September Zero Day Finance Update
Another month, another set of Zero Day Finance updates! This one will be fairly brief because the October Zero Day Challenge is starting today! If you want to start saving a ton of money and register enter for the chance to win cash prizes, right now! If you’ve never heard of the Zero Day Challenge, well now is the time to learn how it’s saving me $18,432 this year! Oh yeah about the featured image? I thought it looked cool. No idea what it actually is, maybe a marble? Anyway, let’s begin!
Zero Day Challenge Event!
I’m launching a Zero Day Challenge event for October! I’ve reduced my monthly spending by a huge amount with the Zero Day Challenge (about $1,500 per month). The whole idea of the Zero Day Challenge is that it gamifies the act of not spending money. People are competitive by nature, so turning not spending money into a game has some really incredible results.
I want to bring these savings to you, so I’m launching a special event starting today, October 1st! Find out more information about this special event, or why not just register now?
If you’re invested in the markets, you know that September has shown some very strong growth. I’m up a few percentage points just in market gains. I also managed to dump $5,900 into my retirement accounts, house fund, and taxable investment accounts combined. I haven’t done that since March when I received my yearly bonus at my old job, and received a total of 4 paychecks during the month.
I started investing in a taxable account, and I have about $1,200 sitting in there. I decided I want to buy some dividend stocks, but everyone knows that choosing individual stocks is risky. That is unless you pick at least 25 of them at random. At that point, your random assortment of stocks has the approximated volatility of the entire index. So, I started purchasing HDV and DGRO, ETFs offered by iShares (commission free courtesy of Fidelity of course).
You can look at my net worth page, but the TLDR is that I jumped from $146,676 to $154,788, a massive improvement. I’ll almost certainly hit my goal of $165,000 by the end of the year. As a side note, these numbers don’t include an extra $2,890 in savings that I deposited today, but won’t be available until sometime next week. As another side note, Personal Capital is no longer tracking my Fidelity accounts. It’s kind of a huge pain in the butt. I contacted their tech support, hopefully the issue will be resolved soon.
Zero Day Challenge
Sorry for this huge image, the aspect ratio wasn’t quite right because I retired my dry erase board. For now, don’t worry, it’ll be back. You can see that I had a total of 19 zero days, a new record! I would have had 20 if I didn’t spend $3 on snacks and $1 on mail forwarding when I moved out of my apartment on September 7th, but oh well. If you want a more in-depth summary, check out my progress page.
So this month was intense. My total spending was $663 + $475 = $1,138. My total income was $2,600 x 2 = $5,200. My 401(k) contributions were $890 x 2 = $1,789. Combining these, I did well. This puts my savings rate at 83.70%. I’ve never come anywhere near that, and I’m hoping the remainder of the year will be just as good (if not better!). Although I’m spending $350 for the October Zero Day Challenge next month :), plus FinCon.
I set these goals for the remainder of the year in my July update.
- 6,000 page views in 1 month remaining this year [COMPLETE: > 6,000 September views]
- Have 25 verified people participating in the Zero Day Challenge [COMPLETE: 75+ signed up for the ZDC!!]
- 2,500 Twitter followers [COMPLETE: 2,513]
- Run a Facebook advertisement [COMPLETE: Success, enough said!]
- Hit $165,000 net worth [IN PROGRESS: ahead of schedule]
Looks like I’m pretty much done. I’m about $10,000 away from hitting my 2017 NW goals. With 3 months and a minimum of $5,400 in 401(k) contributions remaining on the year, I only need to save $1,500 extra per month which should be pretty easy. Realistically, I should aim for $170,000. Yes, let’s change that goal.
- Hit $170,000 net worth [IN PROGRESS: behind schedule]
I like setting goals that are touch to achieve, so let’s see if I can do this. I’ll need to save about $5,000 per month, every month. Doable, but tough. I’ll need to work hard.
Anyway, that’s it for now! I hope you’re registered and ready to go for the October Zero Day Challenge event! Saving money + prizes = awesome!