Net Worth and Income – Jan + Feb 2017

Rev yourself up for the first Chedda Income and Net Worth post of 2017! It’s a doozy!

Our expenses were pretty similar in January and February. We paid off a lot of our car loan, but otherwise we were super frugal.

Mr. Market has been really swelling our net worth. I’ve felt rich since we passed about $100k net worth, but now more than ever I’m feeling extra rich!

Net worth is near the end of the post. Savings rate is in the middle. Income is…right here. Boom! Here you go!


 January IncomeFebruary IncomeTotal
My paycheck$2,899$2,275$5,174
Mr. Chedda's paycheck$2,566-$3,405-$839
Clinical study$550$3,500$4,050
Book selling$300$0$300
Car registration refund$18$0$18
Credit card bonus$0$1$1

Looks nice! Here are some details:


Just my normal paycheck from my old job. My days of being a bureaucrat are over (for now) so I’ll probably be getting some lump payouts of accrued leave and a refund of my pension contributions in the next weeks and months. 

My first paycheck from my new job will come in mid-March and I’m excited to see how much it is! (It should include my signing bonus! Yasssss!)


Mr. Chedda’s paycheck number was…negative. Womp womp.

We had to pay back some of the extra income his old company couldn’t figure out how to stop paying him after he quit his job.

Because his company couldn’t get their act together in processing his leave of absence paperwork, they actually did have to pay him for a few extra weeks where he wasn’t working. What a treat!

Of course, as an unpaid student teacher, he gets no paycheck. The next few months may be a little lean in terms of cash inflows, but that’s mostly compensated for by my new higher income.


Two months means two monthly $1,200 gifts.

Every month for the past several years Mr. Chedda has received $1,200 from his generous parents. We never count on it, because they could stop giving it at any time, but it’s definitely a wonderful boost that goes straight to our investment pile.

In non-financial news, in February my band played the marches from Star Wars! Check out the conductor’s “baton”!

If it makes you feel shoddy to see us getting a gift while you have to work hard for all the money you earn, I’m really sorry. I hate to wave it in people’s faces, but I also want to be forthright about where our money comes from.

If it helps, you can tell yourself that Mr. Chedda has always had a low-ish salary for a white collar worker in the DC area with several years of experience and you can imagine that this gift just bumps him up from his actual salary in the $40k-$50k range to an effective salary in the $60k-$70k range.

Still, it is a huge boon for us and we are ridiculously grateful to Mr. Chedda’s parents (not just for the money, also for raising a beautiful man who plays piano like an angel and bakes bread like an angel who’s a great baker).

In February, we also got a $25 Amazon gift card as a gift from one of my relatives. We spent it on fancy remote control outlets!

Side Hustling

I am a constant hustler. I’ve had probably dozens of side hustles over my short time as an adult human, and I’m usually on the lookout for more.

For example, seeking out and managing bank account and credit card bonuses has been a great hustle for me. I’ve been backing off since the big bonanza for our free Hawaiian honeymoon trip, but we’re still reaping the rewards (only ~$1 this month, lol).

When I was interviewing for new jobs I considered that my side hustle and it was definitely my most lucrative one to date.

Now that I’ve started a new job, I’m dedicating my hustling time almost solely to the job. I’m not going to jeopardize a potentially huge raise or bonus in favor of earning a few hundred dollars selling books.

Book selling – $300.13

Speaking of selling books, between January and February I made $300.13 selling books!

I found a few great textbooks (they’re the real money makers) at a library sale, I looked them up by ISBN on (<- that’s an affiliate link that earns me a tens of cents if you click it!), and I shipped them to wherever Bookscouter told me I’d make the most money.

Clinical Study – $4,050

I usually don’t talk about my clinical study/body part donation side hustle to people in person. Rightly so, people are skeptical of others peddling their health in exchange for money.

We played Star Wars music in band (see top picture) and I got in character for our concert 🙂

But, most clinical studies are minimally invasive and just involve some discomfort or inconvenience on your end. The more inconvenience, the more you get paid. Luckily, while I was working a super flexible government job, I didn’t mind going to offices at any time during the week whenever the mad scientists needed to check up on me.

In college, I was a lab rat in a bunch of psych studies that paid $10-$200 for an hour or two of answering questions or letting people look at your brain while you think. That’s minor league stuff.

Last Summer, I did a sleep study that just paid me out $4,050 for sleeping at a research facility for a few days with stickers on my body. This is the final payment, since I just completed the final check up in January. Holy easy money!

Savings Rate

We took home – $11,128.80

We spent – $11,901.11

Spending more than we took home means that our savings rate was negative (-7%). 

That’s way, way lower than November’s and December’s savings rates, but it covers a time span where we paid off $7,000 of our car loan. Let’s run the numbers again without the car: 62% savings rate!

Net Worth

Mr. Market’s been helping us out a lot lately, so our net worth has grown incredible! We’ve been raking in the money!

Boom! $345,855! (That’s excitement, not a factorial.)

How does our current net worth compare to what we had before? Let me pop that new net worth number into the handy R program I wrote for just this purpose (I also wrote a tutorial on how you can use it yourself!)…and:

And the zoomed in version (new zoom view for 2017):


Goal progress

We’re doing unbelievably well on our $500k in 5 years goal! So far Mr. Chedda’s leave of absence from the paid workforce hasn’t hindered us at all, because it’s been (over)compensated for by the stock market.

We’re only $2,000 away from the net worth we’re aiming to hit at the beginning of 2018! Unless the stock market tanks we’ll definitely surpass that.

Fun Numbers

At this moment, we have enough saved up to cover 6.5 years of expenses at our average spending level over the past four months. 

And I made a cool new graph to help me think about this another way:

As the title indicates, the graph shows what percentage of our expenses are covered by the 4% safe withdrawal rate. Right now we have 25% of our expenses covered!!!

9 thoughts on “Net Worth and Income – Jan + Feb 2017”

  1. Good job owning the gift. So many are oblivious to the “luck” apparent in their successes. I for instance rent a condo at about 20% below FMV. Definitely helps in the expense department for sure. I also share a car with my GF, but if we need an extra we borrow from family in the area.

    Those clinical studies sound interesting for sure!

    1. Having family in the area is great for many more reasons than just the financial ones, isn’t it? I really like that I’m around to help out my family and they’re around to help me out when we need it. And obviously I’m also extremely grateful for the monetary help they give us!

      I mean, it’s not always a lovefest with our families all the time, but just having them around makes life so much richer.

  2. Bahh, that sucks about paying back the mister’s company, but fair is fair. Good on you for being honest about receiving gifts. Some of us do get help but it’s important to recognize it and appreciate it. And wow, what a great score with the sleep research study! How did you learn about these studies?

    1. I know, right! Mr. Chedda kept reminding me not to get my hopes up about keeping the overpaid salary, but I went right on ahead and got my hopes up! What a bummer! But, at least we have the money sitting around to pay it back. I kept thinking about families who live paycheck to paycheck. If they accidentally got overpaid, they definitely wouldn’t have the money put aside to give back later. It would really suck for a lot of people to be put in that position, and by no fault of their own!

      When I was in college, there were ads on billboards all over campus advertising studies. More recently, I learned about the sleep study through a Facebook ad I think. And there are some others that I’ve sought out by googling. I’ve also done “donation” which is pretty popular everywhere–I know basically every blood bank has plasma donors (and if I had sperm I’d probably donate that too lol).

  3. Looks like you’re having a great start to the year! Keep up the good work. And that sleep study sounds like a great opportunity! I once participated in a study where I had to answer questions on the phone for about an hour three times, and I got $100 each time. Loved that one!

  4. How do I find one of those sleeping studies that pays me thousands? 😀

    Also, so cool that you played Star Wars. I just bought a ticket to a Star Wars symphonic concert in Albuquerque in a couple weeks. 😀

    1. I think studies like that are more common than you’d expect. If you have any kind of health condition like asthma or diabetes there are always researchers who will want you as a guinea pig (and there are still a lot for healthy people too.) Just google! I bet you could even see what universities and hospitals are along your road trip route and make some pit stops.

      Have fun at the concert! That sounds amazing! I’m not *especially* into the Star Wars movies but I can’t get enough of John Williams.

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