Net worth update December 2021

It almost feels a bit weird writing a blog post again. I’ve let it sit pretty much idle since July because I hadn’t come up with an annual challenge for the 2021-22 financial year so haven’t really had anything to post about.

My net worth has increased by 11.81% over the past six months, and by 40.67% since tracking began on 1 July 2019. Here’s the breakdown:

Superannuation

I’m so glad I finally made the change to the investment mix, because it’s gone up nicely just in the seven months since I switched – an increase of almost 9 percent since June! I’ll be very interested to see how the fees have stacked up over the financial year once we reach the end of June 2022, because the management fees for straight equities are quite a bit lower than they are for the super fund’s pre-packaged investment mixes. I’m still on the fence a bit around increasing contributions because I’d really like to have investments outside of super, where they’re under my control.

A little while back I created a spreadsheet with some projections of where my super might be up to in future years, based on growth rates of 8%, 10%, 12% and 14% per annum, and at what age I might be able to retire based on having $1.375m in super for an annual 4% draw-down giving me $55k a year to live on (my preferred minimum). For the record, the average growth of my super since 2010 has been 14.84% – this includes both contributions and growth – and for most of those years the growth has been higher; the drop in the market when COVID first hit has reduced the average quite significantly. If my super does particularly well (14% p.a.), then retiring just prior to turning 65 is entirely possible – two years ahead of the current official retirement age. If I wanted to be fairly frugal, then retiring just before reaching 62 is also possible with 14% p.a. growth, but that would only give me $40k per year.

Cash

Not much has really changed here; even though I used a chunk of change to buy some shares, it only reduced my overall percentage of cash by 1% as compared to the end of June 2021.

Property (PPoR)

Property is clearly doing quite well also. As of June I’ve been using the average of the mid-range value for my property from two different real estate sites to calculate an approximate value of my PPoR (Domain and OnTheHouse). I haven’t increased what I’m paying on the loan, so that isn’t a factor, and the loan has been fully offset since about August 2020. There was a $20k difference in the mid-range values between the two sites. I was a bit startled to see such a large jump in value over the past six months, even though I know that property prices have been nuts, because my property is just an average 3-bedroom home on a relatively small block. However, this has only translated to a 1% increase in terms of value within my overall net worth.

ETFs and shares

Regular readers will notice the slight jump in ETFs from 1% to 2% – I decided to buy some VDHG this month with my idle “Smile” money, which has quadrupled my ETF holdings. My sister’s now quite long-delayed 50th birthday trip may not eventuate for some time, so I thought it would be wise to put the money to better use than a (so-called) high interest savings account in the meantime. This gives me a 25/75 percentage split of ETFs between VAS and VDHG respectively. Now that I have gone all in with equities in my superannuation, I opted for VDGH over DHHF for the 10% in fixed interest and bonds. Thanks go to Passive Investing Australia for various articles about VDHG and other comparable options; these were helpful in making the decision.

My individual share holdings are still just sitting until I make a firm decision what to do with them.

Performance tracking table

Here’s how the components have performed over the past six months and since I first started tracking them (July 2019).

Component6 month changeChange since 1 July 2019Notes
Superannuation8.9189%37.2233%Changed investment mix to all equities in May 2021
PPoR (value-debt)14.086%22.53%
Cash (-credit card debt)0.327%299.4185%
ETFs285.6831%310.4269%Bought VDHG in December 2021 – %ages look huge but this is due to the purchase
Shares (individual holdings)-7.6476%-70.0244%
OVERALL NW11.8057%40.6658%
Performance Tracking

So that’s how this half of the year has panned out. I wish you all a very happy, healthy and wealthy New Year in 2022!

Just for a giggle, here’s what my ‘year in review’ from Pearler had to say about my portfolio checking vibe:

4 thoughts on “Net worth update December 2021

  1. Hey, great work. Enjoyed reading about your progress. Just a comment about VDHG which I am sure you know about. I find that I pay a lot of taxes on the distributions that they give -foreign income tax. cap gains tax etc. I wonder whether you would consider either all VAS for income or all VGS for max cap growth

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    1. Hi Ken
      They did have a big distribution within the past year, but I gather it was unusually large. I really wanted something that was pretty much set and forget, although naturally I’ll review things in the future.

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    1. It’s certainly something I’ve debated internally for a while. Primarily it’s to mitigate legislative risk. Since the Retirement Income Review came out there has been talk around super and inheritance, and how superannuants spend their super. The government’s view is that people are supposed to use it all up instead of passing it on to their descendants. There’s nothing inherently wrong with that view because that was the intention of super in the first place. However, there’s a manipulation of statistics being used in the debate. The Review’s finding that a large number of people die with just as much money in super as they had when they retired includes people who retired with no money in super at all. The number of people who leave substantial wealth to their descendants from super is actually very small. My main concern is that superannuants may be subjected via legislative means to use particular products in retirement (e.g.annuities) that take away their control over their own money.

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