2022 Q4 Quarterly Report
It’s quarterly report time again, and yup it looks almost as dismal as the last quarter. The market appears to be suffering still but we are staying the course, and keep buying in. I keep telling myself that the market is still on sale and this is an opportunity for us.
From the numbers we can see that the overall balance has increased somewhat from Q3, which is a good sign. As indicated previously we have pulled some money from savings to form the deposit for our house, which explains the dramatic drop in overall balance from Q1 to Q2. The remaining drop was just the market collapsing!
The plan for 2023 is to max out contributions to the 401k and Roth IRA, with a view to getting about $600k in retirement savings in the next three years. In part I am hoping that market growth is going to assist in this but I keep hearing that we are due for a recession this year.
Right at the end of the quarter we finally purchased our house. We put down less than 20% as we are trying to save capital, but that costs of course costs in PMI. However we have very good credit so the PMI cost us less than $50 per month. We figure that we will refi in a 2-5 years to get a lower interest rate and at that point we should be able to remove the PMI completely.
Health has been on hold for the past quarter as well. This was mostly due to family visits, thanksgiving, Christmas and a lot of eating. I am fond of fruit cake and it is not good for me. However now that the house buying, visits and holiday celebrations are over, I can get back to walking every day. As long as I create a caloric deficit, I should be able to get to my target weight this year. My target is 170lbs (77kg). At the moment I am somewhere around 195lbs so I have about 25lbs to lose.
Reducing my weight will (we hope) get my blood pressure and blood sugars back where they need to be. And here is where I differ from my doctor because I don’t believe that my weight has a large bearing on my blood pressure but I have to lose the weight to prove it.
What is our 2023 Plan?
So for 2023, the plan comprises two key focus areas:
- Max out the retirement savings
- Lose weight and get our health straight
To max out the retirement savings, we have increased our 401k contributions, and started to accumulate cash for the Roth IRA. Given that the IRS has increased the limits this year, we can put $7,500 into the Roths and $30k into the 401ks each. In addition we will continue to max out the HSAs that we both have.
We will also put any extra cash we have into cash savings and an investment account. We plan on building a 12 month emergency fund this year, if we can. At the moment we think our annual spend is about $60k so an emergency fund of $30k will work assuming only one of us looses our job at any given time.
The other focus is health. None of this makes any sense if we are not heathy enough to enjoy our retirement. For me this means getting my weight down to 170lbs (77kg) and getting my diet right to put my blood sugars in the right place. I have to eat low carb and over the holidays, low carb has gone out of the window. I don’t make new year resolutions, this is just a carry on from last year.
I think at this point we are both comfortable with the retirement savings contributions. This means we can focus on our second goal of getting healthier. The goal is to be a lot more active this year than I was last year. I am fundamentally a lazy person (this makes for a great engineer) but when ever I actually do something physical I really do enjoy it. I need to break that, so that I want to do more physical things and enjoy them. We will see how that works out!