Author Topic: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself  (Read 534247 times)

CheapTrick

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2800 on: June 01, 2016, 09:59:54 AM »
Hi! I started reading the MMM blog a few months ago. I ended up here after reading travel hacking/points blogs for a while. I'm a tech consultant, 25yo single man, living in a major US city. I gave up having a car a few months after moving here, even though I owned it, because parking and insurance were costing so much. I started a 401(k) for the first time this year, but I'm not maxing it out. I put 10% gross in at the moment. My salary jumped an enormous amount last year taking this job, after being a teacher. However, my spending also increased tremendously. Although my rent is about 20% of my gross income, my total savings rate is about 20%.

I realize from reading things here that I'm spending way too much on food (eating out wasn't something I viewed as a luxury until recently). I also spend a lot on gym membership and entertainment (concert, theatre tickets). Electronics and books are another weakness. I guess by joining this community, I'm looking for inspiration. My parents were chronically in debt, and I never want to be in the same position. I was fortunate not to have any student loans, and I never carry a balance on my CC. But staying out of debt and living slightly under my means is different from aiming to FIRE, which is what I ultimately want.

nouveauRiche

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2801 on: June 02, 2016, 04:02:40 PM »
Hi Everyone,

DH found MMM a little over a year ago via Bigger Pockets (real estate investment blog/forum) and we devoured all the articles (then waited impatiently for the next new one). 

Like many people here, I wish I'd known all this stuff at age 25.  Better late than never, I guess.

We're mid-40s and both have advanced degrees in STEM topics.  We've always been frugal - never bought a new car, no car payments since the 1990s, maxed out retirement contributions early on, lived beneath our means, etc.

Since finding MMM, we've shifted into high gear.  I didn't think there was any fat to cut but we (mostly DH) found a lot of little things.  Our plan is to be FI in Jan 2020.  We live in a high COL area.  If we were willing to move we could FIRE today. 

If MMM is reading these:  Thank you for the life-altering blog!

Lake161

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2802 on: June 02, 2016, 05:36:33 PM »
Hi everyone,

I'm 50 and one year post-FIRE. My DH and I spent the first year living overseas and testing how low we could go on our budget. Now getting ready to head back to a much higher cost-of-living in the US.   

Our new budget is about double our overseas budget, but half of our spendypants budget pre-FI. We will see how it goes.

Not looking forward to owning a car again, but not an option where we will be living (serious winter, steep mountain roads, very limited public transport). Hopefully the car just sits in the driveway the other 8 months of the year when bicycling is a more realistic option.

Next goals: find a volunteer role I love, hike more of the PCT, travel internationally, nap in the backyard hammock (not necessarily in that order).

nouveauRiche

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2803 on: June 02, 2016, 09:09:03 PM »
Hi All - have been reading for a while after a friend forwarded a post, really enjoy that i've found a bunch of people who are thinking wisely.

My biggest hurdle thus far, for the last few months - how do I actually start squeezing my spending down? I have managed to say no to large purchases I would have made before (a new truck, etc. relatively easily, but I struggle with core expenses. (Discretionary is easier, and I can manage cutting out some "luxuries" - however it ends up not being very material). My biggest expense - RENT - is hard to save on in my area...i am in the next to cheapest place I can be. Second - meals and groceries - very tough given the amount i work to eat out less (at cheaper places) and prep meals. I don't doubt that eventually I will be able to afford the flexibility to affect these expenses, but at the moment it all seems somewhat too fixed and insurmountable.

So how did you start making significant progress in cutting expenses? It's the core of making it all work, yet it's the hardest part AND I am finding little practical tactical advice...

I'm not sure how many of these apply to you but here are a few things we've done.  They are small things but they really add up.

Cut cable & negotiaged lower rate for internet
DH looked at our internet bill & realized we were paying $11/month to *rent* a modem from the cable company.  It costs $66 so we bought one and stopped renting.
Bring lunch & snacks to work
Low flow shower heads, faucet aerators, LED light bulbs
Switched cell phones from Sprint to Ting & bill was cut in half (maybe more)
Shopped for cheaper insurance
Removed collision insurance from the older car
Greatly reduced dining out and carry out
Got a cash back AmEx card that also gave us a $250 sign-up bonus
Generally paying attention and not buying junk we don't need

DieHard_772

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2804 on: June 04, 2016, 12:50:49 AM »
Hi All,

Great to be here.  I've been reading MMM for about 8 months or so now.  Before reading it
I always thought there was something wrong with me for being frugal, that frugal=cheap.  Now I finally see how
powerful it is!

I really don't know where to start so I'm just gonna dump the whole enchilada here.   I'm a bit embarrassed to
be candid here but I think it might help.

My Money:
very little debt now that I've paid of the credit cards. only $5700 in student loan at 3.5%
$700 in savings, $3000 in IRAs.
I'm self employed, I have earned over $4000 six times in the past year, which is a record for me... looking to reach $5000 soon.
However, I need to overcome some earnings hurdle, as my income has dropped down closer to $3000 recently.

My Relationship:
 I have a great relationship with my wife in most ways, there
are a couple areas we are still working out:

1) She is 23 years older than I am... and we are both just starting to save for retirement. 
2)  She and I have VASTLY different views about money... I'm a total frugal non-spender who hesitates to spend $10
on myself if it's not essential... she on the other hand, loves both earning and spending money... just bought herself a
$1000 iPad today... her 3rd iPad in 3 years!  Also, I have a $35/mo
phone plan, she has a $150/mo plan.  I drive a 92 corolla that gets good gas mileage, she drives a gas guzzler SUV.

On the bright side, we are getting better at communicating and working together about money.
we have a $400/month grocery budget that we have been following mostly successfully for over six months. Last month,
for the first time ever, we actually kept a log of ALL our money going in and out (inspired by Your Money or Your Life).

My frugality has sometimes bordered on being a cheapskate and self deprivation.  Her spending tends to be very
pragmatic, but she does spend "a lot" by some standards.  We have spent about $70-80K each year of the last
few years.  If she earns it, she tends to spend it... even with my coaxing, though
 she is starting to see things a bit differently. 

I get excited by the thought of Financial Independence, yet sometimes have struggled to produce enough
money to set myself up for it.
She is more and more sympathetic to my MMM-style dreams but is still skeptical of it.
  Sometimes I get stressed out about the choice I made to be with a woman so different than me.  But on the other hand,
we have been married for 4 1/2 years now (together for 8 1/2) and most of the time, I'm happier
than I have ever been.

That's pretty much me in a nutshell.  Recently I have been more stressed than usual because my wife left a job
recently and I am going to be taking on an extra $600 in monthly bills that she used to pay... and I'm still
working on manifesting it.

I look forward to a day when we have a big 'Stache... right now, I do what I can to grow a few whiskers at a time...

Best,
Chris
« Last Edit: November 19, 2016, 01:49:26 PM by DieHard_772 »

EsioTrot

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2805 on: June 04, 2016, 04:55:49 AM »
Hi,

I’m a 38 year old from northern England whose been lurking around the blog and the forums for about 16 months now, and thought it about time to come out of my shell. I arrived here via a YNAB posting by MMM, thinking who’s this strange guy with a moustache making crazy statements about not spending money.  Read a bit more and what do you know, it makes sense and wasn’t an alien concept to me.

I’ve always been fairly frugal but never put the money towards a specific purpose.  I work in the public sector in the UK and my pension pot works a bit different- a mix of final salary and career average earning (a proportion of salary multiplied by the number years worked).  I’ll be interested to see how that works with FIRE-the earlier you access the pension, the less you get, so I think my stash will be being put towards bridging the gap between stopping work and claiming the full pension to maximise the returns from the pot. 
 
Family wise there’s myself, my partner and a teenager who likes saving his money and spending other peoples.  It would be fair to say they’re not moustachian, but I’ve been trying to nudge them in the right direction, and I think it’s starting to pay dividends. 

The blog and forums are great inspirations, hope I can contribute further.  Looking forward to the discussions and face punches.
'How long do I have to wait for the whole bag?'

-My response to the Marshmallow test.

Richie1

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2806 on: June 04, 2016, 05:12:06 PM »
Hi there,

Originally from UK but now in Australia after 8 years in NZ. 36 married with 4 kids 10 - 2yo. We have two homes that became investment properties after we left town and are halfway through repaying them. I currently earn 180K AUD with super in mining. Wife has established herself this year as a photographer earning 30k. This was a hobby which became a part time job that works around our busy family life. current net worth is 330k but apart from the 2 mortgages everything is paid off.

We live in a boom/bust town and so we rent at 465/wk. this is down from 600/wk 2.5 years ago. Good wages but high living costs.

I was hoping someone could point me to Aussie topics that focus on growing net worth, super, tax efficiency and most importantly how to make the most of living in this great country.

Thanks


Red_Gold

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2807 on: June 04, 2016, 05:58:16 PM »

I was hoping someone could point me to Aussie topics that focus on growing net worth, super, tax efficiency and most importantly how to make the most of living in this great country.


http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/investor-alley/australian-investing-thread/ Australian investing thread in the Investor Alley forum has a lot of info and probably has links to other Aussie resources.

neverrun

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2808 on: June 06, 2016, 06:23:16 PM »
Hi I'm Jane, I'm a Generation X single working woman living outside a big city in the midwest. I expect I'll mostly lurk. 

my4fireflies

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2809 on: June 07, 2016, 07:51:21 AM »
Hi. I'm a  married mom of 4. Yes, my husband is the father of all four children. ;) We get asked that a lot??? We have a lot of debt: medical, credit card, college loans, blah blah blah.  I was unable to work for the first 15 years due to the special needs of our twins so it was always paycheck to paycheck. Now that the twins are older and healthier I've been able to secure 2 part-timejobs and i've used that income to work on digging us out of debt, over 50k.  I'm super psyched to have reduced our overall debt by 11.1K since January! 6.1K of that was CC debt. We are on point to be debt free (except mortgage) in Oct 2018, but I hope it's earlier. We plan to sell this house and move to a smaller one once the other debts are gone and some of our children move out. We are shooting at putting the house on the market in 3 years.
So got any good advice for this newbie? :)

janavcosta

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2810 on: June 07, 2016, 09:44:28 AM »
Hello, my name is Janaina (but you can call me Jana). I am 19 years old and live in Brazil.
I just found out the blog and I am really enjoying it cause I have always questioned this crazy consumist lifestyle most people live. We are stimulated to spend a lot of money in clothe, acessories, make-up and etc. So its really good to see people living in different ways.
I also like the idea of early retirement so I am learning and hope to start saving as soon as I get a job hahah
So if you also live in Brazil it would be really nice to talk and also if you are at a similar age and  "level" as me, just leave a message so we can trade experiences. Actually, it would be nice to talk to anyone about their experiences, so its really good to see this forum active :D

raygor

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2811 on: June 08, 2016, 04:21:15 PM »
Hi, I turned 50 last year, have a younger wife, and 3 boys in school (1 middle, 2 elementary). We have some 401k, but almost no savings. We have high salaries, but are in one of the most expensive areas (SF east bay), and not terribly frugal. I work in a creative field, and could probably work remotely, but not at the same wage level. Since we bought our home in 2007, we have a LOT of equity in the house. I don't feel the need to retire per se, but I would like to move to someplace cheaper and drastically reduce our expenses, so that I can work on my own projects. I'd also like to move to a place where we can afford several acres, so I can start building a homestead now while I still have my health. The problem is we live in what amounts to traditional paradise for kids, small town feel, but near big city, 10/10 rated schools within walking distance, etc. Convincing my wife that this is a good thing to do soon, while the house prices are through the roof, has been problematic. I have run some numbers, and feel confident of a couple things; I could make 50k in the first year working from home, probably more, but that's being conservative (and wouldn't require full time). We could clear at least 500k from the sale of the house after paying off mortgage and other loans. I have been running lots of numbers on this, but have not yet been able to convince my wife that this is more than enough to make a major change, and while not exactly retire, we could drastically reduce our working time. I will be scouring the forums for help with these issues. Thanks!

akzidenz

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2812 on: June 08, 2016, 09:08:07 PM »
hi all,

i'm 22 and just started my first job this year. my parents are very MMM-oriented: both immigrants, very frugal (in their late twenties, they were saving money from their graduate school stipends to send home to their parents), and have quietly invested in property for the past 2 decades. in contrast, i've been pretty profligate with spending. in high school i had a part-time job and in college i was working every summer, but i was spending most of my money on music festivals, bougie restaurants, designer fashion.

i'm not really proud of that and i want to be more responsible about my spending. i found MMM some time back but never really took it seriously. i sat down this weekend and read through the archives, and i really want to commit to this. i'm making more money now than i ever have and i don't want my lifestyle to inflate, and to get used to a casual luxury here, a casual luxury there, and start blowing all my paychecks on things that won't matter to me in a few years.

my goal for 2016 is to save ~70% of my take-home pay. lurking the forums has already been super encouraging, and i'm looking forward to reading more thoughts and wisdom from the people here

NinetyFour

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2813 on: June 09, 2016, 04:46:22 AM »
Good for you for arriving at this new mindset at such a young age!!
My Journal

Countdown to Freedom:  385 days (1 year, 20 days)

akzidenz

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2814 on: June 09, 2016, 06:37:43 PM »
thanks! honestly it'll be hard for me. i'm very attached to my current luxuries, but i'm hoping that being on this forum will remind me not to sacrifice my long-term goals. i just need to train myself to be conscious, aware, and frugal.

hikeandbike

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2815 on: June 10, 2016, 09:12:18 AM »
Just thought I'd stop in and say hello.

Ran across this site/forum while adjusting my investment portfolio and have been enjoying some of the info here and on bogleheads...has helped a lot, thanks!

I'm 46, and hope to leave the workforce for an extended time to get some outdoor living and adventures in. Planning a hike of the Appalachian Trail next year, followed by a bit of a US tour, then the plan is to tackle the Pacific Crest Trail and ride the Great Divide. All of this over the next 5 years. This will all be done with my girlfriend who loves the outdoors as much as I do.

Maybe jump back into the workforce between adventures. Maybe with my current employer, maybe not. We'll see.


I don't have a fortune amassed, but have some consistent income from a business of which I am a partner. That should be able to support us for the times we aren't working. We live pretty cheaply, and will even more while on the "road."

Anyhow, I'll post a bit more about the financials in another thread to get some feedback about if the community thinks it can be achieved...or if I'm being crazy.

So..hello. Talk soon.

AMexicanHipster

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2816 on: June 10, 2016, 12:47:49 PM »
Hello!

I'm Daniel, nice to meet you all! I'm 24 and I am from Mexico. I have a Computer Science degree, and I work as a .NET programmer.

I was introduced to MMM right this week, and it has come to me as a bucket of cold water. My personal finances are a disaster right now, but I will work to get them back on their feet, and I want to be able to share my successes with you.


See you on the forum!

englishteacheralex

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2817 on: June 10, 2016, 03:31:48 PM »
I'm Alex and I live in Honolulu with my husband and 2 year old son. I am a teacher and have lived frugally my whole life because that's just how I'm wired. I love being a teacher and have no desire to retire early, but my husband and I will probably be financially independent in about ten years (we'll be 46 by then).

Burghardt

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2818 on: June 11, 2016, 04:06:57 AM »
Hi,

i'm Stefan, 29, from Germany, and i'm currently trying to find tracks to put my life on.
I WAS a student in cybernetics/engineering, but i found courses slow/boring and saw little application to real life tasks i had envisioned for myself (robotics). I felt that university was giving students an equally low amount of interest as i ended up returning outside the 2-4 weeks per Semester i spent teaching myself in order to pass another set of what i thought were pointless exams, the courses of which i didn't visit at all after the first 5 semesters.

At the same time i was with a girl who sucked me into the life of her rich parents. Living life on a level i didn't have a taste for - big cars rushing down the Autobahn at 150mph, golf, ski, wine, fancy dinner once a week, concerts... all the negative habits of wealth, but nothing to help me become wealthy. At some point he said i'd never earn more than middl-ing 5-figures wages as employee in my field, anyway, and that didn't exactly help my already dampened motivation.

Disengaged and disheartened i didn't know what to do, didn't want to disappoint anybody and ended up doing the worst thing possible: nothing. Pretty much lost myself. Ambition, goals, passions, everything blurred and ever more distant. Helped my girlfriend finish her own degree (english literature and culture), helped out a buddy with math for his degree in CS & media.
Worked at the institute for a bit, researching computer vision for robot applications, but even there i didn't see what on earth this had to do with engineering. I was just using google, reading and programming tests of different approaches. No idea if this is the norm, but i felt like anybody could've done the job with a few weeks of training instead of 3+ years into university as was the requirement.

i drifted through life and spent my days playing video games, watching streams and looking at funny pictures of cats. For years. Until university finally decided time was up and i had not written a thesis to finish my degree with.

Currently at a real low. I don't know a single successful person. My social network is full of university dropouts and people with finished degrees in various fields who can't find jobs/work in completely different fields. I want to move to a different city and start over.
Looking at 4 potential options now to get back to studying in winter with something more suited to my goals while allowing some transfer from my previous studies, hopefully shortening the bachelors to 1-1.5years.
- engineering degree specialized for automation and robotics
- software engineering
- engineering & business
- CS & business
Until then i'm working minimum wage schlepping through the halls of a mail order business.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2016, 11:00:53 AM by Burghardt »

step-in-time

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2819 on: June 11, 2016, 11:46:24 AM »
^ Burghardt, welcome to the forum, and I commend your motivation to get back on track with your goals. Many of us have been at seriously low points before too. This forum is filled with amazingly smart, successful people willing to share their expertise where they can help. You may want to consider posting a case study for targeted advice and perhaps check out the meetup area for forum members in Germany too. Best of luck in your journey ahead!

JediSpam

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2820 on: June 11, 2016, 02:59:41 PM »
New member. Can't wait to learn about savings and early retirement

Diniecita

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2821 on: June 13, 2016, 08:45:34 AM »
Hi. I'm a bit new to forums like this. I live in rural Minnesota and we are working on biking more places. Hubby's job is about  30 mins away in the car. We love where we are, and don't plan to move. We want to retire on this property. No debt, working on paying of mortgage and then we might buy another house in the city (not THE cities, just one closer to everything.) I ride bikes with the dogs down our dirt road access. Since we have a half husky he needs the run. We've only tried to go a few places on the bikes so far. We're working on getting into good enough shape to do it more. Also, I'm currently riding a mountain bike. I'm looking at road bikes to get places faster, but they are so expensive! Anyways, that's our struggles right now. But, I feel like we're doing well. Also, I'm reading through all the old MMM blog posts right now, I'm up to mid 2012 now. I should be done by the end of the year! HA HA.
I look forward to growing an awesome mustache.
Trying to create our FI homestead for a better life.

Bicycle_B

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2822 on: June 14, 2016, 05:07:49 PM »
hi all,

i'm 22 and just started my first job this year. my parents are very MMM-oriented: both immigrants, very frugal (in their late twenties, they were saving money from their graduate school stipends to send home to their parents), and have quietly invested in property for the past 2 decades. in contrast, i've been pretty profligate with spending. in high school i had a part-time job and in college i was working every summer, but i was spending most of my money on music festivals, bougie restaurants, designer fashion.

i'm not really proud of that and i want to be more responsible about my spending. i found MMM some time back but never really took it seriously. i sat down this weekend and read through the archives, and i really want to commit to this. i'm making more money now than i ever have and i don't want my lifestyle to inflate, and to get used to a casual luxury here, a casual luxury there, and start blowing all my paychecks on things that won't matter to me in a few years.

my goal for 2016 is to save ~70% of my take-home pay. lurking the forums has already been super encouraging, and i'm looking forward to reading more thoughts and wisdom from the people here

Good for you!  You have chosen a great habit to develop for your new adventures in adult living. 

Next, I dare you to find ways to add joy to your living experiments without significant expense.  Stretch goal:  within a year, be having more fun than during your spendy period, but on less then 10% of the discretionary expense.

marion10

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2823 on: June 15, 2016, 08:32:41 PM »
I'm Marion and enjoying the blog- married and just became eligible to retire age 56-long time civil servant.  Two kids- in their 20s- who are on their own.  They both got BAs with no debt- thanks to our savings- an they seem grateful. Not sure how much longer I will keep working-we live in a high cost of living area-our property taxes are around $10,000 a year. Always been pretty frugal.

Annette

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2824 on: June 15, 2016, 08:40:59 PM »
Hi All,

My name is Annette. I am a teacher and I have 2 kids, I'm not in debt but would love to learn how to be safe financially.Looking forward to meet you all. :):)

Freshwater

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2825 on: June 16, 2016, 09:07:08 PM »
Hi everyone, I'm a long time lurker, first time poster. I was led to MMM via other frugal websites/ and an interest in downshifting - we've been living a low expense life basically forever. We had already paid off our mortgage before finding MMM so that I could downshift (ie leave my horrible corporate job) and get to do something that didn't pay as well but that I enjoyed. That worked out well at first but then a couple of years later I made the mistake of starting a business that now has me tied to working about 35-40hrs M-F, whoops. Hubby has continued to work a high paid job because he doesn't mind it but has switched to contracts.

We live in Sydney with our dog. We find ourselves in a fortunate situation in this HCOL city. Our home by the beach is paid off but is now (due to nothing more than good luck on our part) worth a small fortune after a crazy period in the property market. We also now have an almost paid off investment property, the income from which covers our essential expenses (about $25k including unnecessary private health) but no more. If we wanted to truly retire right now we could sell our house, move somewhere cheaper (out of Sydney) and invest the rest. Or we could stay here forever and pay for our fun stuff by working part time jobs. But hubby right now is having trouble finding a contract after taking a 5 month break, and to be honest, that scares me a bit, we both thought it would be more of a reliable income stream that we could turn on and off as we wanted. Which makes me think: maybe now is the time to cash in and leave.

But.... I do like our place, it's got a lovely feel about it. We'd also miss our friends (but we'd only be an hour or two away somewhere like Kiama). There's no real rush to decide, we make enough from the investment property and my business to live on and we can redraw from the almost paid off investment mortgage if there is an emergency. And as much as would like to retire, I worry that I would stay in bed all day!! 

PS Literally just got one of those phonecalls from a real estate agent asking if we want to sell up as I was typing...!

adamR18

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2826 on: June 16, 2016, 10:24:19 PM »
Hey there! Adam here.

I'm a teacher located near St. Louis, Missouri.

I pay my credit cards in full weekly, and don't have a car loan. Unfortunately, I do have a rather large student loan burden.

Started to use YNAB a year ago, and somehow wound up here.

I'm paying extra every month on my student loan, hoping to get it paid off ASAP!

Boo

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2827 on: June 17, 2016, 09:57:27 PM »
Hi. 

Mid 40's M in Ohio.  Recently divorced and split custody of 2 tween kids.

Before divorce we had no debt other than a mortgage, stellar credit, and some (not great) progress toward retirement savings.

Since separation and now divorce have made some head way getting the decrees settled (e.g. payout equity to ex-wife with re-fi) and my life and kids life going.

Refi will have a higher balance amount but a lower monthly payment due to lower rate which will help somewhat with cashflow. 

Have a car loan on a used car that I may be able to sale to pay off the loan or loose a bit.  Looking to get a used car that is more dependable and fits needs better.  Will probably be about the same monthly payment as what I have now but will be more dependable.

Have credit card debt that has mounted to 10K.  Drives me nuts since I always use to pay it off but attorney fees and other expenses have driven it up.

Child support and alimony are really hurting but taking it one step at a time.  One thing I've done in the interim is cut back on my 401K so I have cashflow so debt is not increasing as much.  I'm at 80% loan to value so I cannot put debt on home equity line to get the tax break.  Not sure if I should put the debt on a low intro rate credit card of 1.9% for 18 months and see how far I can get. 

Really trying to figure what to do now.  Scratching my head with the finances while trying to stabilize the kids, home, life, etc.

Thanks


SouleroXT

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2828 on: June 20, 2016, 09:46:43 AM »
So yeah, just found this place of reddit, and was curious about a few things: (BTW, live in South Carolina)

1. How badly screwed am I (19, no debt, only have 190 USD saved for a car fund) I plan on going to a local community college, and possibly snagging a business degree as I was told CA degrees are crap early on, and a business degree would help teach me how to learn to run a kitchen. (although if you guys have better ideas, I'm open to them.)

2. Should I try and work towards a 3 month emergency fund, then slowly build it up from there instead of rushing a 6 month emergency fund?

3. After the emergency fund goal is reached, do you guys have any ideas on how to best boost my income as much as possible? (keep in mind I will most likely be making meh wages due to a starting position in the restaurant biz, so any tips on stretching my dollar is appreciated!)

4. Anyone know what would be considered a decent living wage in SC? Dad makes about 45K~ or so a year, and it keeps food on the table/plus being able to eat out now and again with another person (thats me.) Anyhow, assuming I made that much, would I be able to use it more efficiently? I plan on having no kids + living in a small apartment once I move out.

Anatidae V

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2829 on: June 22, 2016, 04:14:06 AM »
SpuleroXT, you seem to be in a fine position for a 19yo! Might be worthwhile posting in Ask A Mustachians for tailored help :)

Sydneystache

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2830 on: June 22, 2016, 05:04:24 AM »
Hi everyone, I'm a long time lurker, first time poster. I was led to MMM via other frugal websites/ and an interest in downshifting - we've been living a low expense life basically forever. We had already paid off our mortgage before finding MMM so that I could downshift (ie leave my horrible corporate job) and get to do something that didn't pay as well but that I enjoyed. That worked out well at first but then a couple of years later I made the mistake of starting a business that now has me tied to working about 35-40hrs M-F, whoops. Hubby has continued to work a high paid job because he doesn't mind it but has switched to contracts.

We live in Sydney with our dog. We find ourselves in a fortunate situation in this HCOL city. Our home by the beach is paid off but is now (due to nothing more than good luck on our part) worth a small fortune after a crazy period in the property market. We also now have an almost paid off investment property, the income from which covers our essential expenses (about $25k including unnecessary private health) but no more. If we wanted to truly retire right now we could sell our house, move somewhere cheaper (out of Sydney) and invest the rest. Or we could stay here forever and pay for our fun stuff by working part time jobs. But hubby right now is having trouble finding a contract after taking a 5 month break, and to be honest, that scares me a bit, we both thought it would be more of a reliable income stream that we could turn on and off as we wanted. Which makes me think: maybe now is the time to cash in and leave.

But.... I do like our place, it's got a lovely feel about it. We'd also miss our friends (but we'd only be an hour or two away somewhere like Kiama). There's no real rush to decide, we make enough from the investment property and my business to live on and we can redraw from the almost paid off investment mortgage if there is an emergency. And as much as would like to retire, I worry that I would stay in bed all day!! 

PS Literally just got one of those phonecalls from a real estate agent asking if we want to sell up as I was typing...!

Welcome fellow Sydneysider!

Don't sell your Sydney pad, keep it. If you want to move to Kiama, buy a second home and see if Kiama suits you. Use it as a weekender. The last thing you want to do is sell your Sydney place and not be able to buy back in. We have a second home/weekender on the north coast and my neighbours (mostly Sydneysiders) have a Sydney pied a terre to come to eg medical, education, family, friends etc.

The seachangers who are unhappy have sold off all their Sydney assets and given the prices now, are pretty much stuck on the coast and the not so pleasant aspects of it: unemployment, lower wages, drugs, bikies etc. the seachangers who have adjusted well have largely involved themselves in the community which we hope to emulate down the track.

The NBN is now in the process of being rolled in the north coast but won't count on it until say 10 years down the track to see if it is really viable income wise.

You seem to have good plans but at least keep a Sydney option eg downsize and build your dream home in the south.

Best of luck! It is good to have options living in this traffic rage roid city! Our north coast home is our weekend escape :-)

MousyMo

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2831 on: June 22, 2016, 10:24:23 AM »
Hi!
Longtime Lurker here!

I don't remember how I wandered on this site. Glad I did.

Love reading posts on financial ah-ha moments! Love reading life stories/work stories.

As for me, DINK couple, Scientist/Engineer, great health, frugal enough-ish, comfortable living.

Itching to get out of the comfort zone. Just don't know how yet.

Still searching.

~ MousyMo

MoneyGoneRogue

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2832 on: June 23, 2016, 04:04:17 AM »
Hey there,

Long time reader - first time writer! Come from Australia - learnt a lot from the site, very inspiring.

mynewchoice

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2833 on: June 24, 2016, 09:38:06 PM »
Greetings everyone!

Thought I would jump in here with a little introduction as well.  Our family consists of myself (40) and my wife (I know better) and our two boys who are in high school--they will be a senior and sophmore this coming school year.  When I graduated college I had plenty of student loans and credit card debt, which I paid off as I became an avid reader of The Motley Fool.  Once the debt had been eliminated, I had my first introduction to the concept of FIRE (and had even started a blog about it, too bad I never did as well with at as MMM otherwise my story would be quite different) but I didn't truly adopt that lifestyle to get there.

Since that time, I have had the thought that we were doing okay.  We could be doing better but we were saving and chugging along.  I read a thread here on the forums and someone wrote something that really struck home with me.  It was a line that said this person thought they were doing okay because they didn't have any credit card debt and everything was paid off every month.  That has been the exact mentality that I have had for too long now.  As I have put together my new path to FI spreadsheet, courtesy of the amazing template shared by IndyPendent and WeinerDog, it was a facepunch moment as I realized how much better we could be doing.

I am working on introducing MMM concepts into our family slowly as I know there will be some resistance in certain areas, but full support in other areas.  Today I returned our cable modem to Comcast as I finally bought one of my own--talk about a foolish monthly expense when you can be in the green after 6-12 months with your own modem.  We are close to pulling the plug on DirecTV, although I would like to get an antennae before I do so I can get the local channels reliably for when football season arrives.  I have a motorcycle, antique car, and an old car that was my grandma's that I am planning to put into storage (i.e. post on CraigsList) and start to declutter.

It is so encouraging to be among so many like-minded people on this journey, and I look forward to learning from and sharing with so many of you in the future.

Thanks,
mnc

Simple _Socrates

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2834 on: June 27, 2016, 04:46:59 AM »
Hi everyone, signed up a few days ago, got here via a "art of manliness" archive pod cast. Love the site and the idea of frugality. I started on the path to debt freedom a few months ago after struggling to pay down debts left over from a failed business I owned. I'm going to use the ideas here to accelerate the process. If there are any Uk/Ireland posters that have journals can you point me to them please.

Rickardo

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2835 on: June 28, 2016, 04:58:01 AM »
Hi all. I am really happy to be here :) I used to be in a lot of debts before but not anymore.I have cleared all that out.But still I would like to be safe.Looking forward to read a lot of great posts and ideas :)

ptobeast

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2836 on: July 17, 2016, 09:24:52 PM »
Hello!

I stumbled across this site a couple days ago when I was doing a skim of financial sites. Been trying for awhile to find a retirement calculator that didn't assume you will always spend a certain % of your salary, and this website finally gave me answers on that subject. Been crushing through all the blog posts this weekend, and figured I would give the forums a try.

Anyhow, I'm 36, in a relationship with a man who is frugal, I have no debt, and have the start (but still a ways to go) of decent savings. I've always been pretty good with money, but past bouts of underemployment and spendthrift exes have kept me from being where I'd like to be. High hopes for the future though - I've finally worked my way into a decent situation in the tech world, and will be relocating from the Bay Area to Denver, which will make my wallet much happier!

I've got some decent frugal habits - really like to cook, prefer shopping for clothes at thrift stores, like to walk and bike places instead of drive if I can - but I've got some weaknesses as well (online shopping as a mood lifter, an addiction to sushi) that I need to work on. Also need to work on better understanding the stock market, index funds, what to keep in savings verses invest, etc. I love the idea of financial independence - I am a creative person and would love the time to focus on art and writing without the 40 hour a week job sucking the energy out of me - I just need to work on the best path to get there for myself. Looking forward to learning more great tips on here!

KayoticSully

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2837 on: July 18, 2016, 11:14:26 AM »
Hello Everyone!

I found MMM about a year and a half ago, and have been lurking on the forums a bit. It is overdue that I say hi and introduce myself!

I'm a 26 year old software engineer and just married the love of my life two months ago!  Due to where we both grew up our wedding was quite expensive... However, it was this crazy event and trying to afford it that drove me to seek out MMM.  I am very grateful for everything this site and forum has introduced me to, from the idea of FI to Stoicism.  The past year and a half has been quite a journey and I can't believe the progress I have made.  Even my own mental shift and how I view money now vs then has surprised me.  That said I (we) have a LONG way to go. I'm sure I will eventually convert my wife over to the MMM way of thinking.  Shes actually pretty frugal already, but does have some expensive tastes, haha.

I'll see everyone around!

« Last Edit: July 18, 2016, 11:15:57 AM by KayoticSully »

Investmenthunting

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2838 on: July 18, 2016, 04:06:48 PM »
Hi everyone,

I'm Nathan. Long-time reader of MMM. I finally joined the forum today. I'm a 40 something who lives in the SF Bay Area. I have two teenage children, 18 and 15. I look forward to interacting with this forum. I also blog about my own personal finance journey over at Investment Hunting. http://www.investmenthunting.com/. You can learn more about me and my journey here http://www.investmenthunting.com/about/, if your interested.

dignam

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2839 on: July 19, 2016, 08:03:33 AM »
Hi all - my first post!  I've been lurking for a while and figured it was time to join the fray.

Background: 30 year old guy, not married, no kids, work in the IT sector.  I have probably one of the most expensive hobbies possible: I'm a pilot.  That will be something I continue to wrestle with since I love aviation, but I also want to be FI soon (I think I used the acronym correctly ;) ).  Counting home equity from my rental property, my NW is around the $75k range.

I have one really stupid debt (car loan @ 3%).  That is my current target for paydown.  Besides that, a little over $10k in student loans, and my mortgage.  I rent, but am a landlord and lease my house to a family (rental income covers mortgage payment).

I've never paid a cent in credit card interest and will never ever do it.  Credit is excellent (just shy of 800).  I'm at the point now where I need to start slashing the spending: the big one is food/drink.  No more daily $5-$10 runs to the cafe.  Eat out less, cook at home more.  I'm about 6 miles from work and my car is fuel efficient so not much to gain there.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2016, 09:57:04 AM by dignam »

CGSLI

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2840 on: July 20, 2016, 12:55:32 PM »
Hi all,

My first post! From the Netherlands, so a new Dutch Mustachian over here. Have read a lot on the blog and thought it was time to register over here. Am working currently in the Netherlands, but plans are to work across the border, so maybe i'm joining the Americans in a few years, since the company i'm working for is based in the Boston area.

Have a girlfriend, who has the same mindset as I have. We are renting a nice apartment over here. Net worth now about € 10k, but planning to double that in the next months and save more every month. I'm going far to save some extra, some examples of what i did / what i plan to do:
- Showering cold -> main reason was my health
- Selling my motor and buying a cheaper one which is more reliable -> this one gives lot of concerns with maintenance and every month unexpected costs
- Already denounced a lot of unneccesary subscriptions and insurances

I'm already biking to work, since it's only 3 km's from my apartment. Hope to end this year with a savingsrate of around 55% from March on, since that's my starting date for getting Mustachian. When my girlfriend finally get's her self-employed business running I hope that this can increase to around 65% and that I'm able to start my own business, next to my daily job.

Net income every month for myself only is € 2600 :)

bajabound

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2841 on: July 20, 2016, 01:35:20 PM »
Greetings!  We are Mr. and Mrs. Seeks - aka Bajabound.  We are Idahoans but are temporarily living in Washington making some serious moola.  We are in our mid 60's and will retire in three years, actually 2 years, 11 months, 7 days, 11 hours and 59 minutes, but we aren't counting.

We have two grown children and thanks to them we have three beautiful granddaughters; 19, 14 and 4. 

We own a house in Idaho, a house in Washington and a casita in Baja, Mexico.  Our plan is to sell the house in Washington and buy another house in Idaho when we retire.  We will be able to pay cash for the house (it is our mother's house.) When we retire we will be debt free.  We plan to live six months in Idaho and six months in Baja.  We own an acre of sand and cactus on the Sea of Cortez near the bottom of the Baja.  It is paradise and cheap to live there.

We are using the snowball plan to pay off our bills.  Here is how that works if you don't know:
First, you have to have an extra amount of money you can put as an "accelerator amount (AA)."  Say that AA is $500.00.  You take your AA and add it to the payment for one of your debts.  So if my debt payment (DP) is $300.00, I now make a payment of $800.00 a month (AA+DP).  It will pay off fast.  Once that is paid off, you take the AA ($500.00) and the DB you aren't paying anymore ($300.00) and you apply that amount ($800.00) to the next debt; say your payment is $200.00, so now your new AA is 800.00.  So your payment on the debt is the AA+200.00= $1000.00 per month on that debt.  You do the same thing over and over until everything is paid off.  It's a great way to pay off houses, cars, boats, campers, everything.

I hope this information will help someone.

I wanted to say thank you to Mr. and Mrs. MMM for sharing your life and such great ideas.  We plan to glean as much as we can.

God bless ~ Mrs. Seeks
Life's a beach!

pwcfan

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2842 on: July 20, 2016, 04:39:16 PM »
Noob here..........interesting topics & responses here.
The wife and I are in our late 50's, and cannot wait to retire.
We learned as youngsters that we had NO rich relatives and have saved a bunch since our early 20's.
We own our home, est value $600k, have $1.3M in 401k's and prox $200k in other assets.  No other debt.
We feel like we are getting close......
We live within our means.  We have 2 5-10 year old cars, max our our 401k's, old clothes.........we enjoy saving $$.  I commute via bike.
You all make me jealous !!
We will keep coming back here to see what you all are discussing and try and figure out how close we are to FIRE.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2016, 05:02:01 PM by pwcfan »
So Cal born & bred.  I can hardly wait to get the heck outa here

AdaBeansonFire

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2843 on: July 24, 2016, 10:16:46 AM »
Hi! I'm Mary. Found MMM about 9 months ago and am hooked. Started getting serious this month and am aiming for FIRE by 2019. Husband is on board now too.

JohnRL

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2844 on: July 24, 2016, 05:21:35 PM »
Hi-

I'm John, I live in Staten Island NYC and work in heavy construction in manhattan.
300k+ NW and no debts besides a small car loan. (worst car i've owned so far but love to drive)
Been reading since december. Finally joined the forum to respond to a topic and help a member, have a lot of questions and hope to ask them in the relevent areas in the coming weeks.
Ive been thinking about early retirement for years but always thought it was 10+ years out and not 1-3! (could've been sooner had a not waisted a lot of money over the years)

Guess I'll be sticking around awhile.

kiva822

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2845 on: July 27, 2016, 02:03:33 AM »
Hi

New here and introducing before really diving in.  Wife and I in our early/mid 40's but with twin 5 year olds (we got started late).  This situation gives life / the concept of FI a unique twist, to say the least.

We found YNAB about a year ago and sooooo bummed we didn't have something like that before.  Trying to decide where we fit into the MMM 'model'; i am more frugal than the Mrs., so that's always an item of discussion...

Current situation is no 'bad' debt (e.g. revolving or credit card). Bought a new family car late last year (which we will drive until the wheels fall off) which was financed for 5, but should be paid off within 2 years.  I have a student loan that has $17k and 9 years left.  Mortgage on primary house as well as rental.  Rental is self-sustaining / pays it's own maintenance and I want to start investing the profits. 

I think I will first start looking around here for investment advice, as our 403b of 100k is with American Funds and we just started a Roth IRA as well as another Roth (only about $5k each now). 529's for the kids.   I think our investment strategy may be a bit off / could be more efficient, so I'm looking to read more there. 

I guess that's it for now....will be interesting to see what we learn / take on here...

MrRealEstate

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2846 on: July 27, 2016, 02:35:37 AM »
Modesto, CA resident. 25YO. Engaged.

Real Estate Agent
Production Supervisor for KraftHeinz
Landlord
Production Supervisor/Equipment Operator for family's hay harvesting company

Kraft Heinz job is by far the least favorite, but it's the most consistent paycheck. I had a family friend who works as a manager here and is close to retiring but couldn't find anyone to take care of the computer work so I'm helping out. It's interesting to learn how the processing of food occurs so it's a nice job, but the most time intensive.

Living off 45% of the Kraft Heinz salary and a little rental income. Real Estate income helps buy new rental properties and pay down stupid debt(bout a house with 10% down, but the net cost of my PITI is $61 since it has a rental on the property, and a truck loan I got when I graduated 3 years ago( double face punch, but the truck is typically loaded down with a diesel tank, air compressor, and tool box over the summer for the hay harvesting company.) Also paid off my fiance's scion TC loan to set us up well for our marriage in a few months.

I can definitely feel the freedom of FI since I could survive if something happens to the Kraft Heinz jobs. My coworkers always get worried about performance reviews, but they also have new mercedes and corvettes.

celine31

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2847 on: July 27, 2016, 09:34:52 AM »
Well hi everyone!
I'm Céline, 31 year old and I currently live in Ireland.
I've been following the blog and board for a while but finally decided I'd like to join you guys and participate.
I've recently moved from London(after 8 years) to Cork which I think is the biggest financial decision of my life. I did love London but everything was just too expensive and I ended up spending way more of my savings than I wanted, even though I was working freelance.
I now work for Apple here in work and I'm planning to save up to half my salary and possibly buy a house in a couple of years if I can manage to save enough for a deposit.
I also downloaded a program to keep track on my spendings and it has proving to be very efficient, I guess there's something that happens in your brain when you see all your spendings in a big pizza shape circle with different colours, it allows you to see things very clearly I guess.
Anyway, I'm happy to be here and looking forward to participate in your discussions!

Channel-Z

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2848 on: July 27, 2016, 09:57:16 AM »
I've lurked for a while. So, I might as well introduce myself.

I live in the Kansas City area, which is like having an economic cheat code. Skilled people can find good-paying jobs here and the cost of living is still reasonable. I turn 40 this year, no wife, no kids, just a rickety car.

I've never made a lot of money, so I've been living the saver/less-is-more lifestyle for a long time. The result is about $170,000 in cash and an extremely small retirement fund (never had much to put away in the early years). It's unlikely I'll ever be able to retire. But I hope to learn a few tricks to simplify my life as much as possible.

moof

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Re: Say Hi and Introduce Yourself
« Reply #2849 on: July 27, 2016, 05:28:08 PM »
Moof here.  Been lurking a bit. Thought I was doing pretty good, and I am by comparison to the average american, but feel I have been remiss now that I have seen how far a little more discipline goes.

Currently 39, wife, kid.  3 cars, but just $2k total car debt.  No credit card balances in years.  I was targeting mid 50's to retire, which seemed great till I realized I could possibly pull that in before I hit 50.  Currently sitting on $0.5 M in retirement accounts.  My own number is about $1.3M to feel comfortable cutting myself loose.

Currently I am saving a little more than 25% of my gross each year.  I am struggling to benchmark that properly given taxes and such.  Even doing my homework I struggle with properly weighting those effects between 401k's, Roth's, etc.

I grew up frugal (single parent, welfare, etc), but let things slide as I saw big paychecks come in.  I never questioned the save 10% mantra, wishing now I had kept it at 20% all along.  Luckily I have never racked up any real debt.  I used to freak out my girlfriend (now wife) by always carrying a few hundred in cash.  She never had that much spare, but it helped me stay disciplined.  I have let a lot of little things slide under the mantra of a happy wife is still cheaper than a divorce.  I need to work on getting us both on the same page better for not wasting so much money (or not being so damn cheap as she would counter).  Good times.