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Old 06-18-2019, 05:20 PM   #141
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if you’re not debt free curtail your entertainment till you are. after that budget and stick to it.
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Old 06-18-2019, 07:00 PM   #142
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travelbug_ali View Post
wow, you all are giving me a lot to think about.

I think the honest answer might just be....the things I prefer to do are expensive.

I'm going to add up my "fun spending" for may and post it here, maybe tomorrow. then maybe I can come up with a plan for the rest of june.
Every time I was tempted to do something expensive, I always compared it to up to 40 years of financial independence. When making that comparison, almost nothing expensive was worth it

I did have a budget, and kept to it diligently. Now that I’ve FIRE’d, I am so grateful I did.
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Old 06-18-2019, 10:04 PM   #143
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To find inexpensive things to do, go to Meetup.com and search for groups in your area. You should be able to find a group doing something that interests you, and that doesn't cost a lot of money.

You need to track your spending and compare it to your income in order to stay the course.
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Old 06-18-2019, 10:22 PM   #144
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We’re in an early-retirement forum, so let’s think about the opportunity cost of every dollar spent at the club in our 20s and what that could have been in our 50s. At just 6% interest it’s a factor of 10. That $40 bar tab could have been $400. If you want to retire early, it its important to you, learn the magic word “no.”
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Old 06-19-2019, 06:46 AM   #145
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Here's a book reco that may help : Playing with FIRE by Scott Rieckens - How far would you go for Financial Freedom. It's a quick and easy read. It really boils down to making changes in your spending habits, budgeting, and having a plan to follow to achieve your financial goals. Reading the book may give you inspiration.
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Old 06-19-2019, 09:00 AM   #146
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LBYM, especially during your accumulation years. When you finally retire and look at your accumulated stash you will see that all of those years of LBYM have paid off and you no longer have to be so thrifty. Anyway, that is how it has worked at this address.
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Old 06-19-2019, 09:22 AM   #147
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LBYM, especially during your accumulation years. When you finally retire and look at your accumulated stash you will see that all of those years of LBYM have paid off and you no longer have to be so thrifty. Anyway, that is how it has worked at this address.
X2...big time!
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Old 06-19-2019, 10:09 AM   #148
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At 30 we were poor, in debt, DH did not have a 'real job" yet. But, he finished his PhD and I had Bachelor's from a good university. Jobs started slow and steady. Gradually, getting bigger paychecks.

OP reminds me of my niece. It seems being CHEAP is cool these days. Name brands are out, second hand stores are in. Many kids are foodies, so watching the TV chefs helps them learn to cook and avoid fast food or restaurants. Cool kids go to Aldi. Niece just graduated from college and watches her $$ like a hawk. Wants to retire early, like her aunt and uncle . Sure, blow that dough every so often...go for it. But keep the cheap on your radar. You can travel, eat and party cheap these days.
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Old 06-19-2019, 12:04 PM   #149
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Exercise is an excellent hobby that is good for you, helps you live longer, feel better, look better, and is done on your terms.

-Signup for gym
-Excercise
Optional:
-Get training certification
-Train someone else so you are learning and the gym is paying for itself
(do so legally by starting a company)
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Old 06-19-2019, 02:03 PM   #150
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At 30 we were poor, in debt, DH did not have a 'real job" yet. But, he finished his PhD and I had Bachelor's from a good university. Jobs started slow and steady. Gradually, getting bigger paychecks.

OP reminds me of my niece. It seems being CHEAP is cool these days. Name brands are out, second hand stores are in. Many kids are foodies, so watching the TV chefs helps them learn to cook and avoid fast food or restaurants. Cool kids go to Aldi. Niece just graduated from college and watches her $$ like a hawk. Wants to retire early, like her aunt and uncle . Sure, blow that dough every so often...go for it. But keep the cheap on your radar. You can travel, eat and party cheap these days.
+1. At 30, I maybe had 10k saved in a 401k. At 32 I got married...now at almost 38 have 2 kids. You see, time does fly when you are havin' fun! Now we are well on our way to 500k. It starts adding up quick.

Then the pressures are on to put kids in activity A, and sport B and then oh we have an extra coach for sportA we pay for, and a mentor we pay to help with Activity A...oh and we get the kids to sports in the Escelade etc etc. aand we buy them the nicest equipment. Oh, and we pay for that expensive prep school because public school is for the peasants. Really isn't much room left for mom and dad. But we manage.

I have no idea what I blew my money on before kids...but I hope to be reminded someday. Ahhh, someday. FIRE!
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Old 06-19-2019, 11:01 PM   #151
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We have a theme “mountain bike” monthly weekender vacation. So we pack the bikes, water bottles, a backpack with some clothes and find the best trails within a few hours drive. It’s affordable. ‘Vrbo or airbnb’ and totally fun. We enjoy it more when we have to wait for it instead of buying things all week long,
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Old 06-21-2019, 02:17 PM   #152
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Look further into the future. When you are making decisions to spend money, decide if the activities that you are questioning fit with your 10 year plan and help you to get where you want to be in that time frame. Make a written budget and set your entertainment dollar amount. Force yourself to stop when your budget has been reached. Don't think of it as a punishment! Your budget is permission to spend, but it holds you to predetermined limits.
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Old 06-23-2019, 12:10 PM   #153
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but I’m home early on a sat so that means I’m responsible right?? or getting old? lol
I'm in my fifties, so I probably count as old. I still go to bars. Usually once or twice a week. I do go to pricier bars than I did when I was thirty. That's because my friends like the pricier bars. I just usually order one drink and make it a cheaper one. I'm just not willing to spend a lot of money on drinks. It's not worth it to me. But, I'm not going to give up time out with friends just to not spend any money. I have acquaintances who spend a ton of money at bars. They wonder why they aren't in good financial shape, but if they looked at how much they spend at bars, I'm pretty sure it's several hundred dollars a month.

I think you're right that your housing situation is a bigger problem. At thirty, I still had student debt, did not have an emergency fund, and had no retirement savings, though I didn't have CC debt. (I have over $1.5 million saved now, so have hope.) In retrospect, aside from not starting contributions to my 401K earlier, I think my biggest financial mistake at that time was my housing costs. I didn't have a roommate and never bought a home.

At times, I have eaten out too much, but I'm better now. Fortunately, my friends aren't into really expensive restaurants. I give myself a limit to how many times I'll eat out and try not to order drinks, appetizers, or the more expensive entrees. I also try to limit most of my eating out to social occasions and usually bring my lunch to work. I think eating out can really add up and that seems to be reflected in your list of expenditures.

I do go to concerts, but I'm pretty good at saying no to friends if it's not a person or band I really want to see, unless it's a free concert. So, I pay to see a concert a few times a year. I also sometimes see movies during weekend matinees, which saves money and makes it easier to get better seats. One of my friends is as frugal as I am, so that helps. If you can get friends on board with saving money, it would be easier for you.

With regard to travel, I definitely have a travel bug, so I can identify. I think the key is identifying which trips are the ones most important to you and how you can travel more affordably and wisely. $400 is not a ton of money, but if you're doing it every month, then that's a problem. If you're spending a lot of money on the hotels, but hardly spending any time at the hotel, then re-think how you're spending your money when you travel. Consider AirBNB or consider less expensive locations than, say, Hawaii, for a beach vacation. Figure out how to save money on meals when you travel. I don't spend money on a big breakfast and generally eat a granola bar and piece of fruit (or the free breakfast if the hotel has one). And when I'm traveling in a foreign country, I usually try to eat like locals. For example, when I was in Paris, we would get some cheese, bread, and fruit and eat in a park for lunch. In Ireland, it was cheaper pub food for dinner. I've traveled a lot and there are only a few trips that I regret, and those regrets are because the trips were disasters. There are things you can do in your thirties that you may not be able to do when you retire, even if you ER. If anything, I wish I had traveled even more in my thirties and forties, especially to keep up friendships with friends who lived far from me. There are people who spend money on camping equipment, off-road vehicles, or RVs. Not my cup of tea (though I do like hiking), and apparently not yours. Just figure out how you can do what you like more affordably and perhaps on a more limited basis.

I would look at your Target and Amazon spending and see what the stuff is that you can cut out. If you're spending money on cleaning supplies, that's one thing. If you're just spending money on "stuff" you don't need and don't even care much about, figure out a way to stop that. It may be that you need to avoid Target, but it may be that if you just go with a list or even start writing down your purchases as you make them, you'll do better. I can understand retail therapy. I've learned to recognize when I'm doing it and try to do something more productive or limit myself to one small thing. Just figuring out what the one thing is and comparative shopping for it can take my mind off things and keep me from spending too much.

The important this is that you recognize that there are changes you can make, and you're doing it now. Not like a co-worker of mine who died before she could afford to retire or like another co-worker who frittered away so much money on stupid things and retired with almost no savings.

The key is smart balance. Save for the future, but not at the complete expense of your happiness today.

And, after that long-winded post, I'm off to meet friends for a cheap lunch.
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Old 10-07-2019, 02:26 PM   #154
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Originally Posted by rpguy4 View Post
Here's a book reco that may help : Playing with FIRE by Scott Rieckens - How far would you go for Financial Freedom. It's a quick and easy read. It really boils down to making changes in your spending habits, budgeting, and having a plan to follow to achieve your financial goals. Reading the book may give you inspiration.
There was an article today about this guy in the Toronto Star newspaper. What caught my eye was the following quote:

"When I founded the FIRE movement, I realized that it was a real antidote to problems that I couldn't define".

Hmm. I wonder if there may be some folks who might take odds with his founding of the FIRE movement? Especially for a book published in 2019.
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Old 10-07-2019, 02:29 PM   #155
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Looks for all the world like a typo - I expect he wrote, "When I found the FIRE movement."
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