Welcome to the 7th net worth update of 2021 and number “too high to count” over the life of the blog.
If you’re new here, every month I track my progress towards my goal of about $1 million in net worth (house excluded). I’m hoping that amount will let me leave my white collar office job by age 35. I’m currently 31, so let’s check in on the progress!
*As always, I am not an expert or financial advisor, so nothing on this site should be considered financial advice. These are just like, my opinions, man. Always do your own research and always consult a professional.
Life Update: July 2021
Man, after a few months of lull, July came out with a bang. Literally.
We started the month with a trip “up north” for July 4th, fireworks and all. (I’ve learned that “up north” is a a Minnesotan term to describe any trip to a cabin anywhere.)
Shortly after our return, we hosted a really fun Bartender Night with friends.
What’s a Bartender Night? It’s a drunken concoction we all dreamed up a few weeks ago, where each friend is assigned a different type of alcohol, then uses it to make a fancy cocktail to serve the entire group.
Like a White Elephant gift exchange’s drunken cousin.
The result was tons of fun. We ended up having 6 different “bartenders” (friends) making their own takes on margaritas, rum-spiked bunch, vodka bees knees, bourbon old fashioneds, and even a Kahlua dessert cocktail.
If you’ve never tried it, I highly recommend it as a frugal night out! Total cost? A bottle of alcohol and whatever cocktail supplies your heart desires.
Keeping the boozing rolling, a few weeks later we entered the most pre-COVID-style event I’ve attended to date – an all you can drink summer beer festival.
And just to make sure the month wasn’t all sin and vice, I also set up a free month-long trial at a local yoga studio, hoping to counteract some of the destruction I’d done to my body so far. (While I did enjoy it, at the end of the day couldn’t justify the $120/month price tag over my home gym setup, so I won’t be continuing the tradition.)
Oh, and in other news, I took on a bizarre mentor role to a neighborhood kid. More info about that under the Spending report at the bottom of this article..
Net Worth Update: July 2021
An interesting month in the market… by Mid July the S&P500 was down 1.1%, but the market’s incessant climb wasn’t to be deterred, and it ended with a 1.9% gain by the end of the month.
Here’s the exact impact of that on my net worth:
Quite a bit of movement this month, but we’ll get to that. For now, here’s what the allocation looked like on July 31st:
Nothing too ground breaking to report. Maybe the biggest observation is that with inflation picking up, I’m happy to report my cash position is at an all time low.
Checking: $5,883 ($2,513)
Hey, for once I stuck with a goal!
For the past few months I talked about setting up automatic investments from my checking account into my Vanguard account, and in July I actually set it up!
The whole process took exactly 3 minutes, so stay tuned for a tutorial post in the next week or so. (Full disclosure: since it’s such a simple process, that post will probably take twice as long to read as it will to implement.)
In any case, moving forward I’ll be automatically investing $1,000 every month from my checking account into Vanguard’s VTSAX fund.
Dollar-cost-averaging another $12,000 per year is no joke, so I’m excited to see the impact this has on the growth moving forward!
Brokerage: $247,723 (+$3,746)
$3,000 worth of contributions this month plus $746 worth of market gains. That includes $1,000 of those automatic investments from my checking account into VTSAX plus another $2,000 into commodities (gold).
You can read previous net worth updates to see a more detailed breakdown of my brokerage account, but it’s mostly just boring old index funds.
401(k): $253,686 (+$3,445)
About $2,000 worth of pre-tax contributions from my paycheck plus employer matching. Those contributions are still broken down as:
- 50% S&P 500 Index Fund
- 30% Small Cap Stocks Index Fund
- 20% International Stocks Index Fund
Roth IRA: $62,687 (+$1,717)
No contributions here, since I maxed out my Roth at the beginning of the year. Just general market movement to the portfolio which consists of:
- Vanguard’s REIT Index (VGSLX) – about 75%
- Vanguard’s International index (VTIAX) – about 25%
I talk about why I like VTIAX more than VFWAX here.
Rent Payable: $820 ($784)
The only reason this went “down” is because last month, like a true deadbeat, I owed Lady Money Wizard two months rent.
After facing the wrath of my slumlord, I’m now all paid up-to-date.
Credit Cards Payable: $1,611 ($699)
I’ve gotta track this number for an accurate net worth picture, but it’s never a very good proxy for my spending. (That’s what the next section is for.)
As a reminder, I never pay credit card interest, and you shouldn’t either.
Total July Spending: $2,786
Mostly the previously mentioned:
- July 4th cabin trip
- Cocktail night
- Summer beer festival
Bought some treats for the good boys, but also paid $24 to a local neighborhood hustler.
One day, this 8-year-old kid knocked on my door with a proposal – he’d scoop The Money Pup’s poop for $10 every two weeks. To be honest, his prices seemed a little high… the job requires maybe 6 minutes worth of work since The Money Pop does about 90% of his pooping on our daily walks, putting our 8-year-old’s wage at about $100 an hour. But more power to him, because who am I to shoot down a hustling young entrepreneur!?
He’s come a few times already and takes his job hilariously seriously – he recently scored a good deal on “business supplies” aka his poop bags. Meanwhile, I use the opportunity to impart as much of The Money Wizard’s wisdom as possible. I’ve already convinced him to open a checking account to start saving his business earnings; investing will be lesson #2.
House Expenses: $950
For years, we had a random door in our house that didn’t match any of the others. It was cheap, lightweight, and a completely different wood color than every single other door in the house.
Normally this would be pretty easy to overlook, except this door sat smack dab in the middle of our living room. Eventually we got tired of looking at the misfit every day, and decided to hire a carpenter to reframe the thing into something that matched the rest of the house.
Superfulous? You bet. But the end product is great.
In other news we also had to repair some siding on the house. When it rains it pours, right?
Usually this stuff comes out of the home maintenance fund, but the handymen offered a cash discount, so we took them up on it.
How was your July?
We’ve now officially over halfway done with the year. How’s it going?
Hope you all are doing great!
PS – If you’re serious about tracking your net worth, here’s my favorite tool to do so.