I'm co-host of the podcast Stacking Benjamins and blog at the site by the same name.
Wow! Powerful post. How much did it all cost? Have you done any cost/benefit analysis?
10 hours, 19 minutes ago on I Was A Triple-Major in College and Where it Got Me
Dude, I live in TEXAS! How do I ice skate or sled here?
Just kidding, man. Nice article. I love the ugly sweater party. I'm gonna have to steal that one.
4 weeks, 1 day ago on 5 Frugal Ways to Celebrate the Holidays
@PFUtopia That's a tough wrinkle that sidetracks many great plans (the power of love!). That's why it's important to be open about money before marriage. You can decide together how to attack the financial mountain together. Hopefully you were able to share your good habits with her!
2 months ago on How Do You Stack Up To People Your Age Financially?
@deardebt I was behind also because I invested heavily into my business. The good news: because I chose businesses well and worked hard to "build to sell," I was able to catch up quickly when I sold it a few years ago. School can be the same: if you choose subjects wisely, you could also catch up quickly.
@KyleJames1 Thanks, Kyle! I'm not a big fan of rules of thumb, but there are lots of good calculators out there. Here's what we did: start with the relative lifestyle you want in retirement (in today's dollars), use a decent inflation rate (3-5% is good) to calculate what that means after age 60. Then pick a date to die. That'll tell you how much you'll need. Run the number back to today at a reasonable rate of return based on your investment profile (8 percent is a good number for many) and that'll tell you how much you should be saving AND give you benchmarks to hit in upcoming years.
I'm looking at what I just wrote and it looks like it's complicated, but really there are calculators on many popular sites like Yahoo! Finance that'll help you do that work pretty quickly. It isn't as complicated as it looks.
@CanadianBudgetB The cool part about that realization is that you've learned from it. I know many people who've made financial mistakes and didn't learn anything (or they learned the wrong lesson altogether).
@Andrew LivingRichCheaply I love that your dad encouraged you to start early. Investing in your education will set you back ahead because you chose a career where the education needs are matched by a payoff later.
@brokeandbeau We actually are talking about that on tomorrow's podcast! For some people it isn't an expense problem (broken budget), it's an income problem.
@FrugalRules The biggest problem I had in my 20s was that I wanted to spend time reinventing the wheel for myself because I felt like I had forever. There were so many cases that I decided to take the long way rather than a short cut because "I wanted to know how it works." Now I'm looking for any help possible toward reaching my goals. If some tool can make it easier....bring it on!
@Holly at ClubThrifty Hopefully, though, someone reading this in their 20's will learn from your comment (and your blog....).
@moneystepper I'd love to see that statistic also.....AND that was the most common question in my practice: "How am I doing next to everyone else you see?" My answer was usually, "It's far more important for us to see how well you're doing vs. your goals."
That usually wasn't a very satisfying answer! ;-)
You're right on about working out. I get a huge rush on days that I have a hard workout. It's a great feeling without any of the downsides of drugs/alcohol!
Thanks for mentioning my piece. The geek in me couldn't resist asking the question: what if financial people could be superheroes? That'd liven up a topic that for some reason some nay-sayers think is "boring."
3 months, 1 week ago on The Weekly Quick Hits Roundup
@FrugalRules Agreed. In that case, it becomes management's problem. How come management isn't engaging workers during the downtime with training to do their job better? It's a waste for the company and employee.
3 months, 1 week ago on 5 Ways to Stay Busy at Work
I've worked form myself for so long that it's ingrained in me to look for process improvement and think strategically. What could I be doing right now that will advance the ball 20 yards instead of 3 (sorry for the football analogy, but it's that time of year, baby!)
This shows why priorities are so important. Once you know how much each goal costs, it's easier to prioritize. I can't believe that someone would choose to put their kids through school for $100k and completely disregard retirement. Oops.
3 months, 1 week ago on Are You Really Living Within Your Means?
Funny thing....I have a friend who went to Antarctica and said it wasn't very fun at all. In fact, she openly discouraged people from the trip because everyone got seasick on her boat, there's zero to see there, and it's a long way to go for absolutely nothing. She isn't a whiner, btw. That said....I'd still like to go ;-)
I have several trips I'd love to take, but none qualify as "once in a lifetime." There's a cool tour of castles in Scotland that's for runners. You run in a great setting every morning and then tour the rest of the day. Every day you're running mileage in the best setting they could find. There's a great bike trip right now around Yellowstone that looks awesome. I want to see King Ludwig's castles in Bavaria. A close friend wants to run the Great Wall of China Marathon, and I'd like to do it with him. Luckily, none of these trips is "once in a lifetime" expensive.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on How Much Would You Spend on a Once In A Lifetime Experience?
I wouldn't invest the money for a car in stocks or a small business. Why? Time. Most car loans are four years or less. If you're investing money in the stock market or a business with only a four year time frame, you're absolutely nuts. Historically that's way too much betting for me. You're far more likely to win if the investment is 10 years or longer.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Paying Cash for a Car versus Taking out a Loan
I'm 45. Can you get my parents to un-cut me off, Cat? That'd be awesome. ;-)
3 months, 3 weeks ago on When Did Your Parents Cut You Off?
Great tip on focusing your attention only on "must haves." When my kids were in kindergarten and first grade we piled up on all of the "recommended" supplies. Many of those sat around the house forever.....we got smarter as they aged.
4 months ago on 6 Ways to Maximize Back-to-School Savings
Another great episode, Steve. I love the analogy between investing and baseball.
The best baseball story I have: We were at a game a few years back and in the previous game we'd attended (maybe a year earlier) one of our favorite players hit a grand slam. That same player came up to bat with the bases loaded and after a couple pitches my son said, "Wouldn't it be funny if he hit another grand slam like he did a year ago?"
It happened on the very next pitch.
4 months, 1 week ago on Stay in your investing seat – MPSOS118 [podcast]