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When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 09:58 AM   #1
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When did you start seriously saving.

I was in college for 7 years. Durring that time I did save, but only $20-$50 per month. When I turned 27 I started putting away $10,000/yr. Today I am 34, and put away $23,000/yr, and have $184,000 saved.

I wish I had started puting serious $$$ away at 22. After reading "Millionair Next Door" I realized that I am not as far as others my age simply because I got serious about saving 5 years too late. Thanks to college.

When did you start saving?
How old are you?
How much do you have?

Did any of you start seriously saving $$$ at 20 or 22?
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 10:21 AM   #2
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rw86347
Did any of you start seriously saving $$$ at 20 or 22?
I started saving seriously at 18. I'd take scholarship money and invest it. During the 3 years of undergrad, I saved quite a bit. Ages 20-23 while in law school, I made a lot of money working high-paying summer jobs and I also started my own consulting firm and made mid-five figures profit the first year. All those savings went towards buying the current house I live in with cash.

I "refi-ed" the money out of the house and put it in the market back in 2004. 2004 was the first year of big savings, with my first full-time job and first 401k. I got DW (back when she was just dear living-in-sin GF) investing and saving seriously in her IRA and 401k when she worked a couple of years between undergrad and law school back in 2000-2002 (she was 23-24 years old then).

The net worth keeps growing at a very satisfying pace.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 10:28 AM   #3
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I've been saving ever since I was in the 1st grade, back then the school opened a savings account for you at the local bank and every week you bought your pennies, nickles and dimes in to deposit, it's too bad they don't do that now. The serious saving part came once I was old enough to have a job. The seriously heavy duty saving started about 10 years ago.

I really think that 1st grade experience was one of the things that shaped the way I handle money.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 11:15 AM   #4
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Hmmm, flat broke when we moved back to NYC in 1997, and immediately started saving in earnest when we started our jobs here (living with mom & dad as a married couple - fun). So I guess I would say age 24.

Hopefully my daughters will do better. Both already have custodial accounts with small sums in them.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 11:20 AM   #5
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I started in 1998. I was about 28. I wish I had started earlier of course, though I've done everything possible to make up for lost time. I gues the good news is that a couple of years into saving, the bottom dropped out of the market, and I just kept investing, which has helped a good deal since a lot of money was invested on the way down and back up, and not much near the top.

Still, as someone posted in Young Dreamers a while ago, it can be hard to stay on track. I'm not going to start spending frivolously, but even with all of our dedicated saving and investing over the past decade, we have such a long way to go, and meanwhile our jobs grind us down, eat up my months and years and sanity, and keep me from sitting in the backyard, reading a book and learning to graden.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 11:49 AM   #6
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I started a little late around 37 or 38, around the time I started a ROTH IRA and bought a house. I'm 44 now.

Moved around with jobs a lot so I lost years of contributing and vesting with 401(k)'s and pensions.

Also, advice of elders to save went in one ear and out the other when I was in my 20's. I was busy being young and didn't look ahead much.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 12:21 PM   #7
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I started with 10% into my 401(k) as soon as I was eligible, which must have been when I was around 24.

Started 12,500 in debt (student loans). Engineer, now 43.

In pure investments I now have about 800k. A couple hundred of that is rollover IRA from my wife, who was also an engineer (staying home with kids now).

I'm not one of these ultra- (or even super-) frugal types - I'm not afraid of spending

Life creeps up on you fast, keep plugging away at that 401k, you'll be glad you did.

- John
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 12:28 PM   #8
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I had some small, token savings through college and law school (less than $4000 total), but started seriously saving in 2002 at age 26. Net worth (including home equity) is now a little over $200K.

In order to save a lot of money, it helps to first earn a lot of money. Sometimes I spend too much time agonizing about savings and investments, and not enough time on building my career!
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 12:40 PM   #9
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tricky88
I started in 1998. I was about 28. I wish I had started earlier of course, though I've done everything possible to make up for lost time. I gues the good news is that a couple of years into saving, the bottom dropped out of the market, and I just kept investing, which has helped a good deal since a lot of money was invested on the way down and back up, and not much near the top.

Still, as someone posted in Young Dreamers a while ago, it can be hard to stay on track. I'm not going to start spending frivolously, but even with all of our dedicated saving and investing over the past decade, we have such a long way to go, and meanwhile our jobs grind us down, eat up my months and years and sanity, and keep me from sitting in the backyard, reading a book and learning to graden.
Wow are we in the same boat. I am tickled to see how fast I have moved between 100k and 184k, but my job. I am getting tired of work. I am seriously considering a change in careers after I finish paying off my house and rental. I am just really tired. I hope by that time to have a NW of $1M.

The problem is that I make good money. I can't turn that down. And I *think* I like my job now better than I liked changing oil at Walmart. And when I was working at walmart I had little chance to save.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 12:53 PM   #10
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I just checked a number I have from a very old spreadsheet:

7/1/1998 $188k net worth (age 34)

Now: $970k net worth (age 43)

Nice when it starts to snowball. Had I discovered indexing, asset allocation and leave-it-alone investing earlier, I'd probably be retired right now

- John

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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:13 PM   #11
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by runchman
I just checked a number I have from a very old spreadsheet:

7/1/1998 $188k net worth (age 34)

Now: $970k net worth (age 43)

Nice when it starts to snowball. Had I discovered indexing, asset allocation and leave-it-alone investing earlier, I'd probably be retired right now

- John

I love hearing those kinds of posts.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:20 PM   #12
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Decided college "wasn't for me" after 2 semesters........... :P

Worked 4 years in the school of hard knocks. Went back to school part-time, then full-time.

Got $50,000 inheritence from dead grandparents, but it all went to medical bills I owed..........or I would be retired now........... :P

I guess I started "late", while DW has been saving 10% of her money in 401K since college graduation..........

While I would like my NW to be higher, I'm not complaining....our plans are still on track...................
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:20 PM   #13
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Hey rw86347, what job do you happen to do?

Just curious. As an engineer I get really tired of a job after a couple of years, then have to move on to something different. Once the challenge diminishes, the boredom comes on, and the web cruising increases greatly

- John
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:28 PM   #14
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by runchman
Hey rw86347, what job do you happen to do?

Just curious. As an engineer I get really tired of a job after a couple of years, then have to move on to something different. Once the challenge diminishes, the boredom comes on, and the web cruising increases greatly

- John
For years I have written device drivers. Today I do something more like project management.

Yep that is exactly what happens with me.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:33 PM   #15
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I started seriously saving at 31, when participation in our 403B became mandatory. I'm 56 now, with about $880K saved.

Thanks to an unsuccessful attempt to start a business, I was about $20K in the hole at age 29.

Coach
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:39 PM   #16
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rw86347
For years I have written device drivers. Today I do something more like project management.

Yep that is exactly what happens with me.
I'm guessing you are similar to me:

device drivers = cool stimulating work
project mgmt = drudgery

I've avoided mgmt at all costs, although you can certainly rise up the ladder more effectively there. But then who among us ER types is interested in that

It is ironic though that we feel trapped by good salaries, since so many career changes would be in the 'down' direction. Could have worse problems for sure.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:40 PM   #17
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I've always been a saver. I started in my first grade class too where they taught us about savings and checking accounts.

I got my first real job at 14 working nights at Walgreens. From there I was never without a job (except during college) I did work all the breaks though. Around 14 I started saving for a car. Once I had that done I opened a Schwab account at 15-16 and started buying funds. I can look back now and laugh about how I lost sleep about whether I would be able to save $2,000 during my summer break.

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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:42 PM   #18
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I had paper routes from age 9, and saved almost all of that, giving
me $10K+ when I left high school.

I started programming right after college, saving a good % of my salary.
I bought a house at 23 with $20k down, which was most of my
savings. In 1983 at 25 I changed companies to one that had a great 401k
just as they came into existance, and started maxing that out every
year until 2006. At first I invested in bonds. A $5k 9.2% muni I bought in
1983 just matured last October.
I started investing in individual stocks in 1993 with after-tax
money, and in 1997 in my IRA with money from a big 401k rollover.

This let me retire 6 months ago at 48, having gone through a marriage/divorce,
a change of house (in 1987), a pack of 4 dogs (and a current pack of 3), 4 jobs,
and about 10 years of part-time grad school. My investments (in stable,
high-quality (IMO) stocks) generate enough dividends to cover 100% of
my previous spending level, using 72t withdrawals to access my $IRA.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 01:50 PM   #19
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

Quote:
Originally Posted by runchman
I've avoided mgmt at all costs, although you can certainly rise up the ladder more effectively there. But then who among us ER types is interested in that
I definitely had the same attitude here. I knew I was a much better programmer
than I ever would be a manager. I turned down every promotion attempt
for 27 years, managing to retire as a bottom level programmer. The somewhat
lower salary I got ($135k) was far outweighed by job satisfaction and lack
of stress.
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.
Old 04-24-2007, 02:04 PM   #20
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Re: When did you start seriously saving.

I have always been a saver. I cut lawns in HS and saved most of that so I had about 10k when I entered college (where I am now). I invested about half of that in some individual stocks that declined in value about 20% so I learned to mostly stick to mutual funds at a young age. Since then I have contributed to a Roth using money that my parents gave me for college, but I didn't need it due to scholarships and money from work.
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