On the path to financial independence (FI), a retirement savings plan is one of the most powerful tools for building wealth, with compound interest on your side. Retirement accounts are available in two popular flavors, traditional and Roth. These words simply indicate the tax treatment of the account’s contributions and distributions.CONTINUE READING
Do you remember the last time you received a physical check on payday? It was a thrill (or a relief) to open that envelope at the end of the week, revealing the tangible return for your dedicated time and talents. The attached pay stub featured dozens of variables, but most of us simply tossed it aside to focus instead on the check itself. Since electronic pay statements and direct deposits have replaced these old school physical checks, many employees neglect to access and review pay statements at all, often for years at a time!CONTINUE READING
Budget [buhj-it] noun
1. an estimate, often itemized, of expected income and expense for a given period in the future
2. an average adult’s worst headache
Before you pull the plug on this article, please know that I am not going to tell you to stop buying your daily cup of coffee. Budgeting isn’t about cutting expenses on the things you love; it is about evaluating and realigning your spending and savings with your personal values. Personal finance is personal, so don’t feel the need to compare your financial goals and progress with others. The destination is different for everyone.
The best way to begin your path to financial independence is by assessing your current financial landscape. You must know where you are before determining where to go (and how to get there). This exercise of reviewing how money flows in and out of your accounts can verify if your spending and savings accurately align with your current values. Budgeting on purpose takes a little bit of concentrated work up front, but it makes future cash flow and investment decisions less daunting.
Take a deep breath; we’ll get through this and out the other side with a sense of clarity and ease – then you can go get your coffee.