Monthly Update #18 (February 2020) – Bloodbath

Monthly Update #18 (February 2020) – Bloodbath

7 min read

Update #18 is about to go down, which means I’ve now been doing these for 18 months!

Of all the updates this has by far been my LEAST favorite one to do. But even though life has its ups and downs the show must go on 🙂

2019 ended on a high note for the average stock investor, while 2020 has revealed itself as a bit of a challenge (she’s been a bit of a bitch lately, hasn’t she?)!

Luckily for me, I’m not hugely invested in stocks (I do have stocks in my pension portfolio, but only about 30% of the portfolio).

Unluckily for me, I was “invested” in a couple of (what turned out to be) dodgy crowdlending platforms, and last month I wrote off my investments with Kuetzal. – This month the time has come to write off my Envestio portfolio…

That’s a tough one, because I had more than €1.500 on the platform. Goodbye “hard” earned money. Oh well, Easy come, easy go. I comfort myself in the fact that only about €850 of that was actually “my money”. The rest was accrued “interest” (or whatever we want to call it). I had more than €3.000 “invested” at one point with Envestio, so after all I’m somewhat happy that I managed to diversify in time to avoid a total disaster.

The month in review

Last month I declared that I was totally “unfazed” by the demise of Kuetzal and Envestio. This month I feel a little less unfazed to be honest. Kuetzal is gone and forgotten (in my mind), so now there’s nothing else to do, than to put Envestio behind me as well. I haven’t even bothered to fill out a claim with the estonian police against Envestio (I did do the Kuetzal one, because they only required you to send an email with a few details attached, but the Envestio one seems like a freaking novel). I honestly don’t expect to see ANY of that money again, so I prefer to just forget about it and move on with my life.

While the crowdlending part of my portfolio only makes up 10% of my entire Total Balance (Property #1 makes up 80%), it currently makes up about 90% of my worries/annoyances. So much in fact that I am considering calling it quits altogether.

This month I made € 75 on crowdlending. Seems a little pointless to be honest, but I guess it’s better than nothing 🙂 I don’t currently feel inclined to put in more money in the crowdlending pot right now, but I would like to see that number hit at least € 100 / month at one point again. Otherwise I don’t really think it makes sense continuing with that particular asset type. However, as long as I have a mortgage that I have to pay interest on (which I’m probably gonna have FOREVER if the interest continue to be < 1%) it still makes sense to have some positive interest income, because the negative and the positive interest “income” balance each other out (tax wise). So my goal with this part of the portfolio is (still) to become interest “neutral” (which I’m now far from at the current level of crowdlending income).

In other news, I’m still spending a little too much brain power on the whole “new car” debacle. We have two cars today (remember we live outside of the city), and the lease on my car (we own my wife’s car) is up in June. Since we’ve now got my daughters school locked down (it was a little uncertain at one point), we know our traffic patterns for the next 10 years (give or take). This means that I should be able to bike to work (and drop the kid off at school on my way). My daughter is totally up for it – but then again, she’s never driven that far on her bike before. I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t love it if it was windy/rainy (which it rarely is in Denmark, RIGHT?!…), so I’m still 50/50 preparing myself for that new car smell come June/July! 😛

This week one of my “dream cars” went on sale (a lease). I was close to pulling the trigger, but I reminded myself of the bigger goal, and how having only 1 car would bring us one step closer to FIRE…It’s not easy, I’ll be honest. For 10 years I’ve had the luxury of getting a new car every other year, and while the cars have been getting less and less luxurious, I do love my cars!… I do not love my wife’s car, so the problem with having only 1 car, is that that particular 1 car isn’t really that appealing to me 😛 Replacing it would ruin the whole idea (it’s only 6 years old, and I plan to keep it at least another 4-5 years), so the outcome of this whole car debacle is still very uncertain! You’ll probably hear more about it in the coming months!

Anyway, come August/September I while most likely be driving one of these vehicles (it’s 50/50 at this point!):

Yes. That last one is a pedal-powered vehicle! 😛

Moving on!…

The pretty graphs

I’ve obviously had to find some extra cash (from other saving accounts) in order to outweigh the blow from the Envestio write-off. I think this shall be the last time I mention that name on this blog again 😛

Due to my conservative AA on my pension portfolio, I’ve managed to stay in the green on my pension this month (just barely!). If the market takes another dip (it’s rebounding a bit lately, but it could be a “sucker’s rally”, so I’m hesitant to call of the alarms just yet…) I will consider moving more cash into the market, but for now I’m happy with my current AA.

I comfort myself in the fact that my net worth is still up a bit from last month 🙂 (progress!)

 

The boring income statement

Platform Invested Deposits/withdrawals  Last month Current value Bonus/fees Monthly income Exp. Return
Crowdlending
Crowdestate € 700 € 0 € 767 € 782 € 0 € 15 13%
Crowdestor € 1.150 € 0 € 1.223 € 1.233 € 0 € 10 16%
Envestio € 850 € 0 € 1.548 € 0 € 0 € 0 16%
Estateguru € 90 € 0 € 104 € 104 € 0 € 0 11%
FastInvest € 106 € 0 € 149 € 150 € 0 € 1 14%
Grupeer € 0 € 0 € 136 € 138 € 0 € 2 14%
Mintos € 900 € 0 € 1.059 € 1.067 € 0 € 8 11%
Monethera € 800 € 0 € 937 € 952 € 0 € 15 16%
ReInvest24 € 400 € 0 € 547 € 547 € 0 € 0 13%
TFGCrowd € 700 € 0 € 721 € 736 € 0 € 15 17%
Wisefund € 500 € 0 € 520 € 529 € 0 € 9 18%
€ 6.196 € 0 € 7.711 € 6.238 € 0 € 75 14%
Commodities
GOLD (Coins) € 5.333 € 5.333 € 0 € 5.333 € 0 € 0
Properties
Brickshare € 1.333 € 0 € 1.333 € 1.333 € 0
Property #1 € 68.667 € 0 € 68.667 € 68.667 € 0
€ 70.000
Cash
Bank #1 cash (main savings) € 0 € 0 € 1.560 € 1.560 0,50%
Portfolio Leverage -€ 3.800 € 1.600 -€ 5.400 -€ 3.800 -3,50%
Total balance € 79.204 € 79.331

 

At least I’ve still got my Gold! That’s one asset that hasn’t tanked lately! And Property #1 of course. The wife and I will be going to the first annual general assembly for Property #1 this month. I will meet (most of) the other investors at a fancy dinner party, hosted by the developer. We’re looking forward to it, and have planned it as a weekend getaway, so that’s almost a double-whammy! (“Free” food and no kid! What did you think I meant, you dirty bastard!?).

The classic growth chart

As always, the classic growth chart for tracking purposes. The last couple of months is looking pretty ridiculous (obviously), but it should normalize again in the coming months…

2020 boasts a new look for the Classic Growth Chart. It’s getting increasingly difficult to display the progress month by month in a clearly visible manner, so eventually I’m gonna have to switch to a quarterly view (and eventually, yearly of course). But for now I think I can manage to squeeze in another month or two in the chart. It’s so damn satisfying to look at my progress. Of course now my target is getting away from me, which is really annoying 🙁 (I will catch up eventually though! 😛 ).

In conclusion

Another shitty month in the trenches. Let’s put these last two months behind us as quickly as possible. It’s time to look ahead! – And I think this summer (it’s just around the corner now, can you feel it?!) is going to be an epic one.

My kid starts school in May, I (might) get a new vehicle by the end of the summer, and cash flow should be pretty regular from here on out. No more defaulted/fraudulent platforms from here on out, please!…

I have been regularly moving money away from the classic P2P platforms, since I’m not really a fan of the concept (borrowing money to people who probably shouldn’t be borrowing money in the first place?). However, I have been considering moving into less risky platforms to rival that of Mintos, although nothing can really rival Mintos in terms of loan diversity, security and liquidity. – But perhaps I will look at some other P2P platforms in the future, in order to hit that €100/month target again (Robocash, Swaper, Lendermarket, Bondster, ViaInvest etc.)… I’m not completely decided yet. Maybe I should just go buy some stocks instead!? 😛

Anyway, we made it through another month in the red! Let’s hope we’re back in the green next month! See you then!

4 thoughts on “Monthly Update #18 (February 2020) – Bloodbath

  1. Ah, what a month, Nick. After a 2019 where all investors could walk on water, we are now seeing a depressing start to 2020. I’m also not going to increase my crowdlending portfolio anymore (Mintos is perhaps the only one I really trust), but I am still buying stocks at a “discount” at the moment. Maybe we’ll finally see you in the stock market now? 😉

    1. Who knows! Stranger things have happened before 😉 I am invested in the stock market via my Pension, but I feel comfortable with my current AA. I have ice in my stomach (for now). If we end up with a 40-50% decline I might consider going ALL-IN with my pension. I don’t really have any cash to invest outside of my pension fund, so I will have to watch from the sideline there on that front.
      I still believe crowdlending has a bright future – we’ve just been unlucky (maybe a bit greedy) with some rotten apples. I think 10-12% long term returns in crowdlending is still very lucrative (especially given the current situation in the stock market).

  2. 18 updates and I still love your graphs as much as the first day, Nick. I can relate to your feeling with P2P investments. The community has grown and has became very noisy, and many speculations and dubious information are circulating on the web. Similar thing used to happen with the stock market In US decades ago, but now is worse as technology and social media has became powerful.

    Anyway, do you plan to restructure your total crowdlending portfolio or just stick with it?

    75eur in passive income isn’t that bad!

    I would pay a fee to see you driving your future pedal-powered vehicle (cos you’ll right?). Fred from The Flintstones would love it too, 100%. Haha have a good one Nick.

    1. Haha, thanks Tony. I’ve never really liked the Classic P2P short term/micro loans. And it seems still those are the kind of loans that are dominating that sphere. It just doesnt sit right with me that people who are poorly financially educated should pay these kind of interests for borrowing money. For now I’ll stick with what I have, but I probably won’t go above €10K in Crowdlending again.

      My Flintstones bike actually also has a battery and an electric motor, so it’s not that hard to move it forward 😛

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