Net Worth Update: $511,782.60 (+$17k – Regained Title!)

by J. Money - Published August 5, 2016

net worth breakdown - July

What up, what up!

That time again to update ye old net worth and do some checking in on our money! Y’all have a good month over there? Anyone cross some epic milestones?

I’d like to say that I was a straight up hustler and re-crossed that Half-A-Millionaire status all by myself, but truth be told it was the market’s doing though I did plant the original seeds :)

And unlike last month when I straight up freaked out about my car purchase (no more regrets!!) I promise to keep my emotions in check this time around. All those changes going on totally hijacked my emotions and I haven’t been more ready to move on to the next chapter…

Which began two weeks ago! The wife is at her new job earning that 2nd income (YES!), the kids are down the street playing with their new daycare friends, and I’m here typing to you at our new place while I pretend “to work” :) So here’s to a calmer future!

typing gif

Here’s how the month of July went down finance-wise:

CASH SAVINGS (-$2,319.97): Another big drop in reserves due to moving and not focusing on monetizing my projects enough (why can’t I just get paid to blog to you all day? :)), but this should be the last month of it. The wife starts getting paychecks next week, and I’m back to focusing on the future of my projects and how to align my goals with making money at the same time. Something I’ve been struggling with lately since it usually messes with “the heart” of it all. But can’t ignore it any longer!

DIGIT & “CHALLENGE EVERYTHING” ACCOUNTS: Just another reminder that I’ve mixed all my ‘savings’ accounts into one main line item here in the net worth breakdown. I’m still rockin’ Digit which saves me hundreds every month (now up to $5,494.64!), but my minimalist side finally got a hold of me and didn’t like seeing all the areas split up like it had been. Hopefully it makes it easier to follow too!

BROKERAGE (ACORNS) (+$29.42): This has been on autopilot going on a little over a year now. Every month Acorns invests $20-$30 for me by automatically rounding up all my daily transactions. It’s pretty cool if you want an easy way to invest more – check it out.

IRA: ROTH(s) (+$3,900.94): Nice bump! Haven’t added a thing in months, but the market continues to climb making its customers nice and happy ;) Unless you happen to be one of those who cashes out every time it freaks out and waits too long to get back in. The trick is just plowing more and more in whenever you can and letting it ride! I only wish I had more money to do this every time a Brexit or whatever happens!

IRA: SEP (+$15,300.62): Huge jump here too! A 4% one! Similar to the Roths, we haven’t touched this in quite some time so it’s totally just moving along with the markets. And since I’m fully invested in Vanguard’s VTSAX index fund, it just mirrors the overall economy as a whole. Which has been doing fairly well lately.

Here’s a snapshot of our account since switching over two years ago… Keep in mind that it shows *performance* and not the entire amount actually invested (that’s $400k now):

vanguard returns - july

(This is exactly why you sit tight through the madness – it corrects over time!)

AUTO VALUES (-$305.00): Nothing major to report here. Just depreciating as is normal, though I’d imagine the amounts being dropped will be somewhat higher now that we’ve swapped the Caddy for the Lexus ;) As much as I started really regretting not buying it from a private party, I’ve since come to terms with it and realize I did the best I could within the time frame I had. And even more importantly, I’m still very much enjoying riding it around town! I’m starting to understand just what the fuss is about them, haha… Though I still feel VERY out of place owning one.

Here’s the values of our two cars via KBB.com:

  • Lexus: $14,373.00
  • Toyota: $4,257.00

AUTO LOAN: (-$418.34): Operation “round up debt payments” are back in action! I used to do this with our home mortgages – rounding up to the nearest $100th – to get them paid off faster, so it feels kinda good in a nerdy way to have another mission like this again. Our normal payments are around $340/mo, but we threw in $500 this round as well as a little extra we got back from refinancing it already last month. Was able to spend more time looking into it all, and got our rate down from 3.45% to 2.75%. Only saves us a few dollars a month – but hey, one time work for future savings! The best kind!

And here’s how the last year has gone in total, for those visual people out there:

net worth - last 12 months

Our boys have their own net worths too! (Though sadly can’t update it themselves… yet :))

baby net worths

And that wraps up July! Very much looking forward to getting all these cash problems out of the way and re-gaining momentum again… If it weren’t for banking so much while times were good, we’d be looking pretty bad here! And I guarantee you would have taken my blogger card from me by now ;)

Hope your situations are poised to get better too! It’s not always roses all the time!

As always, here’s the list of all 90+ updates we’ve done over the years: J’s Net Worth Journey. And here’s a look at how 229 other bloggers are faring too: The Ultimate Net Worth Tracker (via my other site, Rockstar Finance). See if there’s anyone in your own range there that you can follow and get motivated by! The amounts range from $500,000 in DEBT, all the way up to $3.3 MILLION plus.

See ya back next week :)

j. money signature

PS: Here are a couple of spreadsheets to help track your money and/or net worth if you're looking to get started (and love manually tracking it as I do :)):

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 Personal Capital account instead.

Personal Capital 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 net worth

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 Personal Capital - check it out here: Why I Use Personal Capital Almost Every Single Day.

(There's also Mint.com too btw which is also free and automated, but its more focused on day-to-day budgeting rather than long-term net worth building)

Jay loves talking about money, experimenting, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his two beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!

{ 89 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mrs. CTC August 5, 2016 at 5:25 am

Half a millionaire but a total badass! That was cheesy, I know.

Congrats on the net worth though, it really does sound badass. You must be almost as thrilled as I was reaching our own net worth of nothing the other week :)

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2 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:36 am

Hey, if that means you’re killing off debt like a champ then WAY TO GO!!! The first few milestones are honestly the best. $0.00 (if in debt), $50,000 and then $100,000. From $100k and up it’s all nice and makes you feel great, but thrilling-wise it doesn’t compare to the first ones.. I think because it’s a slower process and you’ve already learned and set things in place so it’s all kinda on automation, if that makes sense? I think the biggest jump in joy will be $1 Million :)

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3 Mrs. CTC August 5, 2016 at 10:23 am

Killing it off like a beast! Not the first time I accomplished nothing, but the first time I actually enjoyed it.

Now I can look forward to telling other people that everything above 100,000 kinda happens on automation, haha! Makes sense, but it rocks at the same time :)

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4 Ten Factorial Rocks August 18, 2016 at 5:53 am

That’s absolutely right J. I still remember how great I felt when NW crossed $100k, but not so much when it crossed $500k. Reaching $1 mill feels good but that’s only because mass media popularized it, otherwise it’s just a number. So, extrapolating backwards, negative to zero would give the greatest satisfaction. Getting out of debt, therefore, is the biggest thrill. This feeeling of lower satisfaction when your net worth keeps going up is called ‘marginal utility’ that I cover in one of my articles on my site. It’s a well known economics and human psychology principle.

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5 Nicola @ The Frugal Cottage August 5, 2016 at 5:34 am

Hello, half-a-millionaire man! ;) great increase this month! I was pleased with our increase of £1,200+ but we’re just at the beginning :)

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6 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:37 am

Congrats! We’re all at the beginning at some point :)

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7 The Green Swan August 5, 2016 at 5:43 am

Nice work J$, letting the market do it’s thing which can be powerful. Solid pickup. I saw the same bounce here, it was well appreciated :)

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8 Pengepugeren August 5, 2016 at 5:47 am

I know I’ve said it before, but I just can’t get over you getting a car loan, and for a Lexus! What has the world come to?

But hey, your net worth is higher than mine, so you must be doing something right :-D

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9 Paul August 5, 2016 at 8:55 am

I know you are mostly joking but I think a lot of people equate extreme cheapness with being financially savvy. In fact buying a higher quality product that will cost you less overtime can be the most financially sound move. It’s not like the Lex really cost that much anyway.

Also, while I hate loans in general, interest rates are such that hes probably getting a 1% discount by financing (adjusted for inflation). But I do agree that if he would have gone out and bought a new Lexus fresh off the lot I might have to reconsider the blog. I look at it like this. Would I go out and buy a gently used vehicle that 1. served my family and 2. Someone else already took the depreciation hit on? Yes, in fact its my 2011 Honda odyssey touring, sitting in my garage, that I paid $28K for with low miles and a new MSRP of $45K. I plan to drive it into the ground and I do not feel that this vehicle was in excess, which I think that the most important barometer. I like Financial Samurai’s 10% rule for vehicles, I think it really is sound. So if you make $200k a year then a $20K car is perfectly reasonable.

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10 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:39 am

You said it way more elegantly than I, haha… thanks :) Though I’m not as hardcore as Financial Samurai wished we all were. Not making near $200k these days but luckily we’re all allowed to make our own decisions!

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11 Paul August 5, 2016 at 4:16 pm

I also feel 10% is a little low, as I am not making the required 280K a year to buy a 28K car, well, not yet anyway.

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12 Pengepugeren August 5, 2016 at 6:44 pm

I am mostly joking, and I have no intention of reconsidering this awesome blog. But it does rub me the wrong way, that a personal finance enthusiast like J$ got a car loan. And for at car with a low mileage and high insurance cost.

Perhaps I’m also a little bit jealous. I paid more for my wife’s teeny tiny car due to the 200 % registration tax over here.

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13 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 11:26 am

I hear where you’re coming from :) In a perfect world we’d all pay cash for everything (even our homes!) but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. The real thing to watch for here is how long it takes me to pay it off!

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14 Jon @ Be Net Worthy August 5, 2016 at 5:50 am

Hey J$, I’m relatively new to your site. Congrats on crossing back over the half-million mark and l love your detailed net worth report. I just analyzed my investment performance for so far this year and I was up a little over 10% due to the fact I had thrown a Vanguard Precious Metals fund into the mix. It has almost doubled for the year!

Love your site!

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15 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:42 am

Nice! I love gold and silver stuff but stick to it in my coin collection vs funds… Just don’t know enough to really invest in it well other than the “it goes up when everything’s crashing and down when everything’s growing” rule of thumb. I have a friend who used to hoard gold and silver bars in his safe back in 2010. He must have cashed out $500,000-$1,000,000 in stocks cuz he swore the apocalypse was coming! And he worked in banking!

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16 Dividends Down Under August 5, 2016 at 5:59 am

Hey J,

Must be pretty awesome being able to total up all of your assets (and liabilities) to over half a million. Nice job! Good luck for the next update.

Tristan

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17 Brian @ Debt Discipline August 5, 2016 at 6:12 am

Congrats J$ and family on a solid month. Half-a-millionaire status I’m sure feels good. How’s the Mrs. adjusting being back to F/T work?

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18 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:44 am

Well, she’s adjusting! Haha… still getting used to early wake-ups and dressing appropriately, but she’s getting there :) I know she loves working on her career again after 6+ years off!

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19 Miss Mazuma August 5, 2016 at 7:11 am

They say the first half million is the hardest. ;) Welcome back to half status!!

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20 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:44 am

Haha… the first $100k was the hardest! I think next is $1 Mil :)

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21 [email protected] Smarter Decisions August 5, 2016 at 7:15 am

That’s a great report and love how you include the car’s depreciation. I think few people consider that (and glad you don’t regret the purchase anymore!)

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22 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:47 am

Thanks :) Been tracking it for almost a decade now – helps put things in perspective! Esp seeing the drastic difference from what I paid for it vs what it’s “worth!”

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23 ESI Money August 5, 2016 at 7:55 am

This is the power of saving in action.

You spend less than you earn, invest it, and watch it grow.

Just so happens, this was a good “grow” month.

Congrats (again)! :)

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24 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:47 am

Yeah :) I’m glad too because it helped me get over my hump last month… I know some major dips are coming around the corner to help smooth it out!

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25 Apathy Ends August 5, 2016 at 7:56 am

Market went on a sweet run after Brexit! Didn’t see it coming

Congrats, maybe the market is done messing with you and you can stay above 500k for awhile

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26 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:48 am

Well, either way it’s all good… hoping to be in a position to scoop up more funds as they dip low again… been a while since I started dollar-cost-averaging!

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27 Matt @ Optimize Your Life August 5, 2016 at 8:06 am

Congrats on recrossing that milestone! I’m always torn when the markets have big months like this. On the one hand it feels good and looks good for my net worth. On the other hand I am far enough from retirement that I know rationally I should want the market to stay lower for a while.

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28 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:49 am

Haha – EXACTLY.

If it helps, think about all those people who are about to retire/in retirement now though and how sucky it would be if it all crashed right at the time they need their $$ the most :( That usually makes me feel better about things as well as less greedy!

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29 Cash Collector August 5, 2016 at 8:30 am

Hey J$, Congrats on regaining the title! Half Millionaire is great!! Had a great month here at the “Cash Collector” House as we approach Millionaire status. As of August 1st we are $28,346.90 away from the Big Goal!!

Looking for the big celebration very soon.

Regards
CC

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30 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:50 am

OOOOH NICE!!! I want a report next month when you’ve crossed it, please :)

Loving the name too – Cash Collector – haha…

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31 Cash Collector August 5, 2016 at 10:45 am

Thanks Man! My spreadsheet pretty much mirrors yours, My projection to reach the Big $1MM was 4/1/17, but at this pace if things keep going I hope to reach still by then end of 2016. I will let you know when I hit that number.

Some people collect Baseball cards, or Coins, trinkets from travels. I collect Cash, in any and all denominations.

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32 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 10:55 am

Haha… I actually AM a coin collector!

http://cointhrill.com

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33 Josh @MoneyBuffalo August 5, 2016 at 8:53 am

Good strategy of rounding up the monthly debt payments, I would round up my student loan & car payments as well. Either to the next $100 or $10 depending on what was going on.

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34 Paul August 5, 2016 at 9:00 am
35 Paul August 5, 2016 at 9:03 am

Comment disappeared when I hit submit and I don’t feel like typing it over.

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36 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:51 am

I think it was about how you were going to buy me some good beer?? :)

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37 Paul August 5, 2016 at 4:10 pm

HaHa. Well you probably aren’t that far from me now that you are in DC adjacent Maryland. I’ve got some Fat Tire and some Ruination in the fridge.

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38 FinanciaLibre August 5, 2016 at 9:29 am

Hey J$ – congrats on regaining $500k!

One question: If your auto loan carries only a 2.75% interest rate, why pay it down more aggressively than necessary? You’d almost certainly obtain a better long-run overall rate of return by investing the difference instead. Just a humble thought.

Thanks for another inspirational post.

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39 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 10:09 am

Good point indeed!

I think right now it just bugs me seeing the debt there and emotionally prefer to just have it all nixed, but financial-wise you’re totally right. Investing that in the market will almost certainly net me way more than 2.75%! I might change my strategy down the road, but for now I’m cool with the killing off route and you really can’t go wrong either way. The worst would be just not doing anything at all!

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40 FinanceSuperhero August 5, 2016 at 10:56 am

I completely relate to the emotional impact of low-interest car loans. Currently, our low interest auto loan is our only non-mortgage debt. We could write a check on September 1 and wipe it away, and part of me really wants to do so because the debt bothers me. I’m not quite at that point, yet, but I’m getting there!

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41 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 12:56 pm

Also depends on how much of a cash cushion you have too :) If you’re sitting on a ton then I’d be much more comfortable paying it off and/or investing it all. If you’re running low like I currently am, then no way I’d pay it off as you def. need a good emergency fund set up!

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42 Amanda @centsiblyrich August 5, 2016 at 9:41 am

Wasn’t July great :) !? Congrats on regaining your half mil title! And it’s great you have that 2nd income now – I can imagine that will help tremendously.

August was good to us too. Market gains + home appraisal came back $35,000 more than I had been valuing it at. Here’ s hoping to keep it going in August! (I still haven’t gotten up the nerve to share our net on Rockstar, but maybe soon…)

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43 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:52 am

Hey, no shame in that! Gotta be super comfortable to share the beans everywhere :) Much easier to do when you’re anonymous too!

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44 Richard August 5, 2016 at 4:55 pm

How does the appraisal compare with Zillow? I’m using 80% of the Zillow estimate, subtracting an additional 10% for selling expenses. Does that seem reasonable?

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45 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 11:29 am

Nice! I think that’s super reasonable personally. I didn’t even take out selling expenses in mine but def. a more conservative way to do it. We had our realtor run comps for us once a year when we used to have mortgages, and when we eventually sold it it was actually spot on! Only off by $1.00 – hah.

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46 David @ Thinking Thrifty August 5, 2016 at 9:44 am

Congratulations! I started from scratch this year but current net worth stands around £3,500 from what I’ve saved away. You gotta start somewhere!

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47 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 9:53 am

Yes you do, sir. I remember my first $1,000 saved as if it were yesterday!

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48 Mollie August 5, 2016 at 10:14 am

Speaking of feeling out of place in a fancier car, years ago my dad got a Cadillac after his Pontiac came to the end of its life, When he first had it, he was parking around the corner from work because he was embarrassed. It wore off, but I loved that story. I think it shows you’re both good folks who aren’t in it to be flashy!

Congrats on being over $500K again. =)

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49 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 10:18 am

Aww, haha… I think your dad and I would get along great :)

And honestly, owning a luxury car has really opened up my eyes more as to *other* reasons why people would ever pony up for such a thing. I used to think it was all more to be flashy and cool too, but honestly they’re just freakin’ NICE to drive! My wife never cared about what car she had at all thinking they were all the same, and then sitting in this one just once completely opened her eyes haha…

So yeah, people do get them just to show off and what not, but there are other reasons too which I’m better understanding now. Though of course none of it really matters if you can’t afford it :)

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50 Fiscally Free August 5, 2016 at 10:33 am

Congrats on passing half a million once again!
I am shopping for a new (to us) car and am trying to avoid any of the issues you ran into.
We will be replacing our polluting VW diesel, which they will be buying back in October or November, so we have plenty of time to find the right car. The best part is we plan on buying a car for less than VW will be giving us, which will let us pocket a few thousand dollars.

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51 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 10:36 am

Nice! Plenty of time to find a good deal too :) If you go the private party route, just make sure to take it to a mechanic you trust to look it over first. They only charge a little for it, and then if anything comes up you can use it to help in negotiations. It’s also a quick way to tell the honesty of the person you’re buying it from :) If they quickly freak out or say no, then prob smart to move right on to the next one!

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52 Avery Breyer August 5, 2016 at 12:17 pm

Congrats on being past the half million milestone – that’s fabulous! :) And I noticed that you drive a Toyota… they’re one of my 2 favorite auto manufacturers because their vehicles are soooo reliable! We just sold our Toyota mind you, but kept our Honda (the other brand on my 2 favorite list).

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53 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 12:54 pm

Oh yeah! And our Lexus is made by Toyota too :)

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54 Hannah August 5, 2016 at 1:31 pm

That net worth is looking pretty. Sadly, due to some unfortunate timing for my 401k rollover, I missed out on the gains.

Do you feel uber productive now that the kids and your wife are out of the house for several hours everyday?

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55 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 2:38 pm

Hell yeah! A lot easier to concentrate/hustle. Though on the flip side I also miss them terribly :( And my old friends I left behind at our old place as well… I think it’s starting to hit me now.

(Regarding your 401k rollover – if you compare to the LONG term you didn’t miss out on any gains :) Think about what those amounts will look like in 20, 30 years from now!)

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56 Danny August 5, 2016 at 1:32 pm

How come you don’t include this website in your net worth? Or is that just a side net worth for you?

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57 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 2:36 pm

I don’t include it for three reasons:

1) It’s REALLY hard to value it fairly (and I’d probably overvalue it just cuz it’s so personal to me – hah)

2) I like being ultra conservative with it not being included since you can never count on something coming of it, right? Maybe I’ll sell one day or maybe I’ll blog here forever.

and 3) If I do ever cash out, it’ll be reflected in the net worth at that point anyways. And I’d make sure to post it here too and keep up the transparency :)

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58 Done by Forty August 5, 2016 at 1:59 pm

Woohoo! Way to hit those milestones!

A lot of our net worth is in home equity, which we’re not particularly pumped about but hey, what can you do. Generally, we acknowledge that it’s there, but kind of ignore it for retirement planning and just focus on the liquid stuff.

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59 J. Money August 5, 2016 at 2:32 pm

Smart way to look at it for sure. And also means you’re doing good killing those mortgages!

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60 Richard August 5, 2016 at 3:37 pm

Cool news J, keep up the good work. A few more months like that and you should be able to get through a minor market contraction and still be above the 500k mark.

I told the wife we had crossed the half million dollar mark (Assets $722,860, Debts $186,121, Net Worth $536,739). Her response YAY, when do we hit one million?? Hehehe Seriously though Its going to be a while. There is lots of time to build up anticipation for that milestone. Perhaps as the numbers climb it will add incentive to save more. It’s a great positive feedback system.

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61 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 11:38 am

You know what my wife said when I first told her the other month? “I thought we were already at $500k?” Facepalm.

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62 Robert August 5, 2016 at 6:44 pm

Hi Jmoney,

I was curious why you don’t count equity in your house as a part of your net worth? Even if you don’t consider it an investment (which I do because housing markets when viewed from an area by area basis are 100% a speculative investment: Detroit has been a very poor investment of the past 20 years and San Fransisco has been an absurdly strong investment but I digress), most people would still at least accept them as a store of value so the Principal portion of your monthly housing payment should be added to your net worth on a monthly basis.

I would think the most recently appraised value of your home should show in assets and current outstanding home loan balance should show in liabilities.

Thanks for your insight and you have a very cool site!

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63 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 11:41 am

We don’t own a house – we rent :) But when we used to I did include both mortgages and the estimated value of it in my net worth reports. Some people don’t like doing that, but I look at my net worth as a “snapshot” of where all my money/assets are, so to me it makes sense to include in there. Some will even only include the mortgage without the value/equity at all! Super hardcore! :)

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64 Tawcan August 5, 2016 at 8:27 pm

Love that Jim Carey GIF lol. Totally awesome that you were able to increase your net worth by that much. A few more months you should be able to get the $600k mark.

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65 Rachelle August 6, 2016 at 10:33 am

Not as fabulous as your monthly change but despite having a super small retirement account my YTD rate of return is sitting at just over 8% and I had a change of just under $7,000.

Part of the change was from a large contribution and then my normal 15% deposit. Still I will take it. I hit my first investment milestone of $25,000 last month.

Next goal, $50k… Can’t wait until I hit six figures so I can really start to see my money grow.

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66 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 11:46 am

Oh yeah – keep going!! $25k and $50k milestones are some of the best! And as you’re probably noticing already it grows even faster despite you putting in the same level of work :) Pretty cool if you ask me.

http://www.budgetsaresexy.com/2015/11/difference-working-for-money-vs-your-money-working-for-you/

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67 Rachelle August 9, 2016 at 11:35 pm

Thanks for sharing that article! Love the penny example :)

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68 J. Money August 10, 2016 at 4:37 pm

One of my favorites :)

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69 Dollar Engineer August 6, 2016 at 12:11 pm

Yeaaa back up over that 500k! That stock market has been on fire this month and with that jobs report yesterday hopefully it keeps it going in August. Nice to hear your wife will be bringing in some more income for you all too!

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70 Deacon August 6, 2016 at 2:20 pm

Congrat brotha! We are almost quarter millionaires, so hopefully we will catch up to where you are now in the next five years :)

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71 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 11:48 am

With all your biz ideas brewing I’m sure you will! I still REALLY want to check out that co-working space of yours :)

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72 CP August 6, 2016 at 2:30 pm

Hey J,

Congrats on re-attaining the half mil. mark. Curious about one thing though. I see your net worth is 99% in tax advantaged vehicles, leaving the vast bulk of your wealth subject to access limitations if there was ever any non-traditional retirement uses that come up such as housing, education, travel, early retirement and the like.

Was there a specific method to your approach in balancing the tax benefits from those vehicles versus the detriments in going all in on the IRAs? I max my 401ks/IRAs also, but am closer to 50% in tax advantaged versus non-retirement/real estate assets. If there’s a previous article or podcast where you already answered this question, just let me know and I’ll find my way to it. Thanks.

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73 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 12:06 pm

Great insight for sure!

To be honest I haven’t put complete thought into it all yet (I don’t ever plan on really “retiring”, though I do strongly want to become financial independent and work on stuff I love all the time!) but I def. need to start diversifying, no doubt about it. I’ll probably do it with a separate brokerage account once I get things more stabilized in the cash department.

That being said, however, I know there ARE ways to hack the system and get some of that $$$ out earlier w/out penalties! So I’m not terribly worried about it…

Check out this post from Mad Fientist – he gets all into it, pretty cool!

http://www.madfientist.com/how-to-access-retirement-funds-early/

Hope this helps :)

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74 Dividend Diplomats August 6, 2016 at 4:30 pm

J Money,

Nice! Love the little ones accounts as well. Market was real nice, of course, and I’ve been sitting strong at over $200K now for a few consecutive weeks, which is insane haha. I re-structured my strategy as well and am set to max out the 401k and HSA, for the tax benefits and then it drops the MAGI down low enough to dabble into the traditional IRA – all while saving me tax $$ to invest that back into the market. I can’t wait for January 2017 – I’ll be on a very much “steady” auto pilot with the investments and looking forward to a more “normalistic” monthly budget.

Great share and congrats for climbing back over $500K. Keep it going!

-Lanny

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75 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 12:07 pm

Rock on! Love all the different ways you can be efficient with investment $$$$ :) Here’s to another $200k for ya soon!

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76 ZJ Thorne August 6, 2016 at 10:08 pm

Congrats on getting back over half a million! That’s impressive. I’m sure the second income will accelerate your growth.

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77 iFreebies August 6, 2016 at 10:55 pm

Congrats on regaining the half millionaire status. A nice accomplishment. Just as important it looks like you have your spending under control. This will help a lot as you move forward into millionaire status and beyond. A lot of people just focus on one end of the savings / spend matrix and it’s easy for lifestyle creep to eat into your monthly budget and force your FIRE number higher. Another great post as always.

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78 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 12:15 pm

Well, don’t pat me on the back too much for that haha… I do have our spending down more or less, outside of recent moving costs, however the area I REALLY need to focus on more right now is *earning* as I’ve been sucking at it lately… Once that’s nailed down more we’ll be sitting a lot more prettier/comfortable. Great point about the matrix though!

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79 Syed August 6, 2016 at 11:04 pm

Got that market bump myself. Though I have decided to be a little more aggressive with my student debt payments. I would be done in 4 years (that would make 150K gone in 10 years), but now I’m shooting for being done in 2. Net worth will still be going up but not as rollercoastery as before. Great job man!

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80 J. Money August 8, 2016 at 12:12 pm

Oh wow – that would be awesome man! Can’t even fathom $150k in debt – no less paying it off so quickly like that. Inspirational, man.

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81 Travel Travel & Retire! August 9, 2016 at 7:11 pm

I love following your progress – of most of the FI blogs out there, yours I relate to the most right now because I feel I am about one year behind of where you are (https://traveltravelandretire.com/starting-point/) . The fact that you share specifics is suuuper helpful – certainly convinced me to do the same, make the plan public (less likely to fail I guess) and hopefully help others along the way.

I too however bought a car in 2015 which I still kind of regret. My worse financial move in a while. Hey at least I got rid of student loans!

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82 J. Money August 10, 2016 at 4:39 pm

Haha… it’s never a straight line up, that’s for sure :)

Glad you’re enjoying the blog! Thanks for letting me know!!

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83 Joe August 11, 2016 at 9:23 am

Congratulation! You’re half way there! Keep at it. The 2nd income is going to help so much in the next few years.

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84 Beth August 11, 2016 at 3:32 pm

Good freaking job!!! Half-a-millionaire!

Maybe I’ll be there one day…

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85 FI Champion August 16, 2016 at 10:22 pm

Way to get it! Keep it up man.

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86 Financial Samurai August 17, 2016 at 10:47 am

You do realize if you bet it ALL on black, there is a 48.5% chance you could become a millionaire in just ONE MINUTE of action!!!

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87 J. Money August 17, 2016 at 12:33 pm

Haha… The IRS would love me too from all those fees I’d owe them from withdrawing all my retirement accounts :)

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88 Cash Lab August 21, 2016 at 10:03 pm

It’s like they say, the first half million is the hardest! I hear ya on purchasing a car. We bought one in July and I can just feel the erosion of our net worth because of it. But it’s quality and should last the next 10 years.

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89 J. Money August 22, 2016 at 10:34 am

Loving the blog name, dude!

And that you’re tracking your worth for all to see too :)

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