Author Topic: I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?  (Read 875 times)

texasJeff1

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I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« on: October 28, 2019, 12:33:47 PM »
Team,
I just joined the MMM Community, but I have been a fan of FIRE for some time. 
My wife and I have been married for nearly three years, but she is new/skeptical of the FIRE/MMM lifestyle.  We are VERY fortunate, in that we make a great income between us and we managed to save a nice chunk of money each month.  However, due to my wife's upbringing, she was never taught the benefit of investing.  Her and her family have always hoarded money in savings accounts, living a life of zero risk and zero reward.  Anytime she there is a risk of losing money, she is extremely against it.

With that said, she's a reasonable, intelligent, forward-looking person who just has a cultural roadblock when it comes to investing.  What steps can I take to get her onboard and show her the value of investing in order to retire in the next 15 years.

Here is our breakdown...

My salary - $140k
Hers - $120K
We save roughly $7k per month after all our expenses, $175k in savings account

Targeting 2,500,000 in 12 years (age 52).

I want her to be on board and excited, how do I accomplish this?

Best,

TexasJeff

Here4theGB

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Re: I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2019, 12:46:21 PM »
Show her what 175k invested in the S&P500 index 10 years ago would look like today?

nancyfrank232

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I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2019, 02:31:04 PM »
People make decisions based on what they perceive as a benefit to them. Not what the OP perceives as a benefit to the OP

Personally a 10 year chart of the S&P500 would be irrelevant to me. Is the person showing me the chart telling me that they can predict the future?
« Last Edit: October 28, 2019, 02:32:58 PM by nancyfrank232 »

terran

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Re: I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2019, 03:07:35 PM »
I know it's easy to not pay attention to the stickied posts at the top of the forum figuring they're just rules or something, so in case you missed it: https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/how-to-convert-your-so-to-mmm-in-50-awesome-steps/

legalstache

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Re: I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2019, 04:46:02 PM »
At least it sounds like your wife is on board with the savings part, which seems to be what most people struggle with.

Maybe try working backwards to see if you can show her the benefit of investing? For example, if your goal is 2.5M, you could try to show her how long (based on historical returns) it would take to achieve that number with your money in the market versus in a savings account. If, for example, investing cuts 10 years off your working careers, and she is interested in not working as long, maybe that would be helpful?

Another concept that it seems like people new to investing struggle with is paper losses versus actual losses. You only lock in losses when you sell investments that are down. If they're down, and you don't sell, you don't actually lose any money. This is particularly important when you're not planning to touch these investments for years anyway.

You could also explain how keeping money in savings accounts actually causes you to lose money to inflation over time.

Ideas like those seemed to help bring my wife around to investing. Like yours, she was pretty good at saving but kept her money in CDs and savings accounts and her family didn't introduce her to investing. Of course, your mileage may vary but maybe play around with those and similar ideas and see if something clicks. You could also show her some articles discussing investing versus sticking money in a savings account. 

Cpa Cat

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Re: I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2019, 04:51:22 PM »
Are there any investments that she is comfortable with?

Rental properties? Bonds? Blue Chip/dividend paying stocks?

Is she ok with keeping her money in low risk investments, such as CD's while you take on more risk, like the S&P 500 with your separate money?


dmmms

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Re: I'm on FIRE, How do I get my wife on board?
« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2019, 06:26:53 PM »
You could also look at taxes and compare how much more you "save" by investing in tax-deferred accounts like a 401k. Given your great salaries, it's quite a lot of money you are giving to the government!!