Monday, January 05, 2015

Happy New Year!

I can't believe it's 2015, and 3 months have gone by since I last posted. Resolution #1 is to get back in the habit of writing more! I fixed some problems with the site template that had been bothering me for a while, so maybe that will encourage me to stop by more often. So what's new? Here's a few broad strokes. My mom has her house on the market. After a few months, she hasn't had any bites. She missed the best time of year last spring when families would have had a chance to close the deal in time to get their kids in the local school by the start of the fall. Also, the house is probably overpriced. It's a strange market with not too many good comps in her price range, but I think what it comes down to is that it's a small, crummy house even if it's been nicely decorated and has a big yard. It's not the kind of house families want nowadays. So I am trying not to say "I told you so" about all my mom's renovations that she swore would increase the value of the house. She probably would have been better off selling it as a tear-down. But she has at least gotten a few years of enjoyment out of the work she's had done. And from what I could tell from snooping around on my last visit, she isn't running up any credit card debt yet, though I worry that will start to happen soon since I think most of the savings are gone. I continue to save my own pennies and did pretty well this year. I first hit the million dollar net worth milestone back in June and despite fluctuations in the stock market, have managed to keep my net worth at or above that level every month since except for one, when it dipped to $999,827 in September. As of the end of 2014, my net worth was $1,027,750. One interesting thing I noticed was that I made more from dividends and capital gains distributions from investments this year than I was making in salary about 15 years ago-- around $50,000! And my net savings for the year were over $90,000. I spent more in some areas than the previous year (food), but cut back in others (travel). But it's hard to gauge my spending accurately against previous years because Sweetie and I keep adjusting how we share expenses. I'm paying for Sweetie's health insurance now too. Sweetie hasn't worked in over a year and is just living off savings. It's fine for now, and it's been more of a voluntary sabbatical than actually trying and failing to find a job, but that will most likely change in the coming year-- by which I mean I hope it changes to employment, rather than a desperate and unsuccessful search for employment! I've been happy to support my Sweetie in this endeavor and we are extremely fortunate in not having to have made too many lifestyle adjustments, at least not yet, but I must confess I kind of preferred how it was before when we felt even more secure and relaxed about the occasional luxury! It will be interesting to see how things go once Sweetie gets serious about looking for a new job... There's so much more to write about-- thoughts about my own job history, the economy, friends and family, books I've read, catching up on long-past things like selling my condo! I will try to tackle them soon. But in the meantime, I am grateful to everyone who continues to check in here, and I feel incredibly fortunate that my own financial story continues to be a happy one despite so much difficulty in the world around me.

7 comments:

Chitown said...

Happy New Year!

Jim said...

Glad to see a nice surprise on my newsreader. Welcome back!

evy said...

Long time reader here. Looking forward to more posts!

Taylor Lee said...

So glad to see you posting again!

Anonymous said...

I too am looking forward to more posts...I was just getting into your blog when you stopped posted regularly so more please!

Can you please update your blogroll too? Half of the people aren't blogging anymore.

Thanks!

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Anonymous said...

Glad to see you are still posting. Happy 2015!