The final month of 2004 saw my household net worth increase by 6.4 percent ($4,081) from November, to a level of $67,682. The entire year 2004 saw our net worth increase by 39 percent, or $19,075, from its January starting mark of $48,607.
Liquid assets (savings, checking, cash in hand, etc.) started the year 2004 at a level of $1,011. They now stand at $6,021. Part of this rise is relates to our Freedom Account balance, which has grown from $1,137 in January to $2,354 now.
Overall, I will say that 2004 was a great year for us financially. I am extremely proud that we are now officially credit-card debt free, as that was my primary goal back when I started IYM in early 2002. (I still use my credit cards at every opportunity, but I do so on my terms; i.e., only for convenience and cashback rewards. I pay the balance in full every two weeks.)
As for spending in the month of December, I am a little concerned that we spent $470 on groceries. Christmas was at our house this year (12 people total), so there's part of it. When I look back at the last quarter for 2003, we were spending an average of $354 per month on groceries. (We averaged $409 per month for the last quarter 2004.) Also, for household items, we averaged $212 per month in the last quarter of 2003. The same quarter for 2004 shows us spending an average of $285, for a per-month expense increase of $73.
Bah. Time to put heads together to work on these two items . . ..