Well here it is. The big annual review. I decided that seeing as I didn’t do much in the way of monthly updates, I should do an annual review of the previous 12 months. I have done similar articles for previous years so you can check them out for 2022, 2021, 2020, and 2019, and decide how I’ve done. In this report i will look at the highlights, my financial progress and the lowlights, and set out some goals or strong suggestions for 2024.
2023 was a year filled with highlights. I shall list them below:
- Promotion at work;
- Travelling to Australia, Italy, France, Scotland, Wales, California;
- Friend’s wedding in Italy;
- Buying a car.
- Remaining sober for one year.
We’ve had a great year and we have been fairly busy doing other fun things too. Work has been great but very busy. I feel like I’m progressing quite rapidly, and this can only be down to not drinking and performing much better than before. I feel like my brain is just working fully and able to learn and retain information at a great pace. Again as in 2022, big trips in 2023 to Australia and California topped off the year.
In terms of finances, we have the following wins:
FI fund growing from £256k to £308K, an increase of 20%, (using the old measurement of just my assets), and £447K including Mrs Wealthster’s assets.
Our networth grew from £456k to £539k (old measurement), an increase of 18%. The joint value stands at £630k including Mrs Wealthster’s assets.
As in all years, 2023 wasn’t all holidays and fun. The following were some lowlights for me personally:
- non-success of IVF and lack of success conceiving a child;
- Sudden death of a good friend’s father.
I won’t go on to talk about most of these, but all despite the highlights. These two were genuinely the only lows we’ve had this year. Although tough moments with long term and unknown effects, because we’ve had a great deal of highlights, those highlights have got us through less depressed than we might have been. I’m still wondering if there will be a delayed reaction and we will feel depressed at some point soon. Perhaps not drinking has reduced the depression level in this respect. Clearly this bad news will have a huge impact on our lives and this is something that we need to process. But for now we are taking a break from all things about children and reassessing our options.
2023 strong suggestions
Last year I said I didn’t want to set goals as I was feeling rather disheartened when I didn’t make them. I instead set some “strong suggestions” which were basically goals, but not.
Here are the 2023 strong suggestions
- Savings rate of 45% – Achieved 49%.
- Increase pay (achieved a promotion and 15% raise).
- Look into starting a business. (fail).
- Cut back on alcohol (smashed as haven’t drunk for a year).
- Somehow, stop feeling frustrated! (largely achieved).
- Make it to, and celebrate my 40th Birthday!!! (pass – i’m still alive).
I’ve exceed my savings rate somehow. I honestly have been trying to spend more this year and even bought an expensive car. The average rate over the year started at an insane 84% then decreased to around 35% at the end. I’m fine with that. It means I’m saving but living and taking opportunities to have fun.
My pay increased thanks to a promotion. This helped maintain the savings rate despite increased in mortgage payments (8% of income) and the expense of the car (15%). I’m hoping my bonus will increase this year too as my ISA savings have been shocking since I bought the car!
I’ve always got an eye on starting a business but deep down I know I’m not likely to do this anytime soon. Maybe if the opportunity arises in my current line of work, I will do this.
My lack of drinking has been great. I have gone further then I ever imagined and am feeling healthier than ever.
I”ve also stopped feeling so frustrated. I do think that stopping drinking has helped given that alcohol is a depressant. Id say not drinking has removed about 50% of the depressing effect of the low lights.
This year, again, my goals will be more like strong suggestions as they seemed to work very well last year!!
2024 strong suggestions
- Savings rate of 40%
- Increase pay (either from promotion or job move).
- Remain alcohol free
- Go on an overland adventure with the car
All in, it’s been a great year. We’ve been traveling, meeting up with people we haven’t seen for years, and we have progressed professionally and financially this year. The news that we may never have children was a huge blow but one that we cannot let get us down. There is always a way whether that is adoption or otherwise.
What are your goals for 2024, assuming you dared to set any?