A Look at Other People’s Money :)

Today we’re going to feature OTHER PEOPLE’S money on the site as I’m sure you’re tired of seeing mine all the time ;)

These are all snapshots sent over to me recently, mostly via email, and they really give you a great look into other people’s lives and financial stages they’re in. I’ve also tried to include some of the backgrounds from our convos to better put them in perspective.

Hope you can find a nugget or two to marinate on, or at the very least have fun comparing your $$$ to theirs! A perfectly acceptable thing to do when you’re on financial blogs ;)

Net Worth Snapshot #1: The Risk Taker

reader net worth

(Spreadsheet being used is from AbsoluteBudget.com (free))

Some background:

So I’ve never shared my net worth with anyone except my wife of course, but here is a screen shot from my excel spreadsheet!

I’ve paid off a whopping $19,451 since September!  My wife and I would love it if she didn’t have to go back to work, so we’ll try and figure that out in the next two months!  We have some cash on hand we could live off of, but spending more than you make can only last so long!

My net worth increase is mainly due to cryptocurrency, which peaked on January 7th!  What a crazy ride it’s been!

I asked him about his Crypto strategy and if he buys and holds as I don’t have the stomach for it myself (remember when I tried it for 3 weeks and then cashed out? Haha…), and here was his response:

I bought quite awhile ago and have realized some gains, paid off the vehicle with profits! I have some long term holds and some short terms holds that I’m willing to sell if they go up. I have re bought a few thousand worth, trying to hit another coin that would 10 or 15x.

Back in September of 2017 I also received my Ultimate Bet poker money that had been frozen since April of 2011. An extra $12k to the account was sure nice! I never dreamed I would see that money!

In case you can’t tell, our friend here likes some risk in his life :) Check out that net worth growth since September though – up $30,000! He’s doing something right!

Net Worth Snapshot #2: The Newbie Financial Advisor

readers money

This is a guy who’s just beginning his journey as a financial advisor, and as you can see from the different “properties” up there, most of them relates to this career path. Here’s what he sent over that went along with this snapshot (in response to our “tip yourself” giveaway the other week):

To answer your question, I skipped my typical Friday morning Taco Bell Grilled Sausage Burrito this morning and tipped myself $1.07 or $2.15 – depending upon how hungry I would have been.  I’ve been saving for new running shoes since I’ll need 2 to 3 pairs while Marathon training this spring/summer/fall!

Also, the sale of our rental closed on Tuesday (and it was kind of a mess of a closing since they screwed the taxes up), but still great.  Plans tend to be a lot easier to follow/stomach when you super conservatively estimate the value of your non-stock-market assets. In this case my estimated value was about $50,000 or 18% lower than the actual value!

But here’s why it turned out super great: We paid off all debts except Tory’s student loan and the current credit card balances that will be paid automatically during the course of this month!  We also now have $20K of reserves!  Also, we’ll get another $1,896 back in taxes from the Escrow account once things are all sorted out!

Always feels good when things start falling into place :) I still remember the feeling of closing on our house sale as if it were yesterday! FREEEEEDOOOOOOOOOM!!! Haha… (Also – NO MORE MORTGAGES! EVEN THOUGH I CHEATED AND JUST SOLD THE DAMN THING!)

Budget Snapshot #1: The Wife of J. Money, Circa 1995

mrs budgetsaresexy budget old

This will give away the age of my wife (sorry honey!), but as the note states – this is the “money budget” from when she was 13 years old… Not to be confused with any other types of budgets ;)

It looks like it only lasted about 3 weeks, but hey – not that different from many adults out there! Heyo! I found this in our trashcan as she was decluttering for our recent move, so hopefully she doesn’t hate me even more for posting it here as well ;) That’s what you get when you marry a blogger though!! *evil cackle*

Budget Snapshot #2: The Kyrgyzstanian!

kyrgyzstan budget

This one comes from an email convo I had with a new reader (that you’ll see I already blasted out, haha…), but what I liked more than her crazy cheap living was the fact she uses a bulk of her savings to help out her friends in need! Like those drowning in medical debts and other unfortunate events! What a blessing to be able to afford such things, even with an income of only $2,000/mo (she’s retired).

If you look at the twitter conversations that came out of this though, you’ll see that there are plenty of other places where you can live super cheaply as well, one of them being Thailand where fellow blogger Jason Fieber ‏(MrFreeAt33.com) currently resides. He recently wrote a post on how little you need to live there, and believes you can even retire with only $200,000 if you live similarly! It’s not for everyone of course, but fun to think about just the same…

You can find that post here: Can You Retire In Thailand With $200,000?

(Astute readers may have noticed a miscalculation in that tweet up there, as the $708/mo should actually be $808/mo, but it still doesn’t take away from how incredibly CHEAP that lifestyle is! Our family spends 7x that each month! 😱)

So there you have it. Lots of different lifestyles and net worths floating around! And that’s only a look at *four* peoples’!

If you liked this and want me to do another one later, let me know and we’ll make it happen… Also feel free to email me YOUR snapshot + background, and I’ll make your $$$ famous! ;)

Be well,

j. money signature

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  1. Accidental FIRE June 11, 2018 at 5:31 AM

    Ha, I’ve been to Kyrgyzstan, and not only is it easy living but it is absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. All mountains!

    1. Laurie@ThreeYear June 11, 2018 at 7:22 AM

      You’re igniting my travel bug, Accidental FIRE! :)

      1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 9:40 AM

        After Googling it right away myself, I agree! Incredible!

  2. Mike at Balanced Dividends June 11, 2018 at 6:41 AM

    Nice spreadsheet from the first example. – thanks for sharing! I haven’t done crypto myself but it did make me realize I could afford to take some calculated risks in our own portfolio. Just not with crypto.

    Thanks for sharing. – Mike

  3. Laurie@ThreeYear June 11, 2018 at 7:21 AM

    It’s great to see a snapshot of peoples’ finances who are at different stages. Sometimes, it’s so easy to look at people who have a really high net worth and forget that so many people starting out are working hard to get to the first $100K. It’s also interesting to see what types of risk people take. My ESL student from Vietnam says a lot of Americans retire there who only get Social Security, because with their $800 SS checks they live really well! :)

    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 9:54 AM

      Exactly why I wanted to share these! We’re all on different journeys! :)

  4. Ten Factorial Rocks June 11, 2018 at 7:42 AM

    Good post, J$. The financial blogs, including mine, all encourage vicarious living egging questions like, What will I do if I had his net worth (or) I can’t believe it’s so cheap to live where the blogger does…is this for real?

    Whatever be the motivation behind following OPM journeys, the whole reason people like you and me even put out out net worth stats (and even list on the Rockstar Finance Net Worth Tracker) is to motivate all others and to show that it can be done! If I get one sincere reader to improve his/her financial situation or to explore living in other countries, then I consider all my effort at sharing worthwhile.

    Keep up the good work, J$. I am amazed you are able to post so frequently despite daddy duties…maybe all that late night feedings and diaper changes are inspiring you to write!

    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 9:58 AM

      Hey dude – long time! Always enjoy seeing you pop up over here :) And of course totally agree with you – it’s all about sharing and adding value to this world vs nastiness which seems to be oozing wherever you look! I sometimes consider stopping sharing my net worth in case it rubs people the wrong way, but then I remember how drastically it impacted my own journey seeing others share it over 10 years ago and it keeps me going and hoping I’m helping do the same. Can never please everyone, but hopefully collectively we have enough tips and info as a group online here that we capture people’s interests and help push them along! There could be worse jobs! :)

  5. Brian June 11, 2018 at 7:50 AM

    The first example is crushing their debt repayment almost $20K in 9 months! At that rate, they will be debt free in 15 months, and have lots of extra cash to build wealth!

  6. Lily | The Frugal Gene June 11, 2018 at 7:58 AM

    Thailand is a total life hack :p
    I love looking at other people’s money and seeing how they do it. What I find interesting are the people who aren’t aware of personal finance and have the $2000 grocery bill. I really wanna know how they do it and what they’re buying for curiosity sake.

  7. Ms. Frugal Asian Finance June 11, 2018 at 8:31 AM

    I think we only get to see other people’s money and how they spend it in the personal finance community, which I absolutely love. I don’t mean to be nosy. But it’s nice to see how other people are handling their finance to achieve wealth and FIRE ;)

    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 9:59 AM

      Totally! And I bet if more people were sharing in the real world our communities would be much different too :)

  8. Kathy Kristof June 11, 2018 at 8:51 AM

    Okay, I I love Mrs. $$$$!!!!
    Easy to see why you married this smart lady with the cat fund and a cloth purse.

    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 10:00 AM

      Haha… I’ll have to let her know you approve ;)

  9. COD June 11, 2018 at 8:56 AM

    1995? I had a one-year-old kid in 1995.

    People are living on $808 a month, and my health insurance alone here in the gold ole’ USA is $1350/mo.

    I did spend the weekend tinkering with my budget spreadsheet. There wasn’t really anything wrong with it, I just can’t ever leave well-enough alone.

    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 10:00 AM

      I was a sophomore in high school in 1995 :)

    2. EL June 18, 2018 at 10:01 AM

      Thats one of the reasons people who retire are leaving this country, the government and big insurance businesses are hurting the people just for profits. This is usually a non political site, but medical bills are getting too expensive to leave off the convo.

  10. Joe June 11, 2018 at 9:32 AM

    It’s neat to see how other people manage their money. I guess the younger people can take a risk with cryptocurrency. I don’t have the stomach for it either.
    It’s interesting that food is such a big part of the budget in Kyrgyzstan. I guess that she’s retired from the US or some other first world country. It’s probably tough to make $2,000/month in Kyrgyzstan.

  11. Syed June 11, 2018 at 9:45 AM

    Very cool insights. I think people really underestimate the power of low cost of living areas. Not even just Thailand there are many places in the US where the cost of living isn’t too high. And you don’t have to live in the boonies either! Cities like Pittsburgh and New Orleans have pretty reasonable costs to live there, especially compared to certain coastal cities.

    So if you live in a high cost of living area and want to become richer, seriously consider moving!

    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 10:06 AM

      And much easier to do when you’re young without kids/family too! I’d be all about it if I were still in my 20s, but now I crave family/hometown too much to do it – no matter how much it would save me. If only we could bring our friends/family with us wherever we go :)

  12. Jon June 11, 2018 at 11:25 AM

    It’s amazing when one considers moving away from the US, It can knock 200k off their FI target. Healthcare costs for a family can be astronomical.
    Great article.

  13. Jason Fieber June 11, 2018 at 12:11 PM


    Thanks for the mention!

    Thailand is very cheap. And I’m not even in the cheapest city in the country or area. Still always trying to maximize efficiency, though. We’re scheduled to look at a really beautiful luxury 1-br apartment tomorrow… runs about $300/month. Keeping fingers crossed. :)

    Hope all is well, brother!


    1. J. Money June 11, 2018 at 12:13 PM

      That’s the cost of a doorknob here in DC!

  14. Worker Bee June 11, 2018 at 5:59 PM

    Cat fund? Mrs. J. Money had the right priorities even as a kid!

    1. J. Money June 12, 2018 at 7:20 AM

      Haha… ever since I’ve known her she’s had cats too :) we’re down to one in our household after her eldest one passed away a few years back.

  15. MrParadoxWealth June 12, 2018 at 10:05 PM

    Hi J Money – long time reader, first time poster.

    It really is crazy how much further your money will stretch in lower cost parts of the US, not to mention other countries. The geographic arbitrage of having a decent salary in a low cost environment is a powerful way to throw fuel on the FIRE. But it’s not for everyone. As great as it would be to live in paradise for much less than my medium-to-high cost-of-living home, we live here for a reason. We love our home, we have roots here and family nearby, so we pay that opportunity cost of having a higher cost of living and a lower salary. Although dang, snapshot #1 sure is killing the debt!

    1. J. Money June 13, 2018 at 1:43 PM

      Yep – I feel your same sentiment! If we made choices purely financially most of us would be living somewhere else :) Def. about finding that happy medium.

  16. Jamie June 12, 2018 at 10:29 PM

    I LOVE seeing other peoples’ numbers and unconventional ways, even if I know nothing about them. And I really love seeing them showcased here without judgment. Great idea, J$!

    1. J. Money June 13, 2018 at 1:46 PM

      Thanks Jamie! We’ll definitely have to do more of these, then ;)

  17. EL June 18, 2018 at 9:57 AM

    ITs cool to see others finances. That cheap Eurasian country looks nice, but very remote unless you are in the city of Bishkek. (Be careful Russia might take it over again, lol.) So Id like to see this article again with more details on future goals too.

    1. J. Money June 18, 2018 at 10:24 AM

      The next round of this will contain some better backgrounds, as well as future stuff for sure. Got a handful of people already submitting their info over and it’s equally as interesting!

  18. Primal Prosperity June 19, 2018 at 11:37 AM

    “Cat Fund”!!!! Please tell your wife how adorable that is from a fellow cat lover. :)

    1. J. Money June 19, 2018 at 4:47 PM

      On it :)