2016 is drawing to a close. It has been an extremely busy, yet great year. I moved to the Midwest to live with my girlfriend. I purchased a bicycle that I use all the time (until recently when the weather decided to snow everyday and not break 30 degrees). I traveled a little too much for work and weddings. And I kicked butt financially.
First let’s recap what my 2016 financial goals were when I set them last December:
- Max out pre-tax 401k – PASS – I planned on doing this by September but actually got there in July.
- Max out Roth IRA – PASS
- Max out my HSA – PASS
- Pay off my student loans – PASS – I’m debt free!
- Save 100% of my raise and bonus – PASS – This has been going directly to my brokerage account.
- Contribute to my after-tax brokerage account as much as possible – PASS
As you can see I batted 1.000 financially in 2016. Moving out of Manhattan to the Midwest definitely helped me on the expense side, while busting my ass at work lead to a pretty decent increase in income. The US equity market has also been on a tear in 2016 which was icing on the cake.
The GF started cutting my hair as well and the $60 clippers I purchased paid for themselves in three haircuts. This will be a $300+ run-rate cost savings for me. Also if you want to test your relationship to see if it is cut out for the long haul, this is one way to test that REAL quick. Luckily we are still together.
Here were my 2016 non-financial goals:
- Get to the gym 4x per week and hit a 315# squat, 225# bench, and 405# deadlift – FAIL – If I work a “normal” 40 hour week I definitely get to the gym four times in a week. But if we are traveling to visit family and friends, or going on vacation, or I’m traveling for work, this definitely doesn’t happen. Also I have been battling a little knee injury which I am just starting to get over, so my numbers aren’t near where I’d like them to be.
- Try and negotiate a remote work arrangement for at least six months – PASS – I’m at seven months and going strong!
- Read more books in 2016 – Half-PASS – I have definitely read more in 2016 than any other year, but still nowhere near where I want to be. Need to prioritize this more.
- Travel – Half-PASS – We went on a cruise in February, but then the rest of my travel was mostly work or wedding related. While I definitely enjoy traveling to see friends and family, the weddings get in the way of the time we have to travel for pleasure. I have also realized too much personal travel is stressful for me, at least while working full-time. I think I need to tone down the travel ambition, at least while I’m working. Maybe this will change down the line once I pull the plug from working for a paycheck.
2017 financial goals:
My 2017 financial goals will remain the same as 2016, with the exception of paying off my student loans since they are gone, and include maxing out all tax advantaged accounts I have at my disposal and investing what is left into my after-tax brokerage account.
2017 non-financial goals:
- Get to the gym 4x per week and hit a 315# squat, 225# bench, and 405# deadlift – let’s try this again.
- Remain in my remote work arrangement – As long as I can keep up with my current stressful/demanding career, I know I want to do it remotely. I have no plans of moving back to metro NYC to trudging to the office everyday.
- Pass the Series 65 – I have been thinking about a second career a lot lately. I’ve been giving financial advice for years to family, friends, and coworkers for free and have enjoyed helping others tremendously. The Series 65 is an exam you need to pass before you can give investment advice for money.
- Read more – Self explanatory. I like non-fiction.
- Buy a mountain bike – I like my hybrid bike so much I’m going to get a mountain bike as well. There are some nice trails near me that I want shred.
Currently I’m looking forward to two weeks off of work coming up and our trip to Cancun (if anyone is going to be in Cancun the first week of January – let me know!). I hope you all had a great 2016 as well and were able to crush all your goals, financial and not. Thanks for reading in 2016 and happy holidays!
How was your 2016? What does 2017 have in store for you?