Net Worth – May, 2017

Each month I’ll be keeping track of our net worth on this blog. The reason for making our net worth public is to not only hold myself accountable, but to provide a record so I can review my progress over time. I’ll be giving a brief analysis on our results for the month and what changes I’m thinking of making.

 AprilMay$ Change% Change
Retirement accounts$628,653.60$630,625.07$1,971.470.3%
529 accounts$19,366.96$20,562.87$1,195.916.2%
Brokerage accounts$1,425,969.28$1,450,824.46$24,855.181.7%
Private equity$200,000.00$200,000.00$0.000.0%
Rental properties$917,171.00$917,171.00$0.000.0%
Primary residence$1,607,000.00$1,607,000.00$0.000.0%
Credit cards$4,177.23$16,678.29$12,501.06299.3%
Rental mortgages$520,881.09$519,763.65-$1,117.44-0.2%
Primary mortgage$750,715.48$748,492.39-$2,223.09-0.3%

S&P 500 performance for May, 2017 = 0.87%


Checking – Down a bit from last month due to paying off some credit card balances. The plan is to keep between $30k and $50k in the checking account at all times to ensure we have sufficient liquidity to deal with any potential issues for the rental properties. Yes, I know a lot of people will look at that sum and think about how much money it could be earning in the stock market (or other investments), but I am holding on to cash so we can take advantage of buying opportunities if/when they present themselves.

Retirement Accounts – This includes a 401(k), a few IRAs, and a few Roth IRAs. The only account we are currently contributing to is the 401(k), as we are ineligible to invest in the rest. These were up only 0.3%, mostly due to contributions.

529 accounts – We are contributing $500/month for each kid, and given the low balance of these accounts I expect that our contributions will dwarf any investment returns for quite some time. We added $1,000 and got another $195.91 in gains from the market, so it looks like my expectations are about right.

Brokerage accounts – This is our early retirement fund and where most of our net worth is. This account was up 1.7%, which resulted in a total gain of $24,855.18. We made no contributions/investments this month. I don’t think I’ll ever get over the joy of seeing my money make that much money for me. It’s just shocking that by deciding at some point in the past to save and invest rather than spend we are now at the point where we are making $24K in “free” money from our investments.

Private equity – 2 separate equity investments in startups. Since there’s no way to value these investments I will continue to keep them valued at my initial investment amount. Hopefully I’ll one day be pleasantly surprised to see that the companies are worth something.

Rental properties – On the last day of each quarter I adjust the value of the properties based on Zillow’s estimate. No change this month.

Primary residence – Just like the rental properties, I adjust the value of our house at the end of each quarter. The value of our house doesn’t really matter because we hope to live in this house forever, but I track it for the sake of completeness.

Total assets – Total assets were up $15,048.31 for the month (a mere 0.3% gain). Last money we also had a .03% increase in assets.


Credit cards – We don’t carry a balance from month to month on our credit cards, so this just reflects our balance as of the end of the month.The balance is high this month because we paid our daughter’s preschool tuition on the credit card (to get miles).

Rental mortgages – We paid off $1,117.44 on the mortgages. The best part about seeing this number drop is that the mortgages are being paid by the renters, so this feels like “free” money each month.

Primary mortgage – We paid $2,223.09 on the loan for our primary residence. The goal is to have the second loan (~$187k) paid off by the end of 2017. This will be a slam dunk (see below for more details).

Although I don’t really consider our house to be an asset, I definitely consider our home loans to be liabilities. I think it would be difficult to retire early with substantial mortgage payments hanging over our heads.

Total liabilities – Total liabilities were UP $5,887.78 for the month due to the higher credit card balances.

Total net worth

Net worth was up $5,887.78 for the month to $3,571,708.53. This was a solid but unspectacular 0.14% increase from last month.

Due to our real estate holdings I expect us to underperform the market on the way up but significantly outperform in a down market. My guess is that we’ll find out sooner rather than later if this is the case.

I hoped to receive my large commission check by the end of May, but I don’t get paid until the company is paid, and it looks like payment from the customer won’t happen until early June.

Stay tuned until next month – this number is going to look very, very different…

How did everybody else do this month? Is anybody planning on making any changes to their allocations or investment strategies?

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