Time for ye ol’ net worth updating again!
And just like last month, it was a pretty juicy one for us this time around too – only much more fun than making IRA mistakes and playing the bitcoin game ;)
For the first time in 15 years, we finally have a traditional brokerage account again! WOO!! And what a difference all those years have made with our mindset:
(Of course I had to tweet it in real-time as blogging is too slow these days ;) So be sure you’re following me to get up-to-the-minute news and nonsense! –> @BudgetsAreSexy)
So yeah – dropped $50k right into it last week, and you can probably guess where it all went ;) I’ll give you a clue – it rhymes with Wanguard, and it got invested into Mindex funds, haha…
So why now? Three reasons:
- We finally had enough of staring at all our extra cash reserves, and it was beginning to feel unproductive
- We couldn’t use it to max out our Roth IRAs this year because of our higher incomes
- It was finally time to DIVERSIFY our tax advantaged accounts more, because it’s probably not a good idea to have 100% of your investments locked away in them… at least if you truly want to “retire early” one day :) (Though of course, you still have Conversion Ladders and other strategies you can utilize – which I refer to Mad Fientist on, who’s a master at this: How to Access Retirement Funds Early)
I’ll probably use this account to tweak holdings over time and maybe diversify our index funds as well (you know, with bonds, international, etc), but for now we got it going, so I’m calling it a win in the “more well-rounded” department. Which only took us 15 years to get comfortable with again ;)
(And to be honest, I’m still a bit nervous about it, which is strange since we have over 10x this amount in our retirement accounts which are invested in the EXACT SAME FUND??, but I’m chalking it up to just being new and different for us, so hopefully it all subsides… We can always cash it back out whenever we want/need it, right? With much less hubbub?)
At any rate, that’s the major news over here this month! No baby yet, but should be any day/hour/minute now! It’s gotta come out some time, right??
Here’s How April’s Money Broke Down:
[These reports are shared every month to keep things transparent, and to start great conversations around money in our lives. Sometimes we’re up, and sometimes we’re down, but whatever the case, we disclose it all and hopes it helps with your journey too. Welcome to net worth update #124!]
CASH SAVINGS (-$42,514.66): A big drop as we move out a chunk of cash into the new brokerage account just mentioned, as well as another clump into my SEP IRA to max it out for the year. Which thankfully we *were* able to do unlike our Roth IRAs because we earned “too much” last year – womp womp… We also got a decent amount back during tax filing too, which is why we only went down $40,000 here instead of $60,000.
SPAVINGS FUND! (+$629.92): Another great increase this month! This time due to cash back rewards with our USAA credit card, cancellation of our HBO subscription which now nets us $15.00/month (though very tempted to go back with the premiere of West World again!!), some reimbursements checks, and a bunch of other smaller cash findings we quickly stashed before it all went out the door again… Because as the saying goes, “if it’s not saved, it’s spent!” And if that’s not a saying yet, well, we’re making it one today! Spread it far and wide, people!!
(More info on the “Spavings” idea here)
THRIFT SAVINGS PLAN (TSP) (+$586.78): Up and up it goes, the more my wife works! And the beauty of 9-5s is that it should continue to do so even while NOT working and on maternity leave, due to using up vacation and sick days and what not. Benefits us self-employed schmucks lose out on ;) So yay for employers! They’re not always so horrible!
*NEW* BROKERAGE! (+$50,105.83): Best fake increase right there, haha…. Though we have already earned $105 since dumping our money in – much more than the $0.05 we would have leaving it in the savings account :) Of course, we still have a healthy chunk there for emergencies and other future opportunities, but it’s always a balancing act with this stuff, and you do your best to align everything with your goals and comfort levels… Not every last dollar needs to be optimized, but you do want it to be a *conscious* choice that best fits your lifestyle!
ROTH IRAs (+$504.35): Another nice uptick here as well! With obviously no deposits on our end as we were so rudely denied from investing in these for the tax year ;)
SEP IRA (+$7,843.39): A bit better here as we maxed out our account for the year, but we’ll see what the market has in store for us with all these ups and downs going on… Here’s a snapshot of how our Vanguard accounts have progressed since switching over to them close to four years ago:
(Just like with our new brokerage account, all money here is invested in VTSAX as well – Vanguard’s “Total Stock Market Index Fund” – Admiral Shares version (fewer fees, but you need at least $10,000 invested to move into, vs their “Investor Shares” account (VTSMX) which only requires $3,000))
CAR VALUES (-$658.00): Nothing too crazy going on here, other than we lowered our “condition” a bit for each car just to stay more conservative… OH! And we decided to wait on our minivan too until my wife’s car dies out! Turns out we can (barely) squeeze three car seats into my SUV, so for now we’re going that route until absolutely necessary :) The thought of car shopping with a newborn is just not exciting at ALL right now, haha… Or apparently the 9 months leading up to now either!
Here’s the value of our two cars per KBB.com:
- Lexus RX350: $9,111.00
- Toyota Corolla: $2,818.00
Total change in net worth this month: +$16,497.61!
And here’s how the past 12 months have gone to put things in even more perspective:
Some stalls over the past few months, but as to be expected when a bulk of your money is tied in the markets… At least we’re able to scoop up funds cheaper these days! And fortunately when we opened up that new account I believe the market had crashed by 500 pts that day… Which I’m sure subliminally got me to finally act ;)
Oh, and here’s how our kids’ net worths are going as well… Which they have no idea about yet, and which we’re keeping a secret until they’re old enough to log on and read these reports (which will be super weird, haha…)
And that’s April! How did you guys do?? Anyone cross the million dollar mark? Or multi-million?
In “life” news which we now like to add here, it’s been pretty low key…
- Waiting for baby to arrive
- Waiting for baby to arrive
- Playing with my coin collection as I wait for the baby to arrive
- Playing with my other babies while I wait for the baby to arrive
- Sleeping as much as I can while waiting for the baby to arrive :)
It really is unnerving not knowing when – or *where* – it’ll finally make its appearance, haha… I swear every day I wake up it’s going to be The Day!
But I guess he/she’s not done cooking yet… And yes – I’m purposely keeping the sex a secret from you because it’s the only one I’ve got left!! You get everything else from me!!
Hope everything in your life and finances is going well :) MAY your blessings be as bountiful as your incomes this month!
Your (im)patiently waiting friend,
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!
- The "Budget/Net Worth" spreadsheet - the colorful Excel template I personally use.
- The "Money Snapshot" spreadsheet - a simple Excel template I created for my former $$$ clients
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.
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, collecting coins, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his three beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!