2018 Year End Review
Just a quick run through on how the past 365 days went for me in general and how I would want the coming New Year to be different.
I’ve done a year-end review almost every single year since I started this blog. You can read each below:
For me, year-end review is a must. It makes you look back and reflect on the mistakes and accomplishments you had.
It gives you a summary of lessons learned for the past year and provide you with a positive benchmark for the year ahead.
In this post I will:
- Share to you the highlights of my 2018 on Blog, Life and Money
- Share to you a recap of what happened to my goals for 2018
- Give you insights to my spending habits
- Provide you a spreadsheet on how I’m ending 2018 in terms of net worth.
Last year I included my goals in the year-end review. But for 2019, I decided to create a separate post sharing to you my goals for the New Year. This way we can all refer to it every time I do my Monthly Recaps.
Also, in case you missed it I have a Reader Survey running at the moment.
The Reader Survey works as a way for you to let me know how I can make a better blog in 2019. If you can spare 5 minutes of your time please answer the form below:
Highlights of 2018 in Blog, Life and Money
1. Three Google Adsense Payout in a single year!
In 2018 alone I was able to reach my $100 Google Adsense Threshold for a total of 3 times. Such a huge achievement considering how it took me four years to earn my first ever Adsense payout. The amount I made for this year may seem too little compared to others. But I’m very satisfied with it. I know this is only the beginning. A good proof that making money blogging is possible.
In total, I received $360 passive income through Google Adsense.
2. Reaching 2000 Email Subscribers
I am very thankful to the 2000 readers who have extended their support and became part of my email list. Thank you for the interest you’ve shown. I’ve always wanted to build my email list and since staring the SavingsPinay Resource Library last year, everything went well. Seeing the list grow each month was surreal.
Hopefully, I can provide better benefits for your loyalty as part of my email list.
3. Engaging in 5000 Followers on Facebook
Are you part of the SavingsPinay FB Page and FB Group? If yes then you may have noticed the engagement that happened in the page for 2018. Reaching 5000 followers in both platforms was indeed a surprise. This 2019, I plan to stay as active as possible in the said platforms and bring you more valuable engagements.
Hopefully, we can grow the followers to 10,000 too. The number seems impossible to reach but I am excited for this goal to materialize in 2019.
4. Travels – Eastern Samar, Seoul, Palawan and Malaysia
2018 was the year I said yes to travel. I went to not only one but four places in my bucket list last year –
Seoul, South Korea
El Nido, Palawan and
And I did have a lot of fun.
I remember all the excuses I had in the past as to why I stayed away from the word – travel.
- I don’t have a passport
- I don’t have time
- I don’t have paid leave (still on my probationary period back then)
- I don’t have the ideal “travel fund” yet
- I don’t have any idea how to travel at all!
It turns out the only person blocking the possibility of my goal to travel is me. All the reasons I mentioned above were mere excuses. And there’s a way for me to actually travel too if only I turned those excuses to actions!
So in 2018 I slowly but surely polished everything I need to do to achieve my travel goals.
- I applied (and fortunately passed) for a passport!
- I worked hard to have all my blog posts be scheduled in advance.
- I marked the dates that I will file my vacation leave.
- I finalized my yearly budget and know already where to get the so-called fund for travel.
- I continuously read and learn from the best travel bloggers in the country!
I may be poorer because of the fees but the instant gratification travel brings in a person is out of ordinary. Saying yes to travel proved to be the best decision I have ever made in 2018. Just look at these photos!
So what’s my key takeaway here for you?
Turn each and every excuse you have as part of your to-do list!
5. Investing in Crowdfunding
How to Invest in Farmon was the most popular article in SavingsPinay for 2018. It didn’t come to me as a surprise since I have also received a number of emails and direct messages regarding crowdfunding. For 2018, I took a leap of faith and put Php 17,000 to purchase two crops – rice and squash.
What happened next was awesome. I got my return of investment after six months with 11% ROI.
Not bad, right?
And to think that stock market fluctuated throughout 2018 and all of my other investments – individual stocks and mutual fund – were on a solid downfall. I’m happy I got to try crowdfunding and will most likely reinvest as soon as I find a good crop to buy.
The Year That Was
Overall, if I only count my highlights on blog, life and money 2018 can be considered as the best year so far.
But, last year was filled with disappointments too. I remember writing in my journal all of my frustrations from being a big procrastinator.
- I wasn’t performing well on my routines and habits.
- I wasn’t able to make significant addition to my investments.
- I wasn’t able to make money out of my side hustles – YouTube, freelance writing and hosting.
- I failed my emergency fund goal and have to restart again after taking Php 30,000 for my brother’s operation last November.
- I spent a lot on travel.
- I had a ton of regrets over what I could have done better if only I focused on doing things and stopped researching and stressing so much on the how.
But so much for that, it’s time for us to sail forward. I have plenty I need to resolve this 2019 that made a separate page for it in my Bullet Journal. Haha.
Still, my excitement for the New Year is uncontrollable. 2019 will be the year of doing.
How about you? How do you see 2018 in general?
2018 Goals Recap
During my 2018 Mid-Year review I shared to you a goal spreadsheet which tracks the progress I made on my selected financial goals.
The spreadsheet was inspired by Sir Joe of Retiredby40.org and something I really want to use moving forward.
With this, it was easier to see my progress, which area I need to work on and how to better improve the coming months to end the year better.
Sadly, it was a terrible, terrible year for goals this 2018.
Php 500, 000 End-of-Year Net Worth. FAILED.
Something you’ll notice is the big drop of my net worth from ending November 2018 with Php 220, 497.36 to Php 153,243.40. How did this happen?
I am not including the two receivables I had since starting doing my net worth report. The reason for this is the lack of certainty from the persons involved that my money will be returned. I do not want to keep my hopes high that these Php 25,000 and Php 40,000 will be returned to me anymore.
All for my peace of mind and to make sure that I am starting 2019 with clean slate.
If there’s any amount that will be returned to me from these receivables then I will definitely update in the net worth post someday. But for now, I decided to remove both. So the current net worth we will be working on will be Php 153,243.40.
In 2019, I’m keeping my goal simple. I want to gain the amount I lost and end 2019 in the Php 250,000 mark again.
Php 60,000 emergency fund. FAILED
The money left in my emergency fund decreased too. From Php 18, 719.12 to only Php 1,938.32. I wish I can think of an excuse regarding this massive drop. But the culprit has always been the wrong numbers I’m reporting to you.
December 2017, I made two purchases – a Smart TV valued at around Php 13,000 and a fancy lamp for roughly Php 5,000.
And these were not even mine. They were gifts for others.I took the amount on emergency fund since I have yet to establish an opportunity fund back then. There was also me confidently thinking I could pay up the missing amount once hosting gigs pile up.
But I was wrong.
As much as I tried to be the personal finance blogger with “good and perfect” net worth following her own advice – I got caught up with my overconfidence. So this is the number we’re now working Php 1,938.32 which is composed of my very first 10% of my salary fund transfer.
Php 8,000 every quarter invested in stock market – FAILED
I ended 2017 with Php 27, 852.00 invested in the stock market. My goal for 2018 was to make an investment of Php 8,000 every quarter. That means I should have around Php 51, 852 invested already. Sadly, I missed months doing this goal and only ended up with Php 39,113.90 only. This year was also rough for the stock market and definitely lost money in stock market. I will have to do better next year.
Open an Index Fund – DONE
In March 2018 I shifted 50% of my money in mutual fund to an index fund called Consumer Index. It is composed of 18 stocks under food and beverage manufacturing, fast food and restaurants, mall development, communications, financial services, tourism, transportation and more. It basically tracks the market it belongs to. And since it is mostly composed of institutions consumed by the public, there is a big chance it will be big in the future. I will do peso-cost averaging in this new bucket like my mutual investment. The plan for now is to split the Php 2000 a month I have previously budgeted on for mutual fund between Consumer Index and Equity Fund.
Open a Term Life Insurance – DONE
2019 is all about continuing my term life insurance policy. The one I won from Sinag Awards already expired last December 2018 so I did a bit of a shopping again to finally own an insurance I did pay for. I was able to find one that matches what I need for now. Soon I will share to you my “life insurance shopping” story.
Php 20 52-Week Money Challenge – FAILED
I was so good with this challenge in the first half of 2018 but failed right after. The challenge is still good and if you have the financial discipline to do so you can try it for 2019. The total amount was around Php 5000 which I used as pocket money on my trip to Palawan.
Increase Savings by 1% Every Month – FAILED
Just like the 52-Week Money Challenge, I did the 1% Money Saving Challenge in 2018. It was marvelous for the first half but went flat right after. I pulled through around Php 5600 which I think was better than nothing at all. The saving challenge would have been easier than the 52 Week Money Challenge, I just wasn’t budgeting and tracking my expenses enough. If you want to learn more about this saving challenge you can click here.
For 2019, I am not doing any money challenge at all. My plan is to simply follow how I organize my finances. Allocate 30% of my monthly salary to save and invest.
1. I transfer 10% of my salary to my emergency fund.
3. I transfer another 10% of my salary to my stock market account as additional buying power on a monthly basis. My current broker is FMSBC. I did a step-by-step tutorial on how I opened an account with First Metro Sec in this post.
Reading Financial Books – FAILED
This goal didn’t happen at all but I spent a lot of my time reading other financial blogs instead. Other than reading blogs I also went on binge reading and finished 16 books in 2018 – something I am sincerely proud of. For 2019, I will probably read one to two out of the ebooks I have but I am not pursuing reading everything.
Host a Personal Finance Seminar/Workshop – FAILED
Another goal I failed in 2018 was hosting my own seminar/workshop. I realized this goal is not that attainable at the moment, I have no means to do it. Organizing a seminar is something that takes months of preparation and without any sponsors for venue it won’t be as possible for now. Hopefully, God willing it happens this year. Even just an opportunity to be invited and speak in public, meet real readers, that would be a dream in the making!
Six Digit Extra Income Fund – FAILED
The AKA “Opportunity Fund” which obviously was a fail too. The only money left now in this fund is Php 3, 351.65. And I have yet to work in increasing this. In February I will be hitting my first Google Threshold for 2019 which will go exactly to this fund. I also have a sponsored post that I need to make an invoice for.
Practice Delayed Gratification – FAILED
I don’t think I’ve been too good in practicing delayed gratification for 2018 especially in the simple purchases. It’s something that I have to work on more.
2018 Spending Habits
For 2018 I spent a lot of money. Mostly because of the travels I did.
It was a good spending though and I consider saying yes to travel to be one of the best decision I ever had. Traveling makes you feel 10x richer even if you have the same (or perhaps) less money in your bank account.
But for 2019.
The gears have shifted. My main goal is to save and make as much money as I can in 2019 so I can move out and have my own place by 2020.
Wow. Just writing that down gives me chills.
And this goal is above my current saving rate of 30% where 10% is directly saved to my emergency fund and 20% invested in mutual fund and stocks.
I’ve been praying for provision on this matter and I am all so committed in doing my part which is to be mindful of where my money goes.
2018 Net Worth
To give a clean slate on my finances I decided to be share how I’m ending 2018 in terms of net worth.
It’s painful to see my net worth go down from what it used to be but this is the reality. At least for now I am working on real numbers. The only receivable I am counting on is the money I lend for my brother’s operation. The crowdfunding investment is also missing because I withdraw it last December and gave to my parents. They needed extra cash for the house in the province.
Final Notes from SavingsPinay
This is it. This is how we will be starting 2019.
I hope you enjoyed this post. If you have yet to do your own year end review I highly recommend for you to start one.
Do Your Own Year-End Financial Review Too!
Constant review makes a lot of difference.
Mid-year review give you the chance to make adjustments and can help you to stay conscious throughout the year.
Year-end review, on the other hand is a good way to set yourself on a better pace for the New Year.
To recap this is how a year-end review works:
First, re-evaluate your goals.
If you set your goals at the start of the year then you can revisit each and review the status. What goal/s is/are done or accomplished already? Is there any goal that’s not relevant anymore?
Second, review your spending habits.
Find out who and how you are when it comes to spending your money lately. Are you saver or spender? Do you spend more on your needs or your wants?
Third, start your side hustle.
Think of a passion project you can do on the side in 2018.
Fourth, calculate your net-worth.
To give you a concrete road map you need to calculate your current net-worth. I provided a simple template for you to use.
Lastly, list down your next actions.
Once your done with steps 1-4, you can now make an action list. Commit yourself in doing the items written in your next action list to start the New Year strong!
How’s 2018 for your finances?
Izza of SavingsPinay helps Filipinos bridge the financial literacy gap one content at a time by providing insights and tips on budgeting, saving, investing, side hustle and growing your net worth. Aside from this blog she also writes at www.izzaglinofull.com, a beauty and lifestyle blog for frugal Pinays and manages, www.izzagevents.com, a wedding and event business since 2011. For inquiries, topic suggestions or future collaborations email her at firstname.lastname@example.org