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Net Worth Archive for 2010

Net Worth Report for December 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $53,715 $5,382 11.14 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $2,102 $52 2.54 %
Retirement $41,499 $3,063 7.97 %
Home $428,500 $3,500 0.82 %
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,000 ($500) -6.67 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $543,316 $11,497 2.16 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $318,291 ($459) -0.14 %
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $825 $512 163.58 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $319,116 $53 0.02 %
 
Net Worth $224,200 $11,444 5.38 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Net worth makes a very nice jump, thanks to some additional year-end gigs, a decent return on the stock market (with some dividends), and a bump in value on the house. I'm going to be using Zillow for a bit to determine the value of my new home. I've created a profile there and entered as much accurate information as possible. The sale of the home re-calibrated the "Zestimate" (it used to think it was worth $506K, haha I wish). But now it should be fairly close. If it gets to be wildly off over time I may have to think of another method, but it'll do for now. There was another home like mine that sold 2 weeks ago for $15,000 more than I paid, so I'm pretty confident of the current estimate.

Now that the rental period is over and I'm to move in the next few weeks, I'm also starting off the year making those dreaded mortgage payments. While the Principal/Interest payment by itself isn't too bad (~$1500/month) it's the extra costs of Mello Roos, 2 HOAs, and property taxes that add an extra $1000/month to the total. Unfortunately it's extremely hard to avoid those kind of additional costs when looking for a newer home around here. At least a good chunk of the payment is tax-deductible, which should bump up take-home pay about 10%. I've also set up automatic payments for the mortgage and utilities, as well as direct deposit for my salary, so the inflows/outflows will happen by themselves. I'm re-aligning my primary checking account and putting 2 months worth of "bills" in there to start, just for a little padding. I'll have to monitor it for a bit until I see the monthly financial patterns mature.

The net worth is probably going to stall a bit for the next month or two as I need to furnish my home. I don't really need that much to start, but a nice platform bed, sectional sofa, and bar table set will set me back some. Granted I have money earmarked for such things and I'll be sure to keep it reasonable. I've also got plenty of "house warming" gift cards to accessorize the rest of the place, and I'm already inheriting some family kitchenware to get me started.

It's 2011. Let's do this.

Net Worth Report for November 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $48,333 ($110,627) -69.59 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $2,050 $51 2.55 %
Retirement $38,436 ($325) -0.84 %
Home $425,000 $425,000 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $531,819 $314,099 144.27 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $318,750 $318,750 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $313 ($263) -45.66 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $319,063 $318,487 55,292.88 %
 
Net Worth $212,756 ($4,388) -2.02 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Yes, ladies and gentlemen. It has officially come to pass. I'm now a homeowner.

Escrow closed November 4th on a 3-story townhome (yes I said 3 stories, woo-hoo!), I've got 2 bedrooms and a den, 2.5 bathrooms, with an attached 2-car garage. It's only 3 years old and measures 1,555 square feet, which for me is plenty of room. All appliances (except for the washer/dryer) are included.

When this home first went on the market in early 2007, the asking price was $570,000. So you can imagine how nice it was to score this place for only $425,000. (That may still sound like a lot to most of the world but for this location it's below today's median average for the county.) The sellers originally wanted $435,000 but I was able to entice them lower with a 25% downpayment.

The move-in date is more questionable. The sellers are moving out of state at the end of the year so they're renting back to me until then. There are also some other personal obstacles I need to deal with, which means I may not move in right away. The main point is however, that I have a house, and the 4.0% interest rate on my 30-year fixed was too good to pass up. I can start taking advantage of the tax breaks and add some more weight to my paycheck.

That's the biggest change for the month, although my net worth doesn't look like it changed much. I'm sure it's going to rise a lot slower than in the past with the extra expenses, but we'll see how it plays out this year.

Net Worth Report for October 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $158,960 $5,151 3.35 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,999 $51 2.62 %
Retirement $38,761 $1,433 3.84 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $217,720 $6,635 3.14 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $576 ($680) -54.14 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $576 ($680) -54.14 %
 
Net Worth $217,144 $7,315 3.49 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
I'm not going to summarize too much for October, because if I play my cards right, this chart is about to make a massive change. Stay tuned... :)

Net Worth Report for September 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $153,809 $376 0.25 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,948 $52 2.74 %
Retirement $37,328 $2,819 8.17 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $211,085 $3,247 1.56 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,256 $227 22.06 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,256 $227 22.06 %
 
Net Worth $209,829 $3,020 1.46 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Not too much movement this month. I had to pay the last of my quarterlies from the "self-employment contractor" period earlier in the year, so I should be completely done with that. The stock market made a surprise comeback, which explains the small advance this month.

I've made another offer on a house, but I'm sticking to my limit and not going above $425,000, which sounds like a lot to most people but for the area I'm trying to get into, it's a really good price (provided real estate doesn't tank again around here). The potential interest rate I can get is as low as 3.875%. Now that's what I'm talkin' about.

All I need is one more paycheck and my 6-month emergency stash will be completely funded. I can start allocating my income back into the house fund again.

Net Worth Report for August 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $153,433 ($1,191) -0.77 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,896 $50 2.71 %
Retirement $34,509 ($1,285) -3.59 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $207,838 ($2,426) -1.15 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,029 ($319) -23.66 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,029 ($319) -23.66 %
 
Net Worth $206,809 ($2,107) -1.01 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
From the looks of things, I appear to be in some sort of "two steps forward, one step back" scenario. It's really all about timing on when I deposit my funds into the bank, plus the volatile stock market.

My credit card amount would have been lower had I not been involved in an auto accident. I was forced into the curb by someone who didn't see me, causing $3600 in damage to my car. While I'm not at fault and will probably get my deductible back, that's $630 I have to put out in the meantime.

Still looking at houses, although I notice in the daily e-mail reports I get, prices seem to be going down, down, down every day, which I would expect for high-priced Orange County. That puts me in "not any hurry" to go out and buy something. I'm also 75% complete on my "6-month emergency fund" goal, after which I can start pumping money back into the house fund.

Patience is virtue, I say.

Net Worth Report for July 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $154,624 $5,782 3.88 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,846 $50 2.78 %
Retirement $35,794 $3,277 10.08 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $210,264 $9,109 4.53 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,348 ($499) -27.02 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,348 ($499) -27.02 %
 
Net Worth $208,916 $9,608 4.82 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Well now, that's more like it.

Now that my full-time status is in effect, I don't have to worry about deductions anymore (although I will have to put out for Q3 in September, blah). The stock market made a nice turn-around, plus I cut off ALL spending for the month. If I keep it up, my credit card debt should be back down under $300, where I'd like it to stay for a while.

I almost ended up buying a 3-story townhome in July, but it was a short sale. And unfortunately my best offer, while modestly higher than the asking price, still came up a little short as far as the bank was concerned. It ended up falling through, but I've learned a lot about the whole process, and it's nice to know I can be approved for a loan in short order, once I do find something. I'll keep on the lookout.

The current goal is to have a dedicated 6-month "emergency" fund in case I ever run into hard times. (Right now it's at 3 months.) That should be complete by November, so I'll be in a much stronger position to purchase a home and not freak out about it.

Net Worth Report for June 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $148,842 ($2,433) -1.61 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,796 $53 3.04 %
Retirement $32,517 ($1,199) -3.56 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $201,155 ($3,579) -1.75 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,847 ($206) -10.03 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,847 ($206) -10.03 %
 
Net Worth $199,308 ($3,373) -1.66 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Aw, sad day. The 2nd round of quarterly taxes, combined with $1000 in computer software/hardware purchases and a still-weak stock market, knocked me back a few thousand in the overall net worth dept.

Some bit of good news, however, is that I'm transitioning from contractor back to full-time as of July 1, 2010. This means regular semi-monthly paychecks with normal deductions again. In a sense I'm getting a raise since my employer will now pay half of the Social Security tax (which is a 7 to 8% increase). I've got additional paychecks sitting on my desk, plus I'm trying to cool it on spending for July, so with all that, the net worth should jump back into new highs 30 days from now.

I've also been actively looking at houses again. I'm just going to have to buck up to the fact that HOA and Mello Roos will have to be included in my monthly payments. I just can't find an affordable place that I like without those 2 things getting in my way. I was recently pre-approved for up to $440K on a house (with 25% down) so I'm seeing what I can do with that.

Net Worth Report for May 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $151,275 $4,801 3.28 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,743 $48 2.83 %
Retirement $33,716 ($2,769) -7.59 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $0 0.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $204,734 $2,080 1.03 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $2,053 $252 13.99 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $2,053 $252 13.99 %
 
Net Worth $202,681 $1,828 0.91 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Even though the house fund is continuing to accumulate nicely, the sagging stock market during May wiped out $2,500 of the retirement fund. Nothing to worry about long-term of course, but it does remind me that we're not out of this economic mess just quite yet. I think I may add some extra funds to the Roth IRA while it's at a low point.

I kept spending somewhat to a minimum, although I finally broke down and bought a Nintendo Wii (since they now have a black version with more bundled items). I waited 3.5 years for that stupid color, haha. After getting some extra options and using gift card discounts, it was only $225. Not too shabby. That's the first game console I've bought in almost 8 years.

Although it looks like the credit card debt is increasing, rest assured I pay off my balance in full every month. Sometimes I'll buy something expensive right after the billing period cut-off date, which means that amount will hang around for 50+ days before they yank it out of my account.

June is another dreaded "pay up your quarterlies" month, so I don't think my net worth will head too far north for June. I do have some music gigs on deck to stave off any major damage. There's also some new software I'll need to buy (Office 2010, Visual Studio 2010, Adobe Creative Suite 5) that will drain my business account, although it's all deductible. I'll probably start with the cheapest option for now.

Net Worth Report for April 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $146,474 ($159) -0.11 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,695 $34 2.05 %
Retirement $36,485 $482 1.34 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $10,500 $3,000 40.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $202,654 $3,357 1.68 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,801 $421 30.51 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,801 $421 30.51 %
 
Net Worth $200,853 $2,936 1.48 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Not only did I owe 2009 taxes for both federal and state, I also had to start paying quarterlies (for the time being), both of which was the reason for the halt in my advancing net worth. I haven't gone backwards for a long time.

I guess it also didn't help that I added one more camera lens ($860) to my collection, but this is a lens I'd be using for photo shoot jobs so in a way it was necessary. Oh well, it boosts my Personal Property value, which allows me to break $200K net worth for the first time. Yay.

I'm not planning on any spending for May, so hopefully I'll see another jump soon.

Net Worth Report for March 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $146,633 $5,034 3.56 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,661 $50 3.10 %
Retirement $36,003 $1,930 5.66 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 $0 0.00 %
Personal Property $7,500 $2,500 50.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $199,297 $9,514 5.01 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,380 $258 22.99 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,380 $258 22.99 %
 
Net Worth $197,917 $9,256 4.91 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Everything continues its upward motion. The first big check of the year has come and provided a nice boost. Stocks also continue their rebound and add to the total. Not complaining at all.

An extra boost, which some may call artificial, is the addition of "Personal Property" values to my total net worth, which is the reason for the seemingly huge spike on the line. Since I'm a big nerd, I've got lots of gizmos, some over 10 years old, that still hold a decent street value.

For example, the lens I've acquired for my SLR camera... the resale value on those stay extremely high, in some cases more than I originally invested into it. So I figured to add those since people buy/sell/trade them all the time, and could easily be swapped for cash if necessary. I've also included any electronics or computer equipment with a current value still over $250. I have some collectible items which could probably add to the Personal Property total, but I'm not going to bother itemizing all that stuff. Just the big-ticket items are good enough.

I do have some taxes and other expenses next month, so don't expect the net worth line to increase much for April. Oh well, it's an annual thing that must be done.

Net Worth Report for February 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $141,599 $923 0.66 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,611 $50 3.20 %
Retirement $34,073 $1,013 3.06 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $7,500 ($500) -6.25 %
Personal Property $5,000 $2,500 100.00 %
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $189,783 $3,986 2.15 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $1,122 $418 59.38 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $1,122 $418 59.38 %
 
Net Worth $188,661 $3,568 1.93 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Working at home with a more flexible schedule means I'm a little more free to go out and spend some recreational time with friends, although I'm still being careful with how much I spend. I've increased my "fun times" budget to $100 every 2 weeks (instead of once a month) and that gives me a bit more leeway.

I'm still being paid as an "independent contractor" with my new gig, but that will change in the next month or so as we switch to a payroll system. That means normal tax collections and the ability to look for a house again.

I'm anticipating a deluge of checks for March, but I'm also anticipating buying a new laptop machine as well, so that will nuke any huge advance in net worth. It's ho-hum for a little while longer here...

Net Worth Report for January 2010

Assets   $ Diff % Diff
Cash $140,676 $1,901 1.37 %
Stocks $0 $0 -
Bonds $0 $0 -
Annuities $1,561 $68 4.55 %
Retirement $33,060 ($593) -1.76 %
Home $0 $0 -
Other Real Estate $0 $0 -
Cars $8,000 ($500) -5.88 %
Personal Property $2,500 $2,500 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Assets $185,797 $3,376 1.85 %
Debts   $ Diff % Diff
Home Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Other Mortgage(s) $0 $0 -
Student Loans $0 $0 -
Credit Card $704 ($552) -43.95 %
Car Loans $0 $0 -
Other $0 $0 -
Total Debts $704 ($552) -43.95 %
 
Net Worth $185,093 $3,928 2.17 %
Net Worth History Chart
Monthly Entry
Big change for this month. I have finally quit my job after 7+ years and moved to another advertising agency. It's still the same line of work but the hours are more flexible, plus I received a 10% increase in salary. I'm technically an independent contractor for the moment but I will be moving to a normal payroll in the next 60 days.

Until I get a handle on how this changes my financial picture, I'm being extra cautious with my spending budget. I've allocated $2500 toward a new laptop that I will need as part of the job (which I can write off), but this purchase won't be until later into February.

Big changes coming up... let's roll.