Net Worth Summary

The following is a staff writer post from MikeS.  He is a married father of 2.  So, with the cat, he ranks number 5 in the house.  He loves numbers and helping people. Please leave any questions or comments below for either Mike or Crystal. One of the tasks that I do with my finances is to track my net worth. It’s my scorecard on how I am doing financially.  I have only been diligently tracking the number since the end of 2008.  I am positive the number wasn’t pretty before that time, as I was not very good at managing my finances before then.  So, how did I do this year and what were the drivers of the overall change?  Let’s take a look. Net Worth My net worth increased 14.8% from the end of 2014 till the end of 2015. It was a roughly $19,000 increase year-over-year.  I will say that I am pleased with the number.  It’s going up and the markets did not contribute much of anything to the increase.  The increase was driven entirely by debt reduction and savings.  It is also a far cry from the roughly -$19,000 net worth I had when I … Read more…

Year-End Financial Grade

  The following is a staff writer post from MikeS.  He is a married father of 2.  So, with the cat, he ranks number 5 in the house.  He loves numbers and helping people. Please leave any questions or comments below for either Mike or Crystal. There is one number that I am diligent about tracking at year-end, my net worth. I use it as my scorecard to see how I did financially during the previous year – here’s mine for 2014. My History As I have said before, I was in a pretty deep financial hole.  I am not sure exactly how deep it was, but my net worth was probably in the negative $30K range.  This past year was not my best year in terms of dollar or percentage increase, but it was solid.  My net worth increased about 22% over last year and about $23K overall.  I am pretty happy with that increase.  I’ll discuss where the biggest changes occurred and where I think I might end this year. Yay 401k! The biggest change, by far, was in my 401k. That represented almost all of the gains in my net worth.  Between my contributions, my company’s contributions … Read more…

Financial Creativity

The following is a staff writer post from MikeS.  He is a married father of 2.  So, with the cat, he ranks number 5 in the house.  He loves numbers and helping people. Please leave any questions or comments below for either Mike or Crystal. My wife and I are on the same page when it comes to our financial goals.  We both realize the importance of a strong emergency fund, as well as, saving for retirement.  This is driven by solid communication between the two of us.  I am the numbers guy in our household.  I know all of the ins and outs of our financial house.  My wife understands it all, but isn’t into the details like I am.  Given that we are on more of a solid financial footing now, than we were a few years ago, it is starting to become harder to increase our savings rate.  Life has a way gobbling up any money that is lying around.  That’s why I have begun to get creative in how I go about increasing our savings.  Take my recent opening of an HSA as an example. Stealth Savings Increase When we enrolled in the high-deductible healthcare plan, … Read more…