March 2015 net worth update (+4.3%)

31-Dec-2014 28-Feb-2015 31-Mar-2015 MoM YTD
cash $12,300 $6,600 $9,300 +$2,700 -$3,000
savings $47,800 $42,200 $61,900 +$19,700 +$14,100
investments $164,500 $176,500 $176,200 -$300
mortgage $143,000 $141,500 $140,800 +$700
net worth $531,600 $533,800 $556,600 +$22,800
taxable assets – debts $70,600 $73,800 $53,700 +$20,100
$ until FI $845,000 $785,600 $826,300 +$40,700

Yay, I finally got some big paychecks from my new job this month (which made up for all of the time with no income!) and I won’t get another one until September, but that’s okay because I’m going to max out my 401(k) as quickly as possible. I crossed off my first financial goal for the year of having $60,000 in savings for Operation Bayes. I have a bit more cash than that right now, which is so that I can cover expenses from cash while I max out my 401(k). My first 401(k) deduction for the new job came off my paycheck AND it was deposited into my actual 401(k) account, which is quite exciting! :)

I’ve been running the numbers and it looks like I should come within $1,000 of saving 80% of my net income this year!!! That’s been one of my targets and I would be very excited if I hit it. In fact, I saved 78% of my net non-bonus income this month! My original goal for the year was to save 70% of my monthly net income, but now I think that is too low of a goal and I should be shooting for 75% and then 100% of bonuses!

Expenses: I spent $5,718 in March including the mortgage or $4,691 without it. Some of my controllable expenses broke down as follows:

  • New pair of running shoes
  • Three layering camisoles
  • ~$400 end-of-season sales on outerwear: a vest (50% off), a light jacket at 20% off, and a warm jacket at 30% off. I haven’t bought a warm jacket in 5.5 years, so I’ve been budgeting for that one for a while.
  • Six pairs of socks
  • Returned all but $60 of the online shopping for shorts/skirt from last month
  • One pair of leggings
  • Online shopping to find a pair of jeans since I changed sizes AGAIN and not back to my previous size. I only plan to keep one pair, so I should see a ($500) clothing expense next month.
  • $1,200 total clothing
  • $452 Entertainment/Social [average so far this year: $248, average last year: $211] – Renewed our theater season tickets for next year and enjoyed some delicious meals out.
  • $1 Eating out by myself [average so far this year: $4, average last year: $18]
  • $177* Groceries [average so far this year: $118, average last year: $185]
  • $87 Work lunches [average so far this year: $45, average last year: $147] – Food at my new office is much cheaper than at my last job :)
  • $29* Household goods – paper towels, water filters, and some other cleaning supplies
  • $34* Internet
  • 4 months of HOA dues – we rearranged how we’re splitting expenses and I paid my boyfriend back for the last 3 months of HOA dues and then paid the April dues. This means that I removed several other items from my budget going forward.
  • Renewed my driver’s license early because I kept getting anxious about forgetting to renew it
  • Photos for my passport renewal
  • $46 Medical
  • $20 Eyebrows
  • $12 Toiletries [average so far this year: $14, average last year: $33] – over the counter medicine
  • $177* Shopping – some food storage containers, a speaker, and a case for my new sunglasses (that were covered by insurance 100%!)
  • $24 Fuel [$63 so far this year, $0 at this time last year]
  • Travel – booked flights and an Airbnb to go to a friend’s wedding later this year

* indicates expenses that were in the joint account. I calculate my expenses by tallying up all of my individual expenses for the month, adding in my mortgage payment, and adding in half of the joint expenses.

Gah, things really added up this month. My estimate for April is to have net expenses of only $500 after the mortgage payment, HOA dues, and property taxes. (That figure assumes a bunch of returns of the clothing purchases this month.)

Savings: $61,900 (up $19,700)

These funds are spread across a checking account that gets free ATM fees anywhere in the world, my new and old health savings account, a savings account at my credit union, and a bit of a buffer in my credit union checking account.

Transferred a good chunk here from my paychecks this month! I was pretty excited to do that first savings transfer this month!! :D I think that was my first transfer to savings/mortgage/investments from income since November.

Investments: $176,200 (down $300 or -0.2%)

This includes my 401(k) from my former employer: Roth, Traditional, and employer matching (fully vested!), my Roth IRA, my taxable investments including stock index funds and Series I Savings Bonds.

The change here comes from:

  1. Q1 dividends
  2. Some healthy losses in the stock market
  3. The first contribution to my new 401(k)

My old 401(k) happily stayed above $100,000. I’m going to roll my old Roth 401(k) to my Roth IRA, but my new 401(k) should possibly still be above $100,000, assuming that the rollover manages to happen all within the month of April.

At the beginning of April, I will initiate the rollover of my old 401(k) and my new 401(k) will see a strong influx of new cash from my paychecks as well. I’ll also see my first employee stock purchase plan deductions happen in April.

Mortgage: $140,800 (down $700 or -0.5%)

Some statistics here:

  • 2.5%: the interest rate on my 5/1 ARM
  • January 2018: when the interest rate on my mortgage is set to reset, possibly to 7.5%
  • 0: months of payments eliminated with this month’s pre-payments
  • $0: extra payments made on the mortgage this month
  • $0: interest this month’s extra payments will save me on the next regular payment
  • 28.7%: portion of my regular payment went to interest (originally was 59%; down 0.2 percentage points)
  • 60.7%: amount of equity in my condo, assuming purchase price (up 0.2 percentage points)
  • 50.8%: amount of the mortgage I’ve paid down (up 0.3 percentage points)
  • $24,500: amount extra remaining to pay to be on track at the end of 2015 to pay the mortgage off before the rate resets in 2018

I’m just letting the regular, automatic payment go for now, until my cash savings is at the level I want and my 401(k) is fully maxed out.

TOTAL: $556,600 (up $22,800 or +4.3%)

I ended 2014 with a net worth of $531,600, so I’ve seen a change of +$25,000 or +4.7% so far this year. I’m going to set the y-axis on this graph to $650,000 so we can see how my net worth grows towards that throughout the year.


19 thoughts on “March 2015 net worth update (+4.3%)

  1. Great job this month. Hope the new job is going well! In the chart at the top do you purposely leave out the FV of your home, which I am assuming makes up the rest of your net worth? Thanks.

    • Thanks!

      Yup, to preserve privacy. People can still calculate it if they want to, but this way it isn’t indexed. Cash, savings, and investments are all anonymized in that I have many accounts under each of those buckets and I round the bucket total to the nearest $100, but I can’t do the same with property value very well and that amount is possibly public knowledge with my real name. Once the mortgage is paid off, I plan to not post net worth anymore, instead the monetary net worth ignoring home value. I just post it now to offset the mortgage that I do want to show as I pay it down.

  2. Awesome blog and progress! One question – when you say you intend to save 70-80% of your income, do those savings include 401K/IRA savings? And hence does the net income imply after-tax but pre 401K deduction income? Or does it mean your take home pay (in which case the savings would imply savings only in savings accounts/taxable investment accounts)?

    Thanks – your financial progress is an inspiration!

    • Yup, they do! My math on the savings rate is (all in flows to savings – all out flows from savings) / net pay. Net pay = gross pay + pre-tax adjustments – income tax – social security tax – medicare tax. Savings categories can include any of: pre-tax 401(k), after-tax 401(k), health savings account, cash savings, ESPP, taxable investments, Roth IRA, mortgage pre-payments, and regular mortgage payment principal.

      I don’t calculate savings on take home pay because I feel like money is fungible and retirement savings is also savings. Also, sometimes I use money from cash savings so I can contribute to retirement accounts and is that then negative savings? An example would be while front loading my 401(k) or the fact that I usually just take the Roth IRA money out of my savings account.

      • Yep, that makes sense. You consider mortgage prepayments and principal payments as savings too? I hadn’t thought about that, although now that I do, I realize almost half of my net worth is in the form of my home equity. It doesn’t make sense to not include those items in my savings.

        • I somewhat double count the mortgage in a way. I count the required mortgage payment as an expense in my spending reports, but I also count the principal portion as savings. It increases my net worth, it reduces the amount of interest I have to pay in the future, it decreases the length of the mortgage, etc. The principal portion of the regular payment is questionable as savings, but the pre-payments are definitely savings.

  3. Great increase in savings and investments. It is impressive how fast you ramped up your 401k account. Good job. Very motivating.

      • I know, but there is a catch :) you have to have money to max it out. Unfortunately I do not have as my family takes away a lot. But trying hard. As hard as possible.
        Good luck in the next month!

        • That’s true :) But no matter what level you can save at, so long as you’re persistent and start as early as you can, it will pay off. Just keep saving what you can :)

    • :) the joint account worked great – we both loved it! We’ve decided to try another method of splitting things though, so we sadly emptied the joint account.

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