Smart Reasons to Save, Use and Invest Money

Our Net Worth Increased By 455% In A Ten Year Timespan

From the year 2001 to 2011, our net worth has increased by 455%!

401k History
401k Performance History


Okay, first let me saying that any increase in net worth really depends on the starting amount and the ending amount.  It’s easy to be amazed by a percentage like 455% until you consider the starting amount.

For instance let’s look at a few examples:

If my starting amount was $100, that would mean that I have $555 dollars today, not so impressive after all huh!

But if my starting balance was $100,000 then I would have $555,000, that’s a much nicer chunk of change!

What I used to calculate our net worth:

  • Roth IRA (didn’t exist back in 2001)
  • 401k Balance (not to shabby even in 2001)
  • Home Equity (This is the biggest chunk of my net worth)
  • Checking Account Balance (stayed the same, surprisingly grrr)
  • Brokerage Account (big jump, yay).

So as I’ve said before, we’ve never had a year where our household income has exceeded $100,000.  But since my wife and I are frugal, and I’m investing a decent amount of our discretionary income, we were able to grow our net worth nicely.  While I won’t reveal our actual net worth number, I will say that it’s over $100,000.

Here are some random statistics about our change in net worth from 2001 to 2011:

  • Around year 2003, I started a Roth IRA
  • While my home value is the largest percentage of my net worth, my brokerage account had the greatest percentage increase (over 1000%) during the past ten years.
  • The amount in my checking account has remained at $5,000, but that’s because I have my money working for me.
  • My 401k has increased nicely too, over a 10% annual return since 2001.  Back in the early days, I had some great appreciation in certain mutual funds.

We were able to do the above activities because we sacrificed and saved like we were still in college.  Back then, we only went on a real vacation every other year or so.  Our house is full of nice looking but mostly used furniture and hand me downs.  We always looked for opportunities and took advantage of great values when we recognized them.

Hopefully for the next ten years, we can increase our net worth by 200%, I don’t think 455% is sustainable and not a realistic goal for the next ten years.

Do you frequently calculate your net worth change from the past to the present?




17 Responses to Our Net Worth Increased By 455% In A Ten Year Timespan

  1. Wow….1000% return. That’s incredible.

    Well, that’s no small feat given that you also had had children during that time (increased your expenses) and your spouse stayed home too (decreased your income).

    I think you’re doing great. With 4th quarter looming, I think it’s high time I set out some goals of my own soon.

    • Thanks, of course that’s money contributed into the market too, so it’s not really as impressive as it seems.

      The economy is getting scary again, and the policy makers are making what I consider fumbles. Cash (even with the threat of inflation) is starting to look good to me again.

  2. I started tracking our net worth in January of this year, primarily because before all I really tracked was cash savings and annual expenditures like taxes, Roth contributions, insurance, etc., skewed my understanding of our savings rate.

    Now with 7 months of data, I can see that we’ve been pretty consistent in our net worth growth month by month when you include principal reduction on loans, transfers to investments, etc.

  3. I was just looking at this the other day. Not necessarily from the net worth perspective, but from the stock market price perspective.

    I find I track my net worth more when stock prices are better than they are now. 🙂

    Glad things are going so well for you, keep it up.

    PS please stop by my site and leave a comment today. My son wrote a post and he would love some feedback. Thanks!

    • Yeah, I actually do that same. The number above is based on the market last week sometime, if I did it today, it would be less by at least double digits…

      On my way over to your site now 🙂

  4. I monitor a number of factors! I am less concerned about net worth, but more concerned about positive trends. As I get closer to retirement, consistent earnings is more os a concern. I am starting to switch over to more conservative choices.

  5. I just started tracking my net worth and I am up about 50% YTD – I couldn’t imagine keeping up this type of growth to even get close to your growth rate! VERY inspiring

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