Net Worth

2019 Net Worth | December + Annual Summary

An amazing year for my net worth as 2019 comes to an end. A quick 2019 Summary and comparison to previous month’s net worth.

Welcome to the 2019 year-end edition of our net worth tracker. I’ll review my December and then take a look at how 2019 treated us. I started tracking at the time this blog was started, which was the beginning of September 2019. I started by creating the Net Worth Baseline report. A couple of months have gone by, so now I have a couple months to compare!

You can view Previous Net Worth reports HERE.

Our Busy December

December was another busy month for us. We did our normal work routine during the week (mostly), aside from Christmas week, and all of our weekends were filled with parties, friends, family, and fun!

Weekend 1

The first weekend of December was my wife’s company sponsored Christmas party. This was my wife’s first year with the company, so this was our first Christmas party with them. We didn’t know what to expect, but my wife had heard rumors of an open bar. To our disappointment, it was a cash bar with limited and expensive drinks.

On the bright side, the event was hosted at a hotel, which had its own bar, and the bar sold my choice of drinks for less than what the cash bar cost for something I didn’t really want. Yay for saving a few bucks and getting my preferred drink of choice, TX Whiskey.

The party also had several buffets set up around the room, with each station serving foods from a different region of the world. Some of the food was good, some of it was not. Desserts were the best.

Weekend 2

The second weekend we hosted a church party at our house. We had lots of fun just hanging out and playing games. We also got to watch The Elf. I’m pretty sure that has become Christmas classic. There was a ton of food, and we got to keep the leftovers. Lot’s of pizza for us. Yum! No, I didn’t have any whiskey at this party.

Weekend 3

The third weekend was a party for my nephew. There was some family that flew out from California and it was nice to hang out with them. I won’t bore you with too many family details.

Then there was Christmas. We spent the day at home, enjoyed each other’s company, and relaxed as best we could. My poor girl was sick, running a fever, and had a loss of appetite. However, that didn’t stop her from running around and enjoying some of her presents. Mom and dad (me) got more than the normal amount of cuddles.

The weather Christmas week was in the 70’s. My little girl’s fever broke the day after Christmas, so we took a walk around the neighborhood to enjoy the Christmas lights.

I didn’t feel spoiled enough this month, so I also picked up some fancy root beer to drink during my week off. It’s carried at some grocery stores, or you can pay a ridiculous amount to buy it off Amazon here. I have only found one grocery store in my area that carries it. It usually runs about $1/bottle or less.

Henry Weinhard's Root Beer
Henry Weinhard’s Root Beer

December 2019 Net Worth

Here’s how December compares to last month:

December 2019 Net Worth Account Breakdown

December Account Breakdown

Let’s take a quick look at what happened in December.

Cash (-$5,857.81)

This is where our paychecks get deposited. All our income goes into this account, then gets transferred to the proper accounts as set by my budget. The trend continues that I do the net worth report before transferring money to the appropriate accounts.

We made about that same amount in December as we did in October and September. This is about what a normal month looks like for us. This lower value reflects the unusually high income we had in November, as well as all the extra spending we did this month.

Investment Cash (+$8,788.80)

All of our extra cash is transferred here and is considered part of our saving’s rate. This is where our leftover income went from November. This is cash we plan on using to invest in real estate in the near future (less than 5 years). It’s getting close to the point where we could afford some fixer uppers, but it’s still not enough to buy a house and have enough left over to renovate it.

Starting at the beginning of 2020 we will pause transferring money towards this account and instead fund our Roth IRAs until they are maxed out. We try to save as much money as we can. Our future selves will thank us.

Remaining Cash Accounts (Emergency and Sinking Funds) (+$1,052.85)

A few dollars less than last month’s increase. Nothing exciting here. Just the usual. The amount increased by about the same as last month since we’re just saving up for our property tax bill and HOA fees for when they are due in January. (This month! Yikes!) It didn’t increase by as much because the account where we have the money keeps dropping the interest rate. There’s the Federal Reserve to thank for that.

Retirement Accounts

401(k)s (+$3,543.53)

The markets did well and helped us out a good amount. Not as good as last month, but I’m not complaining. The 401(k)s’ increases were partly due to our contributions throughout the month.

IRA (+$4,236.33)

Another reflection that the markets had a positive month. The IRAs are all invested in mutual funds, which reflect the stock market’s growth for October.

College Fund (+$407.98)

The college fund is invested just like the IRAs. I’m not actively contributing, so it reflected market moves.

Net Worth (+$10,736.51)

December was another excellent month for us, despite our high expenses. Our increase in net worth was half of what it was in November, yet I’m still very pleased with our increase. Shows how good of a month November was. I wasn’t sure how this month was going to turn out because of everything that happened, but it worked out well for us. Most of our increase in net worth was from investments. Our net worth increased by over 3%. Not the 6% from last month, but still feels good.

Accessible Net Worth (+$2,956.65)

This is the money we were able to put away, not including the tax-advantaged retirement accounts. This was a high expense, normal income month for us. I’m happy that we are still able to contribute a decent amount of money towards investing.


Status: None, as usual. They’re a burden, so I avoid them. The cars, the house, they’re all paid for. Student loans…never used them. Credit Card debt? I only use one, and it gets paid off every month, and often I’ll pay it off multiple times per month. Just depends on how many times I think about it.

Passive Income

As you probably know, I am primarily invested in mutual funds. December is one of three months during the year where a lot of mutual funds will payout capital gains. September and March are the other two months. As a result of it being December, I had a really good month.

Yet, I’m still a little bummed out. The amount of dividend I received in December 2018 was about $6,500. Since I did better every month of this year compared to last year, I was expecting about twice as much as I actually received.

I have a lot to learn about mutual funds and investing. For now, I’ll be happy with what I did receive. It is the second-best month that I have ever had.

Also, the bank where I keep my savings dropped the interest rate from 1.7% to 1.5%, therefore we didn’t earn as much from the money just sitting there.

December 2019 Passive Income

Saving’s Rate

I’ve been tracking my saving’s rate in order to help keep my feet to the fire, so later I can be Gone on FIRE. As a bonus, you get a glimpse into my cash flow by looking at the income and expense rows.

December 2019 Savings Rate


Right now, our only source of active income is through our full-time jobs.

As I mentioned last month, my wife and I each received an extra paycheck. This month is back to normal. That combined with the high expenses resulted in a low savings rate.


Can I just skip this section? Ugh….

Here is a quick break down:

1) Home Escrow ($1020.00)
The amount I put aside every month.

2) Giving ($1,218.68)
The usual 10% I give every month.

3) Cost of living ($1,242.44)
Previous Months: Nov: ($1,242.44), Oct: ($3,040.36), Sep: ($1238.39)

This includes all my bills (Gas, Electric, Water, Internet, Phone), transportation, food, shopping. There was no daycare or auto/home insurance this month.

December Vs November Expenses

I suppose that it’s normal for December expenses to be higher than November for most families, but such a difference as this is a lot. For us, this big of a difference is extreme. I think this might be the first year that I’ve ever waited until December to finish my Christmas shopping. I typically buy things throughout the year, when I see something I know someone would like. Well, not this year. However, on the plus side, I did get some shopping done for Christmas 2020.

Aside from that Christmas shopping, there was some planned house maintenance. Our HVAC is paid for until next fall/winter. We did have some unexpected expenses pop-up throughout the month. Things like emergency vet bills and having to replace a battery in one of our vehicles, after it breaks down on the side of the road. Thank God that he’s given me the knowledge to diagnose the problem and to fix it. I’m also thankful for my wife, as she took care of the baby while I swapped out the battery.

We even made it home before the little one’s bed time. We didn’t have to pay to get the car towed or pay a mechanic. I only had to pay for the cost of the battery. Just one hour at a mechanic would have cost more than the battery.

Our savings rate for December was below the 50% mark, coming in at 42.98%. This is disappointing when you weren’t planning on a low savings rate going into the month. But things happen. I think we will be alright.

Next year I plan to add our average savings rate throughout the year. That will provide some encouragement when months like this roll around.

December 2019 Roundup

Overall though, December was a fun, busy, eventful month. There wasn’t a whole lot of time to relax until after Christmas. Our expenses were unexpectedly high, meaning we will not be able to put as much money as normal towards investing. I realize the amount we are still saving is like a treasure chest to some people, but for us, it’s like we had to jump a hurdle as we run our sprint.

2019 Results

I’ll have to beef this section up for 2020, after I’ve had a full year of tracking all this data. Next year I’ll have exciting (to me) stats, like our net worth increase for the year. I only have a guestimate for 2019. For now, here is some of the data I do know:

2019 Net Worth Increase Guestimate: ~$100,000

2019 Passive Income: $9,863.99

2019 Savings Rate: 57%

2019 Expenses: $47,676.12

Here are some charts to help visualize our 2019 expenses.

2019 Expenses Bar Graph
2019 Expenses Pie Chart

2019 Roundup

2019 was another great year for us. Our income ticked up slightly and both of us are in jobs and workplaces that we both enjoy. This was the first full year of having to pay for daycare. It’s nice to know that it doesn’t eat up too much of the budget.

Home Escrow

Home Escrow is the biggest slice of the pie. Texas has high property taxes, but it looks like there is legislation going around to help out home owners. However, I expect that it will continue to be a quarter or more of our annual expenses. I already know what our property tax bill looks like for 2020. Assuming taxes don’t have a substantial increase in 2021, this expense will remain about the same for next year.

We have a big house. Therefore, utilities cost a decent amount. We try to be conservative with our usage. Turning off lights and bundling up in blankets for the winter, but there’s only so much you can do. I expect utilities will hover around the same amount for the foreseeable future as well.

We really like our house and where we live. Also, we want don’t want to move too much with the kids. We like the daycare and we live in a great school district. That said, we are always looking for a property with some land. We would like to have some space between our neighbors and ourselves. We would also love to build our dream home one day. FIRE Goal!


It’s awesome to see that giving is our second highest “expense”. It’s a reflection of how good we have it and that we are being good stewards of what we have. Hopefully we can increase our giving for 2020.


As long as we are working, this is going to be a decent slice of the pie. However, I don’t expect it to be this high every year. About a quarter of our 2019 transportation spending was on tires for cars and other items that are not needed annually…. like a battery. I’m hopeful that this category will be 10% or less of our 2020 spending.

All the other categories

The rest of our expenses combined are less than 30% of our total outgoing expenses. I think we are doing a great job in these areas. Sure, we could trim a little here and there, but it wouldn’t really move the needle much for us.

FIRE Away!

  • 2 big items not included in my net worth:
    • House & Cars – Their value will be added to my net worth if and when I sell them.
  • 2 accounts not included in net worth total (even though they’re listed):
    • 529 – This is my baby’s money. Consider it her net worth summary.
    • Home Escrow – This is Uncle Sam’s money. We don’t mess around with him.
  • Total income only includes our active income, which is currently our full-time jobs.