My girlfriend and I spent the past two weeks completing a personal finance course called Financial Peace University. This course is put on by Dave Ramsey, one of the most well-known personal finance experts. It was a course that included 9 one-hour lessons, each with their own homework assignments and takeaways. Since my girlfriend and I were raised quite differently in regards to money, we’ve often struggled to talk about it. She characterizes her feelings about money with words like greed, ego and shame while I often use words like freedom, opportunity and options. With these two differing mindsets, we thought it’d be useful to go through a course together that would provide us with a common background of knowledge on the topic. After completing the course, there’s a lot we both learned and found beneficial but there were a few items in Dave’s courses… Read More
I live in one of the richest countries in the world. The United States economy has made it possible for almost anyone to earn millions of dollars over their lifetime. Although difficult, it’s possible to save a million dollars even while living on minimum wage. Despite this fact, 78% of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. This means if they didn’t receive their next paycheck, they’d have to leverage debt to fund their lifestyle. Let me say this again. Nearly everyone in the United States earns millions of dollars over their lifetime but about 78% of those same people can barely afford to live for a week. How is this possible and why does money even matter? I’ll get to these questions in a bit… Read More
Throughout all of college I focused on learning, athletics and visiting my family. I never really thought about the cost of my meal plan, apartment and education. I assumed like most, that this is what college was and what everyone did. You focus on your schooling, interests and social life while allowing all of your expenses to be put on loans or some sort of debt. Eventually, when you got a job after college, everything would work itself out and your job would easily pay back all the accumulated debt. Well, 150 thousand dollars later, it turns out that almost any job would make paying back this amount of debt quite difficult. And, with a ~7% interest rate, that meant my debt was growing by around $10,500 a year. That meant, I needed to pay $10,500 each year just to keep my debt from growing. Wow… that realization shocked me. But, great lessons from my parents and education had taught me to be a problem solver and to see challenges as opportunities. With that mindset instilled in me, I put together an aggressive plan that helped me pay back all my debt within 6 years. And now, I’m using that same plan to invest and grow my wealth each month… Read More
The following steps are the steps I’ve used, and continue to use for investing. Each time I have money available, I determine which step I’m at and put the money in the respected account. I’ve used this strategy to prepare for emergencies, pay off $150,000 of debt, and grow my net worth to a substantial figure by 28 years old. Although your situation may be different, I believe this is the best order for most people to invest their money… Read More
With the holidays around the corner, I thought I’d come up with a list of my favorite gift ideas that’ll help make you happier and healthier. Each idea is intended to help optimize your fitness, nutrition, sleep, cognitive health, or financial independence. I also focused on products or services that’ll have lasting benefits and aren’t the typical use once, and throw in the closet gifts. I hope you find benefit in these ideas and I’m excited to know which one’s are your favorite! Let’s get to it… Read More
In my journey to financial independence, I found Step 7: Strive to be Debt-Free was the hardest for me. With tens of thousands of dollars owed in student loans, it took me a long time and a lot of stress before I became debt free. But, once I finally completed that step, I was ready to stop throwing my money at loans, and to start throwing it at investments. This became and still is very exciting for me. With loans, I didn’t have many better financial options other than paying down the loans. Now that I had become debt free, I could do anything that I wanted with my money… Read More
We’ve come to what may be the hardest step of all. But, it can also be the most rewarding. Maxing out your 401k. You’ll want to make sure your personal finances are in order before you start this step. That means making sure you’ve followed my first five steps to financial freedom closely. Now, let’s get on to creating a multi-million dollar retirement fund… Read More
What most people don’t know, is that a HSA can be an incredibly powerful investment vehicle. If you’ve completed the following steps, and have a HSA account, this post details why and how you should maximize and grow your HSA. Step 1: Building a Proper Emergency Fund. Step 2: Get Your Employer Match (401k). Step 3: Pay Off High Interest Rate Debt Fast. Step 4: Max Out Your Roth IRA… Read More
Have you ever gotten back from vacation and felt exhausted? Like you need a vacation from your vacation. Have you ever gotten back from vacation and been in shock by your trip’s costs? Like you didn’t realize eating out for every meal and paying for every amenity wouldn’t add up. Have you ever gotten back from vacation and lost track of all your goals? Like your vacation ended your diet and workout plan that you were doing so well at.
Well, vacations don’t have to be like that. I just got back from my first vacation this year, and with some thoughtful planning and great support, I can say I vacationed right. I feel refreshed and excited to get back to work. I spent what I had budgeted so I have no stress and am ready to start saving for the next. I maintained my nutrition and fitness goals. And, I’m super happy with the experience.
In this post, I’ll detail the things I did that made my vacation successful.… Read More
If you’re on step 4, you’re doing pretty well. You’ve built a proper emergency fund, are receiving an employer match, and have paid off all your high interest rate debt. Now, you’re ready to start investing in your future. It’s time to open a Roth IRA and max it out. This will provide you with additional emergency funds if you need it, but more importantly, a retirement that’ll make you feel more than comfortable… Read More