Just a 40-year-old mom of 2 in Northern California. My kids are Monkey Monkey(MM) and Drama Llama (DL). I am married to Monkey Hubby (MH).
We were a one-income family for 13 years. In late 2015 my spouse returned to work (minimum wage/part-time/seasonal). Something recent on his resume just buys us more options for the long run. The main benefit of this job is that he just works while the kids are in school. As always, we are saving 100% of his income.
We saved a lot while we were very young and also moved to a lower cost-of-living area, to make life much simpler. We still live in California though (in one of the most expensive regions of the U.S.). *Simple* and *inexpensive* is relative.
Likewise, we have never had debt aside from our mortgage.** My blog is a testament to how much simpler life is without debt; how we have that much more money to both save and enjoy!
**Caveat: I have no problem whatsoever with credit cards paid off monthly, or low-risk credit arbitrage (for example, 0%-interest debt while earning 5% on FDIC-insured cash, which I have done with credit cards). These are the kinds of debt we have had. Just not interested in high-interest debt, using debt to buy beyond means, and not interested in the hassle that comes with loans and payments.
**Ting Referral Code** https://z181d126bt4.ting.com
$25 off for you & $25 credit for me
In 2017 we are adding both our kids to our cell plan. This will add a whole $12 to our monthly cell bill, which was only $30/month for the two of us. Thank You TING!
BTW, Ting did also lower their rates, if you haven't checked the numbers recently.
[ ]$11,000 to IRAs 2017 (MAX)
...($10,800 @ 12/1/17)
...We save $900/month
[ ]$5,000 to savings
...($4,173 @ 11/30/17)
...We save $300/month, plus interest.
...Topping off with snowballs
[ ]$8,000 to investments
...($6,913 @ 11/30/17)
...$2,000 from monthly contributions; $2,513 snowflakes/snowballs; $2,400 tax savings
...We save $200/month, plus snowflakes
...Will also invest tax savings ($2,400) when contribute to Traditional IRAs
...Will top off goal with snowballs
[X]$3,000 to mortgage
...$3k per year to pay off in 20 years (from last refi); also ensures that we pay more principal than interest
...Funded with overtime
Goal savings rate = 30% of gross
In addition, we save 100% of MH's income.
--Note to self: Utilize library museum freebies
Current big picture goal:
$500,000 in retirement accounts by age 45.
NOTE: WE HAVE NEVER CONTRIBUTED LESS THAN 10% TO RETIREMENT. NO EXCEPTIONS.
If we can't achieve at least 10%, then something else has to give. I share because it's infinitely easier to save for retirement if you start early. Let the investments do the hard work for you.