We use the structure of a monthly income statement and balance sheet in tandem to make sure we are keeping our expenses low and planting our pennies wisely. If you’re not already tracking your finances using these two methods, go to mint.com and get started today! If you have any questions about how we do this just post a comment and we’ll be sure to help!
So despite March being a particularly high spend month, the come-back in the stock market brought our net worth to a new high water mark and a pretty big milestone. That’s right. As of this writing, we are officially members of the double-comma club. Crazy, huh? Well, I think it’s kindof nuts. We’re hoping to can convince Mr 1500 to show us the double-comma secret handshake when we get together in Omaha at the end of April.
While this milestone is definitely not the end of our journey to financial independence, hitting it while we’re vacationing in Hawaii does add a bit more meaning to it. The last time we were in these beautiful islands, we decided that we wanted to start a personal finance blog to stay on top of our finances and record our path. We’re pretty confident about two things. 1 – We had no idea that four years later we’d be back on the islands with two commas to our names. 2 – We’re pretty sure we wouldn’t have had quite the same run of success were it not for the blog and being a part of the online personal finance community.
That said, we’re also pretty confident that this won’t be the last time we cross into the double comma club. We’re increasingly subject to the whims of the market, and a small drop in the S&P500 can easily kick us out again. And that’s okay, too.
Anyhow, here are our numbers for March!
- Our total assets went up by $47.5
- Our total liabilities went up by $0.1K
- Net worth went up by $47.4K
- Total net worth as of the end of March is $1,003.9K, which represents a 4.96% increase this month.
For the details…
- 401K accounts: $280.4
- Roth IRA accounts: $171.5
- HSA account: $14.0
- Taxable Brokerage Accounts: $129.2
- Total Stock Accounts: $595.1
Real Estate (based on current market comparable sales)
- Primary Residence $239
- Investment Duplex: $140
- Investment Residential Land: $80
- Total Real Estate: $459.0
Cars (values from Kelly Blue Book)
- Car 2: $6.0
- Total Cars: $6.0
- Checking Accounts: $11.9 – need to move some over to taxable
- Savings/Money Market Accounts: $17.5
- Total Cash Holdings: $29.4
Total Assets: $1,089.5
Real Estate Loans
- Primary Mortgage: $84.4
- HELOC on Investment Duplex: $0.0 (re-advanceable)
- Personal Loan – Used to Purchase $50K Duplex: $0.0
- Total Real Estate Related Loans: $84.4
- Credit Card Balance: $1.2
- Total Revolving Credit: $1.2
Total Liabilities: $85.6
Net Worth = Assets – Liabilities
Net Worth = $1,003.9, up 4.96% from February
Tracking Investable Asset Growth
This first graph shows the growth of our investable assets (net of any liabilities against them), and shows the distribution of the various equity classes we hold. Pretty self explanatory.
How Many Years Of Spending Do We Have Saved?
Here I’ve taken the total of our investable assets for each month and divided it by the expenses (excluding our investment property expenses) for that month. The idea being that this shows how many years we could live off of those assets at that rate and gives us a better idea of what lifestyle inflation (or intentional deflation) can do to the relative value of our savings.
Early Retirement Locale Index
Mr PoP wanted one more way to understand more viscerally how much we have in “investable assets”, so we’ve come up with what we’re calling our Early Retirement Locale Index. The basic idea is that we know how many years of savings we have at our disposal if we were to continue living in south Florida. (That’s the chart above.) But using the “magical” 25 years of savings necessary for early retirement, where would we have to move so that our current investable assets would cover 25x our COL adjusted current spending? (Note, this is purely for fun, we’re not intending to move. Don’t worry Mama & Papa PoP!) If you want to follow along, we’re using this Cost of Living Index from Expatistan, and using the average of the two big cities in south Florida on the list (Miami and Tampa) as our current COL index, which gets us 179.5. Our city isn’t on their full list, hence the average – but maybe yours is. Then we’re solving this equation:
Current Years Saved/ 25 = COL Early Retirement Locale / COL S. FL
12.64/25 = COL Early Retirement Locale / 179.5
COL Early Retirement Locale = 90.44
… which gives us the city of Brno, Czech Republic!
Though we’d never heard of Brno before today, it actually looks pretty cool. Perhaps like a smaller, even cheaper version of Prague. With a couple of rivers converging in a metropolitan area with a bit shy of 1mm people, as well as a mixture of historic and modern architecture in a city where about 1/10 people is a university student, Brno looks like it could be a pretty neat city to spend some time in. That said, its climate is a bit cooler than we’re used to, so perhaps it’s not a forever place for us.
Here’s our journey through the ERLI so far…
- January 2014 – Delhi, India
- February 2014 – Quito, Ecuador
- March 2014 – Kiev, Ukraine
- April 2014 – Chiang Mai, Thailand
- May 2014 – Madras/Chennai, India
- June 2014 – Colombo, Sri Lanka
- July 2014 – Bangalore, India
- August 2014 – Yerevan, Armenia
- September 2014 – Skopje, Macedonia
- October 2014 – Brasov, Romania
- November 2014 – Prague, Czech Republic
- December 2014 – Mexico City, Mexico
- January 2015 – Zadar, Croatia
- February 2015 – Kiev, Ukraine
- March 2015 – Cairo, Egypt
- April 2015 – Bangalore, India
- May 2015 – Niteroi, Brazil
- June 2015 – Nowhere!
- July 2015 – Skopje, Macedonia
- August 2015 – Recife, Brazil
- September 2015 – Ankara, Turkey
- October 2015 – Lisbon, Portugal / Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
- November 2015 – Debrecen, Hungary
- December 2015 – Tbilisi, Georgia
- January 2016 – San Antonio, Texas or Louisville, KY – readers pick!
- February 2016 – Lisbon, Portugal
- March 2016 – Brno, Czech Republic
How was your balance sheet in March? Where would your savings land you today?