October brought a few big changes and challenges to my personal life, but also to the website portfolio which overall got smashed by google and lost over a third of my traffic (and indirectly, income!). Read on to find out the issues, how I have worked through them, and the performance of the various investment portfolios.
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Monthly Question from the Captain;
Do you have a garden? I recently invested $4000 into a variety of equipment, fruit trees and perennials to bolster the sky garden and fill it out to try and create a microclimate before it gets too hot. Gardening for me is therapeutic, but it is also a major part of my mostly plant based diet.
CaptainFI Total Net Worth
CaptainFI Financial progression
CaptainFI personal update: Early Retirement?
So, to just get the shit news out of way first my girlfriend dumped me, which was pretty painful initially but after a lot of reflection I realised that it was actually not the great relationship that I thought it was and that there were a heap of red flags I seemed oblivious to at the time. What do they say, Love is blind? I’ve actually since had friends and family (and even my therapist!) tell me how relieved they were that it didn’t work out, which was a bit of a wake up call, and then go through all of the issues about the relationship with me. Probably the main thing I found was that there was a huge difference in mindset, priorities and core values. So in the long run, this is the best thing that could have happened (especially before we perhaps got married or had kids). Because ultimately, I want a supportive partner who ‘gets FI’ and wants the same things out of life that I do: a big family, time, land and passive income 😉
I’ve loved spending a lot of time with the dog and getting to know each other, and she has really relaxed and her playful personality has really come out and started shining. Unfortunately she had a slip on the tiles when she was doing zoomies and hurt her leg making it really hard for her to walk and even stand. Because it didn’t get better after a couple of days we went to the Vet, we actually found out that her cancer has likely spread into her spine/brain and presented as a neurological issue. Because of her age we would not put her through surgery and chemo, and instead we are focusing all about giving her a great quality of life for her remaining time. We started a painkiller and fairly strong anti inflammatory and after a week of quiet rest at home with those meds she has come good and is back enjoying herself and I try and keep her a bit calmer and try not to razz her up. I have also put ‘astro turf’ on the balcony between all the pots (which I know isnt exactly eco friendly – but I bought it all second hand at least) which gives her a lot more grip, and I have got grippy rugs to put over the bathroom and kitchen tiles. The astro turf also makes the sky garden less hot and helps create a cool microclimate which will help them all survive the hot summer.
Unfortunately my family have continued to have some significant health issues, which has been tough, but having the ability and flexibility to spend time with them has been invaluable. Even myself I have had some issues I am still working through (I have a crook neck and back from flying) and I actually have an appointment with a second neurosurgeon to discuss the possibility of spine surgery to relieve some chronic pain – which is a pretty scary thing for me to even think about. But it is seriously affecting me to the point where I am not able to do certain things I want to such as hiking, riding bikes, carrying things (like my nieces and nephews, or plants especially on trips to Bunnings!) and even just pottering in the garden is an issue some days, so we will see how it goes. Unfortunately this is all too common amongst pilots and super frustrating for me at only 30 years old. So far its been a combination of physio, medicine, avoiding certain activities and specific exercises from the EP such as TheraBand exercises, yoga, swimming and certain lifts to provide relief.
Whilst something I wouldn’t really talk about because its quite private, I also spent some time at a mental health retreat which I found really confronting / intense and have mixed feelings about. I did get a lot out of it and all of the sessions with the specialists and therapists, however I became totally overwhelmed at one point and so I actually decided to leave early which was sort of ‘less than ideal’, but it did really help me to understand a lot about ‘how I tick’ and how I need to slowly work on healing from trauma in my own time and on my own terms rather than getting overwhelmed all at once.
In terms of the investments, everything seems to really be ticking along really well, Pearler is managing my auto invest into index funds, and the investment property is slowly getting built (up to bricks and roof stage now). I dropped the ball on my websites and the traffic (and income) dropped by about a third which was disappointing but also expected because I basically did not post on any of my sites for months so it sort of stands to reason that the traffic dropped off. I have put in some more effort this month getting all of the outsourcers properly tee’d up so the posting cues have at least a few months worth of content cued up and ready to go. It has sort of been challenging from a time management perspective as I am spending a lot of time trying to work through all of the eBusiness institute champions course content, there is a lot of videos, workshops, homework assignments and guided builds which is taking up time. I am also being forced by them to start a local business site which has really taken me out of my comfort zone but I know will be worth it in the end.
I also had a really great chat with Aussie Doc Freedom about my top 10 money mistakes, with the idea that hopefully you can avoid some of the silly things I have done with my money. Aussie Doc is a specialist on a pretty impressive wicket, who blogs about their experience investing to transition from being a highly paid ‘trade time for money’ worker into living off passive income from an investment portfolio. IMO Aussie Doc Freedom blog is well worth a read, and has a lot of insightful information especially for high earners.
For more information on how I am planning for Early Retirement you can read my dedicated transition to retirement financial planning process article. Although to be honest, with the success of the website portfolio, I may need to revisit this as it looks like I wont even need to dip into the investments at all, and I might be able to use these to buy a big block of land in the Adelaide Hills and start my farm rather than continuing to rent an apartment.
Captain FI Investments
My investments are split between nine investment ‘areas’. I decided to start reporting on the progression and performance of each of my investments separately so we can find the best way to Financial Independence once and for all.
- ‘FIRE’ Portfolio (Global, US and AUS Index fund ETFs)
- Hands-free Automated Investing (Roboadvisors)
- Microinvesting (multiple platforms, including Stock picking)
- Real Estate (investment property)
- Peer to Peer lending
- Website Portfolio (Online businesses)
- Angel Investing (Pearler)
- Precious Metals (Gold and Silver)
‘FIRE’ Portfolio (Exchange Traded Index Funds)
My Financial Independence ETF Portfolio is a simple, low-fee passive portfolio which is split between three index tracking Exchanged Traded Index Funds (ETFs):
- I now have this portfolio fully automated through Pearler which has been a huge gamechanger for me and a massive weight off my mind
- I track my share portfolio using Sharesight, which means my accounting is also completely hands free using the Pearler API plugin.
- This means I pretty much only need to log in to confirm all the trades and dividends over the year when needed for my tax return, however I also choose to log in each month to produce these monthly updates for you guys.
- I have had questions about the tax efficiency of VTS and VEU due to the double tax or withholding tax drag because they are US domiciled funds. This is something I will be looking into. My limited understanding at the moment is that this tax drag creates an ‘effective MER’ of closer to 0.5% which might mean there may be a lower cost alternative that is better than these ETFs – something I will be investigating.
A solid month for the FIRE portfolio as the US share market boomed, but also the AUS share market, and to a lesser extend the global economy. I believe this is continued due to Quantitative Easing (Money printing by governments) and record low interest rates. Money is very cheap, yields are low and people are rushing to find ways to get better yields which may be fuelling speculation in the share market. Either way, I am along for the ride, but my expectation (Like I have been saying for over a year) is that inflation will start to really ramp up and we will be seeing $20 big macs soon – IMO there is no option OTHER than to invest!
A very nice looking rolling 12 month performance which is still riding the coat tails of the post covid crash correction, which I think makes it look a bit stronger than it would be in the long term – long term I am expecting closer to a 10% yield. Although no one has a crystal ball, so we will just have to see how it plays out long term. Awesome to see that the rolling 12 month returns on the portfolio was actually more than my base take home flying wage!
Nice total returns, but slightly disconcerting that it is above historical annual returns. This makes me think that we are probably either due for a correction or stagnation, although this could be the new normal with high inflation figures? The bottom line is no one can really predict it, and anyone who tells you they can are either stupid, naive or lying.
Portfolio vs Target – Pearler chart
I am still heavy on Australian shares through the A200 fund because early on in the journey I was chasing the franked dividend yields for a baseline level of stable, tax effective income for Financial Independence. I am now working to balance this home bias concentration risk by an automated purchasing of VTS and VEU through Pearler, using income from my website portfolio and dividends. I don’t really want to sell A200 to rebalance (although in hindsight, if I had of done this earlier I would be in a much better position due to the growth of VTS).
I have also made a $10,000 ‘Angel Investment’ into Pearler. This is a private equity investment into the actual brokerage tech company itself.
Hands-free Automated Investing Portfolio
The Hands-free Automated Investing Portfolio is a combination of the two largest Online investment advisors in Australia – Stockspot and SixPark. I think they are both pretty damn good, I have been fortunate enough to meet and interview the CEO’s of both companies and I don’t say this lightly but I 100% trust both of them
So, the difficult decision – which one did I go with? Well I couldn’t fault management, and both companies provide a fantastic user experience. To stay accountable and provide insights for the blog, I wanted to hedge my bets with an investment in both. This way I can analyse the performance of each against one another – comparing the results of asset allocation, and Chris Brycki’s choice to diversify with gold, against Pat Garratts’ choice to diversify with property and infrastructure.
I plan to continue to invest chunks into these investment companies when it becomes available, in addition to regular investments to the other portfolios and asset classes.
After a successful trial with the Stockspot roboadvisor platform where they allocated me the Topaz portfolio (which is their most aggressive portfolio), I have increased the balance to $15K. One thing I would like to see is a total annualised return feature (which may already be available and I haven’t just figured out where it is yet) because it will make a comparison with other investments a bit easier.
If you want to learn more about Stockspot, check out the dedicated review I did on Stockspot – which I will be keeping updated with all the lessons from my personal use trial.
The Six Park online investment is going well too, this month showing a few higher percent returns than Stockspot which I think is probably because the market has generally gone up quite a bit wheras gold being more of a defensive play hasn’t really done much. My guess is that SixPark might outperform Stockspot, but SixPark may have higher volatility. But again, no one has a crystal ball, and this is why I decided to split my eggs into these two baskets to diversify and see how the experiment plays out.
I have set up an automatic transfer from my bank into coinspot which will make it easier to stick to my goal of DCA into Bitcoin and Ether. Due to market movements my Bitcoin and Ether split went to almost 50/50 so I bought some more Bitcoin this month. My strategy is to get at least 1% of my net worth into cryptocurrency (which would probably end up to be approximately $20,000) but with the general acceptance of Bitcoin and Ether, I am starting to research about maybe somewhere between 1 to 5%.
I had a few questions about this in the inbox about the brokerage fee’s on Coinspot – I personally don’t use the ‘buy it now option’ as this costs 1%, I use the markets tab and place a buy order for the current market spot price, so the brokerage is only 0.1%.
I did a podcast episode on Bitcoin with Stephan Livera if you are interested to learn more about it, and also recently did an interview with Andrew Fenton from the CoinTelegraph where we talked a lot about crypto and its application on the Financial Independence Journey
I have been playing with a few of the biggest microinvesting platforms mainly just as research for the blog, because I want to see how they all stack up against each other, and against the other portfolio’s in terms of % gains. It is really starting to add up – definitely because of the Tesla stock held in Stake which is now up nearly 80% (Gee with hindsight I wish I bought more!)
I will soon be adding Commsec pocket to the mix – so let me know which of the 7 ETFs you’d like me to try for my commsec pocket account
I just decided to go all in on Tesla (Elon Musk’s electric car company) through Stake. Its interesting as this is on the US stock market, so the currency fluctuation affects the value of the investment in Australian dollars, so its kind of a fun way to learn about currency risk and hedging. Some absolute insane performance with rental car companies ordering insane amounts of tesla cars to electrify their fleet, so Tesla has really skyrocketed and you can see below the value has gone up over 76%. Tesla is now the worlds sixth most biggest company and it looks like there may still be room for growth. I am glad I own a huge chunk of it with my VTS index fund through Pearler.
Raiz aggressive portfolio – good split of ETFs, and a cheap option for small-ish balances at only $3.50 per month. To be honest the fee’s are more than my investment return, but the round ups from spending and the occasional affiliate click sign up bonus usually more than covers any fees, making it a weird pseudo-investment-pseudo-savings kind of account. I’m going to keep going, and once I reach about $1000, I think the investment returns should cover any fee’s and it will grow much quicker.
I didn’t do any trading on Superhero this month, just left my HACK shares to do their thing. I might have a look at some ethical ETFs on superhero over the next few months, but the HACK ETF has gone up by 24% since I bought it.
I also bought the Gold and Silver ETFs last month which haven’t really done much, and will be looking to add some other more speculative picks like ‘gold miners’ and ‘lithium stocks’ etc in here to see how they fair.
Spaceship Voyager Invest
Spaceship Origin portfolio: Top 100 Global Blue chip ETF. This seems to be going alright but If I am honest, for a speculative punt I should have probably gone for the Universe portfolio which seems to be having insanely high gains – I am hoping the origin portfolio might be more stable though. Latest screenshot below showing its actually had a pretty good yearly annualised performance of nearly 20%.
Plenti P2P lending
Plenti Peer to Peer lending account. I have it all set to auto reinvest and over time it should slowly grow, but it is good to know that I can either switch the auto invest off and have that drop into my account within a month, or I can just forfeit monthly interest and do an early withdrawal of whatever is on loan in case I ever need to quickly access the cash. This forms part of my emergency fund (the rest is in the bank). The interest rates through Plenti aren’t exactly stellar, but they are higher than the banks and true value will be in a big market correction where the money should be more stable.
No new updates for the investment property other than it will hopefully be completed within the first half (ideally the first quarter) of 2022. Currently the builders are working on the bricking for the walls and it will be really cool once we get the bricks and roofing all done, because that is going to be a big milestone.
What it does mean though, is as labour is done and materials consumed as we pass these ‘contract milestones’, the construction loan continues to be drawn down which means we are starting to pay interest as the mortgage offset amount is now less than the drawn mortgage. This is OK, as we are continuing to contribute $1000 per month so it just means some gets gobbled up by interest, and some goes into the offset which helps lower the amount of total interest paid.
Something we did not realise was that we would need to get several independent inspections done by a third party (outside the builder) because of some of the things the builder has done have eroded our trust in them, and we also have requirements for financing from the bank, which means we have had to pay this out of the offset account. There have also been a bunch of other small (but not insignificant) costs that we did not factor. But overall we will still make a good profit.
Rolling lessons learned:
It has taken a long time to get to this point, and boy have we made some embarrassing mistakes; including but not limited to…
- Thinking we could save money by NOT using an architect on a house and land package we bought from a developer *WITHOUT DA* from council
- Falling for the oldest trick in the book re: portable fencing hire (the fencing hire company stole the fences back and then tried to charge us for having them stolen)
- Endless delays by not having DA and needing to relodge with council three times meant we were one of the last blocks to be built on, and hence became the neighbourhood ‘free rubbish dumping ground’ which we then had to pay to get the rubbish removed and pay tip fees for (A big fuck you to any dodgy builders reading this who have ever engaged in this practice)
- COVID-19 delays and supply restrictions and union activity meant the builder essentially got a free pass to break contract schedule, putting us back by an extra six months with no penalty, compensation or damages payable – this further took money away from the ‘bottom line’ and made the build less profitable (would have been better to stick money into index funds)
- Lots of small (but not insignificant) expenses such as council fees, independent inspection fees and rates (even though the house isn’t build apparently you still have to pay rates…)
I have not changed any of the valuations, still going off the banks final completed estimation of $560K, and with the mortgage the way it is at $370K leaves me with about $190K of equity in the build. This will come in handy after completion and tenancy as I will likely be able to access some of this equity during a refinance towards buying the dream farm in the Adelaide Hills. Not sure how refinancing is going to go given I am not flying anymore (but hopefully may be able to finance based off website income).
Online Business (websites)
My websites overall have had a bit of a dip in traffic, and earnings in October were down about 30% (correlating to a general decrease in traffic of about the same). I don’t really know why, but I think its because I just haven’t been posting enough – I had a bit of a break from posting and unfortunately let the cue’s run dry for all of my sites (read: major stuff up and I dropped the ball, three of my sites didn’t get posted on for over four months – whoops!).
However I am still getting a healthy income from them which is allowing me to continue to invest and re-invest into the sites. I am even launching six new sites by the end of the year which I will let slowly grow! I can see a lot of comparisons to gardening, websites and investing…. I.e. you get the seed/seedling/capital, and need to work on it and grow it and water it or add to the investment and eventually it just takes off. Not all websites rocket along (just like not all plants or investments do), and some need more attention than others. Other websites however grow like weeds haha!
I am working to hire a few more writers and editors for the business, as well as writing the policy and training documents to get them able to produce content that is acceptable and in the correct format for the site. Learning to outsource has been a really important skill for me, and I am working through the eBusiness champions course which is teaching me how to do this more effectively and focus on my maximum return activites (MRAs). Whilst the champions content is full on and takes up a lot of time so is somewhat distracting me from the core purpose of actually building sites and running my company, it is upskilling me to do this more effectively so I see this more as an investment in my future skills and I have been trying to balance my schedule to get everything done.
It was awesome to connect with so many of you on the Champions bootcamp last weekend, and I am so excited to hear about all of the success you guys have been having with your website portfolios – very interesting to see a mix of Digital agency, directory sites and affiliate website strategies being used successfully (as you all know, I just focus on the last one being affiliate sites using amazon associates, google adsense and various affiliates).
I have done a pretty comprehensive review of the eBusiness institute as well as interviewed Matt and Liz Raad about this on the podcast about online business and websites if you want to learn more about this lucrative side hustle. They provide a free introductory course for CaptainFI readers. I have also recently interviewed Liz Raad again on the pod about entrepreneurship, which is live now.
Currently I have made an ‘Angel Investment’ in the Financial Independence brokerage company Pearler. This was the maximum allowable private investment of $10,000 (AUD) made in July 2021 with the number of ‘private equity’ shares based on their June company valuation.
This helps to fund Pearler’s capital investment pool and lets them grow and build their business – which is great for me since I have nearly $400K invested through them and I trust them to automate my investing for me.
As Pearler grows and builds its revenue, it will get an increasingly higher company valuation and my private equity will grow accordingly (i.e. it is not a free $10,000 loan, it is a $10,000 investment where I am buying a slice of the company).
Whilst this doesn’t align with my general investing philosophy of index investing and diversification, I feel I have a unique insight into Pearlers organisational and company structure and build a great rapport and trust with their executives, and I believe in this company and its genuine intentions to help people reach financial independence.
Also realise that while $10,000 does sound like a lot of money, but this is a small overall percentage of my total investments so my personal risk is actually quite low, and I would not encourage anyone to go out and make $10,000 Angel investments into tech startups. It is generally quite high risk (high risk = high reward). Make sure you don’t compare your financial ‘race’ with others (just think of it like a time trial where you are only competing with yourself).
The valuation of Pearler has gone up which is good, although I am not really sure what that means for my investment, I guess it has gone up, but I haven’t been told anything ‘official’ from Pearler yet.
Gold hasn’t really moved much, and silver went up about one percent. Kinda wishing I had put this into Tesla stock instead! LOL. But this will be a long term play, so we will see how it goes!
I have vague plans to get some lithium stocks because everyone keeps saying that it is directly related to batteries and the greenwashing thats currently going on (ESG and ethical investing) and that Tesla cars need to use lithium – so without knowing much more than that, I will take a little gamble on a lithium ETF soon and add it to the precious metals portfolio. If you know any good lithium ETFs let me know in the comments or email me! Thanks
Cash / emergency fund
Down to holding around $7k in the cash emergency fund. Have been reinvesting all profits from the business back into the business, to start more sites and pay for more content. Exciting times. The cash flow from the business is making me feel much more secure and not need to carry heaps of cash.
Captain FI net worth progression
The net worth progression graph is rather crudely constructed in Excel, but still demonstrates the ‘somewhat exponential’ journey over the past 13 years. You can access the archives for my Net Worth updates here to see how its gone over time.
Again I feel incredibly privileged that this started from ZERO, rather than from a negative. Unfortunately, a lot of people need to overcome a negative net worth whether that is due to student loans for their education or perhaps poor decisions with credit cards etc. This is a huge testament to how amazing my mum is and all of the sacrifices she made to support our family and prioritise our education, which allowed me to achieve so well during my final years of high school and ultimately score a scholarship at university (basically I got paid to study!).
|Date||Net worth||Difference||Saving Rate||Notes|
|Jan 09||$5,000.00||?||Estimate NW based on historical Super, Bank statements and assets at the time||LINK|
|Jan 10||$24,000||+$19,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 11||$40,000||+$16,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 12||$92,000||+$50,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 13||$130,000.00||+$38,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 14||$161,000.00||+$31,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 15||$200,000.00||+$39,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 16||$281,000.00||+$81,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 17||$340,000.00||+$59,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 18||$482,000.00||+$142,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jan 19||$542,000.00||+$60,000||?||Estimate NW||LINK|
|Jul 19||$578,900.00||+$36,900||84%||Finally began tracking NW this like a proper adult.|||
|Aug 19||$560,100.00||-$18,800.00 (-3.2%)||78%||Share market slight correction, Ok savings.|||
|Sep 19||$584,744.88||$24,644.88||72%||Share market rebound, savings rate not so good.||LINK|
|Oct 19||$600,386.00||$15,641.12||84%||Good saving this month. Normal salary, plus allowances, dividends from index funds, tax refund, eBay selling and was working abroad in asia where things are cheap.||LINK|
|Nov 19||$612,917.21||$12,531.21||76%||Falling short of my savings goal of 80%. Mostly domestic legs this month with higher costs. Also invested in hydroponics.||LINK|
|Dec 19||$625,350.00||$12,432.79||76%||Good savings of cash (for development) and investment, however higher spending due to Christmas period (Travel and Gifting).||LINK|
|Jan 20||$865,212.00||$239,862.00||55%||Super settlement was a HUGE boost to NW. $9K growth from stock market. Expensive month lots with lots of unexpected bills – weddings, travel, Booking flights, fines etc.||LINK|
|Feb 20||$851,802.0||-$16,592 (-1.9%)||52%||Large increase in spending on myself this month, still managed to tuck away $5K to put into shares and property. Corona Virus market scare resulted in a correction and gave NW a small negative trend. Time in the market not Timing the market! Became Single again.||LINK|
|Mar 20||$819, 354.6||-$31,806.95 (-3.7%)||80%||Another small step backwards in the NW due to the ‘corona crash’ in full swing. FIRE Portfolio of ETF/LICs down about 15% this month, however due to high savings rate and structure of my superannuation annuity the NW is only down 3.7%. Savings rate good at 80%, higher than usual income (with some slightly higher spending, too). Picking up shares on discount – this is the best outcome for someone in the accumulation phase with good income!||LINK|
|Apr 20||$847,023||+$27,668||85%||$11,000 in rebound of stock market capital prices alone (up 6%), plus first quarter dividends paid (heavily reduced due to banks withholding dividends). Great savings rate due to COVID-19 lock-down = no spend. Increased entrepreneurial efforts and selling down of physical possessions provided side hustle income. Two standard paychecks from flying activity; domestic day trips only so no allowances. All cash unfortunately had to go into the property development due to contract timing, I am chomping at the bit to buy some more index funds before they go back up in price too much – hence why I am selling most of my toys!||LINK|
|May 20||$857,859||+$10,836||92%||Some Great sales as I let go of my Super Sport Motorcycle, Some gym gear, expensive flying equipment and a few other various bits and bobs and invested this money. Flying still reduced, but increasing from April. The share market grew as I continued to make my fortnightly investments. I also wrote down the ‘value’ of some of my possessions (liabilities) such as my car, tools and furniture by around $10K to align them to market price (“tell him hes dreaming…!”).||LINK|
|June 20||$858,650||+$791||90%||Small Net Worth gain as I continue to declutter and simplify my life, despite being off work due to a family emergency. Share market not doing much.||LINK|
|July 20||$888,218||+$29,568||68%||Majority gain due to share market going back up, low spending due to being on the family farm and at home because of lock down.||LINK|
|Aug 20||$1,029,293||+$141,075||74%||Became a millionaire. Achieved this massive milestone I set out for myself in Dec 2019. Included unrealised gains in my property development as well as website business. Good savings rate due to not much spending, invested in Aus and total world shares. Investing in my web business. Starting to shift focus away from $$$ and more into looking after my mental health.||LINK|
|Sep 20||S1,045,486||+$16,193||60%||Officially took time off work for the rest of the year to be close and look after family during major operations. Continued to sell down physical possessions and work on digital business while at home. NW gain mainly due to valuation of websites.||LINK|
|Oct 20||$1,064,399||+$18,913||80%||Base income (retainer) and leave loading, dividend and websites provided income, as well as raiding my P2P lending capital. Significant bill for property due to design not meeting standards which effectively lowers my equity position, as well as fence being stolen.||LINK|
|Nov 20||$1,143,433||+$80,394||82%||Big gains came from share market growth (influencing both the Financial Independence share portfolio and Invested superannuation), Business gains (due to increased earnings) and a $30K boost to my annuity thanks to me logging in and checking the fine-print on the accumulation stats. I only invested around $7K. Insane that in one month, I accumulated nearly more net worth than I did in four years from 2009-2012||LINK|
|Dec 20||$1,152,920||+ $9,487.32||84%|
Share market slight drop, Earnings from Business, Contract work, Selling possessions. No share market investments this month (oops! I forgot and money was tight). Invested a lot into the website business this month (way more than planned) and it is still running at a decent loss (plans to turn it cash flow positive in 3 months).
|Jan 21||$1,165,678||+$12,757||79%||Great returns from the share market. Earnings from Business, Dividends, Flying wage, flipping items on consignment. Regular share contribution, investing in micro investing platforms, P2P lending, Investment property and big reinvestment into the business (still running at a loss)||LINK|
|Feb 21||$1,135,272||-$30,406||76%||Significant write down on property development due to council DA rejection and redesign requiring more money and creating less equity. Offset by small increase to Business value and investments. Simplified my investments and switched over to Pearler.||LINK|
|Mar 21||$1,155,594||+$20,322||71%||Continued investment into the portfolio as well as growth of investments and business. Gave my notice at work and looking for part time job at home for ‘Barista FI’||LINK|
|Apr 21||$1,242,220||+$86,727||74%||Property development back on track||LINK|
|May 21||$1,379,469||+$137,248||72%||Massive gains in the website portfolio due to revaluation based on recent business income, big growth of superannuation due to annuity increasing (salary increment) and shares generally went up. Crypto went down by about 40% or so.||LINK|
|June 21||$1,469,989||+$89,757||41%||Quit flying role and moved to Adelaide. Great month for investments, websites producing serious income so accordingly they are valued higher. Spent a lot on furnishing the new apartment and on enjoying some more luxuries. Seeing a therapist to help deal with anxiety from leaving work.||LINK|
|July 21||$1,543,959||+$74,732||???||Set myself up in Adelaide. Did basically nothing for the whole month except spent time with family, relax, sleep and go to doctors appointments. Massive boost to website portfolio AdSense and affiliate incomes, as well as general share market performance.||LINK|
|Aug 21||$1,624,116||+$70,156||???||Relaxed again, focused on mental and physical health, and spending time with family and my partner. Big increases to spending (too afraid to calculate a ‘savings rate’) but also big increases to NW through website portfolio income growth. Finally got the slab poured on the investment property (foundation).||LINK|
|Sep 21||1,640,663.85||+$16,547||???||Stocks, super etc went down, but business income from websites increased, plus business valuation increased. Property build. got to frame stage, and I also got a dog! Expenses for vet surgery well worth it. Moved into a nicer apartment||LINK|
|Oct 21||$1,705,907 +$65,243||+$65,243||30%||Big boost from website valuation due to securing new affiliate contracts for recurring income, shares went up nicely. No massive changes to this month. Calculated a savings rate and found myself pretty low due to spending a lot on my garden and going out quite a lot – I don’t think I will calculate this savings rate figure any more.|
Captain FI is a Retired Pilot who lives in Adelaide, South Australia. He is passionate about Financial Independence and writes about Personal Finance and his journey to reach FI at 29, allowing him to retire at 30.
5 thoughts on “Oct 21 Update: $1,705,907 (+$65,243)”
Hi Captain FI,
In an effort to learn more about the share market, I recently discovered your website and have read and re-read all your posts a number of times. It has been exhaustive, but importantly an excellent learning experience and a brilliant source of information, education and inspiration in helping me avoid the many pitfalls and traps before starting my investment journey.
Like many others in the FIRE community, I aim to follow a simple investment strategy of regular deposits into ETF’s. “Plant, Grow…..Harvest”.
I have landed on a portfolio of either VAS or A200, VEU and VTS. Still undecided between VAS and A200. I am intending on deploying money this month and after reading your October 21 Update last night. I am very interested in one of the points you raise regarding the tax efficiencies of VEU and VTS, and the effective MER of .0.5%. Excerpt from your blog.
“I have had questions about the tax efficiency of VTS and VEU due to the double tax or withholding tax drag because they are US domiciled funds. This is something I will be looking into. My limited understanding at the moment is that this tax drag creates an ‘effective MER’ of closer to 0.5% which might mean there may be a lower cost alternative that is better than these ETFs – something I will be investigating.”
It is short notice and I was wondering if you have had the opportunity to investigate this any further. I am hesitant to deploy money into VEU and VTS if their are more cost efficient alternatives.
Thankyou in advance.
Hey Darrin. I (and most other people) are probably over thinking this. The benefit of the three fund split means if you are interested in finance and tinkering, and are disciplined, you can tweak the asset allocation, i.e. if the arse falls out of the australian market but the American market soars, then you could potentially sell some VTS and buy some more A200, or just deploy more cash into A200. Its not really ‘timing the market’ if you have set guidelines and plans for asset reallocation and rebalancing with the intent to then buy and hold long term. If you just got DHHF or VDHG, then these companies do all the rebalancing for you. WRT your question on tax efficiency, IVV is australian domiciled so depending on your circumstances could be an alternative for VTS. I am hoping Vanguard move VTS and VEU to Australian domiciled anyway, and honestly there are bigger fish to fry, like your savings rate and earning more, than stressing out too much about this. So, it doesnt really answer your question sorry, but yes there are some great discussions on https://www.reddit.com/r/fiaustralia/comments/fplyyp/tax_implications_investing_in_vts_veu/ and https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=323409
Thanks mate, those discussion forums were a great read and very helpful and I agree, there are bigger fish to fry.
I also found the Passive Investing Australia forum very informative as well.
If you’re after a lithium ETF check out ACDC. They hold battery manufactures and lithium miners etc so a good place to be in for the next 5+ years
Thanks mate – having a look into it now