2015 Net Worth Update

Now that I’m back to actively trying to get my finances on track, I figured it’s about time to check out my Net Worth…for the first time in four years. 😦 I’m fairly confident it has gone down by a significant amount…however, my income has gone up significantly, so I’m hoping to change this quickly!

Assets: $1913.66

Liabilities: $27833.84

Net worth: -$25920.18

The very simple way to find this, for those of you who have not tried to find your Net Worth before, is to add your assets (car, house, expensive item, etc.) and then your liabilities (loans, personal loans, bills, balances, etc.). Subtract the latter from the former. When I did so, I ended up with a net worth of – $25920.18. Which is pretty terrible compared to the average for my age group, which is $8525 (according to sources).

I have a few major purchases that will probably need to happen within the next year or two, and I need an emergency fund built up, so there’s a lot of major repairs that need to happen with my finances. It’s hard to try to deal with all the cards on the table, but it’s my just dessert for not being a tight wad and instead being a loose spender for a few years.

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2012 Spending Summary

summary spending

Instead of doing other constructive things today, I sat down with a pack of $9 highlighters I bought in 2011 to sort through my transactions during 2012…of which there were considerably less than in 2011. This year I’ll be keeping track of everything I spend, but I wanted to look back and see where all my monies went (based on my bank statements and Discover statements. Anything in cash I don’t even know).

I broke my spending up into my major spending categories. I used to have more, but I noticed that my spending isn’t as all over the place as it used to be.

Basic Overview: 

  • School – $1540.13
  • Eating Out – $1555.22
  • Shopping – 1433.25
  • Hobbies – $118.98
  • Bills – $4299.24*
  • Miscellaneous – $1431.31

This puts me spending $10,378.13. My total income was $8237.55. This puts me in the red by $2140.58. I know some of that is probably me forgetting about some income that I must have had, but most of that was due to me paying to put money on my credit card which I then used like a debit card. Which I know is terrible and a bad idea, but I did it anyway. Because I’m a terrible person. And was pretending like I didn’t need to worry about my finances. At least this year I didn’t have to take out more loans…

  • School – $1540.13 – This is solely book purchases, tuition payments, and registration for the GRE. All in all, it’s a completely reasonable amount for me to have spent. I know that if I lived in a different region, that number would be a lot higher.
  • Eating Out – $1555.22 – Percentage-wise, this is a lot more than last year, but I grouped a lot of things into this category that I didn’t last year. It includes trips to the gas station for anything but gas, vending machines, going out, and pretty much everything related to food. I noticed that my “eating out” went up markedly during specific times of the year. Mainly there were two periods it went up, and I know the two people I was around…so I suppose they’re a bad financial influence…
  • Shopping – $1433.25 – This probably includes groceries too 🙂 It’s any transaction from Walmart, Target, CVS, Walgreens, or the mall.
  • Hobbies – $118.98 – I know compared to the rest it’s an almost negligible amount, but I wanted to see how much knitting was really costing me. The answer? Not enough that I would ever quit!
  • Bills – $4299.24 – Self-explanatory. It’s all rent, electric bill, gas, emergency car problems, Discover payments, and fees ($178.20).
  • Miscellaneous – $1431.31 – This is anything I couldn’t think to put anywhere else. This is where I stuck some of my traveling in January (Greyhound tickets), Redbox charges, and if I wrote a check and didn’t know what it was for.

Those numbers are really depressing to see to be honest. I thought I had done a lot better than this, but I mean, what did I expect? I kept my head buried in the sand. I wasn’t going to come up to a Midas-influenced land of awesomeness and financial security. I technically spent less actual money in 2012 than I did in 2011; however, my income was markedly less, and proportionally, I spent way more.

Right now I have $880 in the bank, $13013 in student loans, $1199 in loan interest, owe my roommate $730 for rent, I owe my university $498.52, and have used $1870 of my credit line. I don’t have anything substantive of value right now, so that brings my networth to -$16430.52. Which means it has gone down by $2062.26 since 2011. #depressing

So here’s to looking forward.

*It’s important to note that the reason my bills look so low is that until August I didn’t have to pay rent/electricity/etc. as a combination of being an RA, living with my parents, and then being an HD.

Finance Snapshop – May edition

So I said I was back, and I am! It’s actually taken a lot of thought to figure out where I wanted to go from here, you know, fresh starts and all that jazz 😉 So after outlining a few ideas of traditional posts I’ve done that I like and figuring out new things to push my comfort zone, I’m starting with the basics. Where I’m at. It’s hard for me to look at myself, because the knowledge of what to do and what not to do is in my grasp, in my head even! And yet, here I am.

Not quite in financial ruin yet

Pretty Much

Pic. Source

So I am in no way in financial ruins. Every time I look at my bank account and get a frog in my throat, or open my wallet with a shudder, I try to put things into perspective.  The well-being of others does not rely on my financial success; I am not bankrupt, I am not homeless, hungry, or sick. I’m just a broke college student with no one to blame but herself who needs to make better life choices and actually stick with them. So where am I at right now?

  • Discover: $1,401.49
  • Checking: $155.01
  • Savings: $0
  • Cash: $100.05
  • Loans & Interest: $13,753

This puts me at a cool –$14,899.43 as far as networth goes. Well, looking back at it almost a year ago, I’m down by $4,752.43 from –$10,146. I was really confused until I remembered that I anticipated $3750 in loans that I ended up not taking out that were accounted for and that I valued my car at $5000 (it has since had some…problems); however, I really tanked my savings and cash (plus I got that…credit card). And even in writing this post I wanted to mislead myself and look at my networth as having “gone up,” when it really didn’t at all. I never had the loans I was taking into account, so my networth was never that low in the first place. Denial is not just a river in Egypt, y’all.

Of course, I’m not exactly pleased about this, but a great quote by Thoreau is “Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.” Of course we should always learn from our mistakes (like don’t charge Christmas to your card, and when you get reimbursed for expenditures, treat it as a reimbursement and not as “Ooooo free monies!”). Or, in my case, even though I KNOW KNOW KNOW that credit card money is not actually my money, to not say “I have $400 left of my limit! That’s $400 I have to spend!” And curbing emotional spending. And hobby spending (knitting can get expensive). And not just avoiding my finance-related life out of shame. I really love the PF atmosphere and am genuinely interested in it and getting better. I need self-control. And I need it soon.

As of right now, I’m living with my parents until I leave for an internship in Pensacola, FL on May 24. There, I will have free housing and meals, and a $3000 stipend. That last bit is pretty important because as of August, many things will come to a head.

  1. My Discover Card will have an interest rate (est. 17-20%)
  2. Tuition. I dropped my 2 minors in order to drop my tuition from $3200 to $1500, so that helps, but at least half of it is due the first week of August…so $750 bones…
  3. Rent & deposits on my first ever big girl apartment
So the plan is to get an additional job while in FL (the internship is 30 hours a week, so I would have the time) so that I know for sure I can take care of all of those financial obligations. The next step is building up my EF  and savings. And loan interest repayment…but I’m getting into another post entirely here 🙂


2011 End of the Year Report

To help establish my financial goals for 2012 (which will be an entirely different post), I broke out the bank accounts to see where all of my spending was in 2012. This proved to be more difficult than I thought it would. For one, before I started this blog, I didn’t keep track of my finances at all, so the only records I have are from my bank account (no cash), and I don’t know what I bought while in Canada, just what I spent. I know some of it (from parts of July), but I think for now I’m just cutting my losses. This big spending report includes my spending from my savings account, checking account, and charges to my Discover Card.

I broke my spending up into what I considered my major spending categories.

Basic Overview: 

  • Vending Machines – $136.99
  • McDonald’s – $169.25
  • Academics – $2,124.18
  • Redbox/Netflix – $106.95
  • Campus Convenience Store – $176.09
  • Walmart – $1,918.96
  • Bookstore – $272.88
  • Gas Stations – $698.61
  • Clothes/Haircuts – $724.82
  • Fees & Payments – $1,575.16
  • Eating Out – $1,095.95
  • Miscellaneous/Groceries – $610.64
  • Spent in Canada – $2,778.71
  • Air Travel – $1,061.71
  • Fees & Transfers (from Savings) – $266.99

This puts me spending $13,717.35. My total income (payroll & loans) was $13,149.25. This puts me in the red by $568.10. Now you could be saying, $13,717.35, that’s not a lot of money to spend for an entire year. Well, that’s without spending any money on housing and only a bit on tuition. No, most of this is on useless junk and fast food (no wonder I gained 23 lbs this year).  I took a look at what I spent over $1000 on and here’s what I came up with:

  • Academics – $2,124.18 – This consists of preparation to go to my internship (e.g. passport, $150 to work in Canada, etc) and tuition payments.
  • Walmart – $1,918.96 – This one I’m super ashamed of. Some of this is on groceries naturalich, but most of it is on nonsense (e.g. snackcakes, candy, school supplies, etc)
  • Spent in Canada – $2,778.71 – I don’t know what all of this is for. Some of this was travelling to Banff, some of it was the ticket home (which should go under airfare, but I do what I want 😉 ).
  • Air Travel – $1,061.71 – These were tickets to go to Dallas & Colorado & Canada & fees. Some of these were reimbursed, so that’s included in the income (which is still in the red 😦 )
  • Fees & Payments – $1,575.16 – Oh goodness. Some of these were overdraft charges, and a lot were transfers from accounts & withdrawals
  • Eating Out – $1,095.95 – Pretty self-explanatory. This also includes birthday dinners & V-day dinners. BF & I have a deal: go dutch [unless it’s your birthday].

So now that I have these numbers, I can make a realistic set of goals to help control it for 2012 (goals that you all will see soon).

There is also some spending that won’t be reflected on this within the next few days. I currently have $104.87 in my checking account, $130 in cash, & $100 in my savings account. I will be putting $100 from cash into savings (to bring it up to $200!!) I will keep the remaining $30 to spend in Colorado if necessary (did I mention that I was going to Colorado? I have a business conference the 2nd-7th!). I will put $50 of the $104 in my checking account onto my Discover card as payment (pay what I can when I can), and $30 of that for a shuttle to the airport in Colorado.

This results in $30 in cash, $200 in my savings, and $24 in my checking account  for the end of 2012. I also end this year with a final total of $13,013 in loans (with an additional $536 in interest). I’ll also have $1073.26 on my Discover card.

So (not including my car, which is in the shop right now), I’m at $254 in the green…and $14,622.26 in the red…giving me a net worth of … drumroll please … -$14,368.26. 😦 One positive is that there was a marked decrease in my spending after I started this blog v. before, so hopefully that continues. I don’t think I’ve ever gone so long knowing what was in my accounts haha 🙂 

2011 wasn’t exactly my year, but 2012, you are mine!!!

Net Worth – October 2011

I haven’t revisited my Net Worth since my previous post July 21st. I used the same site as last time, Net Worth IQ that calculates your net worth for you and compare it to others in your income bracket, your age bracket, and all of those other brackets. My net worth in July was -$10,147…so how does October compare? 

October 2011 Net WorthThe answer to that is…badly…sort of. My net worth for October 2011 is -$12,148…which is a $2,001 decrease. This is entirely due both to not rebuilding my cash reserves by spending rampantly in September as well as spending the cash I had in July on tuition in August…so it did decrease, but the money I spent on tuition was worth it 🙂 (I am a big fan of finishing degrees!). The comparison in that chart there is not kind to me; however, if I achieve my eventual goal of paying of my student loans by the time I graduate graduate school, I will be in pretty good shape financially. So, if you’re in the red right now, don’t beat yourself up! Making lasting changes takes time, and it is a lot of work to undo mistakes that were made (like spending all of your scholarship money on Chinese food and electronics -cough-cough-). 

-L.

Net Worth

Argh! There’s this really great site called Net Worth IQ that will calculate your (you guessed it) net worth for you and compare it to others in your income bracket, your age bracket, and all of those other brackets. If you don’t want to do it that way, it’s actually pretty simple to calculate your own net worth (but if you’re like me, the numbers are going to be pretty painful).

So, the how to’s of calculating your own net worth (which you should never confuse with your self worth – which is always in the black!!!)

Ingredients: Financial Statements, guestimates of your assets (if you own a car, house, etc) and BE REALISTIC!!!

  1. List out your biggest assets. These are things like a house, big things. To be realistic, if you’re a college student like me, your asset is going to be a car at most (and even then, you’re hopefully lucky enough to own a used car or be near paying off another!). And be honest with assessing the worth of your -erm- assets.
  2. Now, get your bank statements together (checking, savings, cash, etc). The previously mentioned are probably what you’ve got, but for those who are more ambitious, this includes retirement accounts, investments, etc.
  3. Here’s the miscellaneous section. This is stuff that you own that is worth a considerable amount of money. That ipad 2 you just bought? Totally gets listed here! Generally, if you would sell an item for hundreds of dollars, this gets listed in your assets.
  4. Now add ’em up!!! These are your total assets! Look at that number, and savor it. Savor it. Savor it. 
  5. Now comes the icky part. Liabilities. Ew. Gross. Ick. But, it totally exists. So, look at your basic loans first. Loans for a new car you had to have, a down payment on something, etc. List ’em out. I personally don’t have a general loan, but I’ve got some icky loans in the next category.
  6. Now, list your personal loans. These are things like credit cards and student loans. Student loans: the bane of my existence. Yeah, I may not have to pay them back immediately, (go deferment go!), but they’re totally leering at me from afar.
  7. Add ’em up. That’s your … liability. Look at that number and be sad. Just kidding, but seriously, prepare, you will be a little sad.
  8. Final step: subtract your liabilities from your assets, and you’ll get your net worth! If it’s a bit in the red, that’s fine.  Remember that it’s NOT your self-worth.
  9. Repeat however often you want! I am hoping to do it once a month to see how I’m progressing.

Now I’m going to go out on a limb here (and hope I don’t get judged) and post my comparison charts given by Net Worth IQ. Yeah…not as bad as it could be, but I’m still pretty far off people my age (under 25). My current net worth is – $10,147 (or it will be once I take out my student loans for this year and get my final internship payment). So, like I said, if you’re a bit in the negative, red should I say, don’t feel bad. It’s net worth, not self-worth, so keep on keeping on!!!

-L.