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My Personal 2016 Net Worth Update and Finances!

Come one, come all and snoop around my yearly net worth! I don’t see it as the ‘taboo’ that seems to dominate the culture. I feel that being open about money is a good thing, it allows us to bounce experiences and ideas off each other.

I haven’t always been focused on saving my money. In fact, I’ve only gotten serious about increasing my net worth since November of 2014. It was then that I signed up for Mint.com and then PersonalCapital.com a short while later as they were offering a $10 Amazon voucher for new sign ups.

I was semi-serious in 2013, and that was when I started saving up for a home down payment. I’ve always wanted to have my own place, and my job was sending me to an area of the country where it was affordable. I was notified of the move destination in 2013 and it would include a significant pay decrease of $2,000 a month.

I used the 8 month notice to save up $24,000. Which was used to purchase a 1980’s 3/2 ranch style foreclosed home for $98K in June of 2014. I had taken out a $7k loan from my retirement account tied to the house purchase, which made it penalty free and interest was paid to myself. I used that $7k to remodel the cosmetics of the kitchen and guest bathroom, purchase appliances, and redo the floor. I used my money to pay for other household necessities like a washer/dryer, a vehicle for my wife, and a backyard wedding in October of that same year.

In 2015 I paid off my car note, and started dumping the rest into the retirement account loan.

When I was still paying off some lesser debts I almost exclusively used Mint.com, but as I have transitioned into having only mortgage debt I now use PersonalCapital.com much more often as it is better for managing my investments. I also check in with CreditKarma.com to see my credit score on occasion.

 


 

Significant Events During 2016

 

  • Completely repaid the $7K loan from my retirement account in February, leaving the mortgage as my only debt.
  • Sent to work for six months in Qatar, starting in July. Postitives: Small pay jump and decent tax advantages – about $500 more in my pocket per month. Negatives: Away from family, my normal side-hustles, and was in Qatar in July/August – you don’t understand heat like that until you are in it.
  • Wife became pregnant with little train #2, due in March 2017.

 

2016 Net Worth Numbers

 

During 2016 I earned $64,923.80 in gross pay. I started the year with a net worth of $115K and ended with $173K – an increase of $58K! My savings and asset increases meant that I still have 88% of my 2016 income!

 

(the picture shows a starting net worth of $108K but that was because PersonalCapital couldn’t connect to my bank account in July, after two weeks of trying to get it to connect I ended up deleting it from my account and connecting it like a fresh account, which worked but removed all history before the date of reconnection. This does account for the two large straight line increases – the early one is $5,500 worth of funding in my IRA and the second large jump of $10k is when the bank account was reconnected.)

How it all breaks down.

 


I added $10K to my Robinhood brokerage account. Robinhood is a great service, it is 100% free of commissions. That’s right, no charge for buying or selling a stock. You can just buy 1 stock or 1000 at a time, no need to wait until you have enough to offset the commission fee.

  • I added $1,200 to my USAA brokerage account. I use this to purchase stocks that are not listed on Robinhood.
  • Another $10K was added to my retirement account through my job.
  • My IRA in Motif investing has increased by $7,260 – that includes my $5,500 max contribution.
  • Lending club has increased from $2,836 to $3,144 – an increase of $300, $125 of which was added directly by myself, leaving a passive gain of $175.

All together this comes out to $27,855!

From a gross income of $65K and supporting a stay-at-home wife and child, I don’t think it is too shabby.

The rest of my net worth is related to my house.

 

My mortgage balance started 2016 off at $70,970 and ended the year at $65,345.

In addition, it has increased in value this year by almost $24K!

 

This graph includes two vehicles as well as my house. The large jump towards the middle of the year was when I added the Mustang, and the smaller decrease about a month ago was when I devalued the Mazda.

I don’t expect my house value to continue to increase as fast as it has been, but it added a significant amount this past year.


 

Thoughts

 

2014 data. Americans are in bad shape overall.

I only got serious about becoming wealthy in late 2014 when my net worth was $75,000. Here I am just two years and one month later having more than doubled my net worth by adding $100,000 to it!

I’m not some high earner either. At 35 years old, $65k a year is not too far above the median household income for my age. Anyways, what you make isn’t as important as how much you keep!

I realized that I was only making other people wealthy with my own money! Every dollar I spent on interest or buying stuff was my time and energy leaving. Our time alive is finite, while money is nearly infinite! I am determined to use money to buy my time back for my own use.

Many people want to complain that bankers are rich, but it doesn’t stop them from not paying off their credit cards and financing that new car for 72 months!

You don’t have to live like a pauper either. My wife, child, and myself took two vacations before I left for Qatar, one to Florida and one to England. We’ll take at least one this year too, probably Alaska.

You can have what you want, you just can’t have everything you want. Once you start making smarter choices by not buying or finding bargains for what doesn’t matter as much, you will have enough to save and spend on what does. By buying my items secondhand I save money AND the environment.

Once you get rid of the mindless spending, you can be smarter with your money. When I focused on using money to increase my wealth it really started to grow. In the last two years I have increased my net worth more than the other 33 combined!


This post was originally featured on my Steemit blog.

7 comments

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  1. CoupleofCents

    Congratulations on the 58K net worth bump. The name of this game is consistency. Welcome to the FI blogging community.

    1. MrDD

      Thank you for the welcome! It is really amazing what a person can do once they decide to focus on something. When I decided to focus on my financial health, it really has started to change my whole life.

  2. Cody @ Dollar Habits

    Happy to have found your blog, Mr. DD. A belated congrats to you on the impressive net worth increase in 2016. I look forward to following along. Here’s to a very successful and happy 2017 for you and your family. – Cody
    Cody @ Dollar Habits recently posted…Where There’s a Will, There’s a Why: Finding Your PurposeMy Profile

    1. MrDD

      Thank you Cody. I hope to match the increase this year, as much of 2016’s was due to home appreciation.

  3. dividendgeek

    Finally! I find someone in a similar situation. I am 35 and my investments are < 50% of yours :-). You are on the right path …. as long as you sustain it. I keep doing these excel sheets trying to figure out if I can ever retire 🙁

    Great job mate!
    dividendgeek recently posted…Model Tax-Efficient Portfolios for Short- and Intermediate-Term InvestorsMy Profile

    1. MrDD

      Since you are into personal finance you are already ahead of 90% of the people out there! Just keep learning from the experiences of other people so you don’t make the same mistakes and you will see it pay off in spades.

      My advice, stay off the spreadsheets for a while – then just do it once a month. Use that time you had to start up and work a side hustle! More cash will help you much more than fretting over your financial data.

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