Net Worth

This is actually my “Wet Worth” since I’m showing the value of my liquid accounts (Cash, Savings, Taxable Investments) minus my debt. It excludes all physical assets such as my house and all pre-tax retirement accounts.

2018 Wet Worth

2017 Wet Worth

2016 Wet Worth

2015 Wet Worth

2014 Wet Worth

Net Worth Update – December 2014

My wet worth over time

This section is work in progress as I’m working back through earlier years.

My fall off the fiscal cliff in 2004 is from taking on a mortgage for my first house, and I did it again in 2013 when I bought a second house. In 2014 I finally sold my first house and paid off one of the mortgages.

11 thoughts on “Net Worth”

  1. Quick question? Why do you exclude pre tax retirement accounts?
    Is this because you can not access the money now?

    I do something similar by excluding my company retirement plan, but I will change this in the coming months.

    1. Hi Ambertreeleaves,

      Yes it’s just because of liquidity and not being able to access the money now. I do track my overall Net Worth in my files, I just don’t publish that here – for example in January 2016 my net worth dropped $18,000 compared to the $3,500 from my wet worth, but it’s largely paper money due to changes in house price and retirement accounts.

      I find the ‘wet worth’ value more useful because it tells me what I would have remaining if I paid off all my loans; conversely it tells me how much in new loans I could take out and still be able to pay off in cash. It also helps me by putting my mortgage debt into perspective.

      Why are you changing your reporting method? I’m just curious 🙂


      1. Thx for the details. IT shows how different we all look at the same number.
        I am changing the reporting include a new way to fund travel: the travel fund. I will exclude this from the net worth.
        At the same time, I will include some illiquid assets like my company pension.
        I just prepared a post on this. The full details would be available by April. 🙂 I am building a few months of history for myself first.


        1. Hi AT,

          I look forward to reading your post when you publish it. Personal finance is exactly that…personal and it’s different for everyone. I can certainly see the logic in removing something you plan to spend from your net worth.

          A travel fund certainly sounds cool! I budget monthly for travel so it shows up in my cash account as a surplus most of the year. I’ve been using air-miles and credit card rewards a lot which makes my travel budget go further – my flight back to the UK this year should cost about $200 and 60,000 miles.

          Best wishes,

  2. Wow that’s quite a journey you’ve been on from negative net worth to near where you are now. You a beaver than me in what you are willing to share with strangers. But it’s a very impressive journey. I only share my dividend in come because my wife is a very private person and I know she wouldn’t support me sharing our joint investments. But I can’t say I have not been tempted. Thanks again.

    1. Hi dividend seedling,
      I started in 2000 with zero $ when I first came to the US so it’s been a long time in the making. I guess I don’t worry too much about publishing some of my financial details. I don’t include my girlfriend’s accounts or the house / retirement accounts so it’s not the entire picture.
      Thanks for stopping by and best wishes,

    1. hi D10,
      Thanks! I’m not showing house values in the charts so buying and selling a house made for some interesting jumps in the chart. I’m starting again to fill in the gaps in the chart as I’m curious how much money has slipped through my fingers vs stayed in my hands!
      Best wishes,

  3. What if my husband and I want to leave USA (we are Europeans with dual citizenship) and live off our investment dividends?
    If we have about 750,000? We don’t need more than $2,500 to live well for us. Can we use the dividends from our IRA’s and SEP’s now even though we are only in our late 40’s and early 50’s? We plan on leaving in about 3 years from now. Trying to figure out a strategy to move back to Italy…Any thoughts or advice on a good advisor to help us? We are currently in Vanguard funds.

    1. Hi Patricia,

      I’m not a qualified professional or advisor so I can’t really offer specific advice. I would recommend you ask a question at the Bogleheads – Help with Personal Investments forum. There are some very knowledgeable and helpful people there and they may be able to provide some guidance on taxes and your specific situation.

      I believe there is a 10% additional tax for accessing money in an SEP or IRA before the age of 59.5. This applies to any withdrawal (including dividends). So you will need to keep that in mind if you plan to withdraw from your tax-advantaged accounts.

      As far as the numbers, then $2,500 a month is $30,000 a year which works out as 4% of your retirement account. Essentially you would have a 4% withdrawal rate. 4% is typically higher than the average dividend yield (2-3%) which implies you’d have to sell some investments as well – the dividends wouldn’t be enough I think. Here’s some information on the various methods available to withdraw from your portfolio.

      It’s not a problem to have to sell investments in retirement, but a cash buffer / suitable bond holdings are typically used to avoid selling stocks if the market has a major crisis.

      I hope this info is helpful and congrats on your pending early retirement!
      Best wishes,

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