Here we are, net worth update number three! Now that we’ve got two months of data to compare to I’m getting a little nervous. Before I started sharing our net worth the average change was in the three to four thousand dollar range. After showing you two months of seven thousand dollar net worth increases (give or take), I’m not sure how you will react if we come in below that. In a way, it’s a good motivator, as it’ll help keep us on the right track. If we start to backtrack, I’m counting on my readers to get me back in line!
Cash – +$0 – We mostly use our credit cards so that we can track our expenses (and it makes putting together our monthly financial reports much easier!) so this category is unchanged. I didn’t physically count all the money in the house, so this is just an educated guess, but it’s close enough.
Cash Savings – +$6,481 – If you read my October Income and Expense Report this shouldn’t be much of a surprise. Our net income for October was $6,867 and we managed to save most of that, even after putting $866.67 in our Roth IRAs. The bonus definitely helped us out, but managing our expenses was also a big factor here.
Emergency Fund – +$13 – The interest rate on our account decreased from .8% to .75% so our increase in this account slowed down unfortunately. I don’t expect the dollar amount in this account to change other than interest in the foreseeable future.
Taxable Investments – +$0 – I’ve really slacked on the LendingClub issue, so this number hasn’t changed in a couple of months. I need to get with the program, as the amount of interest we are earning by keeping our money in regular savings accounts keeps diminishing!
Roth IRA – +$149 – October wasn’t a great month for our Roth IRAs. We put in $866.67, yet this account only increased by $149… so we really lost just over $700 to the market. While it can be frustrating to see this, I’m actually pleased when my Roth IRA and 401(k) decrease in value. Why, you ask? Well, as my wife and I are still shoveling tons of money into our retirement accounts each month we are able to buy new shares at a discount. So when the value goes down, we are just able to buy more shares for the same amount of money. I believe that over a long enough timeframe the investing returns in the stock market will be excellent, which is why we are investing heavily for our retirement in the market. For younger workers like us, these temporary decreases in value can be great!
401(k) – +$1,925 – The first thing I have to say is this number looks a lot better than it really is. I mentioned last month that I was trying to get a statement for my wife’s retirement account, and about $1,400 of this increase can be attributed to just adding that in. The statement was from 9/30, and I can only get them quarterly, so I will be using the same value for three months until I receive a new one and update the numbers. My wife has another retirement account that I still need to get a statement for, but that’s another battle for another day at this point.
Auto Value – -$527 – Yikes, this is the biggest decrease I’ve seen in a LONG time. Even though I worked from home (and the local Starbucks’) during October, I still didn’t put an abnormal amount of miles on my car. The decrease seems to be pretty evenly split between both of our vehicles, so I guess it’s just age catching up with them unfortunately. My wife has started grumbling (in the nicest possible way) about wanting a new car… I can almost hear this category crying already! J
Credit Card – +$659 – Two new iPhones, eating out a lot, having to pay for me to eat seven days a week instead of just four, etc – it all adds up. If you want the nitty-gritty details behind this, you can take a look at my October Income and Expense Report. I opened up a new credit card during October (which will of course be paid off every month) that gives me some great perks at a hotel chain I frequent. I do have a minimum spend to meet, so splitting expenses between this new card and the two existing cards we have means that just spot checking the balances can be deceiving as there’s an extra card in the mix now!
October was another spectacular month for Mr and Mrs Aspiring Blogger. I didn’t think it could be done, but we increased our net worth more than in September. My number one goal of financial independence becomes much more tangible after a month like this. I don’t think the rest of the year will be as good since I don’t know of any extra paychecks or bonuses coming in, and I definitely see additional expenses before the end of 2012.
While I’m still working from home I need to take advantage of the location independence I’ve been afforded and start working from different locations. I enjoy working from Starbucks and I haven’t been going much for various reasons (mostly just excuses). There are also some interesting restaurants and other coffee shops that would be cool to try, along with just heading to the library to get work done. I think this would help, not only with giving my location independence goal a boost, but increasing my contentment. Changing my environment seems to put me in a more content mood, even if I am working on regular work – so I should definitely take advantage of it while I can.
I hope you had a great October. Was it better than you were expecting? Not as good? Let me know how your month turned out!