Young and Thrifty’s Financial Year in Review for 2013

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As 2013 draws to a close, i and as I sip my rum and eggnog by myself typing away (oh goodness I love the holidays for their decadent treats and things that are not-good-for-the-waistline) on my laptop, I want to reflect on my personal finance goals that I made earlier in the year.

So without further delay, here is a recap of what went down in 2013.

Net worth Increase from January 2013 to December 2013:

In my January 2013 net worth update, I started off with $169,400.  In the December 2013 net worth update, I finished up the year with $323,600 for a positive gain of over $150,000.  No, I didn't win the lottery but did sell my home because of a relationship dissolving.  I guess there are always silver linings in things.  Although it was sad to see a relationship end,  I am very grateful for this increase in net worth as it has definitely reduced the financial stress I had earlier.

Financial Year in Review for 2013It has allowed me to be somewhat financially independent, though this feeling might actually be hindering my savings ability because when I feel poh I actually am less spend thrifty.  Not that I am a spend thrift anyways.  Unless it comes to travel of course.

Nevertheless, I did experience major net worth inertia and basically stayed “afloat” for most of the year after that surplus, not really gaining or losing.  Hopefully that comes to an end in 2014 and I can start consistently gaining month by month again.

Financial Goals for the Year 2013

At the beginning of 2013, I made some personal and personal finance resolutions.  I wanted to max out my Tax Free Savings Account for the year by contributing $5500 to my account and I also wanted to figure out my Home Buyers Plan and ideally pay that back.  After I figured out the tax situation earlier this year, I was able to calculate how much I still owed to the Home Buyers Plan.  It feels good to say that I have paid that back and again have a healthier looking Registered Retired Savings Plan amount.

Another goal was the invest the lump of cash I had sitting in my high interest savings account.  Thankfully by the end of the year this finally happened and it was put into my non-registered account.

Major Purchases

Some major purchases this year include lots of furniture, a condo, a trip to Colorado (which I used mainly Aeroplan points for, so I guess that doesn't count), a trip to one of the Canadian territories, and a two week trip to Spain where I traveled around by myself.  In total, I think I spent about $4000 on trips, which is kind of my average spend per year on trips.

Stuff Sold

I don't think I did much selling of equities this year, but stocks that I have sold in my Do It Yourself portfolio include:

  • BBY I finally sold Best Buy for a $40 gain which I am pretty happy about since I was down over $500 in this stock I believe, at some points or another.
  • RRSPs- I cleaned up my RRSP portfolio a bit

Stuff Bought

I did do a lot of buying (yes sometimes buying stocks alleviates my itch to buy actual material things that end up depreciating)

Here are some of the equities that I bought this year in 2013 and how they are doing thus far.

  • REI.UN.TO- Wanting to get in on the REIT action, I bought this and it has been a bit lacklustre so far.  So far, I am down about $200 consistently though I think I only bought about 100 shares.  The dividend yield is 4.8% so I'm pretty happy with that anyhow.
  • TA.TO- I bought Transalta because I was chasing yield again as well (what can I say, I am a yield wh*re. I know it will bite me in the butt later on and it has).  This stock hasn't been faring too well but I think I'm just down $100-$200 in this and only bought 100 shares.
  • ETFs- In September I loaded up on ETFs and added some positions in XTR, XDV, CPD (which hasn't faired so well) adn CYH
  • More ETFs- I also revamped my RRSP (sold some RRSPs and opted for the Canadian Couch Potato portfolio in my RRSP) and bought some stocks in my non-margin account

Readers, how did 2013 treat you in terms of personal finance?

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Young is a writer and former owner of Young and Thrifty and the main "twitter' behind Young and Thrifty's twitter account. She lives in Vancouver, BC and enjoys long walks on the beach, spending time with her anxious dog, and finding good deals. If you like what you read, consider signing up for email updates.

12 Comments

  1. fiscally fit on December 23, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    just a quick clarification question but did you not count the equity in your home in your net worth at the beginning of the year?

    Also interesting choices on the energy and reit purchases. I am very curious to how those sectors will playout over the next while. They are either going to be postioned well as expected or deflate as they were artificially inflated as a replacement for bonds.



  2. Leigh on December 23, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    I’m glad you seem to be in more positive spirits now than you were at this time last year! 🙂 Hope things are well with the new guy!



  3. Retire By 40 on December 24, 2013 at 11:25 am

    Wow, that’s a huge increase. I thought we did well at 20%, but 100% is just awesome. I count our real estate in our net worth…
    Good luck next year.



  4. Young on December 25, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    @RB40- I count my real estate too, but not the equity. I would love to do more multiplex options- maybe that will be my new goal in 2014!



  5. Young on December 25, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    @Leigh- Awe thanks dear! Yeah they are but I think he’s a bit different from my in the financial perspective lol….. I will write up a post about it soon! Happy New year and I hope things are well with you!!



  6. Young on December 25, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    @ff- No I didn’t… I never count my “equity” in my net worth.. I only counted it when it was sold. Yeah, I agree, the REIT I’m a bit unsure about, but I don’t have very many shares in it. So far I am down $100 🙂



  7. Fiscally fit on December 25, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    I am curious to why you wouldn’t count the equity in a piece of property? Regardless of the liquidity, I can’t see a situation in which it would not be included in balance sheet/ net worth statement.



  8. Mat on December 29, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    Young, that last comment sparked my question…What are your goals for 2014!?



  9. Young on January 5, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    @Matt- Great question, they will be posted soon! 🙂



  10. Young on January 5, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    @Fiscally Fit- Hmm maybe I am misunderstanding you? I include the payments I make to pay my mortgage down, but I don’t include the “estimated” price of the home if I sold it. I don’t do that because well, I guess it’s speculation and I won’t know until I actually sell it to see what price I will get.



  11. fiscally fit on January 9, 2014 at 11:04 am

    But again my question is why wouldn’t you include the “estimate”? The home doesn’t have a value of $0.00 so you have to include something even if it is the City’s property assessment. For my primary residence, I look at comparables, city tax assessments, and general trends to make an estimate. If I don’t do this, I could be trying to fool myself when it comes to evaluating my financial position. A $150,000 asset is something that I would want to monitor 😉



  12. Young on January 21, 2014 at 12:27 am

    @ff- I put in what I bought it at 🙂 Does that count?



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