2018 is upon us and one of the best parts of the new year, IMO, is being able to reset our goals and determine what we’d like to accomplish in the coming year. Looking ahead, 2018 is going to be a transitional year for us with big changes in store for our family. I’ve kept these anticipated changes (some of them costly) in mind while setting our goals and while that means we won’t be able to replicate our results from 2017, I’m still excited to accomplish some big things in 2018. Without further ado:
Goal 1: Maintain a monthly average savings rate of 50%
2017 was the first year we were able to save 50% of our after-tax income and a big reason we were able to do so was our 60%+ savings rate in January when we received our bonuses. The rest of the year, we maintained a savings rate in the low-to-mid 40s but our January savings rate lifted us to the 50% mark when looking at the entire year in the aggregate. Due to some anticipated home improvement projects this year, we won’t be able to save more than 60% of our January bonuses. We’re looking at somewhere in the low 40’s, which means we’ll have to ramp up our monthly savings rate for the rest of the year to at least 50% (in some months, much more than that). Saving 50% consistently on a monthly basis is going to take a lot more discipline, but I think we can step up to the plate this year.
Goal 2: Increase monthly college savings by 20%
Some of our early readers will remember that we paid off our student loans in 2016 and since then, we’ve shifted some of our focus to the kids’ college funds so that they avoid the same fate. We contributed to their college funds even during our student loan payoff, but once the student loans were gone, we decided to step up our 529 savings to make up for some lost ground. We increased our monthly college savings by 20% in 2017 and are aiming to increase it another 20% in 2018.
Goal 3: Increase net worth by 15%
We increased our net worth by 20% in 2017 in no small part due to help from the market. I don’t think that same market performance will happen in 2018, so I’m pulling things back a bit this year and aiming for a 15% increase. Our savings rate will remain consistent year-over-year so if for some miraculous reason we see another record bull market this year, then we should be able to go comfortably over that 15%.
And that’s about it, folks. Short and simple over at the Single Income Life household. I am really looking forward to the year ahead and can’t wait to follow you all in your FIRE journey. Onward and upward!