My wife and I are closing in on a status we have never achieved during our married life together – without car payment. Just a couple months after we married I leased an SUV. The lease represented one of the dumbest finance moves I’ve ever made, and has haunted us, financially, for a decade.
When the lease was up I refinanced the balance into a traditional loan, and before that loan was up I traded in the SUV and financed our current vehicle. We are now within one month of saying goodbye to car payments – forever. We plan to continue to pay our car payment to ourselves by depositing the same $310.00 we’ve been paying for our curerent vehicle into an online savings account. In a few years we’ll use what’s in savings to buy a new (used) family car and I’ll drive the old one back and forth to work. We will continue this pattern for the rest of our driving lifetimes.
The Fab Five
Early Retirement or Meaningful Work? Thought-provoking post which asks, would you rather “retire” early or continue meaningful work? To me, the question is asking, would you rather hang up your current job to spend your remaining time in an endeavor that is meaningful to you. Which begs the follow up question, why aren’t we already doing meaningful work? Like I said, very thought-provoking. (@ Brip Blap)
Five Ways to Make Laundry Day Easier. My wife recently had to tend to an ill family member, leaving me alone for a couple days with the kids. I typically help with laundry duties, but rarely do I take the lead. I was reminded why I dislike it so much over those couple days. The tips in this article remove much of the stress (and expense) from laundry days. (@ On Simplicity)
Recoup Your Lost Savings. The last time I looked at my retirement account statements I was closing in on being down 40% from the highs of last summer. Thanks to a slight rebound, I’m hoping the most recent quarterly statements will look a little better. Kiplinger has put together a helpful calculator to figure out how long it will take to get back to those high balances again. I’m still depressed. (@ Kiplinger.com)
How to Live Well on Less in Retirement. This post goes along with the theme of my favorite personal finance book, Your Money or Your Life, which emphasizes the point that you don’t need to be a multi-millionaire to enjoy a comfortable retirement. By making sacrifices early on, and living frugally both before and during “retirement,” you can live on less than you might think. (@ Get Rich Slowly)
The Best of the Rest
- 6 Job Search Tips for New College Grads
- An Amex Credit Card Bill You Won’t Believe
- 5 Practical Steps for Generating New Ideas and Insights
- New Debit Card for Teens and Parents – The Discover Current Card
- When How You Spend Determines How Much You Spend
- Cheap Summer Activities
- Four questions to help redirect your life plan toward your dream
- Save Money By Turning Off Your Television
Site of the Week
Early Extreme Retirement. I was planning to include this site in the roundup itself, but I found so many interesting posts I decided to just link to the entire blog here. Any time I feel like I am sacrificing too much I go read a post at Jacob’s blog about how he became financially independent and I quit feeling sorry for myself. This guy has made some incredible sacrifices, and I like that his ideas are outside of the normal personal finance advice box.