2018 in review and looking forward to 2019

Even with all the carnage going on in the markets in the last few months of 2018, and especially December, we still ended the year in a net gain of ~$79k! It just boils down to three things really.

a) Keep automatically investing every month in retirement and taxable accounts

b) Keep reducing debt every month

c) Take advantage of market downturns and sock aside more in taxable accounts. Since you’ll be on track to maximize your retirement accounts no matter what, the excess investment has to go in taxable accounts which do not have any contribution limits.

Since we started tracking our progress from January 2017, our net worth has gone from $458k to $686k. In two full years, we’ve manged to increase our net worth by almost $230k. That’s incredible to me.

Here’s a graphical representation of how our Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth have changed over the course of 2 years.

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For 2019 we have some plain vanilla and some ambitious goals. None of these are “new year resolutions” – I hate that crap!

First, we’ll be maximizing our 401(k) at our respective employers. With an increase to $19k in 2019, that’s $38k tax-free shaved right at the top.

Then, we’ll be contributing to the max in in either Roth or T-IRA. With new limits of $6k this year, that’s another $12k for both of us.

Next, we plan to invest at least $9k in our taxable accounts for the full year. This will almost certainly bump up to $10k by the end of the year. As a comparison, for 2018 we invested $6,850 in taxable accounts.

With automated pulls we’ll be putting $2.4k in our child’s 529 account for the year. I want to top it off to $3k.

Our mortgage balance stands at $206k right now. Aim is to bring this down to $160k, mixed between regular payments and additional payments applied towards principal. This will be the stretch goal!

Other than that, nothing special really. We’ll take a couple of vacations, one probably internationally. We will go on a number of road trips. And work our asses off in our respective jobs.

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