SALARY: I make $34,000 a year as an insurance worker for the government. My husband makes $43,000 per year working in government as well as well. All of our accounts are combined, so including him gives a more realistic picture of our spending! I have asked for a raise before, and I didn't get it. So I'm leaving my employer! I'm worth more than $34,000 per year. I've been job hunting for a bit, and finally got an offer from a different department. I asked my current boss for a raise and was shot down, so I decided to walk. Honestly, even if I didn't have another job lined up, I would've walked after being turned down for a raise. I'm severely underpaid for my insurance job, and the economy has improved a bit. Know your worth, and if your current employer doesn't respect your worth, LEAVE.
SAVINGS: I have $70,000 in my savings account.
MONTHLY EXPENSES: My husband and I split housing costs. I pay $418 per month. Mortgage, insurance, and taxes for our three bedroom, two and a half bathroom condo in Nashville is $836. We aim for $200 to $500 per month each into our Roths. We put 10% of income into our 401(k)s. Health insurance comes out of my husband’s check. It is $200 per month for dental, health and vision. Otherwise, we pay $120 per month for utilities, $60 for pets, $130 to insure both of our cars, $350 for a car loan, $10 for Netflix, $15 for Spotify, $180 for phones, $20 for a home alarm and $60 for internet each month.
DEBT: My car loan is $350, and we have a mortgage of $120,000. We are not aggressively paying these off since the market offers better returns at this time. My car loan is 0%, so it feels like it isn't real debt (even though it definitely is, whoops!) I'm SO glad my student loans are gone, because those are seriously lord Satan.
INVESTING: I started with my 401(k). Then, I opened up a Roth IRA with USAA. It was the safest mutual fund, so I got more aggressive and opened a Vanguard. I love Vanguard! I used to put $200 per month in my Roth, but with my husband’s job loss, we have paused this. Investing is so, so important.
SPENDING VICTORY: I paid off $38,000 in student loans in under three years by working two jobs and spending no money. We now have breathing room in our budget, and it feels so good!
SPENDING REGRET: My brand new car. It has 0% interest, so it sounded like a good idea at the time.
SIDE HUSTLE: I can barely show up to my main hustle. But I did work two jobs to pay off my loans and to help buy our condo, SO WORTH IT!
IF I WON THE LOTTERY: Grad school. I miss school so much but don't miss the loans. I'd also pay off my mortgage and buy my dad a new house.
GOALS: Live on half our income. Invest in non-tax-deferred accounts, max out our Roths and 401k. Be financially free at 45.