Ashley and Amanda’s lives look almost identical during their working years. They both make the same at their job. Amanda’s apartment is a couple hundred bucks cheaper. She drives a car that’s a couple years older. She skips a couple fancy dinners out and cooks at home. No one even notices the difference looking from the outside looking in.
But at retirement the contrast is shocking. Amanda is a millionaire with unlimited options. Ashley stayed broke her whole life and will have to dramatically lower her standard of living to try to survive on a small social security check.
This example uses average numbers, not some fantastical best case scenario. The average US household income is $59,000 per year or about $5,000/month, closer to $4,000/month after taxes. The US stock market has returned an average of about 10% per year over the last 100 years. But of course, inflation eats away at the value of money, so the “real” return over the last 100 years has been about 7%, the number used here. In the example above, the $2.1 million Amanda ends up with is spendable in today’s dollars!
Check out some of my other posts on how to open a Roth IRA and what is a target date index fund to learn how to do this!
Are you living below your means? Are you investing early and often? Are you more like Ashely or Amanda?
This is a repost from my very first "Ashley vs Amanda" back when I had only like 100 followers, but I think it's worth it. This simple comparison represents the worst kept secret to building wealth: Live below your means and invest early and often.
Hello #dfc ! My wcw goes out to this lady here. My parents were hardcore frugal! They literally had #cashenvelopes before I even knew what that was. My dad would give my mom grocery money every week and she would save all her nickels and dimes left over. I was the only daughter of 5, so of course I’m the princess. One day, she saved enough money to buy me a doll at Kmart. She told me to tell my dad I got it from my teacher. Of course, he didn’t believe her. He played bad cop and threw the doll and made her return it (we just didn’t have the luxury to get toys Willy nilly). I remember that day. She drove me back to Kmart and cried all the way there. She cried all the way back home. My mom wanted to give me the world when she couldn’t. She’s pulled so much weight for her family. She worked 7 days a week to pay off mortgage and 2 cars when my dad was laid off for 2 years when I was in elementary. She never made my dad feel less than. She kept her head down and did what she could for her family. It makes me want to succeed so I can give her the world. I pray to be as loving as she is as a mother, a wife, and a genuinely good person. #girlsruntheworld
536406 hours ago
Every paycheck ever 😫😫😫 type 🙋🏻♀️ if you agree 😂😂😂
9527319 March, 2019
This before is one of many reasons why I love this simple life. This is what happens when we bring stuff into the house without having a certain place or reason for it. Everything gets pushed into places until it starts suffocating us. No thank you, never again.
I write this with about 5% sarcasm and 95%determination. Apart of me looks at this number and rolls my eyes because really?! Another part of me is like only 85% to go. 💪🏿 I've decided we are going to be millionaires and I'm not playing around with the idea. We want to set ourselves up to live a financially independent lifestyle when we are around 50 to 55. 🌈
I asked the hubs what kinda job would he like after this military life and his response was "High School Basketball Coach." I say to him then that's what you're gonna do! 🏀
Have you calculated your Networth get? If not what are you waiting for? Try it!
2,1838319 March, 2019
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A combination of paying off credit cards and having a few hard inquires fall off from purchasing our house two years ago 😁
This number has fluctuated quite a bit through our recent debt journey. I'm happy with where it is now and I know that it may do a bit better as we pay off one final card (nieces braces) and continue paying down our mortgage. 🏡
Sadly, I doubt there will be any change reported for bulking up the emergency fund or cash flowing the vacation 😂
When we first establishing our credit this was one thing that drove us bonkers: we had paid in cash for all of our bills and utilities, rent and insurance but NONE of that gets reported.... It is only when you have delinquent utilities etc. that they report it 😡
I remember trying to get approved for our very first credit card and how hard it was because of a "lack of sufficient credit history"?! Anywho... flash forward and now we understand credit and credit cards so much more and can confidently and responsibly use them.
We chose to not cut the cards which I know can be a polarizing topic for many members of the debt free community. Let us know in the comments if you ✂️ cut or
💳 kept your cards 🤗🤗✌❤ #debtfreecommunity#snowball#creditscores#stepbystep
Repost @go_fund_yourself_ .
Yaássss the Queen has been dropping 💰 knowledge on us for awhile now! Have you been listening?
217 minutes ago
Although I was able to get a lot of work done today and even received wonderful compliments about my interpretation at a meeting, internally my emotions were going haywire. I had no shame in admitting to my supervisor and her secretary that I felt ready to cry at any given moment throughout the day. My supervisor’s response? It’s therapeutic to let it out. I couldn’t exactly pinpoint what the issue was, but after careful revision, I believe I fell into a pattern of thoughts with rejection somehow. I applied to a job I was positively sure I’d get a call back from and I never heard from them. I spent four years in an on and off, toxic relationship before walking away. I didn’t receive an invite to a retreat held by our department director. TMI, but it’s getting close to that time of the month. 🤦🏽♀️ I watch a lot of motivational videos on YouTube, so I immediately went on the app and scrolled until I found something that I felt compelled to watch. A few minutes in and this quote stuck out. Cue the waterworks. 💦 I am being protected while being directed into phenomenal things that I can’t even fathom. Yes, I believe it whole heartedly despite how I feel at the moment. Having emotions is awesome, I would never want to suppress them or become heartless; this is what makes me human. Whenever I feel like this, I just need to remind myself that God is constantly at work making sure that I’m receiving the best and nothing less. I don’t know what’s best for me even when I think I do, but He always knows without a doubt. Keep the faith, God sees the bigger picture. Happy hump day, guys!
218 minutes ago
The results are tallied and this week I was able to save $41.71 from my weekly $100. This included a few groceries, a tank of gas, three take out meals and pitching in for a co-workers birthday. $11 will go towards funding the rest of my dog’s hair cut next week. The rest will go into my household fund unless I decide to splurge on something during spring break. Amazing to think I had no problem spending this in a day just a short time ago. #budgetwin#dfc#cashenvelopes#debtfreecommunity#mortgagefreejourney#singledebtfreejourney#frugalliving
This was my face last week when I realized I made a money mistake. Insert the eye roll emoji here. Any other non-perfect people out there?? Here's what happened.
We had purchased a Christmas gift some time ago for a family member, and I had transferred some money into a separate checking account that we use for sinking funds (like Christmas).
Well, some time went by and I had forgotten that the money wouldn't be taken out of the checking account until the item shipped later in the year... in March!
I saw the extra money sitting there, having forgotten that it would be taken out of there and we spent it! I thought a store forgot to charge me or something.
Quickly we realized just last week that the money wasn't take out because it hadn't shipped. Sure enough it has now shipped and the money was taken out! It wasn't a ton of money, but it was good I left some money floating in that account or else we would have had an overdraft.
But here is what I learned - write down things when I know I will forget. Especially something like that, that will come out of my account much later on.
Have you ever had a purchase come out of your checking account much later on and somewhat surprised you? This happened to me many years ago as well with an iPhone (another eye roll emoji).
This isn’t exactly apart of the #debtfreejourney but I wanted to show you all anyway. -
I’ve been really struggling the last few weeks, especially since I’ve taken on overtime which means I’m working more than full time hours. I feel like the 10 year old and I are constantly arguing. -
I’ve been really anxious and I think part of that has stemmed from us not getting along. I decided on Monday night to start this ‘talk journal’. -
He writes a comment about his day before bed, how he felt or something we haven’t had chance to talk about. Then I write a message back and leave little fun things for him to do for the next night. -
We’re 3 days into it and already I feel like we’re starting to reconnect. We’re talking more and I don’t feel like everything I say is me moaning 😂.
Free ice cream at Dairy Queen and free icees at Rita’s. Go enjoy some freebies with your family. Thank me later......You can still do fun things while paying for debt. They can be free, low cost or planned so you have the money for it in your budget. 😊
Lunch on the go. I’ve learned to eat things cold. We’ve learned to eat pretty much the same things over and over again. And over and over again 😂. Keeps things simple and keeps us from spending money on eating out. It’s nearing end of March and I’m glad to say I’ve spent only $3.75 on cafeteria food at work. One slice of pizza 🍕and it was yummy 😋 #debtfreecommunity#frugalmeals
6041 minutes ago
What a long Wednesday 😴
Another day to go before I travel up and work this weekend for a side hustle .. I’m predicting my savings total for March is going to be GOOD 👏🏻🙌🏻 If you ever need motivation have a look on @rightmoveuk to keep you going - I can’t wait to have my own little home 🏠
I’ve also got some items to post tomorrow which I sold on eBay .. worst thing about it is the trip to the post office 😂 alll for the ££££££ though 💰💰
41142 minutes ago
This right here 🙌😍🎄•
$118 per month going into our Christmas Fund, for a total of $1300 by Dec 1.•
Last year (for 2018 Christmas) I decided that I didn’t want to do any sinking funds. Rather, we would just cash-flow Christmas during the months of Oct and Nov. Okay so that did not go well. •
Trying to decorate, plan and purchase gifts, make it to holiday events, and enjoy the real reason for the season 🌟 all while working my TAIL off and picking up as many extra weekend shifts as possible so that our snowball didn’t suffer, was a tad stressful to say the least.•
Believe me, I will still be working my tail off and picking up extra shifts to pay off this debt, but it is already a relief knowing that Christmas will be funded. 🎄•
After Christmas 2018, we sat down and did a Christmas budget for 2019. We came up with $1300. That $1300 includes gifts for our 3 kids, parents/in-laws, a few other family members, gift exchanges, teachers gifts, and little Christmas events we do like breakfast with Santa, cookie/ornament exchanges, holiday programs, etc. •
I still don’t like taking out money from our monthly snowball for sinking funds... but I can’t help but think about our old spending habits. Not being prepared for Christmas. Using credit cards for gifts and paying interest on that amount all year or even longer. •
This new way of thinking about spending money and living takes work but its so worth it and change is possible!•
Today is my husband’s pay day! My pay last week covered all of our monthly expenses except rent so I’ve set that rent money aside now and the balance is off to savings 🎉 We’ve also saved our first $15k parcel which is the size I’ve broken our goals into.
For those who may have missed my previous posts - I’m documenting how much we can pull together from really closely watching our money until we push “go” on buying a property. We’re saving every cent we can! This total is what we’ve saved since 15 February, and I’m breaking our goals into $15k chunks.
I’ve gone public, so here we go - this is me (in a pretty dress)! I have my own personal blog and today I posted about debt, questioning why it’s such a taboo subject! I’ve kept this account anonymous since I started in November because I was ashamed of my situation but I really shouldn’t be! .
If you want to read the blog post, the link is in my bio. If you want to follow my day to day life and sights, head over and follow @charlotte_tys!
We are one step closer to having the bathroom done. Our bathroom has been torn apart since the first week of March. This vanity is the last big piece of the puzzle lol.
There are a ton more things we need to do before we can put our house on the market but having this bathroom nearly complete feels good.
Next up is the sub floor and siding issue we discovered. If it’s more than $1200 we will use our homeowners to cover the damages. If less we will pay out of pocket. This whole process is so draining but will hopefully pay off in equity at closing. #studentloanssuck
16452 minutes ago
I think we did awesome the last 4 weeks! I have a few things left in my freezer and pantry to finish out this week. Before we started this journey it was nothing to spend 150 a week on eating out and a 100 a week on groceries that just went bad cause we didn’t eat it. #debtfreecommunity#eatingathome#babystep2
Credit card debt is easy to wrack up and easier to try and ignore. There are resources available that will help you to pay down your debt. Connect with the Fryzuk Group today. We'll show you how you can eliminate your debt with a program you can afford. Please visit:
We took Laiah to the Memphis zoo for spring break. She has a blast and we had fun, too.
Fun fact: we came out $6 over-budget and that is because Jeff gave $10 to a homeless man. He has such a tender heart for the less fortunate. 💜
We did our research before we went and set our budget + our expectations for eating out. We brought snacks and water + split a meal.
How many of you order a meal for your kids and they end up not eating it? Instead just split a meal with them and save that money. Portion sizes are usually two servings anyways.
Just some tips and tricks we’ve learned as a family who strives to be intentional with our money.
Tell me your money saving tips. I’d love to hear them. If you are looking for a place where you can learn ways to use your money more wisely then join my group: Grace Inspired Living (dm me and I’ll add you).
Life is made to be lived happy and you shouldn’t always have to stress about money. Let’s get you clarity around you money so you can have more to spend on things that important to you.
How did my journey begin? I was 23, had just met my husband and wanted to move out of home because my relationship with my dad had descended into chaos. It was my husband (he was my boyfriend back then) who listened to me and encouraged me to move out.
But to move I had to get rid of some of my mountains of stuff. There’s no way I could’ve physically moved it all. I still had a full wardrobe of clothes from when I was in primary school!
I started slowly but then the urge to minimise overtook me and I found myself getting rid of almost everything. I sold and donated as much as I could, but some stuff (like 10 year old underwear! 😳) just had to be chucked. I filled bins and bins of recycling of random papers and junk I’d held on to... I donated so many brand new items of clothing I wish I’d never bought. It felt amazing.
When I moved, everything fit in the back of my Yaris... except my books. It took me a few more years to work up to getting rid of them but they didn’t deserve to be shoved away in storage so I regret not getting rid of them then.
There you go! That’s my story! What’s yours?
54151 hour ago
I don’t work outside the home at all but this is one thing I consider to be one of my “side hustles” - my garden. It doesn’t bring in cash but it sure frees up money. I grow a lot of our food in the summer. For example last year I grew 50 lbs of carrots and 40 lbs of potatoes. Using current grocery prices that’s about $110 worth of food for $4 worth of seeds and $20 worth of seed potatoes. Plus $5 worth of strawberry seeds produces a solid 10 lbs of strawberries every year (which is amazing when that would cost us $30-40 and the plants produce every year). Is it a huge amount? No. But it absolutely saves us money every day of the summer and fall. It teaches my kids invaluable kids. And it totally indulges my weird little house on the prairie fantasy without resorting to floral skirts that make me look like a chubby Duggar.
1741 hour ago
New Weekly Meal Planning Sheet!!!
Helping me to stay on budget and reduce waste!
Need some good ideas for new meals to add to my rotation. Let me know some of your favorite below!📢👍🏻
This week has been up and down. I think it’s ok to recognise all types of feelings. We are only human right?
Pay day yesterday and we had some cash left over from last pay, which went into our UBank savings account. Hubby still hasn’t found a job yet so we are not saving regularly on one wage.
On the plus side, I got another $20 with pureprofile and redeemed a $20 Coles voucher, I’ll transfer the cash from our grocery budget to our savings account. That way the cash we receive is instant instead of waiting 2 weeks for Pureprofile.
I’m also not paying for lunch this week by using the ritual app. Lunchs are $1 each and I had a $5 credit, so that’s a win too.
I think hubby and I will talk over the weekend to strategise our plans on tackling our debt faster. We are both paying debt and saving for a deposit/baby at the same time. We might throw a lump sum of money at our debt.
What’s your tips on killing debt and saving? #debtfreecommunity#savingmoney#barefootgirl
801 hour ago
Sinking funds are a great way to put a little money aside from each paycheck to prepare for the large expenses that we know come every year. But what about random, miscellaneous categories? Do you guys have an envelope or fund for those items?
For our household, my current sinking funds include: pet expenses, car registration, HOA, vacation, Christmas gifts, gifts, COSTCO, and self-care.
We don’t go to COSTCO regularly enough to make it a line item in our budget, but when we do go, I feel like my money just 💸. I created a COSTCO sinking fund to help offset the amount we spend there once every quarter.
Also, I have a gifts and Christmas gifts section because I’m using the 52-weeks savings challenge to save for Christmas and the “gifts” category is for birthdays and other holidays.
Do you guys have similar categories? Should quarterly clothes shopping trips for the kids have its own sinking fun? 🤷🏻♀️
511 hour ago
We don’t have a car and one of the issues I have (or don’t have) with it, is, what if there is emergency at night? How can we bring our bubba to the hospital? I thought before there’s 000 or an ambulance we can call, and also, now that bub is more than 1 year old, he can take the cab without carseat required. Yesterday, I found another option. We can ACTUALLY walk to a hospital. Yes it’s not a short walk. No we might not have lights during the night, but at least it’s an option. This path here leads to a hospital! How cool is that? 🤗 #carfreeparenting#carfreelife#carfreewithkids#ozdebtfreecommunity#debtfreecommunity
I have been in my new role at work for about 2 months now, and it still feels really new as I am SO far out my comfort zone, and keep getting pushed. Other people are offering me opportunities to stretch myself and I am taking them up on it. A few of these opportunities have included speaking/presenting at work events with large audiences of up to 100 people. I find this terrifying, but after I have done it, I find it quite rewarding, like I have accomplished something massive. I'm getting to speak on topics I'm really passionate about, so I'm viewing it as a chance to 'market' myself to a wide network within the organisation as someone really knowledgable about the topics. I'm hoping this helps develop my personal brand, as well as my experience, confidence & overall personal growth, so I can eventually work within that particular field and continue to develop my career so I can do something that I love and that also earns me great $$$. 😁