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September 2020 Net Worth update: $128,201
It has been a busy month with plenty of ups and downs. September has come and gone, and it is that time of the month. It is time for the September Net Worth 2020.
A couple of things have happened to us in the month of September that has affected our Net Worth numbers.
Unpaid Leave in August
First of All, we took about 3 weeks of unpaid leave in the month of August. So our income for the month of September has been much lower than what we usually receive. So our savings rate is quite lower than it should be. We worked pretty hard on keeping it lower, but sometimes unexpected expenses come up.
Being able to take a vacation or mini vacation in August has been a great thing for my wife and I. We usually take unpaid leave, and travel to exotic lands having adventures. This year, due to covid, we took adventures around Taiwan.
The only not so great thing is not getting paid. We usually have time off with our job, but we use our time off and personal days to travel during Chinese New Year. Who knows what will happen this year. Hopefully, we can leave the country. We shall see.
Moving Money to the States
Secondly, we have moved about $9800 to our savings account in the states, and invested about $8000 into our Taxable Account buying more shares of VTI (Vanguard Total Market Index Fund ETF) and VXUS (Vanguard International Index Fund ETF).
Every couple of months we move money back to the states. It is easier to do it in a larger chunk. There is a cost of close to $30 to transfer the money. Fees make this so hard. I dislike fees. It was time to send some cash over. We like to send money back and invest our money to help our money keep working for us.
If our money is sitting in a bank here in Taiwan then our money is not doing much to help us increase our Net Worth. We are working on trying to save enough for FIRE (Financial Independent Retire Early). Our goal for 2020 is $100,000 in investments.
The Market Swings
Thirdly, the market went down pretty far in the month of September. So the values of our portfolio went down a bit, but we are investing for the long term.
Buy and hold. We have 30+ years, and it is time to save, buy and hold, and not stress the downturns of the market.
The market is always a fickle beast for the short term, but for the long term it keeps going up. With a good return of 6-7%, we expect to keep saving and growing our Net Worth slowly, but surely. With the market down, it gives us an opportunity to buy lower and keep that momentum going.
My Wife's SuperAnnuation
Lastly, my wife has taken control of her SuperAnnuation from Australia. This means we can add her assets to our overall Net Worth. For those that are not familiar with a SuperAnnuation or Super for short. It is like the U.S. 401K plan. The cool thing is that all employers are required to give 9.5% into the Super.
The Super therefore helps Australians save more money, which will create more wealth and prosperity for them in the long run. The average American is saving 7.6%, but with the Super in Australia, the Aussies are saving at least 9.5%.
On to October
Life is good. October is upon us with many ups and downs in politics. The market may have many sways, which means there may be great opportunities for investing. Our pay will be back to normal, and hopefully I can bust out some more great content to inspire you all to take a change in your finances.
Net Worth Breakdown
With our decrease in income, similar spendings, market swings, and the addition of my wife’s Super our Net Worth has increased to +$128,201. That looks great, but overall it was a poor month. My wife’s Super added an additional $36,000, which propped up that number. Anyway, we are working together to create more wealth so it is time to add that one asset.
Here is the breakdown of the month:
Cash Savings: (-$9,905)
We earned about $2,023 for the month of September. Spendings ended up to be around $1,461. Then we moved about $9800 to the states to be moved into our savings account, and to help us to buy more investments.
Taxable Brokerage Account: (+$6,576)
Our investments looked like they did pretty well, but it was a down month for our investments. We invested close to $8000.
Even if our investments went down in value, we were able to buy more at a cheaper price. That is good for the long run. Our strategy is to buy index funds and hold them for the long term.
A bonus for this month is our quarterly dividends that we received that were reinvested into our investments. Those dividends help buy more shares, which means more money for the long term.
For the month of September, we received $299.65 in dividends. Not a bad month at all. We will keep investing and saving.
Roth IRA: (-$125)
The Roth IRA is still slowly moving up and down. It went down $125 during September, but also gained some dividends as well. I like index funds so I keep my Roth in VTSAX.
My Wife's Super: (+$36,269)
This is a brand new item for Net Worth. My wife’s super is in a balanced index fund mixed portfolio with low fees.
Right now, it has around $36,269. It is low, but it will continue to grow, and with low fees my wife will be able to keep more money in her pocket during retirement.
The liabilities are around $25 this month. We had an item of $100 returned to us so our credit card bill went down, and we just didn’t spend that much. So that is a plus $483 from last month. Not bad for September.
An O.K. Month:
That is about it for our Net Worth. Check out next month to see how we improved or not. Life is an adventure, and each month will be different. As long as we keep saving, investing, and staying out of debt we will improve our Net Worth.
I’m Steve. I’m an English Teacher, traveler, and an avid outdoorsman. If you’d like to comment, ask a question, or simply say hi, leave me a message here, on Twitter (@thefrugalexpat1). Many of my posts have been written to help those in their journey to financial independence. I am on my journey, and as I learn more I hope to share more. And as always, thanks for reading The Frugal Expat.