Net Worth Update: $459,266.46 [+$3,000]

Hi November! How is it the 10th already?? I’ve been a bit slow updating my numbers this month (spent way too much time playing w/ our Lifetime Wealth Ratio™ last week ;)), but I’m back to it and ready to spill the beans…

This month we had an increase of about $3,000 which is great! Not just because it was positive and quite a recovery from whatever the hell the markets were up to last month (what was going on there?), but because we still had an increase after taking out my kids’ 529 college accounts. That was a $4k “loss” in our personal worth that’ll now be accounted for down below in these updates going forward. Which also means…

My kids will now have their own net worths again! Go them!! I initially tried this out for Baby #1 when he was first born, but then I decided I didn’t like it and stopped doing it, and now we’re back to liking it again :) But that’s the beauty with this finance stuff, right? You can change things around whenever life/opinions/goals/etc morph over the years. In fact, I’d say if you *aren’t* adapting as time goes on you probably need stop right now and revisit things!

So look for these new net worths at the end of these updates going forward… Other than that, the rest of the financial picture is pretty much status quo. The markets did what they did as we sat back and simply ignored them, and our savings continued to dip as we push through this funky stage of balancing work, kids, and a soon-to-be-back-in-the-work-force wife situation. It’s not ideal, but at least it’s a conscious decision. Even finance professionals go through crap phases!

Here’s how it broke down for October:

CASH SAVINGS (-$2,091.39): We’ve been leaking anywhere from $1,500-$4,000 a month this year with all these changes, so $2k is relatively pretty good. A far cry from when we’d have a surplus of $1,500-$4,000 a month, but then again I’m much happier now so… (also, it’s temporary)

529 College Savings: Scroll to bottom to see.

IRA: ROTH(s) ($1,755.98): Nothing new gets added in here until the end of the year when I know how much money I have to play with, so for 12 months it’s all up to the tides of the market.

IRA: SEP ($7,395.46): Same here too. After we run my business numbers for tax season I know how much a) I have to invest, and b) How much the max I can put in here as it’s tide to business profits. For the past 4 years I’ve been able to max this out every time, and I don’t plan on stopping that anytime soon :) I don’t have a 401(k) anymore so this is top priority!

And as always, here’s the sexy graph that Vanguard shows me every time I log in. It’s simple things like this that I just LOVE from them. Saving thousands on fees are great, but this emotional hit is also important for people like me. Helps to keep you motivated!

vanguard performance{These numbers are since inception – which is April when I moved all my money over}

AUTOS WORTH (kbb) (+$92.00): I don’t think my wife’s car really went up by $100, but who knows really… I just plug the data into and paste their best guess here. If we were to ever sell it, this would be the price tag we’d shoot for. And as always, Frankencaddy remains at a cool $1,000 – though odds are it’ll die first before we get a chance to offload it ;) It’s already paid itself off with all those crashes over the past 18 months so it’s basically a FREE car now! Haha…

Here’s their values:

  • Pimp Daddy Caddy: $1,000.00
  • Gas Ticklin’ Toyota: $6,269.00

HOME VALUE (Realtor) ($0.00): We’ve kept our house valued at $300,000. which was the last time our realtor ran comps for us (comparisons). I prefer going with that vs places like Zillow or Trulia/etc (btw I heard Zillow was buying Trulia! They’re taking over!!) but really the only time we’ll know for real what our houses are worth is the day we get that contract in our hands. Still, it’s good to have a rough idea of what assets are worth.

MORTGAGES (-$673.44): Goes down by a good $600/$700 every month! All those payments we round up just compounds with every new month, and will automagically kill our debt much sooner than the 30 years it was initially set for. Here’s what’s left on the place:

net worth past 12 months

Now, time for our boys’ net worths!

baby net worths

#BAM! Almost $10G’s between the two – they’re ballin’ ;) A good chunk of that ($3,200+) came from that inheritance we were fortunate enough to receive, but the rest mainly came from Poppa and Momma Money. We were on a hot streak with investing into 529s when times were good, but sadly it’s been paused until we’re back on track again. Still, not a bad way to start their financial lives, eh? And that inheritance helped even it out a bit more between the two which was nice…

That’s it for October! Hope y’all did okay too. Remember, if you’re not yet tracking your money, today’s as good a day as ever to start! Just download this template and take 15 mins to knock it out! The future you will thank you for it.

j. money signature

PS: You can find all 80+ of our net worth updates here: J’s Million Dollar Journey
PPS: You can also find my friends’ net worths who share ’em here: Blogger Net Worth Tracker

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PS: If you’re just getting started in your journey, here are a few good resources to help track your money. Doesn’t matter which route you go, just that it ends up sticking!

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Empower is a cool tool that connects with your bank & investment accounts to give you an automated way to track your net worth. You'll get a crystal clear picture of how your spending and investments affect your financial goals (early retirement?), and it's super easy to use.

personal capital dashboard

It only takes a couple minutes to set up and you can grab your free account here. They also do a lot of other cool stuff as well which my early retired friend Justin covers in our full review of Empower - check it out here: Why I Use Empower Almost Every Single Day.

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  1. MMD November 10, 2014 at 6:23 AM

    Nice work putting away so much money this year for your two kids. At this early in the game they have a very nice chunk of change by the time they are ready to hit campus.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      yeah, even if we don’t put in another penny I’d imagine the investments would compound pretty well between now and 18 years, eh? Though of course we’ll be continuing to fund it as best we can. Worst (best?) case we put in too much and they use the $ for other things in life after paying penalties/etc.

      1. Dividend Growth Investor November 11, 2014 at 9:40 AM

        You are doing pretty well JMoney.

        I have been reading your site for a while, but I am really looking into the details behind your NW now. So if my questions have been answered before, sorry ;-)

        Basically, is it possible for you to re-finance your mortgage so that you get a lower interest rate? I know you are self-employed, so this could be an issue with the banks, but then, who knows a friendly banker might be willing to help out ;-)

        Second, what has your accountant told you about a solo 401K vs a SEP IRA – with a solo 401K you can deduct the normal amount (17.5K in 2014 and 18K in 2015) PLUS the calculated profit that you get to put in the SEP (like 20% of net profits or something like that, although you can’t make both contributions for SEP and Solo 401K). I don’t know your personal JMoney situation, but if you wanna defer as much as you can, this sounds like a very good way to do it

        And finally, congrats on your ratios being mentioned in the mainstream media. Soon it will be required learning for most college business courses ;-)

      2. Darrell November 11, 2014 at 7:58 PM

        Using a range of 6-10% return over 18 years, baby penny will have between $13.5k – $26.5k and baby nickel will have between $9k – $18k. In excel, type in “=FV(.06,18,0,4762.38)” Change .06 to test for a different return and change 4762.38 to test for a different present value. have fun. You can change 18 too, assuming one of your kids is 2 or 3 years old, to 15.

        1. J. Money November 11, 2014 at 9:53 PM

          @Darrell – Thanks!That’s a great calculation to know!

          @Dividend Growth Investor — Great questions :) here are my answers:

          RE: Refinancing – Unless we come up with $80,000 or $90,000 or something crazy, we can’t refinance even if we wanted to (and believe me, we do!). The reason is we just don’t have any equity in the place at all and up until a few months ago have been completely underwater with it. A few years back we took advantage of some new rule where we DID get to refinance from a much higher interest rate that was interest-only (yikes) so I just compare our new situation to the old one and it helps pad the sting a little :) Lesson learned big time though – Don’t buy more house than you need! And don’t buy if you like moving around a lot!

          RE: SEP vs SOLO 401(k) – This one comes up a lot, and I think there IS a lot of reasons for doing it, but the last couple times I brought it up with my accountant she advised against it. If I recall correctly because of the process and $$ it would take to start or something. But honestly I haven’t really looked into it all the way either, nor pushed it with her so y’all could very well be right. And with income not being what it used to, I’m okay right now with the what we can put into the SEP as it’ll already be a stretch. In the near future though I’d like to revisit this again and see if the solo really is the best move for us. Seems to be for other hustlers out there!

          Great questions overall – thx for stopping by and commenting :)

          1. Jay @ November 12, 2014 at 9:47 PM

            Just a heads up, PV, RATE, and PMT are two other functions that do exactly what you think they do. Trade out the variable in the same formula.

            “How much do I need to save per period at a given interest rate to reach $1 million”

            Glad you asked, PMT will tell you!


  2. Mrs. Frugalwoods November 10, 2014 at 6:51 AM

    I like that you’re tracking your kiddos’ net worth separately–seems like a good idea to me. And, how cool that they’re already saving like bosses! Great job on the overall net worth bump, woo hoo! October was great for us, but I know November will herald much higher spending since we’re hosting the ol’ turkey day at our house.
    P.S. I appreciate your turkey in the header. I’m all for seasonal festiveness.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      hehe… thanks :)

  3. Brittany November 10, 2014 at 8:02 AM

    I don’t know if I’ve read one f your reports before, but Frakencaddy and Pimp Daddy Caddy had me rolling! Great work saving for your kids too :)

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:11 PM

      Thx! I forgot I put pimp daddy caddy in there… I think it needs to be changed to FrankenCaddy going forward since it’s pimpage has lowly been leaking over the years ;)

  4. Brian @ Debt Discipline November 10, 2014 at 8:47 AM

    I like the break out for the kids. I can picture them printing them out and bringing them to school and asking the other kids what their worth. :)

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:15 PM

      I’d be so proud of them!

  5. Chris @ Flipping A Dollar November 10, 2014 at 9:07 AM

    Question about the home and house value. I got thinking and if you pay down your principal by 1k, is it really 2k increase in your net worth? This is how it works in my NW calculation. Your debt goes down 1k and your equity goes up by 1k.

    At first, this didn’t make sense to me but then I looked at mortgage vs. other kinds of debt. If it’s a student loan or CC debt, then your 1k that you’re putting towards principal disappears so you should only see a decrease in 1k on your debt. But by putting 1k towards mortgage principal, you’re simultaneously reducing your debt while increasing your equity.

    This is fresh in my mind because we put ~3k towards principal this past month and I saw my NW jump by ~6k.

    Am I right in my thinking? I can try to explain my rambling a little better if necessary, just wanted to make sure my calculations weren’t off the wall.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:26 PM

      You are right in your thinking as far as the explanation of what’s going on with it over there, but I think there’s a more accurate way to do it as it shouldn’t count twice (at least in my opinion). I used to do it the same way as you until someone gave me a tip. And that was to just change “home equity” in your assets column to “house value” while still keeping the mortgages in the liability section the same. These two numbers in effect *give you* your “equity” because all that’s just house value – mortgages. And since your house value doesn’t go up just because you paid off more of the mortgages, it’ll only count once. Does that make sense? The only other way to do it if you want to keep “equity” as a line item is to just put it in the assets column and nix the mortgages in the debt one – but that doesn’t paint an overall picture which is the reason I track my worth every month so I wouldn’t advise that one…

      Hope this helps :)

      1. Chris @ Flipping A Dollar November 11, 2014 at 9:08 AM

        This does make sense, and it bumps up my NW back to where it was pre-house buy. I guess, if we sold the house, hopefully we’d get what we payed for it. I had basically been ignoring the total value of the house and only looking at the mortgage. Thanks!

        1. J. Money November 11, 2014 at 9:55 PM

          Glad it helps :) And unfortunately the reality is we’d both be losing more money when we sold once you pay realtor fees yada yada yada too… But I think for the reasons we’re tracking it it’s fine as-is. I really just want to have a great overall picture of where all my money is at any given point in time which these Net Worths def. do.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:26 PM

      Haha…. well, those babies still live at home and have to ask permission from mom and dad for everything, so…. ;)

  6. Tonya@Budget and the Beach November 10, 2014 at 9:32 AM

    I love that you are tracking your kids net worth! Something kind of funny happened to me. Remember how I told you I went to roll over my 401k? Well I got that process started and supposedly the check was on the way. At that time it was valued at about 96k. It was a week and I still hadn’t gotten the check so I called and they screwed up and they didn’t send it, but low and behold it was up to 100k. Happy accident, although I did roll it over there and I’m still waiting for the check.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:27 PM

      Hah! Awesome! Must have been after the markets ticked back up after they tumbled for a few days there – glad it worked that way vs the opposite! :)

  7. Shannon @ Financially Blonde November 10, 2014 at 9:55 AM

    So glad you decided to segregate the kid’s worth from your own, now your picture is a much better representation of yours and the Mrs. net worth. And your portfolio is a great representation of why you should never succumb to market hysteria. Imagine if you sold anything last month? Your net worth would be down instead of up $10,000.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:28 PM

      Exactly! I thought for sure our investments would be down when I ran the numbers, but nope – the market recovered (and then some) and we earned more simply by doing nothing :)

  8. Laurie @thefrugalfarmer November 10, 2014 at 9:59 AM

    LOL, “Frankencaddy” cracks me up. We used to call Rick’s old piece of crap the DaddyCaddy. Awesome work on the kids’ college savings. They’ll be millionaires by the time they’re 18. :-)

  9. Paul November 10, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    USAA has a home value feature if you’re interested. It seems to be fairly accurate for my area (Omaha), unlike Trulia or Zillow, which tend to overvalue a home in my experience. I had my home valued by a realtor last summer, and USAA’s estimate was about the same.

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:29 PM

      Yeah! I do check that every few months just out of curiosity and you’re right, it’s usually within $5k-$10k of what our realtor thinks which is pretty good. Def. more accurate than Zillow’s, at least in our neck of the woods.

  10. Christine @ The Pursuit of Green November 10, 2014 at 12:20 PM

    I love seeing how you break down your net worth every month! It’s great to see the boy’s net worth broken out too! What a head start in life for them!

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:30 PM

      I’m glad you get something out of it Christine :) They’re fun to do myself too, regardless of whether it’s up or down! I’d still do it every month whether I had this blog or not like a true nerd, haha…

  11. Even Steven November 10, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    Just curious would the Zillow estimate make you a millionaire or is it fairly close to the 300K number you use?

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 1:31 PM

      It wouldn’t make me a millionaire no, haha, but it does always give me a higher number than what I think reality is. Usually $20k+ or so in my experience.

  12. Kim November 10, 2014 at 2:08 PM

    Do you think you’ll tell your kids how much money they have? All my daughter knows is that she has $290 in her savings account, and I’m afraid she has told several people. I’m not sure what they would think if she went around telling them she had $20K invested already. Maybe they would just think she’s adding a few too many zeros!

    1. J. Money November 10, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      It’s a tricky one, right? I don’t really know how we’re going to handle this one yet… I mean, I guess if this blog is still around and they old enough to read/understand it I guess they’ll know by default, but it’s def. something for us to consider for sure. I’m still in baby mode over here where they don’t know what’s going on :) I’m not ready to be an adult parent yet!

      (And also, if they read this blog later I’m gonna be in trouble and will have to curb my language, haha… so perhaps I’ll just need a blog “front” to tell them what daddy does so they don’t catch on ;))

  13. moneystepper November 10, 2014 at 3:25 PM

    Its pretty good times when you don’t put a penny towards your IRAs and they go up by +$9k in the month!

    I’m a big fan of the update of your childrens’ net worth! However, I’m sure they’ll be even bigger fans of it when they grow up!! :)

  14. Tiffany A. November 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

    Not much to add here except say “Great job!” I think when I started following your blog, your net worth was in the ~$200K range… so it’s essentially doubled since then, and that wasn’t very long ago! Rock on :)

    1. J. Money November 11, 2014 at 9:56 PM

      Woah, cool! I love hearing how long people have been reading for :) The other month I talked to someone who was in high school when they started reading, and now they’re married and graduate college!! Crazy!!

  15. Kassandra November 10, 2014 at 8:21 PM

    I’m impressed with the kids’ head start to millionaire status J!

  16. Kalen Bruce November 10, 2014 at 11:17 PM

    Nice job, man! Those baby coins are rollin’ in some dough! That’s really awesome considering how young they are. Keep it up!

  17. Jon @ Money Smart Guides November 11, 2014 at 8:09 AM

    The jump in the market was nice as it brought us back up from the losses at the end of September, so no complaints there.

    I agree with the mixed feelings for Zillow. They drop my rental house property the instant a foreclosure is listed in the development, but then never seem to update the price when a house actually sells for a decent amount. All of the home “values” in the development are roughly what the foreclosure prices are, but the recently sold houses and the ones currently for sale are all $20K higher. It makes no sense.

  18. Matt L November 11, 2014 at 1:17 PM

    You mentioned that your ~$37k cash balance has been decreasing month over month. Do you have a specific amount that you would like to have in cash as an emergency fund or similar? And if so, how do you plan to get back to that number?

    1. J. Money November 11, 2014 at 10:01 PM

      Not really, no – it changes anytime my life changes which seems to be every 6 months :) I think my personal comfort level is having no less than $20,000 in cash, but there’s really no rhyme or reason to it other than it “feeling right.” My wife, however, is a different story. We’ve had $80,000 in there before and she still wants more to feel comfortable, haha… But for now, it is what it is and as soon as we become a duo-income family again we’ll work on pumping it back up to a level we can both agree on.

      I wouldn’t recommend this to others though – it’s usually pretty smart to know what number you want and why. I tend to veer off the track every now and then…

  19. DivHut November 11, 2014 at 6:50 PM

    Good stuff. Thanks for sharing your recent net worth update with us. Time sure is flying by. Soon we’ll be saying Happy new year. Great to see baby #1 and #2 growing their net worth as well. Time is definitely in their side to let compounding take effect.

  20. Dividend Mantra November 11, 2014 at 10:38 PM


    Awesome update. Love that you’re tracking your children’s net worth separately like that. How awesome that they’re already off to a great start like that? They have a larger net worth right now than I did at 27 years old! :)

    Looks like you guys won’t even have to contribute that much more going forward to give them a solid college fund after you factor in compounding.

    Best regards!

    1. J. Money November 16, 2014 at 8:59 PM

      I always remember that post you did on how you were wealthier when you were a baby at some point, haha… Always interesting to compare stages of our lives like that :)

  21. How To Save Money November 12, 2014 at 4:24 AM

    Hi! I saw your template and I use a similar one except I don’t have the part on net worth. Thinking about incorporating it soon. Thanks for sharing!

    1. J. Money November 16, 2014 at 9:01 PM

      Great! Please do – it def. helps me keep the bigger picture in perspective, that’s for sure.

  22. Joe November 13, 2014 at 2:23 PM

    Looking good man. Great idea tracking the kids’ net worth. We should do the same. All his net worth is in his 529 so it should be easy enough. I’m still not comfortable sharing our number with the public…

    1. J. Money November 16, 2014 at 9:02 PM

      All that really matters is that you’re just tracking it :) Us voyeurs can feast off all the other bloggers spilling it, haha….

  23. D$ November 14, 2014 at 9:56 AM

    Why not refi that mortgage down again into a 15-year conventional – you could lock in 3.25% easily and save almost $6k a year in interest? Even if the refi could a couple $$ upfront – the pay back period is well worth it…

    1. J. Money November 16, 2014 at 9:04 PM

      I’m not sure I could since we don’t have any equity in it? Or at leas without putting down $90k like the last time I tried to refi with a plain 30 year :(

      Plus, at this point we’ll probably end up selling it sooner than later anyways so I’m not stressing about the interest rate as much as I used to. It’s now a rental property as we’ve since moved so odds are we’ll sell as soon as we think we can break even.

  24. Kayla @ Femme Frugality November 14, 2014 at 10:36 AM

    Great job! Love how you break it down so we can see how you are building your net worth. Thanks!