October Net Worth Update (+$40,500)
Highlights for October
- Our properties are listed on our balance sheet based on their cost basis, not current market value. We have done during the the real estate market highs and lows. I believe real estate is too illiquid to list based on recent sale transactions. For those interested, our October Zillow property estimates are: $206,616; $124,677; $291,139; and $233,654 (total: $856,086).
- Our October net worth growth is largely driven by paper gains in the stock market. This is the 3rd month in 2013 with a $40k+ increase in net worth - amazing! If only the good times could continue, but alas they cannot. I believe we'll be paying for this with either inflation or market corrections at some point.
- Our living expenses while on our work assignment in China are running higher than I hoped. Our employer benefits are smaller than we expected and significant inflation and currency exchanges changes along with expectations from our previous assignment have caused us to spend more to maintain our standard of living than I had originally planned. This means our savings rate has on increased a little while on assignment and we haven't been able to save significantly more while here. However we are still having a great family experience overall.
- We are in the middle a couple of our planned family trips while we are on assignment. We spent 5 days in Hanoi & Halong Bay, Vietnam in October and had a wonderful time. Based on my anecdotal observations I would say Vietnam is a compelling place for investment compared to China these days. The cost of living is considerably less in Vietnam and we got tremendous value for our money.
- Note the travel expenses are largely offset by savings in other areas (such as utilities, car expenses, etc) so I expect to be close to a wash on our monthly balance sheet, but coming out ahead with rich world experiences for our family.
- We continue to allocate free cash to paying down an IELOC on a rental property (House #2) with a variable interest rate. For now, with the economy heating up (and the lack of potential attractive investment opportunities), I'd like to continue to reduce our exposure to the effects of potential higher interest rates that are surely coming in 2014/2015.
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