Today I wanted to share yet another guest post from a favorite fellow blogger. I figure by now you’re a bit tired of listening to an old guy like me whine about all my dumb financial blunders. So today I’m welcoming someone much younger to the stage. She is by far the savviest financial Latina I know and has been tearing it up on her blog lately. Savvy Financial Latina is a 20-something woman learning to manage life, career and money in Dallas, Tex. She has a Bachelor’s in Global Business, a Master’s in Supply Chain Management, and an MBA, all without any debt. She now works for a Global 500 company as a sourcing analyst. Savvy Financial Latina is, also, a member of the Dimespring 30, a community of bloggers sharing their thoughts, experiences and perspectives on personal finance.
What financial independence means to me:
Savvy Financial Latina
I’m 23 years old. I graduated with a Bachelor’s in Global Business, Master’s in Supply Chain Management, and M.B.A. I’m married to a wonderful man and we are searching for a nice, affordable home to live in Dallas, Texas. We try to have a frugal lifestyle and invest in our future.
Pretired Nick and I have been commenting on each other’s blogs for a couple months now. I think I have pretty much read every article he’s written. I find the topics stimulating and the possibilities endless. When he asked me to write about pretirement from a Gen Y’s perspective, I jumped at the opportunity.
Retirement in Corporate America
I started blogging when I was 21 while I was in graduate school and in my first year of marriage. We were pretty broke, and money was tight, and often a topic of stress. Blogging was an outlet at a point in my life where I was stressed out over everything. Soon after graduating in May 2012, I started working in Corporate America. Financial and lifestyle choices have always interested me, and thus, I started asking older workers about their retirement plans. I have found only one person who has a set date for retirement. Everybody else balks at the word retirement, and says “no way!”
I ran into Guy X one day leaving the building. He was really cheery, and so was I! Surprise! He mentioned he had just finished talking to his daughter who was helping him build his home in Hawaii. He quickly delved into how he had less than 2 years to retire fully. At which point he was going to split his time between Hawaii and Colorado. He deserved it. He had spent 30 years working at a manufacturing company, and another 10 years working for our company. Dang… if you count the other two years of work he has left, he has worked a total of 42 years. Astonishing! The guy had a calendar counting down day by day, minute by minute!
Most people don’t have a plan for their retirement. They think retirement is scary. If you think about it, retirement is a fairly new concept. Prior to the 20th century, you either died early or you worked until you no longer could, and then your kids took care of you. The baby boomers will be the generation that takes advantage of social security and/or pensions. And please, if you say social security and your pension will not be enough to fund your lifestyle, please think before you speak. My generation will have no pensions or social security to rely on. I truly believe social security will no longer be in existence by the time I qualify.
What’s wrong with this picture? Just because something is scary does not mean there should not be a plan.
My definition of financial independence
Retirement: Sitting on a recliner watching TV. I could do this for one week before I would start going crazy. Not my cup of tea.
Financial Independence – Not having to rely on the corporate paycheck to fund your lifestyle. Not having to care about politics at work, impressing anyone, tied to a set schedule, etc. Freedom is what I want. This is what Pretired Nick defines as pretirement.
Do I have a number?
So, I can’t say I have a number yet. I do know my husband and I want to have the freedom to do whatever we want earlier rather than later. We don’t want to be in our sixties and stuck because we have too much debt, etc.
I once saw an episode on House Hunters International of a couple looking for a home in South America. The couple was in their 40s, and had “retired” early. This seems like a very lovely idea!
Our plan is to:
- Max out my 401K (So we have income when we’re old and wrinkly).
- Max out ROTH IRAs (Again, our old and wrinkly selves will thank me!).
- Invest in a taxable brokerage account. (Passive income for our not so old selves)
- Develop side hustles that bring extra money.
I want us to save/invest 50% of our income. I know our plan is not very definitive, but I do feel we are trying to invest toward our future. It’s extremely hard to put a net worth goal when you are so young. Any thoughts?
Personal finance blogosphere
I feel so lucky having an entire troop of personal finance bloggers talking about their financial choices and how that has affected their lifestyles. It is extremely encouraging to maintain a financial conscious, yet comfortable lifestyle.
Pretired Nick here again. Well, what do you all think? Savvy Financial Latina is building her retirement fund and a nice pretirement fund at the same time. And she’s working toward saving 50% of her income. Sounds pretty good to me. Let us know what you think in the comments!