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December 2010 Net Worth

For anyone new to BFS, I post a net worth update at the beginning of every month in order to keep myself motivated and to involve BFS readers. Please feel free to ask questions, make suggestions, or even post your net worths too. I am a participant-motivated blogger, so please jump on in.

I calculate our net worth as listed below. I don’t include the value of our possessions, I round down to the nearest hundred for assets, and I round up to the nearest hundred for liabilities. I also don’t include my husband’s pension account since I’m too lazy to keep up with it and it shouldn’t actually matter until he retires anyway.

1. Cash – $24,700 ($3300 but this will take a small hit when we pay off our Christmas credit card charges at the end of the period)
2. Stocks – $19,300 ($500 up)
3. Retirement – $45,000 ($2500 up)
4. Home – $130,000 (same)
5. Cars – $16,000 (same)

1. Home – $68,100 (down $600)

Total Net Worth = $166,900 instead of $160,000
Increase/Decrease = Up $6900 from last month (WOOT)

We spent about $850 total on Christmas gifts and extra food this year which did effect this month and will effect next month as well.

I base the value of our home on two things: comparables selling in our neighborhood and the estimated appraisal by Chase Home Value Estimator. I will always estimate very low.

I base the value of our cars on Kelley Blue Book’s Private Party Value of our vehicles in “Good” condition truncated down to the nearest $1000. For example, if my car is valued at $4600, I’d calculate that as $4000.

Please feel free to visit the archive to see our past net worths. If you really want to see an impressive net worth, check out this High Net Worth Balance Sheet!

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8 comments to December 2010 Net Worth

  • MikeS

    As expected, my net worth took a slight hit from last month. I’m down $454 from last month. Paying the property taxes and updating the value of my home and cars did the trick.

    Overall, I’m very happy where I ended the year, $32,920. That is up significantly from the previous year. I ended 2009 at -$2,260.

    My goal for 2011 is to keep increasing it. My wife and I are buying a new house this year, so hopefully I can end 2011 with an increase over 2010.

  • Wow, nice job! Up $6,900 is really great.

  • That is some great movement! Wow!

    Question…why include your cars? I get that they are worth something, but why does it even matter. You aren’t selling them anytime soon (or it doesn’t seem like it)….they are never going to increase….it just seems like it is to inflate the number or keep things like they were for comparison purposes?

  • Christmas is always a networth killer – ours was flat also for the month, with most of the difference being Xmas gifts. Maybe its time someone did an article in June on saving for Xmas!

  • Question: I see home listed under assets and liabilities. Do you calculate your home value, then how much you owe left on it?

  • @MikeS, property taxes do suck the wind out of net worth updates, but congrats on having a great year! Congrats on the new house and planned baby (I saw you mentioned having another at Crystal Clear Thoughts)!!! I hope you achieve all of your dreams!

    @retireby40, thank you!

    @Evan, great question! When I first started these updates, we had a car loan and a mortgage, so I didn’t want to include the liability aspect without taking the asset aspect too. Now I leave them in there since they are still major assets, they can be sold for cash on Craigslist in less than a week if the need arose (I’ve done that 3 times in the last 2 years for other people), and it’s easier to include all the possibles and let you decide what to take into account. Feel free to ignore them in the calculations. :-)

    I’ll warn everybody now that I’ll be keeping the house in as an asset even after we pay it off in 5-6 years too. Feel free to ignore it as well. I do undervalue the cars and house enough to keep it very realistic.

    @Jim, I will try to remind everyone in June, lol. :-) We’ll see the big hit this month since that’s when the dreaded credit card statements will be paid off, lol.

    @Sunil, thanks!

    @Briana, yes, I use the Chase Home Value Estimator to find out our current value of the house and round down to the nearest $10,000 (right now our house is actually valued at around $138,000 but I always want to be on the safe side). The liability part is the actual number left on our mortgage based on our most recent bank statement.

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