Saturday, April 13, 2013

Holy Crap! I managed to save $100,000!

If someone would have told me this five years ago I wouldn't have believed it...

Lifetime deposits to my brokerage accounts recently exceeded $100,000 thanks to a nice 2012 tax refund.  In total I have saved $100,760.  Unbelievable!  To commemorate, I added a Deposits Page to track my progress.

My brokerage accounts are currently:

It is evident that investing has been very rewarding.  I'm up $34,000.  That's higher than my annual salary... Pretty crazy!  My portfolio page is scewed.  Reinvested dividends and capital gains (e.g. the HNZ and UNS sales) increase my cost basis on my spreadsheet, yet there was a handsome profit.  A better way to see how I'm doing is to compare how much I've actually deposited to what my account is actually worth.

To me, investing success is defined as a rising income stream.  I do not care about beating an arbitrary benchmark such as the S&P 500.  I've been blogging since December 2011 and can only remember talking about beating the market in one post.  My brokerage account has a feature that allows me to see my rate of return.  Here it is (just for shits and giggles):

Fidelity started the Rate of Return feature in October 2011, it would be interesting to see how I did before then.  These percentages are annualized. 
 
Without even trying, dividend growth & income investing can do pretty well.  I'm nothing special, just an average guy who invests as a hobby.  Lets not forget SPY would actually underperform the S&P 500 due to fees....

26 comments:

  1. Congratulations! Milestones are great inspiration to be better. I can't wait to reach that goal.

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    1. Thanks!

      I hope I didn't come across as bragging here, that was not the intent.

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    2. Nope, it didn't. You sounded amazed yourself. I can just imagine the effort to reach that goal.

      Delete
  2. Wow, this is cool man! Congrats on your first round number... Now 4 more and you are done, aren't you?

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    1. Not exactly. I will be working 15 more years regardless unless I win the lottery or get an inheritance. I just try to take advantage of what the military offers. It's actually a decent gig for savers. I could literally live off $100 per month right now if I was motivated enough to do it. Well maybe $150/month since cell phones are necessary.

      Cheers!

      Delete
  3. Wow now that is some achievement! I like this deposits page - I may have to do the same. Keep up the great work!

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  4. Is this feature something only premium services / "high roller" accounts get ? :) I can't find it in my fidelity so I guess i'm not quite at your stage of financial independence quite yet.

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    1. Go to the "summary" tab and you will see the rate of return link. I had to keep track of my deposits manually.

      Cheers!

      Delete
  5. Congrats and keep up the good work! I know it took a lot of dedication to save up that much, especially in our consumption driven society. I'll gladly consume solid DG stocks rather than a new iPad or car though. I recently passed $100k for my account, but not in deposits. Hopefully I'll be hitting that mark later this year. As they say the first $100k is the hardest, so now you have a much better base working for you.

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    1. Thank you. This took me over 5 years to accomplish. I have been saving a lot longer than I've been blogging.

      Experiences like basic training and deploying are good for frugality. In both cases there is nothing to spend money on. It taught me to be thankful for something as meaningless as a candy bar. I actually cherish a nice day or seeing trees more than my smart phone.

      Try living in the desert for two years. No trees. No plants. Just sand. You'll gain a whole new perspective. I couldn't relate to the over consumption when I finally got to come home.

      Cheers!

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  6. Congratulations! It's always nice to see the results of actual savings and dividend growth investing. Keep up the good work!

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  7. Congratulations on reaching this milestone! You say you're nothing special and just an average guy, but what you're accomplishing is remarkable and certainly not average! Keep up the good work...

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    1. Thanks. I wish I could keep doing $1,000 monthly deposits forever but sadly that will not be the case. I try to be honest on my blog, posting the good and the bad. I plan to do a post on mistakes I've made, maybe tomorrow or something this weekend.

      Cheers!

      Delete
  8. Breaking the $100k is the hardest, now watch your wealth multiply. Your rate of return is outstanding :) I like how your brokerage does the cumulative rate of return for you. My brokerage sucks and I have no idea where I'm at as I dont really keep a good track of my records.

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    1. Yeah it's pretty interesting, but unforunately it's only been around for a year and a half. Most of my best purchases occurred before that started.

      Really though. Anyone can have a good year or two. That means very little. If someone showed me a 10 or 20 track record of out performance I would be impressed. I do not base success on beating the market anyways!

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  9. That's impressive. Congrats and keep it up!

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  10. Congratulations on your great achievement. After I read your article, I imagine the time, effort, and heartache I could save myself if I could go back and speak to myself at fifteen or sixteen years old, passing on knowledge about not just money, but life in general.

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    1. Yes I wish I could too. I didn't know what I wanted out of life till my late 20's. Many years wasted trying to figure it all out. The military turned out to be a good fit for me, it's nice to be doing something bigger than myself. My job doesn't seem meaningless like before. I know some people wouldn't agree, and that's okay.

      The turning point was when I resolved to do some kind of service for the greater good. It was going to be either fireman, police officer, or military. Then the Army came along and made me a nice offer...

      A lot of people in the Army are miserable, but I can think back to the meaningless days in my 20's and be happy with what I have.

      Cheers!

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  11. This is great! Saving 100k is no small feat. Hope to be there myself in a few years.

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    1. Thanks Kech! I haven't stopped by your blog in a while, I'm due for a visit.

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  12. You animal! Congrats that is an amazing milestone

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