Net Worth Update – End of 2013

Calculating Net Worth 11

Net Worth Update – 2013

 

Following the example of a number of personal finance bloggers, I’d like to start tracking and updating our net worth on a regular basis. Tracking it monthly doesn’t quite make sense to me (translation – way too much work), so an annual checkup should work just fine.

The value of our house is based on the most recent assessment notice issued by BC govt – some people might disagree with this method of valuing a property, but in our case this will provide most consistent figures (unless I start putting up our home for sale every year just to see what is the real market value of it – and it is too much work as well).

I’m only including major items in our net worth calculations – no need to start including absolutely everything like value of our car (non-existent!), and my vast collection of unfinished sock puppets. No Picasso painting for us, and I’m not about to go through my wife’s jewelery box to make the calculations perfect. After all, I’m not trying to pad the numbers and impress anybody  – it’s only meant to show our progression towards our goals.

Net Worth Update

Net Worth Update

 

Investment and cash accounts: $190,853.21

 

Cash and saving accounts: $23,707.68 (includes emergency fund, chequing account, and various saving accounts – new car, annual property taxes, etc.)

RRSP accounts: $2,675.58

Non-registered investment account: $108,005.95

Mr. Financial Underdog TFSA account : $28,719.00

Mrs. Financial Underdog TFSA account: $27,745.00

 

Other assets: $275,000

 

Principal residence: $275,000

 

Liabilities: $207,171.39

 

Principle residence mortgage: $207,171.39 (as of Dec. 31, 2013)

 

Total Net Worth (Assets – Liabilities): $258,681.82

 

 

Good news:

 

– If we sell all of investments and empty out bank accounts, technically we can almost pay off our mortgage and be completely 100% debt-free. But since investment returns are much higher than our mortgage rate, I think it would be counterproductive. But still kinda cool.

 

 Bad news:

 

– A good chunk of our assets is tied up in our principal residence (sounds way fancier than “our home”, eh?). For the most part, these are fantasy money as there’s no easy way to get them out and invest. Tapping into home equity for the purpose of investing is technically possible by using Smith Maneuver   (story courtesy of Million Dollar Journey which is a kick ass resource for anybody interested in personal finance), but at the moment I’m only exploring it as an option down the road.

– We don’t use RRSP accounts although have plenty of room available. I’m not worried about it as contribution room keeps growing, and we can always put some money into RRSPs later on.

– Our net worth is lower than I was hoping it to be (no surprise there). The formula I use is borrowed from Thomas J. Stanley’s book “Millionaire Next Door” :

Net Worth

Net Worth

I think this means we have some catching up to do! I will make another Net Worth Update some time next January to show the progress.

***

According to this article, just 85 people—the richest of the world’s rich—hold as much wealth as the poorest 3.5 billion. That’s half the world’s population. Amazing.

 

  • Updating your net worth is a great way to motivate yourself to grow it faster because you can see the progress that you’re making is quite tangeable 🙂 I’m glad you decided to post it publicly. I have about $200K of mortgage debt as well so I understand what you mean by wanting to use the smith maneuver. I’ve just opened up a HELOC last year which serves a similar purpose for me and it’s working very well so far 🙂 Investment returns are up significantly yet borrowing costs remain low 🙂 at least for now 😕

    I sometimes use that formula from the Millionaire Next Door too. I find it can be a little misleading for certain people, like young adults who just started working, but it’s a good place to start for most people 🙂 Although personally I would replace the “Annual pre-tax income” variable with “Annual expenses,” as I think that makes more sense to me.

    Looking forward to see your next net worth update 😀

    • Financial Underdog

      Thanks, Liquid!

      The net worth formula from Millionaire Next Door is quite discriminating – a 20 year old min. wage earner is supposed to have $40,000 net worth pretty much right away! I think that’s why it’s not exactly useful until 30-35 years of age. It’s one of the reasons I’m not too worried about being a bit behind. Time is on our side, as Rolling Stones said 🙂

      Stay in touch!

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  • Underdog-

    I agree, average sucks! Here’s to being a freak!

    Thanks for posting. Thanks for the encouragement.

    My wife and I just started posting our numbers too. So, thanks for leading the way.

    -Derek

    • Financial Underdog

      Good for you, Derek!

      To be honest, it doesn’t even have to be public. I only made it public because I run my blog anonymously, but I can see how it would be weird if it was under my real name. But even just doing a regular calculations and sharing them with your family has huge benefits as it shows hope, light at the end of the tunnel, and unites you. “- Hey honey, no more red numbers, that is good!” 🙂

      Well, you know this better than anybody, you wrote a book about good marriages 🙂

  • Thanks for sharing. Just to add a bit to the mortgage debt, Yes I agree that you can make more with the investments, but theres a risk associated with having mortgage debt. You can lose your job or other financial disasters which can leave you in a pinch with where to live. Thus you will lose all the money you have put into the home up till that point. On the other hand untapped equity does not grow wealth, its just there until you sell. Something to think about.

    • Financial Underdog

      El,

      Thank you for your feedback. I absolutely agree, and to be honest I’m somewhat divided about this whole thing. As soon as my Gordon Gekko starts thinking about using equity, Dave Ramsey in me calls him stupid:)

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  • R

    I’m curious why you have not put in much in your RRSPs. These accounts are great as you get the deduction right away and your balance grows tax free until you start to withdraw!

    In fact, I’d say that RRSPs > TFSAs yet you’ve maxed the TFSA and not touched RRSPs at all. What gives?

    • Financial Underdog

      R,

      Thanks for visiting.

      I’m not a big fan of RRSP, to be honest. The immediate benefit is great, don’t get me wrong. But the ease of access is more important to me, at least at the stage of our lives where we don’t have much money yet. If we were at the stage where we could truly invest into RRSP and forget about the money – by all means, I’ll be throwing money into it like there’s no tomorrow. But right now I feel like TFSA is a better option for now.

      Since our 2013 update we’ve invested some money into RRSP, see our 2014 update 🙂