Author Topic: Case Study: Where do I go from here?  (Read 4548 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« on: March 15, 2015, 02:09:03 PM »
29y/o single, no children
Income: Registered Nurse at hospital(only income) gross- 4k/mn; 48k/yr. net-1791.12/mn; 21493.44/yr
PRE-TAX: 403b contribution 1480/mn; health insurance 108.58/mn(is a hdhp but not hsa eligible d/t hra and fsa)
AFTER TAX- fed 361.72 mdstate 72.34 mc 34.96 ss 101.28 unitedway 50

Current Expenses monthly
House upkeep: trash/recycling 21.85
                        heating fuel/cooking 350
                        sewer/water(flat rate) electric 300
                        home insurance 62
                        property taxes 133.35
                        total: 867.20
Car: insurance 118.35(full coverage, 1 accident, 1 speeding ticket)
        gas 60
        total: 178.35
Entertainment: cell phone with Ting 30
                        hulu/netflix/amazon 24.23
                        comcast internet 59.99
                        total: 114.22
Food/vitamins/protein powder 130
dog food 37.35
gym membership 34.95 (ends in may and I wont renew!gets used 4-5days/wk with 3 of them twice a day)
nursing liability insurance/ professional associations 30
Total Monthly Expenses: 1392.07
net pay 1791.12- 1392.07 = 399.05 saving/mn
Assets: Own my house- approx worth 147K
             own 2010 Toyota Prius free and clean- bought used this month for 9450 after selling my 2014 subaru crosstrek for 23500
             403b 4500- just started contributing at the end of 2014
             roth IRA 1k- vanguard
             Trad IRA 10k- started this year- vanguard
             approx 70k in savings. looking for the right place to invest- vanguard?
             will receive 10k once my mothers estate is closed- next month

Currently have no credit card debt because I pay those bad boys off in full every month. Paid off last college loan last month. No car payment or house mortgage/rent.
I will be going back to school for my BSN in Aug 2015 and to complete the degree it will cost about 12k.
Also making renovations to my house. Our max budget is 20k between by brother and myself (he is 50%owner of the house) every room in the house needs some work. I plan to do as much of the projects myself with guidance from friends and family with know how.
This year will not be my optimum saving year because I am going on multiple trips throughout the year which have already been paid for prior to me implementing my mustache growing plan. When I turn 30 in October it'll be buckle down time.
I travel 46miles round trip to work 3 days/wk (12.5hr shifts) I think with the new prius my travel expenses will be greatly decreased. Moving closer to work right now isnt something Im ready to do. Once the house is renovated and Im either able to sell it or rent it out then ill move closer to work or Ill have the experience needed in the ICU to become a travel nurse.

I'm looking to be FI/retire in about 10yrs. I know I need to invest the money I have sitting in savings, just investigating the right options. Any suggestions would be helpful. These are the funds from vanguard Im looking at right now: VASGX, VGSLZ, VTSMX, VGTSX, VBIAX, and the energy, health sector funds.
Id also like to know what else I can do increase my money for retirement.
Thank you for any help you can give me. This stuff is fun! 



  • Walrus Stache
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2015, 02:45:28 PM »
FWIW, I feel that investing in health sector funds is doubling down my risk since I work in healthcare. Although it is supremely unlikely healthcare will go down in flames, with the current political changes, I just feel safer not having my income and investments both be dependent on the same sector's performance.

It looks like you're doing very well and managing your money in a very successful manner! I'm sure any index you choose will serve you well, so long as you put those little green soldiers to work!


  • Senior Mustachian
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2015, 03:06:17 PM »

You look like you are doing very well.
For information on where and how to invest, I highly recommend reading the JH Collins stock series.  Very informative in easily-digestible sections.

My strategy is simply to put as much into an SP500 index as I can every month (after filling up the tax-advantaged accounts, which you are already doing).  My choice has been Vanguard, but you could just as easily do Betterment or Fidelity or buy individual ETFs of whichever index you like. 



  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2015, 03:10:00 PM »
thank you both for your comments.


  • Senior Mustachian
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2015, 06:38:03 PM »
Appears you are doing well indeed.

Some of the tax numbers from the OP looked odd.  Based on a $48K gross, $108.58/mo pre-tax for health ins., $1480/mo for 403b, and accepting the $72/mo state tax, one might expect the following monthly amounts:
Federal    $178
State       $  72
Soc. Sec.  $241
Medicare  $  56
Total        $548

You might be making FSA contributions which would lower all the numbers but the relative Federal/SS numbers would still be off.

Your investment options are a good group - allocate among them as you see fit.

Why stop the gym membership?  Appears you are making good use of it.

The sewer/water/electric at $300 seems high unless you have a server farm mining bitcoins...?


  • Walrus Stache
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2015, 07:21:40 PM »
It looks like you're already doing quite well!  Just a few notes you might consider:

--MDM is right about your withholding. Double-check those numbers.
--Your heating fuel/cooking seems high as well
--You can probably get a better deal on your internet.  Give 'em a call and ask if there's a promotion you can get before you make the hop to <your local DSL provider>
--I'm curious about the vitamins and protein powder.  If you're eating a balanced diet, do you really need these?  I honestly don't know, which is why I'm asking.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2015, 07:28:30 AM »
yea my withholding's are probably off a bit(estimated partly because I don't get a set rate of pay every month. There are shift differentials, overtime, double time and triple time that gets added most of the time but since it isn't consistent I just went with my base rate pay) I am contributing money to an FSA which is around 20/mn ( did this before I knew if i didnt I could contribute to an HSA- next year though)
The sewer/water/ electric is high because it is estimated from when my brother was living with me and was into computers and gaming and such so he never turned anything off. Now I can power strip to my hearts content.
The heating fuel/ cooking I agree are a bit high as well. I have oil for my main heat and a propane stove in the family room which is poorly insulated(converted garage/breezeway) also propane stove and dryer(not sure why its propane and not just electric but once it gets warmer Ill be hanging my clothes instead) Most of the house, attic, basement and exterior walls need some investigating to the type or lack of insulation they provide.
The protein powder and vitamins are to supplement the lack of food Im actually physically able to eat. I had the gastric sleeve in october 2014( lost 80lbs since then!) so Im not able to get everything in with just food alone. This will be a lifelong expense to some extent but I knew that going in and was prepared to pay for it. Thanks for the question.

thank you again for commenting!


  • Walrus Stache
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Re: Case Study: Where do I go from here?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2015, 09:09:23 AM »
Is the value for the house you own your equity stake, or is it half of that number based on joint ownership?

Seems like you are doing very well, in a fantastic spot to start. Once the income grows with the BSN degree you will be able to chuck larger and larger %'s of your income into investments.

Best of luck!