I joined this forum exactly 5 years ago, in May 2009, at which time my individual net worth was $335,554.
I was 25 years old, my salary was $60K (I got a bonus of $14K that year), my retirement assets totaled $35K, I had a $10K emergency fund, I had $132K in real estate equity ($89K from the two rental properties I'd purchased), and $160K in stocks (my leftover college fund plus probably $20K or so in personal brokerage I'd accumulated). At that time it is safe to say that fully 80% (around $272K) of my net worth was the result of gifts as opposed to my own savings. My grandparents saved a lot of money for my college education and invested it in Vanguard index funds, and there was enough left after school for me to put down 20% on a condo and two rental properties - and still have about $140K leftover.
As of May 2014 my combined net worth with my husband is $1,015,272.
My salary is $113K (my bonus this year was $29K), my retirement assets total $231K, I have a $36K emergency fund, I have $404K in real estate equity ($299K from 6 rental properties), and I still have $90K left in that college fund (as it grew I tapped it for down payments on the additional rental properties). Things that have really helped me boost my net worth:
- I have doubled my income and raised my retirement contributions with each raise.
- I have been gifted $210K in the last five years ($75K in my parents' divorce, $50K for my wedding, and $85K from my grandparents).
- I married a fellow Boglehead who had just over 6 figures of net worth himself (mostly retirement and stock assets, less a fairly hefty student loan).
- Most recently, in May, I was awarded nearly 6 figures in new employee stock in conjunction with the acquisition of my former employer.
Thanks for all your ongoing support and information Bogleheads!