Investment Update – March 2013

The following is an update of Tim’s plan to retire early.  Please note the house is paid for so net worth is no longer tracked.

To track my progress I’ve decided to track both my expenses and my investment gains.  So once the investments gains are consistently beating my expenses I’m financially independent and can stop working.  I think my ideal tracking of this would be one full year of investment and spending data, but I don’t have that yet.  So for now I’ll do a trailing six 12 month average on spending and investments for the calendar year.


Account (Contribution), [+/- Gain or Loss less contributions]

RRSP $32,790 ($100), [+$390]
LIRA $12,390 ($0), [+140]
TFSA $17,260 ($0), [-$210]
Pension $70,270 ($973), [+$467]
Wife’s RRSP $38,570 ($0), [+$290]
Wife’s Investment Account $13,630 ($0), [+$120]
Wife’s TFSA $14,020 ($2,600), [-$190]
My Investment Account $7,160 ($0), [+$10]
High Interest Savings Account $1,900 ($0),[$0]

Investment Net Worth $207,950 ($3673 ), [+1,000 or 0.5%]

(YTD Contribution: $14,729), [YTD Gain: $10,520 or 5.2%], YTD Avg Gain $3507

Spending Averages

Last Month $2585

Trailing Last 12 Months (less mortgage payments) $2961


Number of months spending covered by investment gains: 1.2 {Target 1.0 or higher}


So this month I used my average 2013 monthly gains compared to my trailing 12 month spending to get my Result number of 1.2.  I finally had enough data in Mint Canada to make that happen. So while I’m still meeting my target I need that to be occurring on a 12 month trailing average for both investments gains and spending before I declare my retirement plan a success. In fact, I realized the trailing 12 month spending includes vacations which isn’t in my plan so in fact if I’m meeting this target I would be exceeding my plan.  Mmm, I’ll have to track that better in the future to back out that information.

This month our expense took a hit as we had an unusual vet bill for our dog.  She needed a lot of dental work done and that cost us $760.

On the investment side I’ve finally started contributing to the TFSA accounts, but at this moment it is just cash.  We moved the money a little late so we are stuck for the long weekend waiting for the transfer to clear before my wife goes investment shopping.

Any questions?

10 thoughts on “Investment Update – March 2013”

  1. I always seem to have an unusual vet bill so I have increased the amount I deposit to my yearly expenses savings account so that I am not caught short.

    Every pay period I deposit an amount to cover house insurance, vet, car repairs, house maintenance, extra health and dental costs. I increased the amount I keep in this account because this is the area that sunk my budget in 2012. I want to be prepared to pay cash for almost anything.

  2. @Jane,

    We do something similar the savings account above is used for that. It’s just had a hard few months as we also had to replace our garage door opener recently. So the fund is down a little bit more than I like, but I’m not in a panic. Worse case scenario would be we stop investing for a month and top it up the savings.

  3. That’s why I don’t have a dawg!

    Too bad you could not take your dawg to Mexico, cheap dental care!

  4. Hi Tim, I’m curious as to how you break down the monthly spending amount of $2585. My wife and I struggle to keep our variable costs below 2000 every month and then on top of that we have our fixed costs such as mortgage, utilities, insurance, etc. I’d love to see how you break down that $2585 as a comparison/benchmark. We don’t feel like we buy a lot of things… Although, every month we get a few unexpected expenses like needing a new printer, passport renewal, car repairs, etc. We spend about 800 a month on food and the rest goes to “etc”… but we always come in around 2000. Thanks!

  5. I’m not sure if my dog is genetically lucky dentally but at 6 y.o., the vet says he has a great set of chompers and complimented my teeth brushing skills – which I’ve never done.
    Since he was a pup (and being a golden retriever – I think you have a lab? – they’re mouthy and it kept him busy) I’ve bought a continuous supply of raw bones from a more rural butcher for $3 apiece. That’s the big femurs that they cut into about 4 pieces so it’s cheap entertainment for him. Used to be $1.50 each a year or so ago – damn inflation… 🙂

  6. First off, I’m impressed with your determination to be so deciplined in maintaining your goal and keep living frugally. However, please don’t lose sight of your wife’s happiness. Be sure that she’s totally on board with your plan or you should adjust a little. Nothing destroys a financial plan more than a divorce. My husband is frugal and wants to retire early also and I’m mostly on board but sometimes, it gets a little irritating when he cuts too much. Sometimes, I would just tell him that I’ll rather we work a year longer just so that we don’t have to squeeze like crazy. He listens! Remember, happy wife = happy life 🙂

  7. Hi Tim,

    Can you elaborate on your pension plan in the next update? Presumably this is a DC plan, that’s why your tracking assets?

  8. @TS – Yes it is a DC plan, so I know exactly what I have in it each month. What else did you want to know?

  9. @wifey,

    My wife laughed at your post, because she understands your point of view. My wife is fully on board with the plan, but for different reasons I want the freedom and she wants the financial security. We tend to compromise a fair bit on our spending. Could I be spending less? Yes, but we don’t to keep things balanced.

  10. @Gene – Sure I could give some data, what did you want to know? I may not post it on the blog, so email me (see the About page).

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