- I know this it does not make any sense to divide the principle residence and mortgage debt by 50%, but since I cannot disclose my boyfriend’s financial information, I will do it this way to simplify things. Some of you may not agree to that, and I understand.
- Vancouver is an expensive city to live in, and many people predict that there will be a housing collapse, especially in a place where their is such a disparity between income and housing price. The Vancouver market was actually quite unscathed compared to the depressed housing markets elsewhere, and many people believe it is sorely due for a correction.
- We plan to live in this house for 5-10 years or even more, and we are prepared to “suck it up” if it corrects by more than 25%. Our house is in a favourable location in the city, and our neighbours have sold recently for about 30% more than what we paid for our house.
Mortgage Debt: $303435 (-0.3%)
- It’s an accelerated bi-weekly payment (-4 years from amortization) and we plan to add on what we get from our rental downstairs to pay the mortgage off faster. Target pay off= 15-17 years. The rental has not started yet, perhaps we may be looking at renting it out in September. We’re still not finished renovations, believe it or not!
Credit Card: $1449
- This month, I had to balance four credit cards which was a bit overwhelming to say the least (now I know how one can get in trouble with credit cards!), the SPG Amex Card which was coming to and end (and officially ended), the Amex Gold Rewards Card, the MBNA card and the Joint Visa card. Now I’m back at three cards which is much more manageable 🙂
- I pay off my full amount every month (and folks, it’s VERY important you do so otherwise you’re losing out on a 19% return!) but include it in my net worth update so I have an accurate picture of my actual net worth. I sort of think “If I were to sell everything right now, what would my net worth be?” I guess I shouldn’t put it in the liabilities column since i pay it off regularly, BUT in mint.com it’s under the liability column so I’ll do the same.
- I basically charge everything to my card to reap the benefits (free flights and hotel stays here I come!)
- BF and I got the Royal Bank Avion Infinite Card as our joint credit card (free for one year since we have a mortgage with RBC! So will be using it and letting you how I like it- I would of course never pay $170 a year for this, but since it’s free for one year, why not?)