12 Month Spending By Category

I’m gonna be so glad when this mortgage is gone.  $98k total spending.  $61k on home.  Next biggest categories are $13k on shopping and $9k on travel.  $6k on food works out to about $500/month (woohoo).  Only $2200 on auto and transport!

spending by category.PNG

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Energy Savings

My electricity bill is between $25 and $70 every month, depending mostly on heating.  As we head into winter, my power bill will increase.  I’m on a time of day rate plan, so energy used at night is cheaper than energy used during the day.

There are two ways I could reduce my costs:

  1.  Generate my own solar or wind power.
  2. Store energy harvested from the power grid at night for use during the day.  There will be an efficiency cost due to the storage.

(1) isn’t practical for me, both because there isn’t enough wind, and because I don’t have anywhere to put a turbine or a meaningful number of solar panels.  (2) is possible but we need to do a break even analysis.  Since I’m still using power from the grid, I’m still going to have electricity costs in the short run.  The batteries will cost something upfront, but it’ll be less than the cost of solar panels.

Break even analysis!

How Much Money Does Tesla’s Powerwall Really Save On Your Power Bill?

Sad fact: The more money I pay out in energy, the faster it will break even.  So if the goal is to save money on energy, using less will trump any fancy cost offset solution.

The article says the payback period is 10-15 years.  This takes into account the degradation of the battery over time.  So if you don’t use much power in the first place, with a $15k installation charge, even if I saved $50/month for 15 years, that’s only $9000.  To make sense, the solar would also need to power a neighbor.

More Questions

goals

Ok, now just think about this for a second.  Most of the people using this site right now are in tech.  And almost HALF of those people think their company doesn’t have a clear direction, and don’t really care that much about it.

no-career-plan

HALF of the people have no clear goal or career plan.  Big opportunity!  People suck at planning.

prof-dev

Ok.  This shouldn’t be surprising.  I’ve felt kind of stuck for the last two years.  The money kept me at my company, not the career growth potential.

career-advancement

This is consistent… also, I’d like to point out that since the responses are from engineering, the priorities are going to be more male than female, so likely cash and ambition is going to be rated higher than time off and touchy feely emotions.

comfort

Arguably, I should have said compensation, but I’d put that in the category of necessary but insufficient.  I could go somewhere else, but if it adds an hour of commuting every day (or several hours of frustrating work), I’m not sure I’d call that a win.

communication

This is a life theme… management not communicating enough down the chain.  Part of this is because it’s an easy, if toxic, way to retain power.  I think part of it is also about equity compensation.  The less you communicate, the more you can grab for yourself.  In my case, I think my boss is so busy doing actual technical work, and he’s much better at that kind of work, that he doesn’t spend that much time farming his employees so they grow more.  It’s a small team.  If the servers go down, it’s his ass.  If his underlings don’t grow… it’s only his ass if they quit all at once due to lack of mentoring.