Author Topic: Case Study: Young Consultant -- should I save more or life the way I am?  (Read 2725 times)

ConsultantLife

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First about me I am a 24 year old consultant who lives with his longtime girlfriend (6 years). We split most bills 60% (me) / 40% (her). For work I travel a lot so my grocery bill can be anywhere from 50 a month to 300 a month depending on how much I am home. We do not split that expense as some times I am only home 2 full days a week. I make around 76k-80k a year depending on my bonus, but NEVER less than 76k. If I follow the common route at my company I will be making around 120k by 30 and 140k by 40.

Currently I put 20% of my pre-tax into my 401k which gets it to around 15,500 a year. I have also been maxing out my IRA every year since I was 22.
I feel like I am saving a lot, but I also know I could probably save some more. I am really looking to get an outsider perspective of where others think I am. Can I stay where I am or should I try to cut some expenses?

My main goals in life travel A LOT with my girlfriend. I make a lot of points through work so generally we fly and stay in hotels free so this is pretty simple. I also want to retire at around 50-55. If faced with it I would work 1 more extra year to live a more traveled lifestyle in retirement.

Savings:

E fund - $9k
401k - 37k
Ira- 11k

Debt:

~185k mortgage 3.75% fixed (house worth ~201k)
~14k car loan 2.64% fixed (car worth not really )important but I could easily sell it for 19k if needed, it has a 9.5 year warranty left on it and all the maintenance is covered in the loan.

Monthly Expenses:

Mortgage 750
Car 300
Internet 35
Electric 120
Cable 95
Water 20
Natural Gas 7
Hosting 10
Gas 50
Security 30
Total: 1417

Non-Monthly Expenses

Medical 50
Contacts 40
Garbage 15
HOA 40
Home 50
Car Insurance 81
Gifts 25
Car Tax 17
Pest 17
Fence 10
Amazon Prime 7
Grocery 150
Termite Warranty 8.75
Car Random 10
Total: 520.75

Spending Money 300 (some months I go over here but I make it up with bonus money)

Roth 380
Engagement Ring 175
Grand Total: 2792.75
2 paycheck income after taxes and 401k = 2800
Extra 2 paychecks a year are used for travel / e-fund
All bonus money is put into either e-fund, IRA, spending money (this is usually about 5k a year after 401k+taxes).



« Last Edit: October 07, 2013, 01:27:11 PM by ConsultantLife »

gimp

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Re: Case Study: Young Consultant -- should I save more or life the way I am?
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2013, 01:28:10 PM »
Electric, Cable, and Security jump out at me.

Electric - is 120 reasonable? I don't know your situation, but perhaps it's a bit high.

Cable - are you paying for TV? And a phone line? 95 seems high. I'd go with just internet + amazon prime.

Security - is this an actual issue? I'm of the opinion that security companies are fear-mongers and you do not need to be paying them a red cent.

ConsultantLife

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Re: Case Study: Young Consultant -- should I save more or life the way I am?
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2013, 01:36:27 PM »
The cable is an argument I have tried and lost, my SO loves TV too much.

Pest I can drop that is a good point.

I value the security because I travel a lot and it makes my SO feel safe. Plus we can check on the house cameras when we travel.

This part is going to get me a face punch. My house is 2800 sq ft so the electric is actually cheap.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2013, 01:38:14 PM by ConsultantLife »

gimp

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Re: Case Study: Young Consultant -- should I save more or life the way I am?
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2013, 01:44:39 PM »
The thing about security is that you can hack up all the things you want and then pay no monthly fee for it.

You can get a webcam for a few bucks, and pay nothing except electricity thereafter.

Also, the little flag that says "protected by x company" is probably enough of a security countermeasure.

Another good one is a dog with a deep bark.

In short, it's bloody fear-mongering, and they've won.

Also, habitual TV is shite, it really is. Can you wean her off? Netflix has a ton of shows, as does Prime. Maybe refuse to watch the stupid ones. Maybe get her into a different hobby? :) Honestly, most hobbies can be done for way less than $95/month and are much more creative...

grantmeaname

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Re: Case Study: Young Consultant -- should I save more or life the way I am?
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2013, 01:56:28 PM »
You don't need to save any more if you don't want to retire, downshift, open your own shop, or change careers until 55. But if you saved more the larger nest egg would give you a lot more flexibility for things like that.