The first $100K

They say the first $100K is the hardest. I don’t really know who says that, or even what they mean. It was actually pretty easy to get $100K in student loan debt, and our $100K mortgage was a breeze. Okay so obviously that’s the wrong kind of $100K.

But I never know whether they mean 100K in investments or $100K in net worth, or maybe they mean $100K in short-term savings. Also, can I include all my investments? Or just m, say, 401Ks and IRAs?

Also, my husband and I are joint property, according to the law. I always look at our joint net worth because how would we even separate it out? But in that case, should it be the first 200K that is the hardest?

At any rate, we are far far away from 100K in net worth. And the thought of hitting 200K in investments between the two of us seems absurd. But!

This is what Mint told me today:

It includes 529s for the kids, but it doesn’t include my husband’s retirement (if you take out the 529s and add in his retirement we’d be over $100K). I don’t know what this means, or if I should be ashamed that I’m 40 and just hitting this milestone. At the same time, it suddenly feels like we have piles and piles of gold bars just sitting in the bank. Piles!

And it feels like a milestone. Next step: the apparently relatively much easier rest of our financial life.

2 thoughts on “The first $100K”

  1. The ins and outs of measuring net worth can get tangled, for sure. Looking at retirement accounts only, it took 12 years for me to hit that line for the first time, and then less than 3 years for the next jump. That’s due to several factors: better market, higher salary, able to save more, AND compound interest. I suspect you’ll see a similar steep angle upward over time!


    1. Thank you! It should go quicker – up until 6 years ago, we were still relying on student loans and only had two decent incomes starting 4 years ago. I don’t know about 3 years but that would be great!


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