Wednesday, 31 December 2014

December 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – December 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – December 2014 Update

Overall, December was a great month for the MoH.  Career-wise, I achieved a new goal, setting up my own consulting business and landing my first big contract.  It should be a long-term program, and the organisation has a great culture for me – stratospherically different to my last bricks-and-mortar employer.

Financially, however, December was a slightly below-average month for the MoH, with total investible assets increasing, but not as much as forecast.

Super and shares were up, due to better sharemarket performance, and the addition of some Medibank IPO shares.  I’ve found that all the IPOs I’ve invested in this year are turning out quite well.

Sunday, 30 November 2014

November 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – November 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – November 2014 Update

Following my big news last month, November was all about the transition to the next stage of my career.  I had a few false starts looking at roles that sounded good, but didn’t align 100% to the direction I want to take.  But as of the end of the month, I have an opportunity that ticks all the boxes.  Touch wood, I’ll finalise it in the coming days.

I needed the break anyway, just to relax a bit after the frenetic pace of my last job.  The last time I’ve had more than a couple of weeks off at a time was back in 2010!  I’m gradually working a list of all the maintenance, repairs, and renovations I want to get done during my break, and some of it is starting to see progress.  A lot of it, however, is going to extend into December and 2015, given the tradies’ lack of availability.

Friday, 31 October 2014

October 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – October 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – October 2014 Update

October continued the roller coaster ride for the MoH.

Following the events I intimated at in my September post, it was time for me to find a new job, one both challenging enough to keep me focused and lucrative enough to keep the Millionaire by 2020 Plan on track.  For a long time, my goal has been to establish my own company and move into contracting, and this seemed like the door opening for me, with great opportunities beckoning.  I got in touch with a number of contacts at recruitment agencies and started the process of searching the job ads.  Slowly but surely, I began to receive some positive responses, and as at the end of month, I've got three opportunities that I think could turn into an offer. Of course, I only need one!

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

September 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – September 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – September 2014 Update

September was a rollercoaster ride for the MoH, commencing with the emotional highs of a personal career milestone achieved, climaxing with a major challenge to my morals and business ethics, and ending with the realisation that the simple act of saying “no” can open new doors and seemingly endless opportunities.

As I mentioned last month, 1 September was a huge milestone for me in my bricks-and-mortar life, as we had a major go-live for the program I manage.  My team smashed the milestone, delivering on time and even slightly under budget, with virtually no issues.  There was a large system component to the go-live, so you always expect some hiccups, but even these have been minor.  We had a month of post go-live support, which concluded with visits to our state offices to ensure that everything was working as planned.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

August 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – August 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – August 2014 Update
 August was an above-average month for the MoH, with all of my investment categories rebounding a bit from the slump over the past couple of months. 

Super and shares were up, due to the sharemarket rebound.  The IPOs I’ve bought into over the last two months are starting to see some growth.  And cash inched up again.

As a result, the Millionaire by 2020 plan tracker is now sitting at 23.3% compared to the target of 17.0%.  This equates to a 1.3% increase over July, which should recover some of the more average returns over the past few months.
 

Thursday, 31 July 2014

July 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan - July 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan - July 2014 Update

July was a ho-hum month for the MoH, with a mixed bag of results. 

Super was up … a bit.  Shares were down … a bit.  Cash was up … a bit.

As a result, the Millionaire by 2020 plan tracker is now sitting at 22.0% compared to the target of 16.1%.  While this is a 0.7% increase over June, it’s not as big an increase as the usual target (around 0.9%).

Like June, it was a low spending month.  My main goals-related spending was some landscaping work.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

It’s time for another contest … The Millionaire on Heels reaches 50k page views

Rene Gruau shows what it’s like to reach 50k page views
Rene Gruau shows what it’s like to reach 50k page views
Source: http://pzrservices.typepad.com/vintageadvertising/2013/11/fashionable-women-in-hats-by-ren%C3%A9-gruau.html

Today I logged in and saw that The Millionaire on Heels site has reached 50k page views.

Of course, there are big sites out there that generate 50k page views a minute, but for a little site like ours, I’m pretty impressed!  We started off with around 100 views a month, and now we’re getting thousands.

So to celebrate this milestone and say thank you to everyone who’s registered to read the blog, I thought I’d organise another contest.  All you need to do is sign up to follow the site and receive RSS feeds and then email me with an improvement you’d like to see on the site – easy!  The best response received on or before midnight 6 August 2014 (AEST) will receive a $50 prize.

Monday, 30 June 2014

June 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – June 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – June 2014 Update

June was another cyclical month for the MoH, with the share market coming back later in the month.  The Millionaire by 2020 plan tracker is now sitting at 21.3% compared to the target of 15.3%.  This is a 1.3% increase over May, which makes up some of the ground I lost last month.

The share market seems to have recovered a bit.  My shares balance has returned to and exceeded April levels, and my super balance is up a fraction.

Cash on hand is down as I prepaid my margin loan interest.  That money is now sitting in the margin loan account.  But it will be offset by my tax refund as soon as I can find the time to prepare my return.  

Monday, 9 June 2014

I'll be back soon ...

Hello, hello. It’s been far too long since I put my fingers to the keyboard to post. 

The MoH has gone into hiding for the last few months for reasons too numerous to mention. First and foremost, the day job has taken its toll. Plus there’s been the odd medical disaster (at the negative end of the spectrum) and more travel (at the positive end). 

Fear not … the Millionaire by 2020 plan is still on track, and last month hit a record 20%! While I haven’t been posting, I have still been tracking all my spending and investments, so I’ll insert a few catchup posts with the missing months’ charts. 

Saturday, 31 May 2014

May 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – May 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – May 2014 Update

I feel like I could just copy my March in review post for May.  It seems like every month my share portfolio has had some gains recently, the next month they disappear.  The technical term for that would be ranging … At least most of my shares do pay reasonable dividends, though, so it’s not like they’re doing absolutely nothing productive!

In terms of the vital numbers, the Millionaire by 2020 plan tracker is sitting at 20.0% versus a target of 14.4%.  While in absolute terms that’s great, it’s only a 0.2% increase from April, which is a bit disappointing.

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

April 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – April 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – April 2014 Update

April was yet another good month for the MoH, with some substantial gains for the Millionaire by 2020 plan.  The tracker is now sitting at 19.8% compared to the target of 13.5%.  The tracker goes up by around 0.9% a month, so this month’s 1.9% increase was over double that!

The share market seems to have recovered a bit, and my shares balance is back to February levels.

My super balance is up a bit, and I hit a major super milestone, which I’m quite excited about.  I won’t reveal the figure, but it ends in 00,000!

Cash on hand is again up … although I’m not sure exactly why.

Monday, 31 March 2014

March 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – March 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – March 2014 Update

March was another good month for the MoH.  The Millionaire by 2020 plan tracker is sitting at 17.9% versus a target of 12.6%.

The share market was down, so not surprisingly my shares balance was down.  But super held steady.

Cash on hand went up due to my second bonus surprise in February.

In terms of my goals, I made a big payment for my upcoming business trip.  I try to do a course or convention for personal development reasons once or twice a year.  So this year, I’m going to invest in refining my business French skills.  I also had a lot of catch-up spending on business start-up costs – packaging, inventory, and design work – as my credit card payments fell due.

Friday, 28 February 2014

February 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – February 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – February 2014 Update

February was a good month in MoH land, at least in terms of Millionaire by 2020 progress … my non-financial goals are taking a hit at the moment due to bricks-and-mortar work commitments.  My downward blip in January reversed itself, and the Millionaire by 2020 tracker is back to 16.6%, compared to a target of 11.7%.

The share market improved, so both my super and shares balances increased strongly.

And my bonuses arrived!  I actually forgot that my long-term incentive is spread across two years, so it was a pleasant surprise when the $ arrived in my bank account.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Upcoming February posts

Summer at the beach in more elegant times
Summer at the beach in more elegant timesSource: http://myvintagevogue.com

January has flown by, and the MoH has not been spending much time on the beautiful Sydney beaches.  My life has pretty much been consumed by:
  • My day job
  • My night job (which unfortunately is simply the second half of my day job after the back-to-back meetings finish)
  • My new business venture
  • The MoH

My new business venture is really getting traction!  The ingredients and most of the packaging have arrived, and the label design is sorted.  I just need to order a few more bits and pieces and then I can start packaging and selling it.  (I'll let you know what "it" is when I've launched the website!)

Friday, 31 January 2014

January 2014 in review

Millionaire by 2020 Plan – January 2014 Update
Millionaire by 2020 Plan – January 2014 Update

All good things must come to an end … and sigh, so has the uninterrupted growth of the MoH’s investments.  After 12 straight months of outperformance, January was a shocker. 

The Australian sharemarket dropped by more than 3 percent as a whole, which impacted both my super and my share portfolio.  Newcrest Mining went against the trend, as the gold price rose, but I think everything else fell a bit!  Oh well.  The positive in this is that now looks like a good buying opportunity, and my investment strategy calls for more share investment this year.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

The Millionaire on Heels renovation plan

The Millionaire on Heels renovation plan
Source: www.painters.edu.au

All these posts on renovating have rekindled the MoH’s enthusiasm for resuming all the work I intended to start doing nearly three years ago when I moved into my current house.  The list is fairly long … and growing, with required repairs being added faster than optional projects are removed!


To make sense of it all, I’ve written a wishlist of everything I want to achieve over the next three years, grouped into five categories:

  • Outdoors
  • Walls/Floors
  • Bedrooms/Living Areas/Home Office
  • Bathrooms
  • Kitchen

Outdoors

Outdoors, a lot of work is required to repair some of the poor quality renovations of the previous owner, plus general maintenance.  

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Case study: saving money (or not) renovating

Case study: saving money (or not) renovating
Renovated kitchen

The MoH’s first property was a 1970s unit in “original” condition.  To the uninitiated that means virtually nothing had been changed since the owner moved in 30 years before.  The theme was olive green and dark brown in the kitchen and bathrooms, with a nice shade of peach on the walls.  There were no wardrobes or blinds.

Over the time that I lived there, I think I replaced virtually everything inside, with the exception of a couple of shelves in the linen cupboard.  It was a learning experience and a half.  I’m only just now starting to motivate myself to start again in my current house!


Sunday, 5 January 2014

2014 New Year’s resolutions from the Millionaire on Heels


 Neto E-Commerce Solutions
Source: Neto E-Commerce Solutions

The MoH is a big fan of goal setting, and I definitely achieve more when I’ve written my goals down, preferably on old-fashioned paper in blue ink.  There’s something about seeing your goals in front of you and ticking them off one by one on a sheet of paper that I’ve never been able to replicate in an app or program.

While I love my lists, I’m not pedantic about following them word for word.  I think it’s important to be open to opportunities as they arise, and a great opportunity may involve adding new goals, reprioritising others, or removing some entirely from the plan.  So I was encouraged to see this article in the paper: Smart New Year Savers Keep Big Picture in Focus.


Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Upcoming January posts

An illustration by one of my favourite vintage artists, Rene Gruau
An illustration by one of my favourite vintage artists, Rene Gruau

The MoH has become a convert to search engine optimisation (SEO) over the Christmas holidays after reading a great book by Ben Norman called Get to No. 1 on Google.  (I’ll do a review of it in February.)  I have to admit I never realised how important SEO was … I thought that having good content was enough.

The other thing I never realised was how unoptimised the official Blogger templates are for SEO.  I’m definitely a slow learner, as there are thousands of posts out there with advice on fixing all the problems the templates throw up when running checks with SEO tools!