Net Worth Update: $631,547.73 (+$20,777.48)

[This is part of our monthly Net Worth Series where I share our real life #’s with the world. Seeing this was GAME CHANGING for me over 9 years ago when I stumbled across financial blogs, so hopefully it helps you out too!]]

Hey hey! Welcome to our 110th net worth update in a row – the longest streak of anything in my life :) (Maybe outside breathing).

I swear every month I promise myself I’m going to spruce it up a bit and add all sorts of bells and whistles to the snapshot (credit score, early retirement date, my made up Lifetime Wealth Ratio™!) but each time I just end up keeping it O.G. and the simplicity continues forward…

It’s pretty wild though that the spreadsheet can look exactly the same all these years, however the contents inside can paint two drastically different pictures! And even crazier that the only thing that really ever changes is the boring passage of time! You make a $500 deposit 10 years ago and it’s $500. You fast forward a decade and it’s all of a sudden $1,500.

Gotta love the power of compounding :)

Anywho, here’s how the month of February went down…

CASH SAVINGS (-$16.54): Nothing too exciting going on here, other than not playing inside the financially prudent line this month… I’d blame it on some outstanding checks waiting to be delivered, but it’s probably more due to not tracking every last penny like I used to ;) 95% of my spending is “mindful spending” and the rest tends to go either way depending on the month. Sometimes I do good and other times I slip up. But so far it’s been worth the trade off.

BROKERAGE (+$45.05): Nothing new going on here either. Just a few extra dollars thrown in via my trusty Acorns app, mixed with a little (a lot?) market growth this month. I still cannot understand for the LIFE of me how it continues to blow up w/ all the political turmoil going on, but I do my best to ignore it all anyways so not like it really affects the game plan here. What I should be doing is storing up all my nuts and laying low until it all crashes to then scoop it all up! NOM NOM NOM!!!

THRIFT SAVINGS PLAN (TSP) (+$695.71): This area is still my recent favorite with those epic % increases every month now that my wife is back in the workforce again :) I feel bad for her since her job is all kinds of messy right now due to the aforementioned landscape (she works for the gov’t), but investment-wise the money continues to flow in so we’ll grab it all while we can. Just praying that her fear of being let go at any time doesn’t come to fruition :(

ROTH IRAs (+$4,157.99): Great boost here too! Courtesy of the markets doing its thing lately. The end date’s coming up for being able to max it out for the 2016 year – which we still need to do – but like always I’ll probably wait until the last minute to push it through just to drag on the excitement of it all ;) I think this will be year #6 or #7 in a row of doing so?

SEP IRA (+$16,071.98): Sweet one here too! As soon as I catch up with my accountant this month we’ll be maxing this one out as well in one fell swoop. I prefer to do it incrementally over the months like with regular 9-5s, but my income continues to be as wild as ever being self-employed and I literally never know how much – big or small – I can put in until the business year wraps up (it’s measured by the amount of profit your business brings in). Still, similar to the rush of the Roth maxing, it’s always fun to throw in large clumps every year :)

Here’s a snapshot of our Vanguard account since switching over to indexing a few years ago:

vanguard returns 3-1-17

CAR VALUES (-$641.00): Nothing too shocking here. Just cars doing what cars do! Don’t let anyone ever tell you they’re an investment ;) Here’s what KBB says our two rides are worth:

  • Lexus RX350: $12,401.00
  • Toyota Corolla: $3,814.00

CAR LOAN: (-$464.29): A little more chopped down, per usual. I started thinking more about when I’ll for real just kill it all in the future, and the time that keeps popping up is at the end of the year. No real rhyme or reason to it (like I mentioned before, I’m in no rush as I enjoy having the cash cushion!), but just for simplicity sake it would be nice to have one less account to manage every month. We’ll see how it plays out though – the interest is only like 2-something %.

And that’s Feb!

Here’s how the last 12 months have gone down:

net worth last 12 months

[If you’re wondering what happened in December, read this :)]

And then here’s the worths of my two beautiful boys – hah:

baby net worths feb-17

I’ve been a bad dad and haven’t put much into their accounts lately, so at some point I’ll need to get back to it again… I feel like all they actually care about though is spending time together and playing all day? When will they learn money is everything!!! ;)

Hope your financial journey’s going well so far! How long have you been tracking your net worth for? Cross any juicy milestones lately?

As always, you can find all 100+ of our net worth updates over the years here if you want to see how we went from point A to point B – though no magic bullets or anything of course.

Or if you’re finally bored with our finances (and I wouldn’t blame you – there’s nothing special going on!), head over to our new and improved Blogger Net Worth Tracker over at our new Blog Directory as we’re tracking over 200 others’ money. You’re bound to find some new ones to relate to and be inspired by? Look up for the ones to strive for, and down any time you need a reality check of appreciation!

Here’s to a prosperous March! You still doing your New Years Resolutions?? ;)

j. money signature

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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!

If you're not a spreadsheet guy like me and prefer something more automated (which is fine, whatever gets you to take action!), you can try your hand with a free Empower account instead (formerly Personal Capital)

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. Smart Provisions March 6, 2017 at 6:35 AM

    Wow, that’s a large increase (+20k)! Great job, J$!

    The last milestone I crossed was the $100k milestone, which happened almost 2 years after I graduated college. It’s a pretty small milestone, but a memorable one, nonetheless!

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:50 AM

      $100,000 is small?? No way! That’s a HUGE amount! And particularly 2 years after graduation, that is incredible. Know how much I had in my accounts 2 years after? Approximately $50.00 :) You’re doing great.

  2. Mrs. Mad Money Monster | @madmoneymonster March 6, 2017 at 6:38 AM

    We started tracking our net worth a little over 2 years ago. I had no idea the importance of knowing that number until then. So embarrassing. These days, I have an internal fight with myself to keep from checking our numbers daily. My husband doesn’t obsess as much about our wealth progress as I do, so I try to wait until the end of the year to give him the numbers. Thanks to the markets, that end of year update has been awesome lately :)

    And, yep, still keeping up with the resolutions!

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:49 AM

      Haha… I bet the #’s are big changes too if you’re only sharing them with him once a year! :)

  3. Liz March 6, 2017 at 6:44 AM

    Great increase! I always like looking back at my old net worth numbers – a few months ago I found my old spreadsheet going back to before the financial crisis and added it into my current spreadsheet. It’s fun to see the numbers changing over the years and remembering events in my life that led to those changes. Almost like a money diary! Still working on my New Years goals, although some are more successful than others. I’ve started doing a monthly check-in on my blog so I can hold myself accountable! Hate seeing where I need to give myself “F’s” for the month. :P But it inspires me to just pick myself up for the next month!

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:49 AM

      Money Diary – yes!!! Such a cool thing to track for sure – esp the longer the years go and the more drastic the difference is. Hopefully for the better :)

  4. Band of Savers March 6, 2017 at 7:14 AM

    Loved that market boost that we got last month.

  5. Apathy Ends March 6, 2017 at 7:24 AM

    Big jump Mr J$!

    I remember when the market kept punking you on the way to 500k last year! Have really blown past that milestone

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:48 AM

      Haha yeah – it was like the same for an entire year really, wasn’t it?

  6. Matt @ Optimize Your Life March 6, 2017 at 7:47 AM

    I’ve talked to some friends in the federal government over the last couple months and it does seem like a crazy time to be there. Hopefully for your wife things start to settle down and get a bit more predictable!

  7. Still At Work March 6, 2017 at 8:07 AM

    We had a net worth of $0 in November of 2010. On March 1 (the day the markets had that crazy rise) we hit $1 million for the first time! Our accounts have since receded, but we still had a $35,000 increase in February. The miracle of compounding never ceases to amaze me. If you don’t recall, I was the woman who wrote you fretting about splitting a restaurant bill evenly when we really owed far less than our share. It still irritates me to pay more than we owe because others drink more, but I no longer view it as the ruinous event it once was. :-D

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:47 AM

      Hah!!!! Look at you go! $1 Mil in 7 years – that’s insane. I’d share a meal (and pay fairly) with you any day :) Congrats on it all!

  8. Fritz @ TheRetirementManifesto March 6, 2017 at 8:24 AM

    Gotta say, J$, I think you’re the only one who tracks the “Babys’ Net Worth”. LOL here.

    Congrats on another great month, and your 10+ years of breathing. Love your updates!

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:45 AM

      Thanks man :)

  9. Kalie @ Pretend to Be Poor March 6, 2017 at 8:28 AM

    Great month, J! I hope your wife’s job works out and the stress dies down, or at least that she can feel some peace in the midst of the stress.

    We need to ramp up our college savings, too. Just a lot of goals to juggle at once. But having lots of good options for what to do with our money is a good thing!

  10. Paul March 6, 2017 at 8:35 AM

    I have relied a lot on my family to help with 529s. I basically just tell them not to ever get me a present because it will be something that I don’t want and will end up sitting in my basement till I get around to donating it one day. Just tell them to give to my kids 529s instead. Strategy has worked so far. my 9 year old has close to 50K, 7 year old close to 40k, 3 year old has about 10 and my new born has less than 1k. About half of the older 2 can be attributed to the market rebounding from the great recession. Especially my oldest who benefited the most from that. I figure that front loading these things as much as possible will give me the best shot at getting them through undergrad debt free. After that they need to get into a fellowship or something that allows them to work and get a post grad degree for free or severely reduced cost.

    Some people institute a no gift policy to avoid collecting clutter, I simply took it a step further and asked for a specific gift or nothing.

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:37 AM

      YES!!! Oh man, I think I’m totally going to ask for this going forward – it’s so genius. I’ve been trying to figure out a way to say “no more things” too and just suck at it. But this!! THIS!!! It’s beautiful!

      1. Paul March 7, 2017 at 10:09 AM

        Family tends to be more generous in giving doing this as well.

        Also, let me just say yours is pretty much the only net worth / income post I can read. There is only so much “I made $900 Million dollars this month alone blogging and you can too if you just buy my program”…. I know its a business but come on, some of these claims are just so ridiculous, they remind me of the get rich quick real estate infomercials that they used to play on TV all the time. Its really so off-putting its made me cut down to only a select few blogs.

        1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:43 AM

          Believe me, after curating for three years for Rockstar Finance I’m getting tired of seeing it too. I’m totally fine with making money off blogs obviously, but I’m seeing more and more people start them simply *to make money* and then making it front and center like that – which is totally off putting as a consumer. Because essentially what it’s saying is – “Hey, look at all this money I made off of YOU – the readers of this blog!” which just doesn’t feel right to me. Most successful bloggers I know started blogging as a hobby and because they were passionate about it, only to find out later you could actually make money off it. The whole space is slowly changing, and def. not a fan…

  11. Joe March 6, 2017 at 9:52 AM

    Looks great! It seems you invested the cash proceed into stock just at the right time. Keep at it! BTW, my kid is worth more than your kid. :)

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:32 AM

      Damn you!! :)

  12. Amanda @ centsiblyrich March 6, 2017 at 10:47 AM

    What a great month! 110 net worth reports?! You’ve got me beat – I didn’t used to do monthly. Started my monthly spreadsheet 3 years ago- before that it was the ole paper/pen wall chart. Wishing your wife the best in her job! :)

  13. Mrs. Picky Pincher March 6, 2017 at 10:55 AM

    I think we all have at least 5% of non-mindful spending. ;) And hey, you’re not a bad dad! It’s fantastic that you’re building a solid financial foundation for your kiddos. You know what I had? One bond that was worth $150. That was it, and that’s more than a lot of people, haha. You’re doing all right. ;)

    I didn’t have a New Year’s resolution to lose weight or anything, but I did want to get back on the wagon with regular exercising. Last week I managed to exercise twice, so that’s not too shabby. I switched medication last week and I’ve overall felt more awake, which is helpful for working out. I’m hoping I’ll have more energy and awareness now.

    1. J. Money March 6, 2017 at 11:28 AM

      Good job! I’ve exercised a total of *once* in 6 months :( Although I do chase my kids around almost every single hour, haha…

  14. Mrs. BITA March 6, 2017 at 11:06 AM

    We had a financially healthy Feb too, and added 45k to our stash, wheeee! Market tailwinds are so much fun. We also visited NOLA and discovered robots running amok at SJC. All in all, a fun month.

  15. Linda@Frugal Turtle March 6, 2017 at 11:38 AM

    Wow! Up $20,000. That’s really impressive!

    Like you, I’m wondering when the bottom is going to drop out. But until then, I’m really LOVING this ride up. I mean, it’s gotta drop some time, right??

    1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:44 AM

      Yup! I was just telling someone yesterday that while yes, we’re up $20,000 this month and it feels cool, we can very much be down $20,000 – or $40,000 even which has happened before! – so it swings both ways. Just hopefully it trends upwards over the years :)

  16. Primal Prosperity March 6, 2017 at 11:55 AM

    Wow! The SEP IRA is awesome! I’m curious, do they have a Roth option, or do the rules for withdrawal and taxes fall under the traditional IRA rules?

  17. Brian @ debt discipline March 6, 2017 at 1:02 PM

    Looking good! I have a friend that work for the federal government too, and now all of his rather strange Facebook posts seem to make sense now. I’ve got to reach out and see how he’s doing.

    Hope things settle down for you wife. Here’s to a great March and little more daylight.

  18. Go Finance Yourself! March 6, 2017 at 10:18 PM

    Nice work with the Vanguard account. Is that 8.3% return as of 1/31 YTD or since inception? Pretty good either way!

    1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:49 AM

      I think it’s since inception?

  19. Miss Mazuma March 7, 2017 at 10:51 AM

    Loving watching the changes! I decided to only update my net worth quarterly because it seems so much more dramatic but I still obsess over each number monthly. Haha – I can’t get away!! :) I am about to cross over the 300k mark and am sooooo excited to see it happen that at the close of each day I re-tally the numbers…yesterday I was $577 short! Doh!!

    I particularly love to see the boys accounts grow. You guys are doing an awesome job setting them up for success. Question (and I’m sure you’ve covered it somewhere!): Do you ever worry that they won’t go to college? And, if so, what happens to that money? I never pay much attention to talk of 529’s but that is one of the things that always made me wonder…I guess being I didn’t go to college! I think the School of Hard Knocks cost me more in the end… ;)

    1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:55 AM

      $300k – awesome!! you’re so close!!

      529 – I do wonder about it, but there are options you can do with it like change the beneficiary of the account to another kid if one goes and one doesn’t, or even use it yourself for continued education I believe. Now if we had hundreds of thousands in there over time it would be a totally different situation, haha, but worst case you just take the penalties and move the $$$ back over to your own accounts if needed. I think that’s why we’ll only put in a certain amount over time and not totally blow it up just in case. Though I very much plan on encouraging my kids to go to school just like my dad did for me and his dad did for him, etc etc. I know there’s a lot of hate for it right now, but I still think it’s super smart to do and only gives you more ammunition in life.

  20. EL March 7, 2017 at 12:00 PM

    Good numbers J money, it goes to show, persistent financial habits pay off. 700K and you’ll be close to FI. Wait you already don’t work like Tommy from Martin.LOL

  21. Rick March 7, 2017 at 4:23 PM

    I miss the Franken-Caddie updates!

    1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:55 AM

      you and me both :(

  22. Done by Forty March 7, 2017 at 11:34 PM

    Love the graphical representation, J Money. You guys are kicking ass this winter.

    I’m kicking around the idea of bringing the Net Worth and maybe even the “Budget Porn” posts back, taboo be damned.

    1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:56 AM

      YES PLEASE!!!!!!

  23. Dennis@NestEggRx March 7, 2017 at 11:54 PM

    Congrats, great news. Hope it all keeps going up.

  24. Mrs. Farmhouse Finance March 8, 2017 at 7:02 AM

    J. Money, you are seriously an inspiration. My husband and I are just about to hit $100,000, so I’m getting ready to pop the champagne (and by champagne I mean prosecco because it tastes better). I’ll be adding Farmhouse Finance to the Blogger Net Worth directory very soon!

    1. J. Money March 8, 2017 at 9:57 AM

      Beautiful!! Please do!! Then make sure to pour some out for me! :)

  25. Average Joe March 8, 2017 at 6:52 PM


    Keep it up! You’ve really inspired me and my wife to keep doing our thing.

    We just crossed the $200k milestone and are looking forward to that $500k number!


    1. J. Money March 12, 2017 at 4:46 PM

      BOOM! Love it!

  26. Steven Goodwin March 11, 2017 at 11:27 AM

    Another update where you are chugging along I see! Thanks for your inspiration and for motivating me to get started on tracking my net worth as well! February was a funny month for investments like you said with all the politics stuff going on!

    Still wish you’d get rid of that funny little car loan. It’s so silly seeing you with that when your net worth is so high, but I guess they call it personal finance for a reason ;)

    My resolutions are still going strong and I even took it a step further this year in that I’m actually posting my progress monthly to hold myself accountable just like these net worth updates! Here’s to a great March!

    1. J. Money March 12, 2017 at 4:47 PM

      I gotta keep ya on your toes, right? :)

  27. gfaseed March 12, 2017 at 8:39 AM

    Looking good. That’s a fantastic report!
    Keep up the good work!

  28. Physician On FIRE March 14, 2017 at 2:09 PM

    I’m sure it’s been mentioned before, but your website(s) have significant value. If you included the monetary value of the business you own, you might just be a millionaire.

    Cheers to the second comma!

    1. J. Money March 26, 2017 at 3:22 PM

      Haha, thanks man… And true – factoring in those and other stuff in my house (coins, jewelry, etc) it would add more in, but I prefer to add stuff in only when they convert to cash :) so will happily await those days later if/when they ever happen!

  29. ZJ Thorne April 24, 2017 at 11:28 PM

    Another great month. I hope your wife’s career is not terribly impacted by our political turmoil. She worked so hard in school to get this new position. The world is unpredictable. Sigh.

    1. J. Money April 25, 2017 at 6:43 AM

      Thanks ZJ… We’ll find out in a couple of months when she either gets activated as an official gov’t employee (she’s on a 1 year holding period) or she doesn’t and gets let go ;) At least she’d still have her degree though no matter what!

  30. Hannah March 9, 2018 at 2:04 PM

    I know that you always have your super-secret savings that you bust out in April, but I just wanted to say that we passed you up for the first time ever :)

    Race you to one million?

    1. J. Money March 9, 2018 at 2:21 PM

      Haha… you mean like from doing tax return stuff? I do always have something extra from that, huh? :)

      AND YOU’RE ON!!!