The Big Scratch – January 2018 Net Worth Report

Wow, look at that chart! We had a great year financially, and the result was an increase in net worth of $178,000 since the beginning of the year 2017. This type of growth is due in part to our stock market holdings increasing by over 20% (in line with the S&P 500) in combination with a net savings rate of over 69%. This report represents the end-of-year net worth for 2017.

January 2018 Net Worth

We saw substantial growth to our net worth this year. In December, I transferred $250 into my savings and made the final contributions to my regular accounts. I maxed out all tax-deferred accounts ($18,000 to the 401k and $6,750 to the HSA) and made a final contribution to my taxable accounts.

We surpassed our 2017 year-end projections of $784,000 in September, and ended the year up a healthy $57,000! Happy New Year to us!

Let’s check out the year-end numbers!

The table shows the balance sheet for the beginning of the month December 2017 and January 2018.

Year-end results

Net worth in January 2017 was $663,042.

January 2017 to January 2018 difference = $178,271! This total includes:

Increase/decrease in home equity = $7,902

Investment contributions = $87,731

Earnings/losses = $82,638


Investment Contributions

Our financial savings goal for 2017 is $83,042. It includes investing the maximum to the 401k, Traditional IRA, Health Savings account and the brokerage account.

Without counting the re-invested dividends, we saved a total of $81,795, a little short of our goal. In 2017, I received a lower than expected raise and bonus, plus had a large expense near the beginning of the year. Despite these setbacks, we had a very respectable year in terms of savings.

*Nearly 100% invested in low-fee index funds (VTSAX – Vanguard)

 In December, we contributed to:

*My employer contributes a match of 10% of my base salary to the 401k. My contributions to these accounts are automatically deducted from my paycheck. I never even noticed it’s gone.


Savings Rate

Our net income savings rate goal for 2017 was 70%. A high savings rate can be reached through decreased spending and/or by increasing income.

In December, we realized a net income savings rate of 74%! Cumulatively for the year, we have a SR of over 69%, just under the goal of 70%. We increased our savings rate by almost 3% over last year. Not too shabby.

Savings rate on net income is calculated by Total Saved + Mortgage Principal paid divided by Total Income minus taxes and charitable giving.

NISR = Total Saved + Mortgage Principal / Total Income – (Taxes + Charitable Giving)


Investment Income

Our net worth minus our home equity is $572,159. These funds are held in equities and a minor amount in cash. These monies will provide passive income during our FIRE (Financial Independence/ Retire Early) years along with income from our rental property.

ER accounts include Roth and traditional IRA, brokerage and cash


We will consider FIRE when our investments and cash reserves equal $937,424, each bucket is fulland the rental property is paid off. This conservative goal allows us a safe withdrawal rate of 3.5% assuming we need $32,800 investment income per year. We will also have an annual profit of $7,200 from the rental property bringing our allowable annual retirement spending to $40,000.

We aim to live off of $35,ooo or less in retirement so this FI goal should allow flexibility.


I am very pleased with what we accomplished this year! Our spending is under control and our savings rate is exceptional. Did you achieved your financial goals?

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