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Hi! New 22 y/o student with ER dreams.
Old 02-03-2011, 06:34 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Hi! New 22 y/o student with ER dreams.

Hello everyone!

Background Information:

First of all, this is an amazing place. I found this community shortly after the Early Retirement Seed was planted in my brain about a month ago. I spent a while lurking and learned quite a bit, including how open and truly committed many people on this board are to helping faceless people across the nation/world realize their financial goals.

I am a 22 year old college senior from Minnesota. After my Feb. rent check goes through, Ill have just under $ 3,000 in savings. I am employed in an organic foods store stocking produce (a great job by the way) where work ~25-30 hours a week and make about $ 1,000 a month after taxes.

I am a very frugal person. I have NEVER driven, much less owned a car. I buy my clothes at Goodwill on sale days and bring home TONS of food from work for free, which cuts my groceries bill by ~80%. I do pay for a phone, but am planning on ditching the plan when it expires. My Achilles heel is weed, which I pay little for. I justify it by being very cheap with everything else.

EVen though I am graduating from a small, prestigious liberal arts college with a Political Science degree, they gave my broke family enough money for me to graduate with $ 12,000 in loans. I will start making payments in June.

Preliminary ER plans:

Open 401(k) in April with my work. They will match up to 4% of my income, which I plan to meet. I would also like to dump some money in an IRA right away, and to continue putting in as much money as possible monthly. I plan to live frugally and hopefully find a better paying job in a few years so I can accrue as much money by my late forties as possible.

My dream is to buy 50-100 acres of land in northern Wisconsin or Minnesota debt free and grow my own food. At this point in my life, as silly as it sounds, I want to live on a subsistence farm close to the Earth and work with my hands. I'm fairly sure I want to do this without kids, though with all of this, I cant speak for my future self. I can only help set him up financially.

Ive been talking to some people close in my life who recommend opening a ROTH IRA as well, and dumping up to $1000 of my current savings into it, while also making automatic contributions to my 401(k).

Again, I just started thinking about all of this a month or so ago, and have been lurking on this board for a few weeks, so I have a HUGE amount to learn!

Thanks for reading!

-Gox
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Old 02-03-2011, 06:45 PM   #2
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Welcome Gox. It's great that you are thinking seriously about your financial future at such a tender age. I would definitely contribute enough to the 401K to get the match. After that, you probably want to collect an emergency fund equal to 3-6 months of your expenses before you commit money to a Roth.

And while I don't claim any expertise in the area of growing food, I would think that if you are going to be dependent on your own agriculture, you might want to pick a place with a longer growing season.
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Old 02-03-2011, 07:22 PM   #3
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Watch out for the Achilles heel you talk about.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:47 PM   #4
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Thanks for the tips.

I will start the 401(k) in April and hold off on starting the ROTH. I have a security deposit to throw down on and taxes to pay within the next few months, so I will wait after I am safely moved into my new apartment and have a sizable emergency account to open a ROTH IRA.

Up until about last summer I only had around 700 in my savings at any time, and funds always reached dangerous levels around RENT time. I made a conscious decision last summer to save as much money as possible. I cut back on everything I could, and lo! I find myself with almost $3,000. In that time I started paying my own rent in full as well as my own tuition. My dad says this will help immensely on next year's tax return.

As for my Achilles heel, I've cut back my spending tremendously. Its about the same $ most people spend on gasoline.

Im really really looking forward to putting money away for the future. I have budgeted well so far in my life and Im hoping that a tangible goal will push me to contribute more.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:53 PM   #5
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Whatca going to grow??

Nicolet forest's solitude attracts major pot-growing operations - JSOnline

Nicolet forest's solitude attracts major pot-growing operations

12 men charged after weapons, 50,000 plants are found
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Old 02-03-2011, 09:16 PM   #6
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I got my first ER thought in my mid-twenties. Back then the original goal was to go at 50. My plans got sidetracked a little at 42 when I decided I really wanted to have a new home built to live in relatively worry free of maintenance. Now I'm back on track to ER at 55 in a little over 2 years. Don't forget to enjoy your life on the way to going after your goal, otherwise IMO it will be a very long row to hoe. (pun intended)
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:26 PM   #7
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As you are 420 person, you may want to relocate to a state that is more friendly toward 420, like Oregon, Colorado or California. And having a longer growing season would be a big plus if you want to be a subsistence farmer - unless you like to ice fish, since you can easily eat on that in Minnesota!

If all you care to do is to live on the level of a monk, that is fine. So long as you have the basics, all you need is enough to pay for a computer and internet connection, and you could be in bliss for very little cash. And since many folks in your generation will be just as poor, you won't be such an outcast.

Having the emergency cash store is great, but I'd say to pay off that damn student loan ASAP - almost before doing anything else. It's a debt that cannot be removed - as opposed to unsecured debt (something that I rid 6 figures of just recently.) Working up to buy that 50-100 acres out in Minnesota would be the next item on the agenda. As for an actual place to stay, you might want to look into a microhouse Micro Homes Tiny Houses.

As for a family situation, yes, you pretty much will have to forgo kids to live like this, but you can always date women that already have a family, which can satisfy your psycho-sexual needs.
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:40 PM   #8
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I don't know about a longer growing season when the land is so cheap up there. Hawaii (especially the Big Island) has two-three growing seasons but land is not easily found or used.

Might as well start with the classics (at your local library):
Amazon.com: Five Acres and Independence (9789562914468): Maurice Kains: Books
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:10 AM   #9
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Welcome to the Forum and congrats on thinking about $$ matters at a young age.

I'm in MN and the last few weeks have been decent temps, but what would you grow during the long, cold winter...assuming outdoors here.

Good luck.
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:41 AM   #10
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st paul native here. attended a school in the multi-school complex along i-94 and dale st. then st paul central. relocated to a much worse part of the country.

welcome. nederland seems like a place you would fit in just perfectly. i believe they grow all year round there.
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Old 02-06-2011, 01:11 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aiming_4_55 View Post
... but what would you grow during the long, cold winter...assuming outdoors here.
I'm guessing "winter wheat" isn't actually meant to be a verbatim description...
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