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Subject:  Re: Baby Steps Date:  3/17/2004  9:38 PM
Author:  SeattlePioneer Number:  2081 of 5245

<<* Made significant progress in funding IRA for 2003. I didn't quite fully fund it, but I was close. And I'm ok with not fully funding it (also a growth for me), because the amount was still about 10% of my gross pay and I feel like that is an accomplishment!

* For the first time since my senior year in college, my net worth is in the black.

* I hit the 5-figure mark in my investments, also a first. I figure I'm 1% of the way there. <g>

* I learned enough to understand a little about my goals. As a result, I sold my first set of stocks that were no longer in line with my goals.

All excellent accomplishments. Congratulations.

<<This next year will probably have very different results since I'll be heading back to school in the fall and paying for a wedding, so my contributions to the retirement account will take a hit. However, I know that I've got a good foundation and I learned a lot. And I'll keep learning as I go.

Keep those wedding costs down! A wedding is just a party, but way too many cost people big time in a hit to their net worth.

Let's suppose you are 25, with 40 years until retirement at age 65. Let's further suppose that you might expect to earn 8% by investing extra dollars in your IRA each year. How much will you have in your IRA at age 65 for every dollar you cut in spending on a wedding now?

Answer--- $21.72.

Save yourself $1000 in costs and you could expect to have $21,720 additional dollars in your retirement account. Save $10,000 and your're talking $217,200.

Or it might be money you'd find useful buying a house, or in financianing an extended leave to care for a child.

But a PARTY? Think that one over carefully. Of course, if I'm invited, go ahead and bust the budget!

Seattle Pioneer

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