Welcome to the September 2019, and the very first, edition of my net worth tracker, where we’ll track my net worth over time. I started tracking at the time I started this blog, which is the beginning of September 2019. For starters, I created the Net Worth Baseline report. A month has now gone by, and we now have something to compare!
It was a long, hot, dry month here in Texas. In fact, it was the hottest, driest September in history. We talked about going down to the lake, but we were all tired by the time the weekend came.
Our September Fun
Our main source of entertainment was watching football. I don’t really like the NFL, but I did turn on a few Cowboys’ games. I’m not a Texas native, but I’m trying to be a good Texan since I moved here. Plus, I can keep up with what other people are talking about. I prefer to watch NCAA football. Go Big Red!
My wife and I did get to have a date night. One of our friends graciously watched our little one. I think they might have had as good of a time as we had. We went to one of our favorite restaurants in DFW, Charleston’s. It’s a steakhouse, and there is only one of them in Texas. The food and service are absolutely amazing every time we go there, and this time was no different.
I’m not great at taking pictures, even when it comes to taking them with my phone, but here is what I got. Meatloaf drizzled with cranberry sauce, garlic mashed potatoes, and honey glazed carrots. It tasted great. You can tell I’m a meat and potatoes (and carrots) type of guy. Don’t be surprised if you see me ordering this again.
September 2019 Net Worth
Here’s how September compares to last month:
As a reminder, you’ll see that the total doesn’t add up. That’s because I don’t include the 529 or Home Escrow accounts in that total. I don’t consider it my money once it hits those accounts. The 529 is for my baby girl. It’s hers, and she’s going to college whether she realizes it right now or not. The home escrow account is mostly for taxes. I consider those dollars to be owned by Uncle Sam and the HOA.
September Account Breakdown
Let’s take a quick look at what happened in September.
This is where our paychecks get deposited. All our income goes to this account, then gets transferred to the proper accounts as set by my budget. The trend appears to be that I do the net worth report before transferring money to the appropriate accounts. We receive an extra paycheck in August, so September is about a paycheck lower. September is also the norm, as far as paychecks go, for 8 out of 12 of the months.
Investment Cash (+$5,138.67)
All of our extra was transferred here and is considered part of our saving’s rate. You will continue to see that this is where most of our income usually goes, if the month goes as planned. This is cash we plan on using to invest in real estate in the near future (less than 5 years). For now, it is just sitting in a money market account. It’s still not enough to buy a house and have enough left over to renovate it.
Remaining Cash Accounts (Emergency and Sinking Funds) (+$1,056.54)
Nothing exciting here. Just saving up for our property tax bill and HOA dues when they come early next year. The accounts also earned a little interest.
Percentage wise, you see a big increase in one of the 401(k)s. That’s because it’s fairly new, as the result of my wife starting a new job this year. You will continue to see jumps like this month to month until the contribution isn’t a significant portion of the account value. Overall, both of the 401(k)’s increases are due to contributions through the month.
The markets had a pretty flat month in general, if you ignore the first two trading days of the month. I calculated my net worth baseline after the beginning of the month, so that’s why there isn’t that big of a percentage change, and why some of the account even lost a little bit of value.
The college fund is invested just like the IRA’s. I’m not actively contributing, and it reflect market moves.
Net Worth (+$7,407.69)
Hey, not a bad month. We were able to keep our expenses low, and the retirement accounts were also positive.
Accessible Net Worth (+$4,447.14)
This is the money I was able to put away not including the tax-advantaged retirement accounts. This is an important number because I plan to retire early, at 45, meaning I’ll have at least 15 years before I can touch the money in IRAs and 401(k)s without penalty. If we’re being nit-picky about numbers, I actually only have to wait 14 ½ years. You can start withdrawing from an IRA at age 59 ½.
Status: None. They’re a burden, so I try to 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 we pay it off every month, and often I’ll pay it off multiple times per month. Just depends on how many times I think about it.
I am primarily invested in mutual funds, and September is one of three months during the year where a lot of mutual funds will payout capital gains. December and March are the other two months. As a result of it being September, I had a really good month. I wish every month could be like this. If that were the case, I could retire right now. Too bad that is not the case, and also too bad that these dividends are all coming from tax-advantaged retirement accounts, making it tricky to touch that money for now.
I took the time this month to go through my account statements and add up all the dividends and interest that I have accrued through the year. In addition to the monthly comparison, there is now a Year-to-Date column.
Here’s a new category I’m adding this month that wasn’t in my net worth baseline. I’ll be 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 will get a glimpse into my cash flow by looking at the income and expense rows.
I should mention that I don’t include the passive income in my total income currently. That may change in the future, but for now I only want to include active income. Right now, our only source of active income is through our full-time jobs.
As I said earlier, August is one of those months where we receive an extra paycheck. That is the only reason for the difference in income. However, our expenses were about 25% higher in August, more than taking that extra paycheck.
Here is a quick break down of September’s expenses:
1) Home Escrow ($1020.00)
The amount I put aside every month.
2) Giving ($823.27)
The usual 10% I give every month.
3) Cost of living ($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.
September vs August Expenses
August was a little more expensive mainly because we decided to hire someone to help us with our lawn. This is my third summer in Texas, and I still don’t have a firm grasp on lawn care. The grass isn’t as thick as I would like, and crabgrass is spreading everywhere. I decided to get some help before it’s completely out of control. Fortunately, this is an annual fee. I’m also hoping that it will be a little lower next year if we decided to keep the guy.
One of the perks of hiring a yard care person is that I no longer have to buy fertilizer or weed control products. I haven’t gone through my receipts to figure it out, but I suspect I spend $100 – $200 a year for them.
Overall, I’m happy with the saving’s rate for September. I hope I can keep it up, although I’ll have to start thinking about Christmas pretty soon.
September 2019 Roundup
September, on the whole, was a good month. Our expenses were low, meaning I could move a good portion of our income over into the investment cash account. Mutual Funds are growing and paid out a good amount in capital gains, which was reinvested.
- 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.
2 replies on “Net Worth – September 2019”
Impressive especially given the exclusion of illiquid assets like your home and vehicles.
Really well done!
Thanks Money Mage!