Net Worth Week 70 – Love in the South Edition

Gentle Readers,
Quick post from vacation. Keeping myself liquid because my business will most likely need cash from me soon. A big jump in CC was the first payment for invisalign.
Back to eating TexMex!

This week’s net worth numbers

8/4/2017 8/12/2017
 Joy 1108 1108
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1005 1005
Life 1818  1632
 IRA  13486  13267
 Brokerage 836  812
 Rewards Card 2 -2489 -2784
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  -438
SL 1 -105444 -105317
SL 2 -46464 -46406
 Earnest -4042 -3584
 Net Worth -139803 -140322
 Percentage Change .15% -.37%

How are your vacations going?

Net Worth Week 69 – Spinning Round Edition

Gentle Readers,
My tutoring sessions continue to improve my skills greatly. Every day I am more excited about the possibilities on the horizon.
Knowing that I will pay out of pocket for Invisalign the same month that my business has many bills due has been stressful. I think I will have to return the money my business “paid” me back to my operating account. Unless a new client comes in ready to hire me very soon. One current client contacted me yesterday for a tiny bit of work that will help enormously, but not cover everything I have going out this month. I should be able to do everything he needs this weekend.
I am grateful that I have this blog, because it taught me how simple a balance transfer is; it also reminds me that the last time I took this step it was because of dental pain, as well. C’est la vie.  My credit score is good and I have no plans in the next six months to take out a loan of any sort. Knowing that I have significantly higher outlays than projected income in the next two months, my plan is to hold off on paying down my credit card so that I have the funds available for my business, if necessary. Once the first big payment is due for my Invisalign, I’ll put it on my credit card and then initiate a balance transfer. That will buy me many months of no interest for the fee of a 2% balance transfer. This is much cheaper than letting it sit on a credit card with an APR over 10%.  It’s not the greatest situation, but I know better how to use the tools available.
Next week may not have a net worth check in because I will be in Texas visiting my love! I cannot lie, I have been dreaming about TexMex.

This week’s net worth numbers

7/28/2017 8/4/2017
 Joy 1107 1108
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1005
Life 1499  1818
 IRA  13481  13486
 Brokerage 809  836
 Rewards Card 2 -2406 -2489
 CC (largest) -114  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105329 -105444
SL 2 -46411 -46464
 Earnest -4033 -4042
 Net Worth -140010 -139803
 Percentage Change -.46% .15%

How often have you felt the phrase “One step forward and two steps back” in your financial life?

Net Worth Week 68 – This is Gonna Hurt Edition

Gentle Readers,
I’m so glad that the most recent attempt to kill my access to health insurance as a small business owner failed!
The community theatre show was dreadful, but I enjoyed seeing my best friend. Our schedules have not aligned often this summer, and I had missed her.
I had my first chance to test myself in my new skill due a job posting. I did not achieve a high enough score this time, but I have  much better idea about how to move forward. I discussed the test results with my tutor and she is helping me with my plan to re-focus where my skill is lacking. Knowing where you stand is powerful knowledge. I think a few more months of hard focus should have me ready.
I went for my semi-annual cleaning, and happily have no cavities! My dentist has now approved me for invisalign to help fight my TMJ since it seems my teeth have finished shifting after the removal of the final wisdom tooth. It’s going to be an expensive few months. However, I am grateful for this as it should reduce my pain. I’m frankly weirded out by the idea that my smile will be forceably changed. My teeth have always been crooked and I like that about me. I worry that I won’t recognize myself and that I will look less interesting.  But, I must see reason, and know that my teeth are not in the healthiest position currently.
The cost of invisalign would have been easier to handle with a gig in the new skill, but that was not yet to be.

This week’s net worth numbers

7/21/2017 7/28/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 1480  1499
 IRA  13479  13481
 Brokerage 824  809
 Rewards Card 2 -2045 -2406
 CC (largest) 0  -114
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105213 -105329
SL 2 -46359 -46411
 Earnest -4025 -4033
 Net Worth -139365 -140010
 Percentage Change .45% -.46%

Did you ever have braces?

Net Worth Week 67

Gentle Readers,
This week’s heatwave is worse than last week’s heatwave. The bandelettes  are doing their job. I need to venture out of my home this weekend for a friend’s brunch and a community theatre show. I’m not looking forward to foregoing the AC, but friendship decrees it!
This has definitely been a week of learning. I am very glad I attended that training last Friday even though it meant I did not get a full 40 at my gig. The knowledge and networking was worth it. I met a woman in my field who is interested in starting her own similar business now that she is financially successful and does not have to worry about income. We have a lot to discuss.
I continued with the intensive tutoring. Really big breakthroughs are happening, and I am exhausted. 2ish weeks to go! Then maybe a long nap!
This is my second week under -$140K!!!

This week’s net worth numbers

7/14/2017 7/21/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 508  1480
 IRA  13304  13479
 Brokerage 817  824
 Rewards Card 2 -1693 -2045
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105098 -105213
SL 2 -46306 -46359
 Earnest -4016 -4025
 Net Worth -139990 -139365
 Percentage Change .69% .45%

How are you handling your heat wave?

Net Worth Week 66 – It’s Hot in Here Edition

Gentle Readers,
My city is experiencing a heat wave, and I may need more bandelettes to continue the good fight against friction.
I’m a bit frustrated with my teeth. I take good care of them, but they cause me enormous bills. I’ve been in constant tooth pain since last summer when my final wisdom tooth came in. It came in such a way to alter the position of my other teeth. That process was painful. Unfortunately, the new position also means that my night-guard which prevents my TMJ from making my pain unbearable is no longer fitted to my teeth as they are. My dentist is aware, but told me that we can’t do anything until 7 + months after my wisdom tooth removal, because my jaw and teeth will still be settling. Then she wants me to do braces and force my teeth into healthier positions to ease some of the pain and tension. For now, I just wait in pain. Wearing the guard causes deep pain in all of my teeth, but not wearing it allows me to grind my teeth causing damage. It’s an expensive and painful position to be in.
I’m really enjoying my tutoring. I am definitely learning a ton, but it is eating in to my sleeping time so I’m extra tired. There will be three more weeks of this, and then I’ll reassess to see if I need to purchase some more. Or if my body can take more, we’ll see what wins out. My progress has definitely kicked up a notch.
Today I’m off work to attend a training for young professionals in my field. I won’t be paid for these hours, but I think I will be much more confident in my business. Definitely worth it.
In more happy news, a potential client contacted my business. He’s been a bit flaky before, but it would be nice to add to my client-base now that I cannot do overtime.
I’m happy to see my debt go down. This is the first time I’ve been under -$140000!

This week’s net worth numbers

7/7/2017 7/14/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 500  508
 IRA  13085  13304
 Brokerage 700  817
 Rewards Card 2 -2121 -1693
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105242 -105098
SL 2 -46372 -46306
 Earnest -4008 -4016
 Net Worth -140964 -139990
 Percentage Change .02% .69%

How are you handling your heat wave?

The Heat of A Summer Thigh – The Great Friction Battle

Gentle Readers,

I am a dress-loving femme.

Once I hit 25, my thighs decided it was time to become acquainted. They previously were happy to stand apart and acknowledge one another from a distance. No longer. They love each other and cannot abide separation. But like many loves, there is friction in their relationship.

My thighs cannot be made to play nice on their own, but they refuse to be kept in separate quarters. I had to come up with a solution so that we could all live in harmony, without confining myself to pants when it is oppressively hot in the summer. I needed the freedom to move and the freedom to not perish of heat stroke.

I tried many solutions and can now help everyone solve their personal thigh-fight.

Solutions for Summer Thighs

My least favorite, but workable solution is Anti Monkey Butt Powder. It is calamine and cornstarch. Softening and drying. It is effective, but I don’t like how messy it is to put on. Squeeze some into your hand and then rub it onto the body part that wants less friction. Some always falls from your hand to the floor. There is always residual on your hand. You have to immediately go to the sink to wash it off. Not a convenient solution when you share your bathroom with two others who don’t want you walking around trailing powder.  I love the name though, because I giggle easily. 7/10.

My next workable solution is Friction Defense, aka Chub Rub. It comes in a tube similar to deodorant. You apply it to whatever body part you want to slide easily against something and let it do it’s magic. I love this product. I previously used “BodyGlide” for runners, but I grew frustrated with the company. The company used to sell one BodyGlide product and it was in a nice gray package and marketed to everyone. Suddenly, they decided that they needed one for men and one for women. There was absolutely no difference in the product, but the packaging became blue or pink. The pink one was also priced higher. That pissed me off. There is no need to gender friction. Then I found the Gold Bond version I’m using now and it is also cheaper than BodyGlide.  Definitely workable. The only drawback with this product is that sometimes you have to reapply based on heat and humidity. I keep a stick in my purse. 9/10.

My actual favorite solution is super femme and no one is surprised. Bandelettes are beautiful. You measure your thigh to figure out the appropriate size and then you wait for these lovely helpers to arrive. They come in multiple colors and sizes and I adore them so much. My thighs are protected and get an extra bit of sexy that absolutely impacts my strut. Just put them on and go about your day knowing that your thighs are safe and gorgeous. 10/10 would buy again.

What are your summer wardrobe protection mechanisms?

Net Worth Week 65

Gentle Readers,
Work finally took away our OT. Slow and steady must win the race now.  My tutoring begins next week and I’m very excited. I’ll probably have less time for interacting with folks because I need to focus really hard on my lessons to make sure they sink in appropriately. A little focus should go a long way, I think. The plan is to devote most of July to this and then potentially find a gig in it. Such a gig would definitely change my money situation quickly.
I should have noted it before, but I am over halfway done on repaying my Earnest Loan! Huzzah!

This week’s net worth numbers

6/30/2017 7/7/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 45 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 1439  500
 IRA  13134  13085
 Brokerage 704  700
 Rewards Card 2 -2902 -2121
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105090 -105242
SL 2 -46306 -46372
 Earnest -4465 -4008
 Net Worth -140992 -140964
 Percentage Change -.35% .02%

Do you still invest in your skill-building?

Net Worth Week 64 – She’s Here Edition!

Gentle Readers,
My room is not yet perfectly organized. (Hint, it never will be.) But I have reduced the amount of stuff through donations, give-aways, and trash where appropriate.  I got it done just in time for my girlfriend to arrive.
My niece is also visiting, but some tomfoolery has prevented me from seeing her until her last day here.
It is still unclear how long my job will last. We had 2.5 days of sitting waiting for work before we were put back on tasks that don’t need to be done. My resume is as current as possible.
It has been an expensive few weeks. This has corresponded with OT being curtailed due to weekend server upgrades. I thought I’d be done with my credit cards before the end of June. I was mistaken.
Thankfully, one of the expenses is for my tutor who I will be starting with very soon. July is going to be an intensely focused month on skill-building. Hopefully, when August roles around, I will find a job in that skill. There was a posting for a similar gig this week, but it is bad form to leave a gig early and I’m not quite prepared.
 It’s time to head out the door for breakfast. I hope y’all have wonderful Fourth of July Weekends!

This week’s net worth numbers

6/23/2017 6/30/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 45 45
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 1116  1439
 IRA  13106  13134
 Brokerage 709  704
 Rewards Card 2 -2291 -2902
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card (98) CR  0
SL 1 -105011 -105090
 SL 2 -46266 -46306
 Earnest -4455 -4465
 Net Worth -140500 -140992
 Percentage Change .19% -.35%

Do you have plans for Independence Day?

Net Worth Week 63 – “Stable” Employment Edition

Gentle Readers,
I’ve done a good job working through some of the giveaway piles and they should be gone before my girlfriend arrives. Gave the nicest thing to a friend and will be donating the rest to a nonprofit.
Work is being very sketchy with information. I think my project is ending, but they won’t say. This is par for the temp employment course, but is always frustrating because you are never sure that you should be looking for a new gig until you are out of another. This is why a resume needs to be up to date. As soon as you are told that employment ends in 2 hours (this is what they do to temps), you can email your recruiters the updated resume and let them start working for you.
I get tempted when the balance is this close to raid my bank to pay off the credit card in full, but I don’t know if I have paying work next week and that feels dangerous.
Had the last free class and signed up for the great deal on a tutor. I think really focused work is going to get me ready to charge for this skill.

This week’s net worth numbers

6/16/2017 6/23/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 45 45
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 476  1116
 IRA  13145  13106
 Brokerage 705  709
 Rewards Card 2 -2136 -2291
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card (98) CR  (98) CR
SL 1 -104890 -105011
 SL 2 -46210 -46266
 Earnest -4446 -4455
 Net Worth -140764 -140500
 Percentage Change .37% .19%

Do you feel that your employment is stable?

Fannie Mae Easing DTI Standards Impacts Your Ability To Get a Mortgage

Gentle Readers,
Remember when I learned that FHA guidance would make it much harder for me to get a mortgage any time soon? Things are changing, potentially.
Fannie Mae is changing their debt-to-income (DTI) formula. This will allow some folks to qualify for a mortgage who could not under the old standards.  The old DTI maximum was 45%, but at the end of July, it will be 50%.

What is the DTI Formula?

The DTI is simple to calculate. All of your debts go on the left of the colon and your income goes on the right. Then divide your debt by your income and multiple by 100.  That is your DTI percentage.
  • If I make $4000 a month, and have debt obligations of $2000, I have a DTI of 50% and am just barely eligible.  2000:4000  (2000/4000)100=50%
  • If I make $4000 a month, and have debt obligations of $1800, I have a DTI of 45% and am eligible.  (1800/4000)100=45%
This applicable DTI seems to be for Fannie Mae mortgages and not Freddie Mac or Federal Housing Administration mortgages. Their standards may or may not change to fall in line.

What does this DTI standard mean for me?

I’m not sure that this is a good move. The more debt you have relative to your income, the harder it is to pay for everything you need. This is true even without emergencies cropping up. Perhaps if the rent in your market is outrageous in comparison to your potential mortgage + insurance + maintenance, then this could be a boon for you.

 

This change still seems risky. Everything in the US market seems frothy right now. Real estate and other investment prices do not seem to correspond to the underlying asset values in a lot of markets. It does not seem like now should be the time for loosening our standards. Just because you can receive a mortgage, that does not mean it is financially responsible.

 

The next thing I need to research on my quest to own a condo is the Fannie Mae Homepath program.

 

What do you think of the new DTI requirement? Good for the market or for individuals?