Welcome to the February 2021 edition of our net worth tracker, where we’ll track our net worth month over month. I first started tracking our net worth at the time this blog was started, which was the beginning of September 2019. I started by creating the Net Worth Baseline report.
You can view Previous Net Worth reports HERE.
Okay, is it safe to say all the political mayhem is over for a while? Is life starting to get back to “Normal”?
I’m not going to talk much about what I did this month because, well, we haven’t been doing much. It was an overall calm and relaxing month for us, aside from surviving a record Texas sized freeze.
Normally, I go through my month, and go over the highlights. These days I’m doing it a little different. I think I can sum up my whole month in one or two paragraphs.
Where did February go?
It feels like is went by in the blink of an eye, but looking back, there were times when it didn’t feel like it was flying by.
Texas decided we would get through winter in just 1 week!
Temperatures literally did not get above freezing for the whole week. As you might have heard, that apparently causes problems for the utilities. Most people were without power and gas, some without water, for close to a week.
I’m extremely grateful that we kept all of our utilities and had no burst pipes. In fact, our street was the only street in the whole neighborhood that did not lose gas or power. Really, gotta thank God for that one.
That was an interesting week for us because both the kids were home and mommy and daddy were working from home. It was nice spending the time with the kids, but it wouldn’t work long term if we both had to work. I’m thankful that daycare is back open!
We wrapped up the month with the baby having a fever. Started on a Friday, broke on Sunday, and was able to go back to school on Monday. Again, I’m thankful for that and that my baby girl is back to normal.
So, if I learned anything this month, it’s that God does hear my prayers. It could have been a rough month, and was for many, but we were able to squeak by without any major problems.
February 2021 Net Worth
Here’s how February compares to last month:
February Account Breakdown
Let’s take a quick look at what happened in February.
Monthly Blurb: 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. As usual, I do the net worth report before transferring money to the appropriate accounts.
It was a good month for us in terms of spending. The difference in cash on hand is due mostly to the fact that we received one less pay check.
Our spending was a little below average this month. (Thanks to the winter storm!)
Investment Cash (+$11,679.90)
Monthly Blurb: All of our cash leftover at the end of the month is transferred here and is considered part of our saving’s rate.
This is where our leftover income went from January. It wasn’t a whole lot since we had such an expensive January.
I’m still waiting for some opportunities to come up. The foreclosure moratorium was supposed to lasts until the end of 2020, but it has now been extended for most of 2021.
I expect the market will be flooded with properties a few months after the moratorium ends. The longer it last, the more severe it is going to be. If they extend it indefinitely, home owners will eventually stop renting out houses and there will be a bigger crisis.
Remaining Cash Accounts (Emergency and Sinking Funds) ($1060.00)
Nothing exciting here. Just the usual. We’re back at it again. We are just saving up for our property tax bill and HOA fees for when they are due early next year.
I guess the drop I was expecting is finally here. I was expecting it last month. It wasn’t much of a drop though, less than 1%.
I still think we have to be in some sort of bubble, right? And the bubble keeps getting bigger and bigger The markets have basically been on a bull run for 12 years. Yes, I know that there has been a recession or two, but they were short lived.
And cryptocurrency! It’s still going up like crazy. The fed mentioned again that they were looking into ways an e-currency could be used. I’m curious how that’s going to play out over the next few years as more companies begin to adopt it.
Again, all market performance. Last month I mentioned that I planned to transfer in money for our 2021 ROTH contributions, so there will be a big increase in these accounts next month.
Well, I got distracted and that didn’t happen. It will probably happen this month.
That’s a loss of about 2% between the 401k and IRA’s. Not too bad for a down month, but not good either.
College Fund (-$1,043.58)
The college fund is invested just like the IRAs; in mutual funds. The loss is equal to about 1.6%. Not terrible, but I prefer positive months..
Net Worth (-$2,172.81)
Wow, when was the last time our net worth decreased? It’s been a while! (It was September.)
Hey, if it only happens once or twice a year, I can’t really complain. As long as it’s less than 2%.
In total, our net worth decreased by slightly over .4%.
Accessible Net Worth (+$3,158.38)
Monthly Blurb: This is the money we are able to put away, not including the tax-advantaged retirement accounts.
Our income was normal and our expenses were a little below average this month. The markets were down, but not by much. Our accessible net worth increased as a result.
Status: (Other than the hospital bills.) 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.
December was a near record month for dividend income, and 2020 was a record year. We are about 25% of the way to being able to live solely off the dividend. And it’s suppose to grow exponentially, right? So, Financial Independence here we come!
That said, February, along with January, are very boring months for dividends. At least for what I invest in (Mutual Funds). I know March will be more exciting.
The interest rate in my savings account is super low, as can be expected. My money is barely making any money sitting in that “high-yield” account now earning a measly 0.3%.
I track my savings 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.
Last year, I had to adjust the savings goal to 50%, which we didn’t acheive. I’m setting the same goal this year, and it’s looking like it will be tough to get there.
This month we failed to reach that goal! And that is with very low expenses. My prediction last month turned out to be correct.
On the downside, next month is a normal paycheck month, and I’m not sure we will make enough money to raise our savings rate above 50%.January Net Worth Report
Of that 50% we are spending, Housing and Daycare alone eat up about 30%. We give 10%, so that means we are living on 10-15% for everything else.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel for daycare, but these Texas property taxes kill me. They will be the reason I move out of the state. Is that Tennessee I see in the future???
I expect moving there will at least cut property taxes in half. Daycare will decrease every year, until it’s gone in about 5 or so years. Hopefully we can get our savings rate up to 70% by then.
Here’s how we did this month.
Right now, our only source of active income is through our full-time jobs.
This is what a normal income month looks like for us. No extra paychecks this month.
Our expenses were below average this month. We only spent money on essentials, and we cleared out our pantry while we were stuck inside for the week. This is about as low as it gets for us right now.
Here is a quick break down:
1) Home Escrow ($1211.55)
The normal amount we put aside every month. And as I mentioned last month, this went up slightly we hired a gardener.
2) Giving ($1,250.01)
The usual 10% we give every month.
3) Cost of living ($2,632.65)
Previous Months: Jan: ($4,757.43), Dec: ($-$1,132.39), Nov: ($1,372.91), Oct: ($6,397.83), Sep: ($2,602.07), Aug: ($2,835.56), July: ($4,283.01), June: ($3,031.71), May: ($2,957.92), Apr: ($2,164.31), Mar: ($3,078.52), Feb: ($2,474.38), Jan: ($4,708.98)
Running Average: $3,243.45
This includes all our bills (Gas, Electric, Water, Internet, Phone), transportation, food, shopping, and daycare. Home insurance is paid for out of our Home Escrow savings account. Like last year, we are going to drain our dependent care account at the end of the year in one lump sum. Doing it that way is less paper work for us.
Our gasoline bills was low thanks to staying home so much, but it was partially offset by our utility bills. Took a lot of gas and power to keep our house at a decent temperature.
I mentioned that after February, I should have a pretty good idea what a normal month looks like. And I’ll know if a savings rate of 50% is likely.
Unfortunately, after seeing what a normal month looks like for us, I think a 50% savings rate is a little bit of a stretch for us. I’m not going to change it though, because it will be a good challenge to see if we can make it.
February 2021 Vs January 2021 Expenses
January started off a little rocky, and things settled down in February. It was nice getting back in a routine. February was smooth sailing for us.
Hopefully March stays fairly smooth too, although I think we may have another car repair, and we got a “friendly notice” from the HOA that we have to take care of.
Aside from the Roth IRA contribution, most of the financial goals this year are year long goals.
The Roth IRA contribution should be done, I just have to transfer the money. I’m putting all that investment money we had in December towards the Roth’s.
Aside from the 401k, which is on automatic contributions from my paycheck, I’m still not sure how the other ones are going to turn out. Time will tell.
I have to wait till dividends start coming in to know how the passive income goal will turn out.
The savings rate goal of 50% is turning into a stretch goal, but I still think we can do it.
For 2021, I want to create more content. My goal is at least one article a month. I failed to do this for January and February. Hopefully March I’ll get an article posted, now that things are getting back to normal.
I’m doing a reading goal again this year, but half the number of books. I know 6 books isn’t much, but it felt like a lot. I think I can do 3.
So far I haven’t started.
And then their is my physical health. I didn’t get to where I wanted in 2020, so we’ll try again this year.
I’ve been loosing some weight this year, and I’ve been going to the gym again and running. That’s been helping. Just need to eat a little healthier. That’s so hard to do when Blue Bell comes out with their seasonal flavors. They just released Banana Pudding. One of my favorites.
February 2021 Roundup
The month of February was a a good one, even with a few unusual things that happened. The kids got a week home from daycare, although mom and dad didn’t get a week of work. Thanks telecommuting!
I’m joking, telecommuting is great, and I’m thankful we have that as an option.
I’m excited for March, and to get back to normal.
I’m still hopeful that we will be able to stop wearing masks everywhere we go soon. Doesn’t look like it will be by March, but maybe summer?
Stay tuned for next month’s New Worth update!
- 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 money for my babies. Consider it their net worth summary.
- Home Escrow – This is Uncle Sam’s money. We don’t mess around with Uncle Sam and his money.
- Total income only includes our active income, which is currently our full-time jobs.