Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A New Tradition?

Two of my favorite bloggers, Debt Ninja and J. Money, share monthly net worth updates with their readers. Since I'm down for being a copycat (disclaimer: so long as it's the right cat to copy ;>), I've decided to do the same at the beginning of the month. Here goes:

Here's a summary explanation:

403(b): $100 every pay check.

Emergency Savings: Currently, I'm not contributing to this account. However, I've tapped it a few times in 2010 to pay for major car repairs.

Regular Brokerage Account and Roth IRA: I'm not contributing to these accounts, at the moment. However, I made a random deposit (from my "emergency savings") to beef up the Roth a bit. In hindsight, it was totally a psychological band-aid for the realization that I haven't been maxing it out.

Savings Account: $25 month. I opened this account for overdraft protection, but I haven't had to use it for such in the past year. Yet, I sometimes transfer a few bucks to cover an unanticipated, small expense (like the crap I got around Thanksgiving 2010).

Car Loan: If you've read through my previous posts, you know that I'm a bit obsessed with paying off my car note sooner than later. I opened this account in July/August of 2009 with a $13,500 balance. If I paid what my credit union wants me to pay on a regular basis, I would retire this debt in 2014. However, I have other plans. I set aside $1,055/month to pay off this sucker. With my estimations of a nice tax refund and "extra" paycheck in April, I plan to completely eliminate this debt by May 2011.

Credit Card: Despite setting aside cold-hard-cash for holiday gifts, I still resorted to my credit card to make some purchases. Gas. Food. Clothes. Accessories. And they were all for me. Now I'm staring this junk in the face, wondering how I'm gonna pay it off (one of my goals this year is to avoid incurring interest charges) while staying on track to pay my car note off by May. I'll keep you posted (even though I suspect the funds will come from January's $1,055 car note money :/).

Student Loan: Six years of post secondary school for me = $30,000+ student loans. Currently, I am on a graduated repayment plan (which will adjust in February to a higher amount). I have no intentions of continuing to pay on this plan, as, ultimately, the total interest charges exceed those of the standard repayment amount (i.e. about eleven years of the same payment each month). As soon as financially possible (hopefully May of this year), I can begin paying the standard repayment amount ($360.10) and then some (you know, so I can knock this puppy outta the water!).

I'll also share my yearly net worth updates once per quarter. Heck, I might later change my mind and display the YTD net worth totals with the monthly ones. But seeing as this is my first stab at it for the year, I figured I could spare you the redundancy.

Do you check your net worth? How often do you calculate it? Monthly? Quarterly? Bi-Annually? Yearly? Never? What benefits do you glean from assessing the differences between your assets and liabilities?

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