Saturday, 29 February 2020

Sale! Sale! Sale!

Hello Fire Fans!

I’m back!

Sorry for the long delay since my last post – I’ve just been extremely busy since the new year with a fresh work assignment being around 100 miles away (my door to door commute is 2.5 hours each way!)

This is on top of a now 4-month-old baby and so due to my long days I’ve been pretty exhausted to write new posts – but I thought it is now about time and so here I am!

Sooo, what to talk about?

Well this past week has been quite eventful hasn’t it!

The markets have taken huge hits. Like probably most of you, I’ve also suffered heavy losses and from my previous post (First Portfolio Post!) my Nutmeg ISA is from +£735 (+10.34%) to -£310 (-0.38%) in between this time the value had reached a peak of +£1,020! Likewise, Vanguard is currently -£579.66 (-9.68%) previously it was +£420.06 (+9.15%).

Going Down!

The Coronavirus has had a huge effect on the markets, and I do really hope it gets contained very soon – it is constantly in the news and honestly it does worry me from a health and safety perspective.

I’m not really going to go into further details about the virus as I’m not a doctor or scientist etc. - all I will say is that I hope you all stay safe.

From a FIRE/Investing blog perspective, the markets tanking like this is a Sales Bonanza!

Sale! Sale! Sale!

Due to my long term goals and being in the accumulation phase this is the ideal time to invest more – I currently have a Direct Debit set up for my Vanguard ISA, however from now until the end of tax year I am going to drip feed more funds over the coming weeks to take advantage of the prices on offer.

With my current Direct Debit amount set up, I was not going to reach the full £20,000 allowance for this year (from the screenshot below, you can see I have so far contributed £12,805.60), however with my current work assignment paying more than before I should be able to put the full amount in and hence I will to ensure by the end of tax year I have fully used this year’s allowance.

I am planning to do this once a week for the next few weeks as I am not sure how much further the markets will go down or whether they will even start to rise (personally I don’t think this will be happening until at least a few months down the line).

Looking at the history of share markets I am very confident it will eventually rise back and even overtake the recent all-time highs and as I have potentially up to 20 years to go (hope it turns out less!) I have no concerns

The only time I may have been slightly concerned would be if I was close to retiring or had just recently retired but even at that point I would either delay plans or look to get back to earning money and simply wait it out until the prices recover. My equity exposure would have also been reduced and hopefully my portfolio damage would not be as intense as it is now.

It’s very easy to panic at the moment and you may even feel like cutting your losses and selling your investments (as a lot of investors are doing right now), however if you have a passive/drip feed strategy and you are still a long way to go from retiring I say just weather the storm! Stick to your strategy and think with a clear mind before making rash decisions – trust me now is the time to make a lot of money!

Thursday, 2 January 2020

First Portfolio Post!

Hello fellow Fire Fans!

Happy New Year! Hope you all had a good break and are ready to continue the FIRE journey.

If you remember, I promised in the very first blog post, that we would be sharing our real portfolios, so that you can see exactly how and where we are investing and also keep a track of how they perform with us. I will be looking to do this on a regular basis, hopefully at least once a month.

So let’s get into it!

We have Savings/investments with the following providers: (Values as at today)

Vanguard ISA
Nutmeg ISA
Hargreaves Lansdown
First Direct

Vanguard ISA

Vanguard ISA opened tax year starting April 2019.

Nutmeg ISA opened tax year starting April 2018 (No longer contribute further to this ISA).

Been investing with RateSetter since 2015. I like P2P investing as unlike the stock market the value never falls, however obviously it has its own set of risks. One reason I like this platform is that it has a big provision fund and they mention on the website that since inception, no investor has lost a penny. However, this is no guarantee for the future – but it provides some comfort.

Hargreaves Lansdown - this was my first foray into investing. I read online about the Lindsell Train Fund and went with HL. I wish I had opened this as an ISA but didn’t really know much about investing back then and ended up opening a general account. I was just experimenting with a few hundred quid and don’t contribute much now either. Will probably just let the funds remain in there and let it accumulate.

My Santander account is the 123 Current Account, I treat this as an all-in-one type of account i.e. Savings, Current and Emergency Fund. I always maintain the balance above £20K as I can earn the full 1.5%. (I was very disappointed when the knocked the rate down from 3%! ).

I know deep down I shouldn’t hold this much cash and should take some out and invest it, however due to the nature of my work, I feel I need a slightly higher buffer just in case I’m out of work for a bit and its also ingrained into me to keep the balance above £20K to make the most of it.

The First Direct account I only did as I had a dormant 2nd current account lying around with Santander for years and at the time, First Direct were paying £150 to switch to them. I made the switch and transferred the £150 out. I need to keep the balance above £1,000 else they charge a £10/month fee.

HSBC account is primarily for online purchases. Had this before 123 account and have just kept it open.

Wife’s Barclays account is her current account, we don’t leave much in here as my Santander 123 provides enough emergency cover for both of us.

So these are our savings and investments at this time. The Vanguards ISAs are invested into various different funds and I’ll go through these in another post providing a breakdown into the proportions and reasons why we are invested in them.

Disclaimer: This is just a personal blog and none of the info provided anywhere across the blog should be considered as recommendations or financial advice.

Sale! Sale! Sale!

Hello Fire Fans! I’m back! Sorry for the long delay since my last post – I’ve just been extremely busy since the new year with a fr...