As you know, the company you keep and spend the most time with heavily influences your habits and overall life. As the saying goes, you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. If you had to assess the financial awareness and responsibility of the people you hang around the most, what would you conclude? Would you say your circle of influence is financially healthy or financially unhealthy?
Last week, my husband and I enjoyed some kid free time in one of our favorite places, Miami. The best part of it all (other than it being kid free, did I mention that already?), is that we went for practically free, only $22!. How you ask? Through a method called travel hacking.
Apologies for not posting and being a bit MIA but since giving birth to my son almost 3 weeks ago, the last thing I wanted to do was to sit down and “work”. With a newborn and toddler now, my free time is definitely limited. In fact, I had to sit down and force myself to write this post.
For those who don’t have a budget, it can seem really overwhelming and daunting to try and start one from scratch. Where do you start? How much work will it take? Etc. The reality is, it really doesn’t have to be that complicated if you break it down into manageable steps.
Having a budget is essential if you are looking to get out of debt, efficiently “spend” your income and create wealth. Who doesn’t want to accomplish at least one if not all of those things? Without a plan for your money a.k.a, a budget, how do you expect for your money to work for you vs you working for it.
I had my first taste of an early “retirement” when I took 6 months of maternity leave with my son 2 years ago. It was completely magical yet by the end of the 6 months off, I was actually ready to return to work.
It’s may seem a bit crazy, that a person like myself who is striving to not work in 7 years, actually wanted to return to work only after taking 6 months off. How is that possible? Well, I will tell you, two years ago, my mindset after having my 1st son was totally different from what it is today.
I have been commuting to my job which is about 1 hour and half away from my house since I was 21 years old. I interned at the location the year before I entered into my senior year of college. When I began working full time at 22, I kept on with my commute. At first, 12 years ago, my commute was only about 1 hour, but since then, I have moved further away from my job and traffic patterns/road work have actually increased my commute. Adding to this, in a few months, my company is moving into a new building 10 minutes FURTHER away!
There are a lot of differing opinions in the finance community on paying off a mortgage early vs. investing the money elsewhere for a better return. My husband and I have already come to the conclusion that we want to get rid of our mortgage as soon as possible. The real question is how we are going to pay our mortgage off early.
While I love receiving a tax return, this year we will actually owe money to the Fed’s since my husband’s employer failed to take out enough taxes from his extra job checks. Luckily, we have enough money in savings to pay it off right away. Usually, in previous years, we would’ve received a hefty federal tax refund. I used to look at this as a good thing until I realized what most financially savvy people already know. There is no real benefit in getting a high tax return back at the end of the year. If you are getting a lot of money back at the end of the year, that means you are giving the government too much money from your paychecks!
I was honored to be interviewed by The Personal Economist over at her awesome blog.
How wonderful is it that the internet allows us to connect with folks from all around the world and people we normally wouldn’t know existed.
Although we are continents apart, (The Personal Economist is based in Austrailia), we share the same general goals as moms and by wanting to find financial security for our families.
Please check the interview out and let us know what you think!