RooBadley's Journal.

Where are you and where are you going?
RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

My number today is 163.

Instead of a generally accepted NW number, I find it more useful to me to simply add up six accounts and subtract what we still owe on the mortgage.

401K, His IRA, Her IRA, TDAmeritrade, HSA, and Kids' 529.

Our accounts are at 212k and we owe Pennymac 49k so the number I walk around with in my head today is 163.

When I found you personal finance misfits hiding out back here 20 months ago my number was negative 12.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Greetings.

I'd like to start this new journal to better track my own progress towards FI.

I'm a 54 yo married father of two.
INTJ.

I have a great job that I don't like because of some mental health struggles. I value solitude but my job is collaborative.

I want to sprint to the finish line, get my kids launched, and get back to doing what I want without all these coworkers.

basuragomi
Posts: 151
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2019 3:13 pm

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by basuragomi »

Welcome! That's an impressively rapid turnaround on the debt and savings situation. With a (preumably) soon-to-be paid-off house and independent kids you'd be in a great position to retire in a few years.

Is your job actually great if you don't like it? Maybe you're fine and the job isn't for you (or you'd rather reserve your collaborative capacity for family)? What would you rather be doing?

Hristo Botev
Posts: 806
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:42 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by Hristo Botev »

Well I have to follow your journal for the "RooBadley" name alone; clever as hell! Hope that means you're a fan of SouthernLit.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Hi basuragomi.
The job is fine but for the people politics.

I work as a kind of field mechanic taking care of a specialized machine. The pay is great and I got a hell of a raise last year to $37 /hr plus per diem. There's really nothing I'd rather do that pays anywhere near this much. But damn, the coworkers... I hold my breath all day long until I can finally close my hotel room door behind me.

I was a very late bloomer. After a few false starts I finally got this career started in 2003 at age 37.
Last edited by RooBadley on Mon Oct 12, 2020 10:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Hi Hristo.
Sometime around 1978 my archnemesis, Sister Madeline Mary, assigned the book to me extra credit. I was pissed. Then Catcher In the Rye, then extra math, and on and on..

She had this very nice Gibson acoustic that I just wanted to smash across her kneecaps.

Then of course I proceeded to sail through high school without lifting a finger so yeah, obviously much posthumous respect for Sister Mad Dog, true hero.
Last edited by RooBadley on Fri Oct 09, 2020 2:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Hristo Botev
Posts: 806
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:42 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by Hristo Botev »

The other day I heard on a podcast or audiobook (trying to remember the specifics) about some survey showing that it's very often the case that the teachers you love the most later in life are the ones you liked least when you actually were in their class.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Housing:

Cheap studio apartments until I got married in 2008 at age 42. DW, cradling newborn DS, would like us to 'buy' a house. No problem. $165k, perfectly OK house in a pacific northwest state. All good.

About one year later DMIL moves to town. :shock:

Sell the house. Lose 25 thousand dollars. Move to another pacific northwest state. Lord, I apologize for being such a horrible son-in-law.

After renting for almost a year we find another place: $125k at 4%, 3/2, two car garage on one acre. Great. Room for pigs, chickens, turkeys, rabbits and greenhouses. DW loves all that. Zillow says it's now worth about $270k and we owe $49k. Not bad. We're on track to pay a 30 year mortgage in 15 years just before younger son graduates HS. I really enjoy kicking my mortgage in the nuts every month, even if it's just a few hundred extra.

So I could add $221k minus the vig to my net worth, but it doesn't really feel real to me. It's the whims of the housing market, and primary residence so it's not like we're going sell and add the equity to retirement funds. When I'm ruminating on retirement I say 'I want a pot of money and a paid off house'.
Last edited by RooBadley on Fri Sep 11, 2020 11:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

My number today is 166.

Covid Furlough:

A few months ago I was car camping out looking for Forrest Fenn's treasure when my manager called to talk about furloughs. Everyone is taking a month off, do I want May or June. I had never considered the difference between layoff and furlough so I was a little worried at first. On furlough I keep my job and the family health insurance remains uninterrupted. Whew. No big deal, just two 'missing' paychecks.

The 401k contribution was easy to fix, just go on TRoweprice and dial up the contribution so that I will still finish out the year at $26,000. Then they contact my employer and it's done. Too bad the Health Equity HSA contribution can't be fixed as easily. My max allowable HSA contribution is now short by about $510. I can't go on Health Equity change the contribution, as it gets set once per year during open enrollment. The best I can do is transfer my post-tax money in to make up the difference.
I know at the end of the year I'm only talking about 50 bucks extra income tax to the state of Oregon but still...
It's just these last two years that I've finally fixed my shit with regard to taxes thanks to ERE and GoCurryCracker.

I used to really enjoy a little marijuana from time to time back in the day but for 18 years now I've been subject to random urinalysis. My employer has no leeway, no matter how much they like me. Hmmm, but now I'm going on furlough! Hell Yes! I didn't discuss it with my manager on the phone of course, but I wonder how many of my coworkers were getting baked in May and June.
Holy Crap, the POTENCY. What the hell happened to the stuff from the 80s & 90s ? As soon as I LRE, I will probably start partaking again but by then they will need to have a nostalgia strain. They should co-brand it with Counting Crows.
Last edited by RooBadley on Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:07 am, edited 2 times in total.

wolf
Posts: 1090
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:09 pm
Location: Germany

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by wolf »

What's your goal number?

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

$614k June 2028.
Plus a paid off house.
I have just 93 months.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

While on furlough I collected some unemployment benefits and I have mixed feelings about it. Feelings isn't the right word, my Feelings and Empathy knobs have always been turned way down. Or I've always tried to turn them up, but they don't go to 11, only about 4.

Anyway, I'm not 100% sure that I was supposed to apply for unemployment benefits. Some of the info that the state unemployment department wants to know is if you have a definite date when you expect to go back to work with your employer. Well my HR dept basically round-about instructed all of us to leave that part blank! WTF.

When 1st applying for benefits, there is a 'waiting week'. No money the first full week off. This obviously saves the state big money and it also serves to give the newly unemployed an 'oh shit' moment so if they have any lead on any job they will be incentivized to take it. So I thought I would be getting money 3 weeks, but no, when the state contacted my employer about all these newly laid-off people the person in HR said that we all got laid-off on Monday morning instead of the previous Saturday night! So now our waiting week won't even begin until another week later.
This was brought to HR's attention so they changed it for all the June furloughs to begin on the Saturday night...All of us that took off May got 2 weeks benefits and the later people got 3 weeks. Damn it.

During Covid there was the extra $600/week but for some unknown reason my extra benefit was just $500. So for the entire 4 week furlough my grand total haul was $2200.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Just returned home from work last night. 9 time zones, 23 days away, 4 flights to get home. The jetlag after I get home includes some weird amnesia for a couple days. My cheap coffee at home tastes horrible on the first morning back.

Submitted an expense report that includes $2800 per diem. Cha-ching.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

In 2017 paid 7200 in fed & state taxes on 72,200 gross wages. ( 9.97%)
In 2018 paid 5250 in fed & state taxes on 71,500 gross wages. ( 7.34%)
In 2019 paid 1980 in fed & state taxes on 95,800 gross wages. ( 2.06%)

It's looking like 2020 gross wages will be about 80,000.
I'm still figuring out SR's. Before ERE (Feb 2019), probably 21%.
I need 2019 and 2020 ytd.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Moderate turbulence and sustained headwinds forecast for the entire flight.
Last edited by RooBadley on Sat Oct 17, 2020 11:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

NoItsNotLikeThat
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2020 9:58 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by NoItsNotLikeThat »

Thanks for sharing. I just discovered this site a few weeks ago and have read several journals. Most so far have not been relatable, but it's still interesting to read about other's lifestyles and finances. It's not like you can go up to your friends & family and ask them about this stuff.

I'm glad to have found someone else with kids, yours is the first I've read so far. Also I work in a collaborative tech environment and hate people but like the pay :D I, too, have chosen to stay put for now and am hoping to sprint to the finish line.

NoItsNotLikeThat
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2020 9:58 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by NoItsNotLikeThat »

Oh, and I had also been wondering if most people here were including their homes in their net worth, so I'm glad you clarified what you're including. I also don't typically factor in my home when considering my net worth.

Cheepnis
Posts: 285
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by Cheepnis »

Wow, you are making amazing progress, great job! Would you mind going into any more detail about how you have brought your tax rate so low? I'm assuming those numbers posted above are excluding FICA taxes? Or perhaps I'm just underestimating the power of MFJ and child related write-offs? I've read some of the GCC tax posts and think I'm doing everything available in my situation, but I'm still curious as your above numbers are astounding.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

NoItsNotLikeThat wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 12:09 pm

I'm glad to have found someone else with kids, yours is the first I've read so far.
Keep surfing. There are 39 pages of journals going back a decade. I lurked for 20 months and found an immense treasure trove. Still mining valuable seams every week. You'll find plenty of others here with kids.

Edit to add: And of course home equity would be included in net worth. I guess 'liquid net worth' is more precise, and more helpful to me when tracking my own progress.

Edit to add to my edit.... Wait, 'liquid net worth' is wrong too. It's my tax-advantaged accounts plus some portion of my liquid NW that I call 'my number' in my own head.

RooBadley
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:47 am

Re: RooBadley's Journal.

Post by RooBadley »

Cheepnis wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 1:01 pm
Would you mind going into any more detail about how you have brought your tax rate so low? I'm assuming those numbers posted above are excluding FICA taxes? Or perhaps I'm just underestimating the power of MFJ and child related write-offs?
Yes, Cheepnis, excluding FICA.
MFJ, child tax credit, and over 50 I get to make ketchup contributions (what my 10 y.o. thought I was saying).

Numbers off the top of my head for someone in your situation:
401k: 19,500
IRA: 6000
HSA: 3550
So you can shelter/defer 29,050. With a std deduction of 12,400, you in effect start paying fed taxes at income above 41,450.

For me (over 50) and DW (under 50):
401k: 26,000
his IRA: 7000
her IRA: 6000
HSA: 8100
So I shelter/defer 47,100.
I also get 2 child tax credit, 4000 total. Pulling a 15% tax rate out of thin air, in effect I get to earn 26,667 additional.
Then MFJ std deduction of 24,400 means I can earn 98,167 at 0% federal rate.
This assumes we can live on 51,067 (24,400 + 26,667).
And my wife doesn't even have a 401k. If she did we could defer an additional 19,500, and be raking in 117,667 at 0% effective.

I can't discuss this with my coworkers because they would never believe it's possible to stash all that money and live on 51k.

This leaves me with just my state taxes problem. I was able to put 4865 into the kid's 529 and lower AGI by that amount.
The tax situation for my state 529 college funds just changed, but that's for another post.
Last edited by RooBadley on Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:10 am, edited 2 times in total.

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