My Twelfth Net Worth Overshare

For many of us, the next few days will be spent planning for the upcoming year. Because despite what’s happened in the past, there’s always an opportunity to start over with a clean slate, work toward different goals, and live more intentionally.

As a personal finance blogger, I’m constantly reminded of the power of money.

The power to take risks, cut ties, or change your life completely.

Whether your goal is paying off debt, building an emergency fund, saving for a long-term goal, or reaching financial freedom, it’s never too late to get started.

I’ve been tracking my net worth publicly for three years. By taking back control of my money, I’ve been able to quit my jobchange careers, and survive a job layoff.

Here is a snapshot of my finances this year:

spreadsheet of assets and debts

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links.

Here is a breakdown of this year’s changes:

spreadsheet of assets and debts

Looking for your own budgeting tool?

You can download a free copy of my Go-To Budgeting Spreadsheet.

And if you’re tired of excel spreadsheets altogether, you can also try Personal Capital.

Last year, I started using Personal Capital’s tools to automatically import my accounts to track my net worth.

Personal Capital seamlessly tracks your expenses, income, asset allocation, investment fees, and more. I love seeing everything in one place. Plus, it’s free!

Income

As I approach my three-year blogiversary, I’m reminded of all that’s happened over the past few years. Despite the professional turmoil since Cashville Skyline began, I’m happy with the progress I’ve made since my very First Net Worth Overshare.

In addition to growing my net worth from $83,308.72 to $267,259.64, I’ve turned Cashville Skyline into my full-time business. I’m now earning income a few different ways:

  • Freelance clients (writing, content management, editing)
  • Social media consulting (1-on-1 training for financial planners & bloggers)
  • Blogging income (advertising, sponsored content, affiliate marketing)
  • Money coaching
  • Investment income

Looking for some help in 2017? Let’s talk.

After countless happy hour talks with Believe in a Budget, I think I’m finally ready to experiment with some products in 2017. It’s amazing to have a local blogger friend to brainstorm ideas with (and complain to over whiskey when experiments don’t work).

Related:

Blogging

In case you missed it, I’m launching my first FREE, seven day course!

Starting on January 1st, you will receive one lesson per day by email on these topics:

  • Calculating your net worth
  • Establishing a budget
  • Paying off debt
  • Improving your credit score
  • Saving more money
  • Building an emergency fund
  • How to start investing
  • Earning more money

I’m sharing my favorite tips and tools for a healthier financial life.

The course is FREE, so you have nothing to lose by signing up.

Professional 

This year, I started taking CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® classes through Boston University’s self-paced online program. I enjoyed the coursework, but really missed the community and accountability of in-person classes.

That’s why I’m switching to in-person classes through Belmont University’s program next month. Classes begin on January 17th and will continue every Tuesday night through 2017.

I’ll be attending XYPN17 in Dallas in August and hope to volunteer for FPA’s annual conference in Nashville in October.

Later in October, I’ll be hitting my 4th FinCon in Dallas.

Related:

Expenses

After an expensive August and September, I cut back in October and November. I skipped a couple of major events—a close friend’s wedding in Massachusetts and my boyfriend’s family ski trip in Colorado—but I was grateful for the opportunity to replenish my emergency fund.

As predicted, December has been more expensive. I flew home for Christmas in Massachusetts, plan to visit my boyfriend’s family in Buffalo, and will celebrate New Year’s Eve in Toronto.

Next year I’m hoping to cover a couple of international trips with credit card rewards points. Other than a couple of conferences, I don’t anticipate any other major expenses.

Related:

Credit Cards

A reader recently asked why my net worth overshares always include credit card debt. My net worth overshares are a picture of each account on the day my posts are published.

In the interest of transparency, I include my current credit card balances even though I pay them off in full every month. By keeping my total utilization below 10% and total debt to a minimum, I’ve managed to keep my credit score high.

Related: 

Cash

Deciding how much of an emergency fund you need is a personal decision.

Most financial planners recommend saving three to six months of expenses, but the right number for you depends on your personal situation.

Personally, I will feel most comfortable once my emergency fund reaches $15,000. That’s six months of expenses at $2,500 per month.

I’ve been saving a little every day with Digit. It’s a handy, free tool that I’ve automatically saved over $1,000 with.

I love managing my account via text message!

Read my full Digit review here.

Related:

Investments

In a bold move, I decided to sell off my small dividend portfolio this month. I haven’t seen returns as strong as my total stock market index funds, and I no longer have the time or desire to track individual companies.

Moving forward, I’m sticking 100% with index funds. I’ll max out my Roth IRA, HSA, top off my emergency fund, and then continue adding to my brokerage account.

Home Value

I think about aggressively paying down my mortgage all of the time. But at 3.25% interest, the decision would be purely emotional. My brain says stay the course and invest the difference, even if my heart prefers to be 100% debt-free.

Assuming I don’t take on additional debt, I’ll make my final mortgage payment on February 1, 2027.

2017 Financial Goals

  1. Max out Roth IRA – $5,500
  2. Max out HSA – $3,400
  3. Build emergency fund to $15,000.
  4. Take two international trips with credit card travel rewards.

Ready for a refresh in 2017? Join my FREE Money Resolutions Course!

Readers: What are your money goals for 2017? 

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Discussions — 16 Responses

  • Tonya@Budget and the Beach December 26, 2016 on 8:20 am

    Nice Kate!! I tend to do better with in person classes as well. For me it’s more about discipline than anything else. good luck with your course and everything else in 2017!

    Reply
  • Smart Money MD December 26, 2016 on 8:47 am

    Great job Kate! It might be worthwhile to start looking into a SEP-IRA or Individual 401k for your primary business to help accelerate your net worth and reduce tax burden.

    Cheers to a happy, successful, and healthy 2017!

    Reply
  • Brian @ Debt Discipline December 27, 2016 on 7:34 am

    Nicely Done Kate. I agree on the in person learning. I fond myself getting distracted by to many other things when taking course-work online. Here’s to a great 2017!

    Reply
  • Stefanie OConnell December 27, 2016 on 2:14 pm

    Have you written anything specifically about HSA’s? I’m trying to figure out what to do beyond maxing out my ROTH and topping off the Efund.

    Reply
    • Kate Dore Stefanie OConnell December 27, 2016 on 2:25 pm

      Yeah, I wrote about HSAs here: http://cashvilleskyline.com/2016/09/06/health-savings-accounts/

      I’m with Health Savings Administrators: http://healthsavings.com/ I’m paying out-of-pocket for my healthcare expenses and maxing this out like another Roth IRA because of their Vanguard index fund options. I’d recommend reviewing the fees with any HSA before signing up. Health Savings Administrators is more expensive than some others.

      Reply
  • Dividend Diplomats December 27, 2016 on 8:38 pm

    Cashville –

    I am so amazed and impressed with how you are doing. I honestly and sincerely mean it. You are a definition walking of pursuing your dreams, your passions your life – your way. It seems like you have really found what works with you and what you truly enjoy – on both what you do with your time and what you spend your money on.

    I am looking forward to your 2017 – to see your income, business and net work blossom, as well as your life. You are on the right track, no doubt. Also – very excited you’re maxing out the HSA – the most underrated investment/savings account out there – I wish everyone that had the opportunity to use one, used it!

    Thank you for sharing this and keep us updated!! Nice job on 2016 – now time to make 2017 your own.

    -Lanny

    Reply
  • TJ December 28, 2016 on 9:58 am

    Congrats on a solid month.

    I’m still too, um, afraid, to overshare my net worth. What would my friends and family think? Ha.

    I started an HSA this month, if you’re looking to save a few bucks, check out TheFinanceBuff’s post on transferring hsa to Saturna. I can’t decide if I’m going to bother. HealthEquity makes me keep $2k in cash that I can’t invest. 🙁

    Reply
    • Financial Samurai TJ December 28, 2016 on 10:12 am

      I can’t share the net worth details. It’s too embarrassing for me. But for some reason, I can share my passive income progress because it is taken five damn long years to achieve since I started writing, but really 16 years to achieve.

      And my age now, it’s not a big deal.

      Reply
  • Financial Samurai December 28, 2016 on 10:11 am

    Good luck with the CFP! I think that would be a proud and great milestone for you.

    Your hustle is fantastic. Keep up the good work for 2017!

    When you look back, you’ll realize how much awesomeness it was to be your age with all that energy.

    Sam

    Reply
  • Ms. Montana December 28, 2016 on 1:03 pm

    That is such great progress! It’s great to see how it’s changed and grown over time. I’m sure month over month it doesn’t feel that significant, but looking at the big picture it’s just incredible.

    Reply
  • Aja @ Principles of Increase December 29, 2016 on 1:46 pm

    Nice. I’ve been tracking income, but I hope to get to the point where I feel comfortable sharing net worth updates (hubby is SUPER private.) On the bright side, your post reminded me to up our auto deductions for his 401K! 🙂

    Reply
  • The Net Worth of Personal Finance Bloggers December 30, 2016 on 6:24 am

    […] Cashville Skyline @ $267,259 […]

    Reply
  • zolar January 2, 2017 on 8:52 am

    Nice analysis..
    Honestly, I’m not really track my own finance last year..
    Just keep on movin. This year my expenses is tight and my goal is to improve my emergency fund, buy a house for rent and others..
    and my next 7 years is to retire from my service..
    wish you luck

    Reply
  • Colin @rebelwithaplan January 5, 2017 on 12:51 pm

    I loved the article on why you decided to become a CFP! The amount you have your Roth IRA is stellar. I’m hoping to max mine out for the 2017 year. You seem to have your retirement savings on such great progress!

    Reply
  • Buy, Hold Long January 6, 2017 on 1:35 am

    How fantastic is that you can retire on your own accord. I am very jealous. I hope it goes well for you in 2017. All the best.

    Reply
  • Dividend Ten January 6, 2017 on 7:39 pm

    Congrats on the amazing progress. Not an overshare.

    Reply