In our last post, I unveiled the Adventure Rich Money Map. This map details the flow of our money to and from various accounts, giving you a peek into our money management. This idea came from a few bloggers who created maps earlier this year (I’m looking at you Budgets on a Stick, Apathy Ends, and the Luxe Strategist!) and it has been exciting to see a few more bloggers join in by creating their own money maps!
As I pondered my map and reviewed other money maps over the past day, I realized a few things about money maps in general and our map in particular. I would like to share these musings with you today.
Money Map Musings
Why a Money Map?
After creating our money map earlier this week, I sat back, surveyed my colorful creation with pride and began to follow the flow (mentally double-checking the map’s accuracy). I surprised myself with how enlightening the money map is for me.
I have always mentally kept track of our personal money map…
That goes there…
This goes here…
It is transferred over to that one and…
Voila! We pay this, this and this!
But my mental money map failed me in two ways.
Mental Map Fail #1: Whenever I conjure up an image of our money management, it was either a blurry jumble of accounts or I was only focusing on one aspect of the money flow. My mental money map was never the clear “whole picture” snapshot.
Mental Map Fail #2: My mental money map was, well, just that… mental! I could not sit down with Mr. Adventure Rich and point to one transfer or one area and discuss it. We communicate often about our finances and this map will greatly aid our discussions as we plot our future!
Is the Money Map set in stone?
No! I look forward to updating this map periodically. Life is a crazy, insane, constantly changing, rich adventure (see what I did there 😉 ). Our temporary priorities will come and go, jobs and accounts will change, and the money flow will shift.
A flexible money map is key to accommodating the changes and optimizations in your money management.
Does our Money Map have to be perfect?
Um, what’s the fun in perfection?
One of the greatest learnings from our money map is the opportunity for optimization! So no, our money map is not perfect, it is a reflection of our money management at a point in time (aka- now) and will evolve as we move forward!
Will the Money Map replace other metrics/visuals?
I will still:
— Use Mint for my daily expense tracking and quick check of account balances.
— Consult Personal Capital’s awesome calculators.
— Update my sexy Net Worth excel each month.
— Spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about finances like a good little #moneynerd
The Money Map is an addition to our money management tool kit. As I mention above, I look forward to using it as a discussion starter and a reference chart for our future financial discussions!
Our Money Map
Our map is reflective of our current situation and money flow, but I hope our map will change over the next year!
Background: The Adventure Rich family has had quite the year. Over the past 13 months, Mr. Adventure Rich received a job offer, I negotiated a remote office accommodation with my current employer, we sold 2 cars, moved across the country, bought a house, bought 2 winter worthy used cars + a plow for our 1/4 mile long driveway, and replaced a busted dryer + paid for various other unexpected “new house” expenses.
Phew. No wonder I am tired…
With the move and additional expenses associated with and immediately following the purchase of our house in October 2016, we dug into our emergency savings more than we would have liked to.
Due to the expenses in the past year, we adjusted a few of our previous priorities accordingly. Specifically, we shifted some funds (previously going to Mr. Adventure Rich’s former 403b) to savings in order to rebuild our emergency fund and beef up our “house fund” in order to pay for a much needed re-roofing (30 year old roof + Michigan winter = recipe for disaster!).
— Max out my 401K + HSA (check)
— Rebuild the Emergency Fund to ~$12K (~$9K…so close!)
— Fund a new roof ~$12k (~$9K… almost there!)
— Create fund for an additional investment, either real estate or IRA (check… only $500 in it so far)
— Pay our mortgage + some extra (check)
Once our emergency and roof funds are fully funded, we will shift our priority to the following.
— Max out my 401K + HSA
— Fund Mr. AR’s 401K to match when eligible
— Likely open an IRA for extra funds
— Continue to save in our investment fund (for real estate and/or IRA)
— Pay our mortgage + some extra
— Explore credit card churning for travel rewards???
When I look at our money map, I am pleased to see that our money flow is reflective of our current priorities. At the same time, I can’t wait to blow the current map to pieces by fully funding a few of our savings accounts and shifting our money to additional investments!
Have you thought about plotting a money map? If you have, what did you learn? What areas are you nailing?!? Are there areas you would like to improve?
Always an Adventure,
Mrs. Adventure Rich
pssst, check out some other awesome Money Maps from the bloggers below!
The Official Money Map Chain Gang:
Link 1: The Luxe Strategist
Link 2: Adventure Rich
Link 3: MinaFi
Link 4: Othalafehu
Link 5: The Frugal Gene
Link 6: Work Optional
Link 7: Our Financial Path
Link 8: Eccentric Rich Uncle
Link 9: Atypical Life
Link 10: Cantankerous Life
Link 11: Retirement Manifesto
Link 12: Debts to Riches
Link 13: Need2Save
Link 14: Money Metagame
Link 15: CYinnovations
Link 16: I Dream of FIRE
Link 17: Stupid Debt
Link 18: Spills Spot
Link 19: Making Your Money Matter
Link 20: Life Zemplified
Link 21: Trail to FI
Link 22: The Lady in the Black
Link 23: Smile & Conquer
Link 24: Her Money Moves
Link 25: Full Time Finance