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Another month down in 2010, so it’s time for me to run the numbers and check out our net worth for September. It's been a great month for us even if our net worth barely budged.

Our Spending Habits in September

As you see from the graph, housing was a big expense this month. We went ahead and paid down our mortgage with the tax credit we received. We had waited until we had the car situation resolved. I'll share the numbers below, but it was nice to pay off a chunk of our mortgage.

Checking & Savings cash in wallet

As you probably figured, because we paid $8,000 towards the mortgage, our joint checking account balance is much smaller than last month's balance. We believe it'll be consistent for the rest of the year as we don't have any major expenses coming up.

Our joint savings is doing well; we contributed a bit for our emergency fund. It's been growing each month as we're acculmating interest with ING.

ING Direct may not have the highest rates of savings right now, but they have better than average interest rates compared to many banks. We’ve had solid customer service from them. Right now they are offering  1% cash back on Electric Orange card debit purchases of $50 or less until November 30, 2010.

Auto Property

The new car seems to be doing well, my husband appreciates the great gas mileage. It looks ot be a solid car and I hope it stays with us for a few years. That'll give us time to fill up the car replacement fund so I can get another car eventually. My VW is doing fine, but as it's getting older, I've notice an increase on repairs. Nothing major now, but I'd rather start depositing money before I need it.

In case you’re wondering how I got the vehicles' values, I used Kelly Blue Book. We no longer have car loans, so they are assets on our books. Every quarter I’ll update them to account for depreciation.

Retirement Accounts

Right now, my husband automatically has his 401(k)contributions deposited to get his company’s match. I have a Roth IRA that I’m contributing on my end.

House and Mortgage

this was by far the biggest change since last month. We sent in the $8,000 we had gotten for the first time home buyer's tax credit. According to the mortgage calculator, the $8,000 will have saved us $23,456.89 of interest payments. It's cut 3 years and about 11 months off of the length of our mortgage.

I mentioned before that keeping a mortgage just for the interest deduction is crazy. You’re just sending over more money to your mortgage company instead of paying a fraction of the amount in taxes. The numbers don’t add up.

Here’s where we stand today with the mortgage:

  • Total Loan Amount: $113,417.65
  • Interest Rate: 5.00%
  • Loan Term: 30 years, fixed rate

If we continue to pay an additional $150/month, we're looking at paying off the 30 year mortgage off in 18 years and 2 months! That's for a total savings of $60,768.76 in interest!

Student Loans

Like the past few months, we’re chugging along with the student loan payments. Payments have been automated so it’s been relatively easy to keep up with them; we just confirm payments have been made each month.

Monthly Summary

After tallying up all the accounts, I’m happy to report we’re growing our net worth, even it's ever so slightly.

Net Worth (as of September 30th, 2010): $38,844.14 (+300.55)

No big plans yet, we're discussing 2011 plans, believe or not. We're looking at a reach goal for next year and we're trying to set up income streams to meet it.

Your Net Worth Update

How are you doing with your finances? How are you doing in 2010 so far?

Photo Credit: Jeff Keen

About Elle Martinez

Elle Martinez helps families at Couple Money achieve financial freedom by sharing tips for reducing debt, increase income, and building net worth. Learn how to live on one income and have fun with the second..

7 comments add your comment

  1. Got to love that $8,000 home buyer tax credit!

    The bar chart really shows the home expense amount, which will probably drive you to pay it down quickly.


  2. What’s your logic for leaving out cars as assets until the loans are paid off? What’s wrong with having the car value as an asset and the remaining loan amount as a liability? I’m just trying to follow your logic there.

  3. @FS: I try to advantage of tax credits I can qualify for. :) Our home expenses are the biggest chunk of our budget. The good new is we were conservative on the size of the loan, so it’s not too much of a burden on our cash flow.

    @Patrick: I was making the comment that the cars don’t have a car loan (liability) attached and they were simply assets. Sorry if it wasn’t clearly.

  4. Curious why did you decide to use it on the home loan vs other debt. For example you can only deduct $2,500 of student loan interest if you have more than that might as well as get under that number…or rock out the psychological benefit of taking out the account. Obviously I need some more insight to the debt situation, but just a thought

  5. @Evan: Thanks for the good question! We have a couple of reasons for the extra mortgage payment . One is that paying the mortgage down will save us more money in the long run. Our tax deduction is less than $2,500 (around $1,300 last year) for our student loans. I also think it’s psychological to see our mortgage go down. The interest rate on both is pretty much the same too.