Stuck In Neutral

by Dual Income No Kids on March 2, 2008 · 0 comments

My wife Miel and I usually meet twice a week online. Among other things, we usually discuss our personal finance situation. When we talked yesterday both of us were feeling frustrated with our financial situation.

Our net worth hasn’t grown much at all. When we measured it back in December we were worth $368,000. Last month it was $373,000. That’s a modest increase of $5,000. We don’t have monthly goals for our wealth growth, so we don’t have clear expectations for what the numbers should be but still – we both would have liked to have done better.

Some things have been aggravating the situation:

1) Miel’s student loans came due. Since February, the amount we’re paying for her loans to Citigroup increased from $100 to $370. This puts a bit crimp in the rest of our budget and pressures our ability to achieve other goals.

2) The property tax bill arrived. We were not excited to receive the DC government’s property tax bill in the mail. We’ll need to come up with the $566.77 in the next couple of weeks to get this taken care of. Of course, we’re happy to contribute our share to the well being of the district, but considering our net worth progress the timing could have been better.

3) Our Swiss vacation was expensive. If you’ve been following our blog, you’ll know we just got back from Switzerland. The country is fantastic, but it was hard on our pocketbooks. We spent more than $3,500 on hotels, dinner, some modest shopping and plane tickets. While the trip was wonderful, next one we organize will probably be someplace significantly less expensive.

4) I’ve been wasting money. Specifically, I’ve been dropping a pretty good amount of cash on take out, lunches, movie rentals and stuff like that. Even a hundred dollars or so ads up to extra pressure on our budget and makes it harder to achieve our goals. So, basically my own spending habits have been contributing to this situation as well.

That said, we’ve been successful at building wealth in the past so I’m optimistic we’ll be back on track soon. Stay tuned.

Best,

James

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