2019 – Paid Off $96,000 Debt & Increased Net worth by +$140,000

Woohoo! Looking back at 2019, what a year it was! The year my wife and I got on the same page about money, got on the same page about our health, took our heads out of the sand, and executed a plan with amazing results.

We didn’t start 2019 with the expectation of paying off all our consumer debt or changing our health around. There were no “new year resolutions” of “losing 10 pounds” or “paying off the car”. No, those “resolutions” never worked for us, the drive and determination would always quickly fade by the end of January.

We were already “aggressively” paying off our debt, but the timeline of being “debt free” was still 5 years out, we were looking at the year 2023! The debt burden was taking a negative toll on our health, almost suffocating us if you will. We thought we were doing it right too, save a little money here, invest a little money there, pay off more than the minimum on the monthly debt payments. The slowwww grind, because that’s just the way it had to be. At the time, we had over $60,000 in student loans, and around $30,000 in auto loans remaining.

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My wife and I were not yet on the same page about money either, there was no budget to refer to, no automated financial systems in place. No hard number of our total debt. One was a spender and the other a saver. So what happened?

A random Dave Ramsey YouTube video changed it all in late January 2019. This single video was the spark that made us have a serious discussion about our finances. This video literally changed our lives and our financial futures forever. You would think if that video had such an impact on us, I would remember it. I don’t! Ha! (We’ve watched hundreds since then). I think the message we took from it was that we weren’t alone, there were hundreds, thousands, even millions of people just like us trying to dig their ways out of debt. The “baby steps” that Dave recommends gave us a blue print to follow. Did we follow it to a “t”? No, but it was a jumping off point.

The discussion we had that night was hard for both of us. I grew up in a single parent household were money was a not always plentiful, so as an adult I viewed having money in the bank as a “comfort blanket” against struggle, against job loss, against being vulnerable. So when it came to executing Dave Ramsey’s baby step of having only “$1000” in an emergency fund and throwing everything we had at the debt it terrified me. $1000? Ha! A car repair or an issue with the house or god forbid a health issue could easily wipe out a $1000 in a blink of an eye. It felt like standing on a diving board above a pool and being afraid of heights.

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We took the plunge. We took our savings, liquidated our taxable investment account, tax refund, bonuses, and as much of our paychecks as we could while still being able to “keep the lights on” and “being able to eat” and threw it at our debt with vigor.

Throughout 2019, we posted entries that highlighted bits and pieces of our plan, and the thoughts behind it…

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Getting on the same page with your significant other is the bedrock of our success. If one is a saver and the other is a spender, neither having limits, you won’t succeed. Most folks see talking about money as a taboo but you need, need, NEED to have that tough conversation in order to succeed.

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We developed the 35/45/20 rule that gave a framework that was different than the average run of the mill 50/20/30 rule that you hear so much of. After ridding ourselves of our consumer debt, we quickly went at increasing our emergency fund. Which came in handy when an unexpected medical event and auto repair took place in late 2019.

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Paying off debt instead of investing outside of our retirement accounts was a massive moment for us. We didn’t follow Dave Ramsey’s advise here by stopping contributions to our retirement accounts, we thought the negative implications such as increasing our income tax liabilities and the mental effort of re-starting contributions again was too much of a risk. We actually went in the complete opposite direction, MAXING out our retirement accounts! This allowed us to also enjoy the stock market rise of 2019.

We developed a fancy excel sheet that tracked our net-worth and monthly expenses which became an exciting moment every month were we came together to see our progress. We made some free printables this year for others to start on their journey as well.

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One of the many positive side effects of ridding our debt was the ability to focus on our health. Instead of going out to eat a few times a week, we decided to consistently cook at home, making large and healthy batches of chicken, vegetables, with rice or pasta. We were able to find a local instructor lead fitness center that we were more readily able to afford, and over the course of the year we were able to lose 70 lbs combined! Improving our blood pressure, increased our tolerance to stress, and shrunk our waistlines!

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We are excited for 2020, we plan to continue to follow the 35/45/20 rule, and focusing on our health. Here’s to the new year!

Remember, we are not financial advisers and are merely sharing our experiences. 

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

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2019 Stock Picks In Review

Wow, 2019 started with a whimper and appears to be ending with a bang! There was doom and gloom in the air, with the threat of recession looming in December 2018. Federal Rate inversions were happening, high yield savings accounts were approaching 2.5%. The sky was falling. Fast forward to December 2019 and the champagne is flowing. “One of the best yearly returns of the S&P 500 since the Great Depression!”

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Now if you are a prefect market timer and were able to get out of the market in late Sept 2018 and THEN jumped back in the beginning of 2019, you are looking pretty with a “28% gain” in the S&P 500.

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Now, if you are like most folks… there is a good chance you were invested in an index fund tracking one of the major indices like… the S&P 500 and it was more likely you road the wave, achieving an 11% gain since the September 2018 peak. Yes your retirement account statement is showing a great year to date return but sometimes you need to step back and look at the big picture when you hear Bob from accounting exclaim his 401k is up 25% this year!

2019 was full of opportunities to buy great companies at crazy low valuations compared to their historic norms.

Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. – Warren Buffett

We focused primarily on what we know and understand the best, cyclical “tech” type companies. Namely companies focused in…

  • Mobile devices
    • Smart phones, laptops, tablets
  • Computer components
    • Processors
    • Memory chips
    • Graphics cards
  • Internet focused companies that have a large probability of scale
    • Cloud storage/solutions
    • Online merchant storefronts
    • Online advertising
    • Cyber security solutions

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Lets see how we did looking back on our portfolio performance for 2019.

Company Ticker Percentage Gain/Loss Purchase Month
Advanced Micro Devices AMD 62% August
Apple APPL 80% January
CVS CVS 19% February
CyberArk CYBR 20% September
Google GOOG 25% January
Micron MU 60% June
Nvidia NVDA 40% July
Shopify SHOP 35% October
Splunk SPLK 25% June
The Trade Desk TTD 50% June
Zillow ZG 40% September
Average return 41%

Will the good times flow into 2020? Who knows! How was your 2019?

Remember, we are not financial advisers and are merely sharing our experiences and make no recommendations to invest in any of  the above mentioned securities. 

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

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Be Above Average – Steps to Increase your Net Worth

What is the best way to check your financial health?

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Your credit score? Blah! No, that’s just the banks way of grading on how well you handle your debt addiction.

You can have a credit score of 850, paying your bill every month on time, collecting those HUGE cash back allowances… and be broke with zip, nada, in your checking and saving accounts. No matter how much you see it advertised every day by the likes of Credit Karma and the like. Remember, when something is advertised, its because there is money to be made on YOU, not to help you. So, no, not your credit score.

Something the financial industry is not shoving in your face everyday is your net worth.

Your net worth is the best way to evaluate your financial health.

So what is your net worth then? In layman terms… your net worth is the difference between your assets and liabilities.

An asset is anything of value that can be converted to cash. Think, a home with positive equity, rental properties, businesses, stocks, bonds, savings, checking accounts, etc.

A liability is typically something that you owe to somebody else. Think, credit card debt, student loans, auto loan, home mortgage, personal loans, etc.

Net Worth = Assets – Liability

So what is yours? You can figure it out easily by trying out our free net worth health check printable in our new Free Downloads section.

Where do you stand?

So are you worth something? Or are you sitting in the red?

In accordance to a study performed by NerdWallet and reprinted by MarketWatch earlier this year the median and average net worth by age is below:

  • Under 35: Median net worth: $11,000 (average net worth: $76,000)
  • 35-44: $59,800 ($288,700)
  • 45-54: $124,200 ($727,500)
  • 65-74: $224,100 ($1,066,000)
  • 75+: $264,800 ($1,067,000)

I personally would not compare myself against the “average” numbers as they can be skewed heavily by your millionaire/billionaire buddies, think the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world.

Don’t worry, no matter where you are in your financial journey there are always ways and time to improve your standing.

Live Below Your Means

You hear this one all the time, but are you actually doing it? Are you living paycheck to paycheck? Are you keeping up with the Jones down the street, you know, the ones who are maxing out their 5, 6, or 7th credit card buying that new iPhone?

Do you know where your money is going? If you don’t, give our Free Monthly Budget printable a try to see where your hard earned dollars are going.

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After writing everything down, give it a a real hard look. What are your biggest culprits? Are you spending too much on going out to eat every night? Is that cable bill outrageous? How much are you paying every month for that new car?

If you want to see where you can cut back on your current expenses head on over to our Ultimate Budget Guide to learn some tips and tricks.

Attack your debts!

If you want to turbo charge increasing your net worth PAY OFF THAT DEBT. Any debt you have is acting like a vampire on your finances, constantly sucking money out of your pockets in  the form of interest payments. Every time you pay off a debt your basically paying your future self in saved interest payments, with a guaranteed return.

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For example, we paid off over $160,000 in student loans in a 4 year span, about $60,000 this year alone. If we did the normal payment schedule we would be handing Sallie Mae almost $10,000 in interest a year! Now that money is going back into our investments and savings, turbo charging our net worth.

““Whatever interest rate you have — it might be a student loan with a 7 percent interest rate — if you pay off that loan, you’re making 7 percent. That’s your immediate return, which is a lot safer than trying to pick a stock or trying to pick real estate, or whatever it may be,”

Mark Cuban (Billionaire)

Automate Your Savings

One of the easiest ways to remove the temptation of spending your paycheck the second its pay day is by automating where you money goes. Take out the worry of trying to save X dollars every pay check. Have your paycheck automatically send money to your savings or investing accounts.

Give your paycheck a purpose! Take a look at our 35/45/20 rule to maximize your growth potential.

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Maximize Retirement Accounts

If your primary income comes from a W-2 (your 9 to 5 job) a good chuck of your gross income is going to either Uncle Sam or your primary state of residence in the form of taxes.

You can put more of that money in your pocket by maximizing your retirement contributions, either through your 401k retirement plan or a traditional IRA.

You reduce your current tax liabilities by reducing taxable gross income by increasing your pre-tax contributions. By even increasing your contributions by even 1 to 2 % you could end up putting thousands of dollars back into your retirement “pocket”.

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Give Yourself an Allowance

One of the greatest concepts that helped us turbo charge our net worth this year was giving ourselves money to spend on whatever we wanted.

Yes, we gave ourselves an allowance. A fixed amount of money that we could spend on anything!

That $4 Starbucks coffee? Yup, went for it. New video game? Fancy pair of pants. No sweat. As long as it fitted within the allowance.

By not depraving ourselves, we didn’t feel like we were punishing ourselves on our financial journey.

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Remember its a marathon, not a sprint. Think of it kind of like how folks typically fail a dieting, because they deprave themselves of simple pleasures instead of doing what is right by developing a long term, sustainable, life style change to achieve their goal.

By creating a balanced sustainable system you are sure to succeed.

What you set as your allowance is up to your given scenario. Could be $20 a week or $500, you may have to play around it until you hit that sweet spot. I recommend cranking it down until it hurts and then adjust upward.

Invest in Appreciating Assets

Make your money work for you by creating multiple streams of income.

Rental properties, stocks, bonds, high yield savings accounts, starting your own business.

All of the above investment instruments have their own barriers of entry and each come with their own levels of risk.

The lowest barrier to entry and lowest risk is definitely a high yield online savings account. In a Federal Reserve interest rate cutting world, what we define as “high yield” is around 1.90%. Look into online high yield savings providers to get the best rates. I recommend Synchrony Bank, but there are plenty of alternatives, just be sure that they offer FDIC insurance!

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The second lowest barrier to entry to grow your money would be in the world of stocks and bonds.

It’s actually even cheaper and easier than ever, as of October of 2019, many of the major trading houses have reduced their commission fees to $0. The risk increases though, stocks and bonds can go to zero, so due diligence is required here, but the growth potential is huge. If you are unfamiliar with the stock market start with Investopedia.com and SeekingAlpha.com to get investing savey!

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Investment properties are another method of increasing your wealth. You’ve probably seen the infomercials or YouTube videos of 20 year old millionaires flipping or renting out houses, sounds almost too good to be true!

When you step up to looking at investment properties the up front cost and risks amplify. Do you have $200,000 laying around? No? Okay looks like your taking out a loan. Oh shoot, the kitchen needs to be gutted? $20,000. Plumbing problems? $10,000. New roof? $15,000. But wait! You can rent it out for $1200 a month! Wow a 30 year pay back period!

Obviously I am being a little harsh here and plenty of folks are successful with investment properties, but there are plenty of horror stories, so due diligence is required here as well. You may end up being a millionaire on paper but when you only have a net worth of $100,000 and have $900,000 in mortgage liabilities, do you really want that hanging over your head?

Avoid Expensive Liabilities

Do you really need that $50,000 Silverado? You a business owner? No? Office job? Then why are you driving a $50,000 truck? Oh I am sorry your driving a $45,000 BMW sedan, my mistake.

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New cars are money pits that add very little value to building your net worth. Since most folks are financing the crap out of these new cars its a double whammy. Getting whacked on terrible depreciation, long 7-8 year loan terms leading to being upside down on a depreciating asset. These are anchors on your net worth growth.

When it comes to most consumer goods if you can’t by it in cash, you shouldn’t be buying it at all.

If an automobile is a necessity in your next of the woods, look into to a reliable low mileage used one. If you can pay for it in cash, even better!

Delayed Gratification

Did you see the new Iphone 11 Pro? Wow what a looker! Three cameras you say? No Way! How much?

$1100.

Well… that’s a sure fire way of going in the wrong direction in increasing your net worth.

Do you really need it? Like REALLY really? How about just holding on to that old iPhone 8 just a little while longer.

One of your best tools to increasing your net worth doesn’t have to be how many dollars and cents are coming in to your home every week. Its your mindset in the form of delayed gratification. Resisting the temptation of an “immediate reward” for your long term growth goals is key to your success.

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Bring it all together!

By living to the above topics we were able to supercharge our net worth growth by over 50% this year alone!

Remember, it’s never too late to change your mindset! Take charge today and stick to it. In 3 – 6 – 12 months from now you’ll be amazed by your progress.

Let us know your ideas, tricks, success stories below!

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

If you liked what you’ve read please be sure hit the “like” button and share! If you want to receive the latest articles please be sure to subscribe.

 

Get on the same page about money! Become Unstoppable

One of the biggest hurdles on our road to becoming debt free and turbo charging our net-worth growth wasn’t the size of our monthly payments on our cars or the interest rate on the credit cards.

It was us.

My wife and I were just on totally different wave lengths all together when it came to money.

One of us was a penny pinching saver playing the “invest instead of paying off debt” game, and the other was a spender who paid the monthly payments but pretended the debt mountain wasn’t really there.

We saved money.

It was mostly by accident.

We used credit cards.. to earn “cash back” thinking we were smart and sticking it to the man.

Little did we know we were sticking it to ourselves.

SO much waste, on student loan and car loan interest, and spending WAY too much every month on the credit cards chasing that “cash back”.

Spender vs Saver

If you are the spender and they are the saver or vise-versa no matter how hard you each may try individually you’ll end just spinning your wheels making absolutely no progress.

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Not being on the same page lead to arguments and unneeded stress in our relationship. Per a 2018 study performed by Dave Ramsey we weren’t the only ones, money problems are one of the leading issues leading to failing marriages. Luckily, we had an “aha!” moment earlier this year and it happened on accident.

I stumbled upon a YouTube channel run by this guy named Dave Ramsey and a random episode was playing on our family room television when my wife came home from work. Our interests both peaked when the episode talked about a caller who had $200,000 in student and auto loan debt. We both sat there and intently listened to Dave’s recommendations.

After the episode ended it just “clicked” in both of us that we needed to get serious. It was a difficult discussion, a complete change in mindset. No more thoughts about investing and playing the game of beating out the interest rates on our loans, and both of us coming to realization of our total debt.

What We Did

We developed a Net-worth tracker spreadsheet that outlined all of our assets, liabilities, and monthly expenses. This spreadsheet gave us the “big picture” on our financial health and helped us track our progress.

We developed the 35/45/20 rule to follow. Which gave us a structure that we could both follow by giving us each an allowance that we could spend how ever we wanted while also automating our savings and investing.

We also put the credit cards away. Took them out of our wallets and switched completely to debt cards. Cash Back, Points, and/or airline mile rewards is a suckers game.

To jump start this new effort we also decided to use our emergency fund and started throwing all other income at the debt, any money left over from bills went to debt, including our tax returns.

Become an Unstoppable Team

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When both partners get on the same page and understand how both effect the big picture you become unstoppable. No financial hurdle is too big.

For us, not only did we pay off both cars, and all of our student loans, we increased our net-worth growth rate by 50% year over year. For example, hypothetically if we increased our net-worth by $20k last year, we are growing at a rate of $30k this year! Getting on the same page shook up 50% more money that previously was just being wasted!

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

If you liked what you’ve read please be sure hit the “like” button and share! If you want to receive the latest articles please be sure to subscribe.

5 Money Habits to Start in your 20’s

Your 20’s are an exciting time of your life, so much opportunity for development and growth. For a lot of us we hit some major milestones… starting our first “adulting” job or career, getting married, buying our first home or car, maybe even paying off those good ol’ student loans.

The time you have in your 20’s has the potential to set the tone of your financial health of the rest of your life, so it’s important to develop some essential habits…

1. Create a Budget

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You hear this one from everyone, make a budget!

Write down and understand where your money is coming and going. When you start to track your income and expenses it opens your eyes to all the potential money you could be saving and investing but were actually eating away by going out three or four times a week.

You can track your budget using a number of different tools and methods, you can do the home brewed approach by developing a simple spreadsheet or you can use a number of financial and budgeting applications for your smart phone. Whatever method you end up choosing the most important attribute is your dedication and consistence in tracking your in’s and out’s. Check out our guide at making a budget and slashing our expenses.

2. Automate Your Savings

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This one is easy, money you never see in your paycheck is harder to spend on impulse. Set up automatic deductions from your paycheck to deposit into an online high yield savings account or online brokerage account for investing.

There are plenty of options today that not only are easy to setup and use but help you in the long run of setting you up for financial success. It may be developing an emergency fund for a rainy day, or starting that passive income dividend stream you always wanted.

Start small, it can be a little as $5 to $10 a paycheck but your goal should be to gradually ramp up your deductions until it starts to feel uncomfortable. You will be amazed in as little as a year how much you have saved with this approach.

3. Have an Emergency Fund

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In your 20’s change can be rapid and sudden, your 15 year old car breaks down.. your furnace goes out, or you just received a pink slip. You can never be too careful by creating a emergency fund to cover those rainy days.

Strive to save up 6 to 12 months’ worth of living expenses to get you through the tough times. Since the majority of Americans don’t have the cash on hand to cover a $1000 expense, it should be a wake up call to have a stash of cash to help you when you need it. By maintaining an emergency fund it allows you to avoid the major pitfalls of using credit and loans to cover those unexpected expenses and racking up unnecessary interest payments.

An emergency fund is not a “I need the newest iPhone” fund, or the “shopping spree” fund, and it should not be considered an investment fund. Leave it alone and keep it in a liquid high yield savings or money market account, it may not sound as sexy as putting it all in the latest penny stock but you’ll be happy when you need it to cover that blown out tire.

4. Invest early and often – Retirement (401k, IRA, etc.) and Taxable Accounts

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In your 20’s you have one of the greatest assets that money can’t buy, and that is time.

Use that time and the magic of compounding by investing early. If you are fortunate enough to have an employer that provides access to a 401k, try to contribute 15% of your pretax income or if you can’t achieve that do your best to contribute the percentage needed to receive an employer match if available. Your starting salary and contributes may start out small initially but as time goes by you’ll see massive growth and the sooner you start the less effort will be required in your 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s to prepare for retirement.

“Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it… he who doesn’t… pays it.”

-Albert Einstein

With every raise you receive try increasing your retirement contribute by 1-2%. If you were living on your previous salary just fine, you won’t miss that 1 or 2% all that much.

For 2019, you are able to contribute up to $19,000 of your pre-tax income. I know, your thinking to yourself…$19,000?! Are you crazy? You all have the potential to achieve that and more… you just have to start!

Other retirement vehicles such as IRA’s offer other tax benefits depending on your income, and I recommend looking into them if you do not have access to or are maxing out your 401k.

Taxable investment accounts also can be considered when you have reached your goals for your emergency funds and retirement contributions. Remember not to chase the latest penny stock or virtual currency, start off small and steady by researching low-cost index and mutual funds that provide you diversity to hundreds or thousands of companies.

“It’s a mirage… the idea it has some huge intrinsic value is just a joke”

-Warren Buffet (on Bitcoin)

5. Live Like a College Student

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You were living like one not too long ago so why change it? Just because your making big bucks now doesn’t mean you should go out and blow it all on a new depreciating car or some fancy apartment. Get a roommate, nurse that old car for a few more years, buy a a refurbished smartphone with cash. If you really want to jump start yourself on your way to extraordinary financial wealth, live below your means!

Conclusion

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Remember, your 20’s can be the best years of your life or… they could be the years that set you up for success for the rest of your life, it is your choice. By making simple and steady habits with your finances now you’ll thanking yourself later.

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

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To Debt or Not to Debt

Let’s talk about something that almost everyone has in common:

Debt.

Be it credit cards, auto loans, student loans, personal loans, or a home mortgage there is a good chance you are on the hook for one of these.

Let’s face it, our world runs on debt.

The United States, for example, holds the title of most indebted country in the world with a national debt of around 22 trillion dollars. TRILLION, with a T. Can you even fathom a trillion? A thousand billion, a hundred thousand million. You get the picture.

That works out to almost 180,000 dollars per citizen…man, woman, and child. That is just what the government alone owes.

If we look at how much us common folk are on the hook for it’s just as scary. We owe almost 15.5 trillion dollars in home mortgages, 1 trillion dollars in credit card debt, 1.3 trillion dollars in auto loan debt, and over 1.5 trillion in student loans! More than credit cards and auto loans combined!

So, what do all these MASSIVE numbers boil down to?

Well there is a good chance the Joneses in your neighborhood with that shiny new F-150 in the driveway of that 4-bedroom McMansion are in debt up to their eye balls, living paycheck to paycheck while trying to pay off their student loans they took out 20 years ago.

Why is everyone striving for this life style? Why is everyone striving to absolutely bury themselves in debt just to maintain an image?

I’ll tell you why…

Debt is easy and delayed gratification is hard.

Just sign on the dotted line and only 24 easy monthly payments of $25 gets you the latest shiny iPhone.

Just sign on the dotted line and only 72 easy monthly payments of $700 can get you that new Silverado.

Easy.

“Save $700 per month for 6 years. Are you insane? That is going to take forever.”

You want that shiny new car NOW! Not in 6 years! You earned it. Right?

“Bah! Who has $1000 on hand? That’s just crazy! All my friends have the new iPhone. I deserve to treat myself”

Our inability to wait and save for the things we want or realize there are things we want we really cannot afford is our downfall.

The credit system is setup to get you into that debt cycle and keep you there. You get a grade that literally tells these companies how much you love debt. A good credit score is something you “need” to get the things you want. You get a score on how good you are with debt just to take out more debt. Do you see how crazy this sounds?

Have you ever really thought about the loan terms you take on for your phone? Car? Education? Or home? I mean like really think about it. Why is it a 2, 5, 15, 30-year loan? You spend more money and the lenders MAKE more money.

Why does your phone provider offer financing your new phone for 24 months? Is it because in 2 years most folks are getting the itch to get that shiny new thing?

Why do most auto loans fall within the 5-7-year mark? Is it really to make your monthly payments smaller? Or is because in 5-7 years most people are looking for a new ride.

You are literally on a payment plan that once you finish you are ready to trade it in, throw it out, and get right back on the debt hamster wheel. It’s like they figured out the human psychology to keep folks in the game of debt!

So now that you are starting to see how debt runs our world what can we do to break the cycle? How can YOU get off that hamster wheel?

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

If you liked what you’ve read please be sure hit the “like” button and share! If you want to receive the latest articles please be sure to subscribe.

The Rebellion Begins!

I am a millennial. A millennial that had real debt, real bills, and had to find real solutions. The news will tell you how illiterate we are with money. We’re lazy, can’t buy a house, can’t buy a car, can’t get a job, are saddled with debt, we can’t do a heck of a lot right…but we love avocado toast?

I am here to tell you that you can prove your parents wrong. You can rise above and have the best house on the block, running circles around your neighbors on financial literacy, and having the sense of financial security that everybody is searching for.

If you can’t see where this is going already, my goal here — to be blunt — is to teach others how to be smarter with money by sharing my thoughts on finance, business, and investment. To change your mindset and to be different!

I want to help expand your horizons by going through all the in’s and out’s of the financial lingo — 401k’s? ETF’s? P/E Ratio’s? CD Ladders? APR? Good Debt, Bad Debt? Financial independence? What do these really mean?

I want to spark that flame in your mind, I want to give you that hunger for knowledge today to make sure your future self — 5, 10, 20, 30 years down the line — is left self smiling back at you.

Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.— Warren Buffett

Since earning my first paycheck at eight bucks an hour from a part-time job washing dishes, I’ve been absorbed with expanding my understanding of business and investment. How can I make my money go further? How can I make it work harder for me? How can I grow my income potential?

The first step to any of the above is education.

abc books chalk chalkboard
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Education is thrown at you from day one in the form of abc’s and 123’s, but something that is rarely taught to you throughout your K-12 journey is how to handle money and finances.

Your teachers always told you if you want a good job you need to go to college, but they never told you how to pay for it. They never told you how to handle the potentially crushing debt that a college degree may bring. Fixed interest rates? Variable Interest Rates? Does your degree of choice hold any value at all to an employer? How does the Federal Reserve’s fund rate affect you?

Your teachers never told you how to file your taxes, they never told you how a mortgage works, and you never heard about a credit score, but you learned about Shakespeare and how to calculate the sides of a triangle. When it came to how income tax works or how to invest in the stock market (along with various other financials) you were on your own.

Your parents probably didn’t teach you any of the above either, but don’t blame them for your average $36,000 of student loan debt. No one taught them either.

Follow along with me on this journey to becoming financially savvy. This site won’t be about getting rich quick or getting advice from a well-off millennial whose parents paid for their college, rent, cell phone bill, and car payment. This blog will be from a millennial who started off with real bills, negative net worth, working 6-7 days a week while going to school, who has a hunger for knowledge and success. Hopefully, together, we can change the image of our generation.

So what are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or send us an email via our Contact Page.

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