I’m beginning here at the age of twenty-six knowing exactly what I want to do with my life. I have known for about two years now but I am finally ready to act on it. So often we get pushed in certain directions in our life. We get intimidated or we doubt ourselves so we take the only route that is laid out for us, never questioning what else is out there. This may seem a bit heavy for a financial independence blog but I’m truly re-inventing every aspect of my life and that is just too exciting.
I have been reading about FI for almost two years now but I have never chased it with a passion. I have let the passion swell inside me but I never committed – I was intimidated and fearful. That is a large part of why I am putting this all out there to the world in the form of a blog otherwise I may just let another year pass without and constructive action.
My financial story is pretty normal for all those Dave Ramsey fans. I was fortunate enough not to have any college debt but as a result I thought I was ahead of the curve financially. I had lived at home until I was twenty-four and mostly all the money I earned was for my own spending discretion (not saving). The only financial responsibility I had was paying for my cell phone and keeping my gas tank full. At twenty-three I bought an $18,000 car when I was making $10/hour part-time. For perspective, my car payment was about half of my total monthly income! At twenty-four I moved into an apartment by myself spending $850/month when I was making $17/hour. I had no concept of house poor at the time. I thought this is what adults do and I quickly went through my savings and then slowly started depending on credit cards to get me by each month. At twenty-five I bought a dog, no regrets there but it did add to my expenses each month. Then at twenty-six I realized I was stuck in the rat race and there was no getting out unless I made some drastic financial changes.
In January 2017, I completely stopped using my credit cards. In May 2017, I moved out of my apartment and back in with my parents… is that really what adults do?! By August all my debt will be paid off including that expensive car of mine. And in one year I plan to have $20,000 saved to buy a duplex and never pay rent again. This is definitely not where I thought I would be on the verge of twenty-seven but I’m a believer in learning through experience and I have certainly learned a lot. My hope is that this blog will help keep me accountable and you will join me on this FI journey!