net worth

Do you know your net worth?

Unpaid work aside, ever wondered how much you might be worth on paper? Here's how to calculate it using just your financials.

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A woman’s net worth is seldom reflected in a financial statement, as we tend to do more unpaid and volunteer work than men on average.

According to numbers from the United Nations, women devote 1 to 3 hours more a day to housework than men.

The Financial Times reports, the gap between paid and unpaid work is highest in South Asia, where women do about 4.8 hours every day more than men. In India, women do an average of six hours of unpaid care work per day, and men do less than an hour.

The gap is much smaller in Scandinavian countries. In Norway, women spend about 3.5 hours on unpaid care work per day compared to 3 hours for men.

The smaller the gap between women and men’s time spent on unpaid care work, the wealthier the country, according to OECD research.

But if you want to grow your wealth, then you must establish how you can use your woman-hours to earn more money and get savvier with your budget to cut your expenses.

These two strategies hold so much more value if linked to something else that’s really important… and that’s your net worth.

Your net worth is your real, overall financial position. It’s that simple bottom-line sum when you add up what you own and subtract it from what you owe. Here’s how to work it out.

Calculate your assets

This includes super, shares, property, any business you own and collectibles, think art, wine and other valuables.

Your assets help secures your net worth because they are hard to uproot. If you cash them out, you’ll suffer big financial hits.

So, give them time – slow and steady wins the race –over the years, solid assets can multiply in value, compounding your earnings.

Calculate your liabilities

Your liabilities relate to the money you owe. This could be anything from credit card debt, your mortgage, an overdraft on your business – you get the picture.

So how does that interact with your overall financial wellbeing?

Let’s break it down with a profile of Joanne, a university-educated woman who lives in Sydney and owns her own apartment.

JOANNE’S NET WORTH

  • Her assets = $745,000
  • Residence: $700,000
  • Emergency fund: $5,000
  • Superannuation: $40,000
  • Her liabilities = $680,000
  • Mortgage: $630,000
  • Credit card debt: $15,000
  • Student loan: $35,000
  • TOTAL NET WORTH = $65,000 ($745,000 – $680,000)

The verdict: Joanne’s net worth is positive.

Although small it is relative to her investment in her home and education.

Her net worth can grow as she pays down her mortgage while her university degree should support career growth, salary and super that will compound decade by decade until she retires. BUT, she has a few things to watch out for.

Her emergency fund is on the low side – she needs to get it to $10,000 as soon as possible, especially as a property owner.

Over the longer term, she needs to stay focused to ensure her earning potential equates to the income she needs to find her chosen lifestyle.

Travelling in a positive direction is the most important thing to underpin your true net worth.

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