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(Daily Finance)   For Millennials, "financial planning" basically boils down to asking all their friends what they're doing, and then doing that. And then they all give each other trophies, of course   (dailyfinance.com) divider line 238
    More: Fail, peer pressures  
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6365 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Nov 2013 at 10:45 PM (37 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-11-05 08:19:00 PM
Save more than you spend.
 
2013-11-05 08:29:19 PM
Put everything on credit cards. Especially credit card payments.
 
2013-11-05 08:36:58 PM

Tr0mBoNe: Put everything on credit cards. Especially credit card payments.


Recursive solution!
 
2013-11-05 08:59:05 PM
I'll elaborate:

1) First things first, pay off any debts and save your money until you have 6 months worth of living expenses. Even better would be to have a few years of liquid expenses, aka f*ck you money. But it's probably better if that money was tied up in real investments and not some sh*tty money market fund. If you have a job and are living off a credit card, you are spending too much or you need a better job.

2) After you have 3 months salary, start putting 10-15% of salary into retirement. Start immediately, in fact the earlier the better. Compounding interest is your friend. Max your Roth IRA every year if possible, especially if you make less than 40k and have prospects for better money (and higher taxes) down the road.

4) If you make 50k and your friend makes 100k, don't try to live like your friend (unless your friend saves almost all their money, which is highly doubtful). Chances are that friend you know who does OK but buys up stuff like he owns the world is terrible at saving money. I have friends who make more than me but they spend a lot more than me too.

5) If you are ready for a house, make sure the house is 2-3x salary at most. If you and a spouse are buying together, 3x salary at most in case one of you is out of work for a while. Chances are when one or both of you is out of work so is everyone else and your house will be worth jack sh*t at that time. Also, don't expect your house will appreciate much at all, even if you put those lame ass granite countertops on. Houses are generally poor investments.

Material possessions: not worth it.
Cable - you don't need it. Save yourself the $60-80 a month. Get internet. Watch stuff on it.
Mobile phone - you don't need a smartphone. Save yourself the $60 a month.
Car (if needed) - a 1-2 year old used car is a great purchase. You can buy a new car, but if you do buy a low TCO car. Something with a decent safety rating, high MPG, and less than 15-20k is probably ideal. Don't lease, drive that car into the ground. 
Clothes - don't dress like a slob, but you can be thrifty about it. Or dress like a slob, I don't care. 
Furniture - craigslist is your friend

Keeping up with the Joneses is bullsh*t. You can still enjoy your life but chances are if buying something makes you feel temporarily whole again, you have probably been programmed by some marketing tool.
 
2013-11-05 09:02:22 PM
"66 percent of those polled say they want to keep pace with their peers on where they live.
64 percent strive to stay on par with their friends on the fashion/clothing front.
Nearly two-thirds report feeling pressure to keep up with the types of places their friends eat and the type of gadgets they buy."

Because we all know the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses" was created in 2000, and has never before affected a generation of young Americans.
 
2013-11-05 09:04:40 PM
This is why no one feels bad about not paying entry level workers much- they'll just blow the extra money anyway.
Well, it's one reason at least.
OK, it's not really a reason at all. But we don't need a reason, because no one feels bad about that in the first place.
 
2013-11-05 09:23:00 PM

nmrsnr: Because we all know the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses" was created in 2000, and has never before affected a generation of young Americans.


Don't try to keep up with the Joneses. The Joneses are broke.

The typical American family has $3,800 in savings.
25% of Americans families have no savings at all.
38% of Americans have an emergency fund.
The average amount saved for retirement is $35,000.
40% of Americans are not saving for retirement.
Typical household debt is $117,951.
The average amount of credit card debt is $2,200.
American Family Financial Statistics 7/26/12
 
2013-11-05 09:35:31 PM

dustman81: Don't try to keep up with the Joneses. The Joneses are broke.


Didn't say it was smart, just saying it's not a new problem for "kids these days."

/puts 10% away for retirement, with 4% employer matching.
 
2013-11-05 09:41:17 PM
Do the opposite of their parents.
 
2013-11-05 09:44:32 PM
To be fair, that was "financial planning" when I was their age, too, minus the trophies part.
 
2013-11-05 09:54:36 PM
Meh.

(I'm 27, and have paid off most of my six-figure student loan, though I'll admit to living at home until this year, which obviously helped tremendously and was very awesome of my parents. Throughout those years I still managed to go out enough for my liking and go on the occasional trip. I mean, you have to have *some* fun. I now have an apartment with my now-fiancee. Splitting the rent helps, as does the fact that I'm much closer to work and thus spend a few hundred per month less on the commute. And I started a 401k at 22, and have no debt aside from what's left of my student loans. Having such a big debt to start has made me sort of maniacal about limiting it to that.)
 
2013-11-05 10:46:58 PM
Mostly I was just super-cheap. Luckily, I'm easily entertained.
 
2013-11-05 10:48:12 PM
+1 headline. Would vote again, just like in the Va. gov's election.

/according to Freeper land
 
2013-11-05 10:49:51 PM
But how can you plan for something for which you have none of?

*gong*
 
2013-11-05 10:50:15 PM

bdub77: Mobile phone - you don't need a smartphone. Save yourself the $60 a month.


Woah woah, there - let's not get crazy!
 
2013-11-05 10:50:43 PM

Tr0mBoNe: Put everything on credit cards. Especially credit card payments.


Keep it up long enough, and then it is no longer your problem, but the credit card company's problem when you die.
 
2013-11-05 10:50:57 PM
It would probably be easier for these crybabies to save for retirement if there were jobs available that paid enough to allow for savings.

Until the boomers retire and stop taking up all the jobs, the Millennials are just going to have to bide their time.
 
2013-11-05 10:51:23 PM
That's better than most previous generations, whose credo is "we don't talk about personal finances with anyone ever."

/plus, trophies... which is nice...
 
2013-11-05 10:52:40 PM

dustman81: nmrsnr: Because we all know the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses" was created in 2000, and has never before affected a generation of young Americans.

Don't try to keep up with the Joneses. The Joneses are broke.

The typical American family has $3,800 in savings.
25% of Americans families have no savings at all.
38% of Americans have an emergency fund.
The average amount saved for retirement is $35,000.
40% of Americans are not saving for retirement.
Typical household debt is $117,951.
The average amount of credit card debt is $2,200.
American Family Financial Statistics 7/26/12


Typical household debt includes mortgages and student loans, both of which can be great ways to achieve financial security if handled correctly (or albatrosses ensuring financial ruin if mishandled).
 
2013-11-05 10:54:55 PM

b2theory: Tr0mBoNe: Put everything on credit cards. Especially credit card payments.

Recursive solution!


Hardly new.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Check_kiting

Anyway, I'm a "millennial", apparently, having just turned 30. My wife and I own a very modest house, and have no debt but our mortgage, which is substantially less than three times our annual income. I make my maximum Roth IRA contribution every year. We're comfortably middle-middle class.

Screw judgmental people.

And last I checked "millennials" weren't the ones who f*cked us all over with the housing bubble. Now the f*cking boomers aren't retiring, and making it harder on us.

I predict that the last baby boomer will cost this country about $3 billion to live an extra ten minutes, and that no one my age or younger will ever see a cent of the SS we're paying for right now. And that would be about par for the course so far.
 
2013-11-05 10:55:06 PM

bdub77: I'll elaborate:

1) First things first, pay off any debts and save your money until you have 6 months worth of living expenses. Even better would be to have a few years of liquid expenses, aka f*ck you money. But it's probably better if that money was tied up in real investments and not some sh*tty money market fund. If you have a job and are living off a credit card, you are spending too much or you need a better job.

2) After you have 3 months salary, start putting 10-15% of salary into retirement. Start immediately, in fact the earlier the better. Compounding interest is your friend. Max your Roth IRA every year if possible, especially if you make less than 40k and have prospects for better money (and higher taxes) down the road.

4) If you make 50k and your friend makes 100k, don't try to live like your friend (unless your friend saves almost all their money, which is highly doubtful). Chances are that friend you know who does OK but buys up stuff like he owns the world is terrible at saving money. I have friends who make more than me but they spend a lot more than me too.

5) If you are ready for a house, make sure the house is 2-3x salary at most. If you and a spouse are buying together, 3x salary at most in case one of you is out of work for a while. Chances are when one or both of you is out of work so is everyone else and your house will be worth jack sh*t at that time. Also, don't expect your house will appreciate much at all, even if you put those lame ass granite countertops on. Houses are generally poor investments.

Material possessions: not worth it.
Cable - you don't need it. Save yourself the $60-80 a month. Get internet. Watch stuff on it.
Mobile phone - you don't need a smartphone. Save yourself the $60 a month.
Car (if needed) - a 1-2 year old used car is a great purchase. You can buy a new car, but if you do buy a low TCO car. Something with a decent safety rating, high MPG, and less than 15-20k is probably ideal. Don't lease, drive that car in ...


Hello Mr. Ramsey.
 
2013-11-05 11:00:52 PM
I thought we were overdue for another article about how kids these days are a bunch of poopooheads.
 
TWX
2013-11-05 11:01:35 PM

Sid_6.7: And last I checked "millennials" weren't the ones who f*cked us all over with the housing bubble. Now the f*cking boomers aren't retiring, and making it harder on us.


Well, on the other hand, the longer boomers work for, the more they contribute to the retirement pension system that I'm a part of, so the more solvent that pension system stays.

/working toward paying off house as soon as possible
//lots of advice against this, but the security of having a place to live is stronger than hoping, attempting to get more than inflation in the stock market
///paying all normal bills with only 2/5 of one's salary is tough, but one gets used to it, and learns what luxuries are really not missed
 
2013-11-05 11:02:44 PM

bdub77: I'll elaborate:

1) First things first, pay off any debts and save your money until you have 6 months worth of living expenses. Even better would be to have a few years of liquid expenses, aka f*ck you money. But it's probably better if that money was tied up in real investments and not some sh*tty money market fund. If you have a job and are living off a credit card, you are spending too much or you need a better job.

2) After you have 3 months salary, start putting 10-15% of salary into retirement. Start immediately, in fact the earlier the better. Compounding interest is your friend. Max your Roth IRA every year if possible, especially if you make less than 40k and have prospects for better money (and higher taxes) down the road.

4) If you make 50k and your friend makes 100k, don't try to live like your friend (unless your friend saves almost all their money, which is highly doubtful). Chances are that friend you know who does OK but buys up stuff like he owns the world is terrible at saving money. I have friends who make more than me but they spend a lot more than me too.

5) If you are ready for a house, make sure the house is 2-3x salary at most. If you and a spouse are buying together, 3x salary at most in case one of you is out of work for a while. Chances are when one or both of you is out of work so is everyone else and your house will be worth jack sh*t at that time. Also, don't expect your house will appreciate much at all, even if you put those lame ass granite countertops on. Houses are generally poor investments.

Material possessions: not worth it.
Cable - you don't need it. Save yourself the $60-80 a month. Get internet. Watch stuff on it.
Mobile phone - you don't need a smartphone. Save yourself the $60 a month.
Car (if needed) - a 1-2 year old used car is a great purchase. You can buy a new car, but if you do buy a low TCO car. Something with a decent safety rating, high MPG, and less than 15-20k is probably ideal. Don't lease, drive that car in ...


Which is awesome, except for the following: There are no jobs.  And also, there are no jobs.  Furthermore, THERE ARE NO JOBS.  Try getting a job in most markets sans-car.  Try not wanting to wrap your lips around a 12-gauge after working 6 months at starvations wages and 12 hours a day.  It's what's expected for a decent (ie: liveable wage) job in the corporate world.

I've only recently gone from an entry-level clerical job to something that can actually allow me to rent my own place.  I'm 30, with 15 years job experience ranging from floor sweeper to management to paper pusher to project manager.  I know how to work.  I have a degree.  Doesn't mean shiat.  There's no employee loyalty so there's no more employer loyalty.  If you don't luck out early, or aren't one of those that excel and are in the know with the right people, you are proper farked.

/YMMV
//I'm not bitter
 
2013-11-05 11:03:28 PM
Check the funds you are investing in.  Make sure you don't select 10 funds that invest in the same stocks/bonds.  That's not diversification.
 
2013-11-05 11:06:10 PM
"Well, it's rather brutal here. Right now we are advising all our clients to put everything they've got into canned food and shotguns."
 
2013-11-05 11:06:46 PM
I'd like to add this one, as a youngin: There is nothing wrong with financing if you shop around for a good rate.

I have a rather nice couch/chaise lounge set that I'm paying on with absolutely no problem. Financed $480 on a 6 months, same as cash deal. I'm going to be signing for a chest freezer on a 12 month term as well. 0% interest is a fantastic tool if you can find it and you're not afraid to walk away. My car (bought from the dealership under a combination of very good rebate, dealer incentives, and a bonus the sales manager split with me for getting a model to give him a check for $1000) is 3.05% which I consider very reasonable for a new vehicle signed by a person with only moderate credit history.

I know the wisdom is to avoid debt as much as possible, but sometimes, planned debt can boost your standard of living far quicker than saving and paying cash would. But you need to read the damn contract, and ask questions until you can't think of any more questions to ask. That will do you wonders.
 
2013-11-05 11:09:24 PM
Not me.  I'm investing in trophies!
 
2013-11-05 11:10:10 PM
Ah, another article where baby boomers justify driving the economy into the ground and consistently voting against economic policies that help other people on the grounds that younger people don't deserve nice things.
 
2013-11-05 11:14:32 PM
Wow, a whole lot of unrealistic advice in this thread from people who have never had to get by on a tiny paycheck.

Yeah, if you made the sort of hand-over-fist money that would allow you to actually set aside money every paycheck instead of scrimping and corner-cutting to just pay for gas in the tank and food on the plate, things like investing might be possible.

For actual, everyday folks, who live paycheck to paycheck because wages suck and the Republicans say it's horrible Socialism and evil and bad to pay people more because paying workers more than the tiniest paycheck they can get away with will collapse the economy, there's no difference in setting aside 10% of your paycheck, and 100% of your paycheck, because you can't afford either one.
 
2013-11-05 11:14:45 PM

bdub77: I'll elaborate:

1) First things first, pay off any debts and save your money until you have 6 months worth of living expenses. Even better would be to have a few years of liquid expenses, aka f*ck you money. But it's probably better if that money was tied up in real investments and not some sh*tty money market fund. If you have a job and are living off a credit card, you are spending too much or you need a better job.

2) After you have 3 months salary, start putting 10-15% of salary into retirement. Start immediately, in fact the earlier the better. Compounding interest is your friend. Max your Roth IRA every year if possible, especially if you make less than 40k and have prospects for better money (and higher taxes) down the road.

4) If you make 50k and your friend makes 100k, don't try to live like your friend (unless your friend saves almost all their money, which is highly doubtful). Chances are that friend you know who does OK but buys up stuff like he owns the world is terrible at saving money. I have friends who make more than me but they spend a lot more than me too.

5) If you are ready for a house, make sure the house is 2-3x salary at most. If you and a spouse are buying together, 3x salary at most in case one of you is out of work for a while. Chances are when one or both of you is out of work so is everyone else and your house will be worth jack sh*t at that time. Also, don't expect your house will appreciate much at all, even if you put those lame ass granite countertops on. Houses are generally poor investments.

Material possessions: not worth it.
Cable - you don't need it. Save yourself the $60-80 a month. Get internet. Watch stuff on it.
Mobile phone - you don't need a smartphone. Save yourself the $60 a month.
Car (if needed) - a 1-2 year old used car is a great purchase. You can buy a new car, but if you do buy a low TCO car. Something with a decent safety rating, high MPG, and less than 15-20k is probably ideal. Don't lease, drive that car in ...


That might work now if you plan to retire tomorrow but by the time we (age 32 here) do reach the age of retirement, it still won't be enough. By then, nothing will be enough. We'll be working til we die or until work kills us. Probably the latter.
 
2013-11-05 11:14:48 PM

bdub77: I'll elaborate:

1) First things first, pay off any debts and save your money until you have 6 months worth of living expenses. Even better would be to have a few years of liquid expenses, aka f*ck you money. But it's probably better if that money was tied up in real investments and not some sh*tty money market fund. If you have a job and are living off a credit card, you are spending too much or you need a better job.

2) After you have 3 months salary, start putting 10-15% of salary into retirement. Start immediately, in fact the earlier the better. Compounding interest is your friend. Max your Roth IRA every year if possible, especially if you make less than 40k and have prospects for better money (and higher taxes) down the road.

4) If you make 50k and your friend makes 100k, don't try to live like your friend (unless your friend saves almost all their money, which is highly doubtful). Chances are that friend you know who does OK but buys up stuff like he owns the world is terrible at saving money. I have friends who make more than me but they spend a lot more than me too.

5) If you are ready for a house, make sure the house is 2-3x salary at most. If you and a spouse are buying together, 3x salary at most in case one of you is out of work for a while. Chances are when one or both of you is out of work so is everyone else and your house will be worth jack sh*t at that time. Also, don't expect your house will appreciate much at all, even if you put those lame ass granite countertops on. Houses are generally poor investments.


Every single one of your points assumes a steady job and dependable salary, not temporary short-term gigs with no benefits. 90% of the financial advice out there is from well-meaning but deluded types who rolled easily into their first job straight out of college, had a steady career progression, and could plan their finances a couple of years in advance because they were sure their job wasn't going anywhere. Nowadays, this type of advice is about as dated as "put as much money into your house as possible, home values only go up".
 
2013-11-05 11:16:01 PM
I read the headline was "give each other herpes".
 
2013-11-05 11:16:06 PM
S all the d.

Yes that one, too.
 
2013-11-05 11:16:35 PM
dustman81: nmrsnr: Because we all know the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses" was created in 2000, and has never before affected a generation of young Americans.

Don't try to keep up with the Joneses. The Joneses are broke.

The typical American family has $3,800 in savings.
25% of Americans families have no savings at all.
38% of Americans have an emergency fund.
The average amount saved for retirement is $35,000.
40% of Americans are not saving for retirement.
Typical household debt is $117,951.
The average amount of credit card debt is $2,200.
American Family Financial Statistics 7/26/12

Typical household debt includes mortgages and student loans, both of which can be great ways to achieve financial security if handled correctly (or albatrosses ensuring financial ruin if mishandled


I don't regard the mortgage the same way I view other debt because I still have a lot of equity in the house. And in 3 months, when my wife's car is paid off, it'll be the only debt I have.

/drive those cars into the ground.
//I'm doing better than most, but still not saving enough for retirement.
 
2013-11-05 11:16:45 PM
The wife and I just fell below the poverty line again after being *JUST* above it for the last 3 years when my job ran out of funds.

/so yeah, I'm getting a kick out of "save 10%"
//Also, I've *NEVER* had a job that offered a Roth IRA
///Will be finishing my second degree soon.
 
2013-11-05 11:17:29 PM

Genevieve Marie: Ah, another article where baby boomers justify driving the economy into the ground and consistently voting against economic policies that help other people on the grounds that younger people don't deserve nice things.


This. Shut the fark up, Boomers.
 
2013-11-05 11:18:03 PM
My financial planning means spending as little as possible and getting rid of debt I incurred earlier in life.
 
2013-11-05 11:18:55 PM

b2theory: Save more than you spend.


But not too much. Don't do things like refusing to meet anyone unless they pick up the tab, or being the guy always mooching drinks and smokes. Or worse, count up every penny you spend on someone and demand they spend it back on you. Down that road lies everyone calling you a jew behind your back and avoiding you. And try to weigh your time and frustration against an upfront cost, instead of thinking only in terms of nickels and dimes; some conveniences are usually worth paying for.

/Pregaming is always OK, though; just don't pregame your way into sickness. Like my friend last weekend. Ugh.
 
2013-11-05 11:19:06 PM
Yeah! They should be handing bags of money to Certified Financial Planners instead.
 
2013-11-05 11:28:35 PM
I'll add as a 27 year old, put as much as possible into your 401(k) as you can afford up to your company match. the try to max out a Roth IRA on your own as well. Try to do these as direct deposit so you never really see the money. You just don't see it to know to spend it because it is already saved. Just have to find that level that allows you to meet your debt obligations and other expenses while having a modest amount left over for general fun purchases and savings. Once you get used to it and can make it work it is an amazing feeling to see those quarterly statements and watch your money grow. And really before you know it with compounding interest, dividend reinvestment and market appreciation your funds will grow.

It is never too early to start saving, it is always too late and something that should have been started yesterday.

I know far too many people my age who live in expensive apartments in the trendy part of town, lease the latest Lexus or BMW, yet if they got sick and missed work or worse, lost their job, they would be utterly hosed for that next rent payment. You can't eat an iPad or sleep under the latest 60" 3D TV so those things are generally just not worth it. Doesn't mean you can't have nice things, but that you may just have to wait or get last year's model

Stretch out that living at home with the parent or with a sibling or a roommate, you will get over the embarrassment and be far better set for life. Besides the rent for living at home while cheap, generally, includes utilities, hot cooked meals at 6:30 when you come home from work and nice clean laundry.  It may make it a little more difficult to bring home the after hours bar ladies, but there are hotels for that.

 
2013-11-05 11:30:14 PM

ajgeek: //Also, I've *NEVER* had a job that offered a Roth IRA


Jobs don't offer Roth IRAs. The I in IRA stands for "Individual" - it is an account you individually set up with an investment broker or bank, and to which you contribute funds. By putting it in such a specially marked account, you agree to restrict how you will use the money contributed in exchange for gaining certain tax advantages. A Roth IRA is funded with money you have already payed income taxes on (though if you're at the poverty level, you pay none), and you pay no income taxes when you withdraw from it; a traditional IRA is funded with money before you pay income tax, so it can lower your tax bill now (if you had one) in exchange for paying taxes when you take the money out.

Jobs - well, some of them - offer 401Ks. Even then, many no longer offer even partial matching of employee contributions. (Everyone remember when companies promised 401Ks with matching would be perfect replacement for pensions? Millenials are lucky, you were too young to have had that promise broken to you. I am just barely old enough to remember hearing those discussions on the news.).
 
2013-11-05 11:30:48 PM

ajgeek: The wife and I just fell below the poverty line again after being *JUST* above it for the last 3 years when my job ran out of funds.

/so yeah, I'm getting a kick out of "save 10%"
//Also, I've *NEVER* had a job that offered a Roth IRA
///Will be finishing my second degree soon.


Given that IRAs (Roth or otherwise) are not offered through employers, that is not surprising. You open it yourself.
 
2013-11-05 11:30:55 PM
If you're unemployed or underemployed in this country in this day and age you should consider yourself lucky. You get to enjoy our increasingly expansive social welfare net while availing yourself of all of the other amenities of living in the world's most successful republic. And whenever you finally feel like getting off your @#% and getting a real job, you can move to Texas or North Dakota and earn a living like the other half of the country is doing.
 
2013-11-05 11:31:48 PM

Enigmamf: ajgeek: //Also, I've *NEVER* had a job that offered a Roth IRA

Jobs don't offer Roth IRAs. The I in IRA stands for "Individual" - it is an account you individually set up with an investment broker or bank, and to which you contribute funds. By putting it in such a specially marked account, you agree to restrict how you will use the money contributed in exchange for gaining certain tax advantages. A Roth IRA is funded with money you have already payed income taxes on (though if you're at the poverty level, you pay none), and you pay no income taxes when you withdraw from it; a traditional IRA is funded with money before you pay income tax, so it can lower your tax bill now (if you had one) in exchange for paying taxes when you take the money out.

Jobs - well, some of them - offer 401Ks. Even then, many no longer offer even partial matching of employee contributions. (Everyone remember when companies promised 401Ks with matching would be perfect replacement for pensions? Millenials are lucky, you were too young to have had that promise broken to you. I am just barely old enough to remember hearing those discussions on the news.).


Shakes tiny fist...
 
2013-11-05 11:34:01 PM
Subby, you forgot to say "whining"

/borderline millennial
//will have enough money to pay off my mortgage in 3 months
 
2013-11-05 11:37:29 PM
Trying to imitate someone you feel is doing it right? UNTHINKABLE!
 
2013-11-05 11:40:48 PM
I love how today Fark has been taken over by the "get off my lawn" crowd of crotchety old people. A few threads about "millenials", the thread about "wahh don't wear your shoes in my house"...

yet they are part of the problem, they didn't save, so now they don't leave the work force, so they are keeping younger people from moving up and earning more.

/turns up music and walks on your lawn
 
2013-11-05 11:41:29 PM

bdub77: I'll elaborate:


Why? Who do you think needed it that spam? Are you trying to talk to the people in the article as if they're reading this thread?

ajgeek: //Also, I've *NEVER* had a job that offered a Roth IRA


An IRA is something you open and manage. A 401k (or government equivalent like 403b) is offered by employers.

A traditional IRA is normally mostly used for "rolling over" a 401k from an old job, but a Roth IRA is just a savings account of after-tax month that you invest. It's just taxed a little differently than a normal investment account, so there are limits on how much you can put in.
 
TWX
2013-11-05 11:41:57 PM

DiggidyDan: Subby, you forgot to say "whining"

/borderline millennial

//will have enough money to pay off my mortgage in 3 months


We bought our house at the trough of the market, when it was at its absolute lowest price, and through an almost-painful short-sale process to get the cheapest price that we could.

We're shooting for the same goal as you, though it'll take us a little longer to get there. Still, it will be nice to have no mortgage before turning 35... We're putting off any significant remodeling work, basically just maintenance and repair, until it's paid for. The $15K per year in prinicipal and interest to be saved will very handily pay for the less than $10K per year in home improvement that we expect to do...
 
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