What am I worth?

Donna Willan Money cents

listing boomI have just re-watched the 100 second tip on “My personal balance sheet” (see video below). I was curious, and slightly nervous, to see what I am actually worth and whether I am ‘poor’ or ‘rich’. We tend to measure this by how much cash we have by mid-month, or how much debt we have on our credit cards. But in truth it’s about our big debts and our investments – that’s what really determines what we are worth financially, and whether we (my kids and I) are ‘poor’ or ‘rich’.

So following the guidance in the video, I listed all my assets (things I own): my house, my car and my shares; and then all my liabilities (my debts). Fortunately I only have a bond and a few thousand Rand in the credit card (which is a bit high thanks to replacing ALL my water pipes this month – that’s another story). And although I still owe just over one million on my house, I still come out with a positive net worth, as my assets are bigger than my liabilities – in the words of the JOL video, “things are looking pretty!”

Wow, what a relief that I’m doing OK when I look at the big question of ‘what am I worth’. Yes, on a monthly basis my money is always tight, but the big picture looks better. I am also going to use it as a reminder to continue to consciously manage my assets and liabilities to ensure I stay in this favourable position. My last column reflected on my new motto “never to go into debt over a simple want”, and this column also reminds me to keep that intention alive.

In my next column I am going to talk about Christmas and spending. If you’ve just celebrated Eid you’ll know all about spending a lot on celebrations; and with Christmas just five months away, now is the time to think about how we can manage the budget around that ‘festival of spending’!


Money Cents blog

Meet the Just One Lap team at these free live events

Click here to meet the Just One Lap team at one of our live, free events.

Subscribe to Just One Lap