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What is Your TRUE Net Worth?

Listen to Best in Wealth Podcast Episode 217

David Booth—the Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Dimensional Fund Advisors—recently penned an article entitled, “What’s Your True Net Worth?” Here is the thing—your true net worth is not a calculation of your wealth. It stems from what you value. Find out what I mean in this episode of the Best in Wealth podcast! 

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:01] What do you truly value? 
  • [3:53] What is your true net worth?
  • [8:40] What is important to you?
  • [11:18] Lifetime Integrated Financial Experience 
  • [16:58] Legacy is a big part of net worth

What do you truly value? 

My wife, two daughters, and I did an exercise. My wife had 100 pieces of paper with words listed on them that described something we might value, things like “God,” “Love,” “Career,” etc. 

We separate the pieces of paper into three piles. One pile was for words that did not define us. Another was a “maybe” pile. The last pile was for the words that resonated with us. 

We got rid of everything but the third pile. Then we had to quickly grab the two that were most important to us. My two words were “family” and “hope.” 

Call-to-action: Do this exercise with your loved ones. What two words were the most important to you? 

What is your TRUE net worth?

In his article, David Booth shares that “Many apps today claim to instantly calculate your net worth by adding up your banking and investment accounts and then deducting what you owe on your credit cards and mortgage.” 

David goes on to say that this calculation only outputs your wealth. Your “worth” is far more complex. David believes that if you make life better for someone else, then you are worth something. It can be true in business and life.

What is your true net worth? 

This is a great conversation to have with a financial advisor. Why? You need to find where your wealth and your worth intersect. If you do not know what you value in life and your financial advisor can help you determine that, it is priceless. 

What’s important to you?

Is your money working to help you meet your goals?

  • What is important to you? 
  • What are your goals?
  • What are your most important relationships?
  • What are your values?

Everyone answers these questions differently because everyone is different. It can be really hard to figure out what you value, right? It becomes apparent as you get older. But when I am meeting with younger couples, it is hard. Your time is spent working and raising a family. You hardly have time to think about your future goals and aspirations.

That is why it is important to go through the big three questions that I covered in episode #201. I use these questions to help my clients figure out what they truly value. 

  • What would you do if you could do anything?
  • What would you do if you were given an end date?
  • What would you do if you had one day left?

Once you identify what is important, your advisor can help you build a plan that gives you the best shot at reaching your goals. 

Lifetime Integrated Financial Experience (L.I.F.E.)

Money management is about connecting life goals with financial goals. That is why you need a plan. You need to figure out your values, plan for the worst, and hope for the best. Life is full of surprises, some good, some bad. Every choice you make may change your goals or require you to adjust your plan. That is why your financial advisor should offer solutions personalized to you. 

Everyone is concerned about their financial future—but especially the people they will leave behind. Legacy is a big part of net worth. What memories will you leave with the people you care about?

Do not deal with these tough questions alone. Tell your financial advisor what really matters to you. It might just help you figure out your true net worth. If you do not have a financial advisor, feel free to reach out. 

Resources Mentioned

Connect With Scott Wellens

Podcast Disclaimer:

The Best In Wealth Podcast is hosted by Scott Wellens. Scott Wellens is the principal at Fortress Planning Group. Fortress Planning Group is a registered investment advisory firm regulated by the Securities Act of Wisconsin in accordance and compliance with securities laws and regulations. Fortress Planning Group does not render or offer to render personalized investment or tax advice through the Best In Wealth Podcast. The information provided is for informational purposes only and does not constitute financial, tax, investment or legal advice.