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Please add your own story to this thread.

I'm currently almost 33 and my net worth/income ratio is probably just under 4x my salary. How is this possible? I'm sure there are folks with more impressive numbers (please share your stories!)

Here are a few things that I did.

1. Okay, I'm a saver. I like to save. I have kept my expenses low and extra money has been kept safe in banking accounts, stocks, and other investments. 401k, IRAs, stock purchase plans. These rock!

2. I'm not afraid to invest in myself. This means investing time, effort and money. I went to a hard, well rated, engineering school. It was expensive and required a lot of my time and energy just to graduate. I also went back to graduate school after working for a couple of years. Since I went to a top program, this was an expensive choice. Both of these choices have paid off many times over.

3. I have always paid off debt as fast as possible, regardless of the interest rate. I borrowed some money from my parents to replace my car at one point. Their rates were beyond reasonable, but I made it a priority to pay it off fast. My student loans were at good rates, but I paid them off fast. Was this the smartest or most Foolish thing to do? Maybe not, but I think the mentality of not wanting any debt has been very helpful in building wealth.

4. I bought a house beyond my means. I put 20% down, but making the payments would have really pushed my limits. However, I took on renters (this was planned) and the net effect was that I was paying down a house that was more than I could afford. I also made extra payments towards the mortgage (why not just round up the mortgage to the next even $100? okay...now that I've done that...why not throw in another $50 or $100?).

5. I've taken risks. I changed jobs a couple years after grad school. The increase in salary was significant.

6. I haven't gone into panic mode and have planned for events/contingencies. I was laid off and it took me almost 6 months to find another job. I didn't take the first one that came along, but used my savings (and my wife's income and unemployment checks) to take my time and find the right job.

7. The house I bought (in #4) was in a good location and I was lucky to be selling when I did. It was great to make money on the sale, but the money I made on it went straight towards the downpayment on my current house.

8. I've invested frequently and consistently and significantly in the stock market. Every paycheck money goes to my 401k. Always. No exceptions. Every year I contribute the maximum to an IRA. Always. No exceptions. When I have extra money it has gone to my brokerage account. (The exception has been when I've put a some more towards my mortgage.) Money that has gone into these accounts has not come out. No Exceptions!! You don't have to put 75% of your salary in. You don't have to make great stock picks. You just have to put money in all the time.

Just remember to have fun along the way. :)

justpatrick
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I am not anywhere near where you stand, but I anticipate havnig such success as you have had. I am 23 and getting married in about a month. We found a house at the end of May and purchased that. I feel that it was a good move as we purchased the house for $45,000 and it appraised at $57,000. Also, the payments and my utilities come out to be essentially equivalent to what I was paying for a smaller apartment with no yard and no garage. Same money, building equity, better quality of life.

Before meeting my fiance I too was contributing all that I could to retirement accounts. I fully funded my Roth IRA for 3 years and though I haven't this year and may not be able to next year, I anticipate being able to move towards fully funding both my fiance's Roth (currently non-existant) and mine.

In the meantime, I continue to put 3% of my paycheck into my 401k as that is matched dollar-for-dollar by my employer. Also, I have $100 a month directly taken from my check to invest in company stock at a discount (UPS).

Currently my expenses are higher than normal due to the wedding and the purchase of the house. (You just HAVE to do work around the house to make it yours...) In any case, at this point I do have more debt than I would like though it isn't suffocating. There are two car notes ($10k and $20k), $10k in credit cards (we visited Home Depot a bit too much, and have remedied our addiction), my school loans ($30k), and the mortgage ($45k). We are both working hard to eliminate these debts so that we may save and eventually achieve FI.

$115k does seem to be a daunting figure, but we can only work on that a little bit at a time. Of course, that must be controlled before we can fund the IRAs. One car will be paid off in 3 years, while the other will be done in another 4 1/2. The mortgage, which is a large chunk of the debt is a 30 year mortgage and so it isn't difficult to deal with. It is the credit cards that I am focused on and then I will move on. I am putting $1500 towards those cards this month, though that is to be an unusually high payment as I don't generally make that much and I am simply receiving tuition reimbursement from my employer.

I may be negative on my net worth at this moment, but I am 23 after all. A number of things have to be paid for at this moment that I do not have the earning power to obtain without debt instruments. I do not generally go overboard, so I sincerely hope that within 10 years I can be standing in a smiliar position, financially, as you are. I look around these boards and see role models for myself--people that I wish to be like and follow in their successes. I just hope that I really can follow.

--Xenonax
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I just turned 34 and my NW/Income ratio is just under 3x current salary.

1. My wife and I try to save, but with our kids going to private school that bites into what we are able to save every month. Mrs. RaVeN however has taken a part time paid position at our daughters' pre-school and our tuition just got cut significantly. The leftover from her salary will also be sent to the dreaded CC.

2. My wife and I have paid down all of our debts except for the CC... We are starting to work on this one right now and we will be sending a sizeable payment (my 9.5% bonus this year) to the CC. This will pay down nearly 1/4 of our dreaded CC debt.

3. We have lived in our house since 1995 and always managed to pay to the next $100 similar to justpatrick. We just refinanced and cut 7 1/2 years off the loan this past February. Right now we can't afford to send more on a monthly basis to GMAC, but hopefully we will be able to do so soon. We paid $115,000 for our house and I believe the current value based on other homes in the area is close to $144,000+. Because we recently refinanced, our equity in the home is around $75,000!

4. I have been investing in the 401(k) plan and ESPP plan where I work. This month I raised my contribution to nearly 10% of my current salary. The company contributes to our 401(k) @ $0.75 / dollar up to $2,500 per year. I have maxed their contribution out for the past couple of years. Our ESPP plan enables us to purchase stock at an 85% of the current market premium which gives us an instant 15% return. I also increased this by 1% this month. I also have received ESOP shares in the past. We generally use these as opportunities to purchase things such as our cars, vacations etc... The company has stopped issuing them lately, but all told, I have paid off a $12,000 loan on our Accord, Paid $30,000 Cash for our Honda Odyssey, paid off $5,000 in student loans, and paid for a 10 day vacation in San Diego 2 years ago... I still have some ESOP shares left, but with the recent downturn in the stock market, they aren't worth a bunch so I will just hang on to them till the time is right...

5. I have worked my tail off for the past 9 1/2 years and have grown within the company. I started as a temp making $6.50 an hour 9 1/2 years ago. I was carried over and made a full time employee... I worked in the trenches for a 1.5 years and have been in Management ever since. I just recently received my Green Belt certification and am applying for a Black Belt position ( http://www.isixsigma.com if you are curious ) within my same company.

6. I am also taking advantage of my companies' Tuition Reimbursement program which will pay for $8,700 worth of my Master's Degree which begins October 5th.

7. I utilize the Direct Deposit option for my paycheck and have $200 / paycheck deposited into our Savings Account. We often have to pull that money over to the checking account because of some non-LBYM habits that we are trying to break, but the money is still in the account drawing interest. Our plan this year is to not pull that money by breaking our Non-LBYM habits. This could increase our savings account by nearly $5200 / year... Not too shabby in my books...

RaVeN
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We're not quite there yet... DH and I turn 29/30 this fall and right now our net worth is just shy of 2x our annual salary. We were in a serious cash burn early last year (diamond ring, motorcycle, furniture) and this year lost nearly $50k on a home (related to layoffs, of course.)

But, we are in a less expensive home and have a plan to build our savings back up and then some!!!

FIRE here we come,
96hokies
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I feel as if I'm way behind and way ahead at the same time!

DH and I are 47 and 45. We have four kids, two in college. The short story is that our net worth is about 9 x my annual salary.

The long story is much more involved than I'm willing to go into, but here is some of it.

DH has never worked for pay much; he's stayed home and raised the kids for most of the 24 years we've been married. When the kids got older, he went back to work as a home health care nurse. Then he started to get sick, and he rarely works now. So all the earning comes from my job and my very small business. I don't make a heck of a lot, but we live as far as possible below our means. This isn't easy, because DH is mentally as well as physically ill and sometimes blows what seems to me like an awful lot of money without even thinking about it. (We're working on that. I think we have a handle on it.) Plus we have a daughter who spends more than I'd like and I find it hard to check up on her.

We fully fund my 401(k), which comes to about 20% of my gross. We also fully fund our Roth IRAs, which is another 10% or so of my gross. One of my goals is for my small business to cover the IRAs, but it isn't quite there yet.

A lot of the story is that 13 years ago, DH and the oldest three kids got a windfall. Because of that, those kids don't have to worry about college and can go anywhere they want and have money left over if they're reasonably careful. DH leaves the investing to me, and even though we've spent some of the lump he got, we've also grown it quite a bit.

I calculate that if we can double our net worth every five years -- and I think we can -- we can retire in ten years. We will sell this house (which is appreciating well in a ridiculously overheated market), sell our cabin in WV, and buy a much cheaper place in the Shenandoah Valley for cash.

We still dip into our capital every year, because I save so much that I can't support the family on my income. But at least when I put money in tax-deferred ways, I know I can't touch it. So it's saved in the long run. And it's all growing -- oh, yeah, it's growing. :-)

phantomdiver
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I feel as if I'm way behind and way ahead at the same time!

Oh boy, do I ever know this feeling. Actually, it seems I always feel as I'm way behind everyone, but I know in actuality I'm not. However, from reading these posts on this board, I may be behind most of the FIRE Wannabees.

I have saved approximatly .5X of our gross annual income. We are both in our mid 30's and I hope, no, will be FIRE'd in less than 15 years.

The way that I'm going to do this, if all goes according to plan, is that I have two pensions that will play a big part in my FIRE plan. If either of these pensions falls through, then there goes my plan.

I am still saving about 14% of my gross income, but it seems over the past 3 years I went from having about 1X my income to now .5X our gross income. Of course, our gross income is larger now than it was 3 years ago, but still......

I'm staying the course though. Slow and steady and I'll get there.

Of course, I am modifying my plan slightly and I plan to incorporate some rental properties into the mix. That day of buying the first one may still be anywhere from 1-3 years away, but it'll come.

We will gross about 47K this year. Hang on....I'm going to start a new thread.
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Including the cash balance of my pension and the employer match to the pension plan, my net worth is approximately 9.8 times my annual gross salary. However, because I am less than a month away from my 50th birthday, I think I am actually behind schedule.

Mother taught me to be a saver, but I had problems saving when I was hired by my current employer in the fall of 1980. So early 1981 I signed up for payroll deduction to feed savings. It wasn't until about 10 years ago that I signed up for a 403(b), and about 4 years ago that I started taxable investments with the bulk of the money I was saving up in my savings account, so I am relatively late at investing.

However, during those years, I mostly avoided consumer debt and continued saving and (for the last few years) investing, each time when I received a step increase or a cost of living adjustment, I would reevaluate my cash flow and would usually step up the amount I'm saving or investing. I also tend to live somewhat frugally, e.g., used cars, simple clothing, only a few expensive vacations in those years.

If I could do it over, I would start contributing to a 403(b) at an inexpensive provider a whole lot earlier.
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Oh boy, do I ever know this feeling. Actually, it seems I always feel as I'm way behind everyone, but I know in actuality I'm not. However, from reading these posts on this board, I may be behind most of the FIRE Wannabees.

I don't think you are behind all the FIRE Wannabees, but those of us that feel we are behind probably are keeping quiet!!

I'll be brave. I'm 26 and I personally have just hit positive net worth (woo hoo!!) this year. However, if you bring BF into the picture --he's back in school-- we're going back in the red at a pretty steady rate. I'm learning to be OK with that.

The good news is that my boss is looking to hire me on permanently at a salary that will be significantly more than my current hourly wage. (But I'm not holding my breath...) While I'm waiting for my permanent position to come through, I'm working two jobs and making steady progress on my tiny student loans and my tiny IRA. I also have a peanut jar where we put all of our spare change. That's the Condo Fund <g>.

Hey, baby steps, right?

Cheers,
FriedaChopsticks
-- in an exceptionally good mood, because she doesn't have to work ALL WEEKEND. :)
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No. of Recommendations: 17
Please add your own story to this thread.

My liquid net worth is probably about 2/3 of my annual income, and I'm 37 years old. Do I wish I were further along than I am? Of course... but am I unhappy with myself because I'm not? No... because each situation depends upon one's circumstances. Here are mine:

When I was a teenager, my mother bought a copy of The Wealthy Barber and encouraged each of her three children to read it. This was my first real introduction to finance and investing in any kind of formal sense. There are a few lessons that I learned from that book, but the most powerful was just how big compound interest works over time. There were a few lessons/ideas in that book that upon further learning I have rejected, but that book planted the first the seed.

Well... no... actually it didn't - the first seed was planted before I ever read that book - allow me to explain a bit.

I have an M.B.A. these days, and my concentrations were corporate strategy and finance. I've worked as a corporate financial analyst ever since getting my M.B.A. (about four years ago). I've been around the Fool a while - and am not as big an expert as many around here, but I am certainly no newbie.

But the lessons I learned before even cracking the spine on The Wealthy Barber probably account for about as much as everything I've learned since. How can that be?

Well... I had a typical middle-class suburban upbringing. My parents bought as nice a home as they could afford, in one of the best at the time (and I think still is) school districts in the state. My father was a C.P.A., my best three friends' fathers were an engineer, a lawyer, and a small businessman (owned his own small business). Maybe slightly upper-middle class would be a better description of the neighborhood.

So how was it I learned as much at 15 or 16 as I've learned since, even including evertying here at the Fool or in my formal education?

By watching what financial decisions my parents made.

You see, my friends' parents would typically buy new cars ever 5 years or so... sometimes even a Mercedes. Impressed with these new cars (especially the Mercedes), I'd ask my parents, "Why don't we have new cars?"

My father would say, "Because the depreciate a huge amount the second you drive them off the lot. A car's just transportation, as long as it's reliable that's what really matters, and there are more important uses for the money than paying all that depreciation cost."

Another of my friends's parents (the engineer) liked to buy new, fancy electronic devices. He actually bought a Betamax in the early days - when they were very expensive. Even after VHS had won the war, we still didn't have a VCR - even after the prices had become far more reasonable. Then cable television arrived in our neighborhood. All of my friends had cable television. I envied all of those channels they had, especially the ability to watch more baseball games than I had access to with our little T.V. with the rabbit ears on top. I asked, "Why don't we have cable?"

My mom would say, "Because there's enough junk on television, why do I want to pay for more junk? Besides, there are more important things to spend the money on."

Deciding what's most important to you, and spending your money accordingly... that's the lesson I learned from my parents, and one that rivals all I've learned since. Maybe the Mercedes and cable T.V. were what were truly important to my friends' parents - I'm not second-guessing their lifestyles - but this is the lesson I learned and how I learned it.

Anyway, after reading The Wealthy Barber I knew I could someday be wealty if I just started early enough, and kept at it.

When I got my first job (I'd had others that lasted several months, this was the first lasting one) in college, the company offered a 401(k) after a certain period of employment - 50% matching up to 6% of my pay, and fully vested from the start. I, of course, contributed the 6%, taking full advantage of that matching. You see, The Wealthy Barber had taught me how much money 15% return could add up to over time, but an immediate 50% return? No way I was passing that up.

So, I started off selling popcorn at a movie theater. Became an usher, cleaning the theaters after the movies... became a supervisor, an hourly manager, and then a salried manager. All this time I was fiddling around in college, not really getting anywhere (a different story), but all the while contributing to my 401(k). I never made very much money (movie theater managers don't make a lot, and concession attendants even less), but I was contributing what amounted to 9% of my pay the whole time.

One other important lesson I learned at the same time... it was from my freshman economics course... the lesson was that of opportunity cost. I quickly coupled this opportunity cost lesson with my Wealthy Barber lesson and came to an epiphany of sorts.

Avoiding paying interest is the same thing as earning it.

Avoiding paying 18% credit card interst is the same thing as earning 18% investment interest - and I knew how absolutely huge 18% interest would be over time.

I've almost never carried a credit card balance in my life... thanks to that Econ 101 course I took when I was maybe 19 and thanks to The Wealthy Barber I read when I was maybe 16. Sure, sometimes my little, boring, economy box on wheels needed to be repaired and I didn't have the money (the e-fund lesson came later) and needed to get to work. So I would use a credit card from time to time for occasions such as this, but I'd always pay it off as quickly as I possibly could - never, can I recall, ever carrying any credit card balance for more than three months.

Well... I finally 'saw the light' and actually put some effort into college. Once I did, I went full-time, straight through, including summers while also working full-time (all the while contributing to my 401(k)). After a brief hiatus, I enrolled in grad school. Now this necessitated taking out some student loans, but I took out the least I could, and continued to work full-time while attending grad school full-time (I was one of two students in my entire class to do this). No, I didn't have much free time - was I a glutton for punishment? No. My fellow students who worked only part time, or didn't work at all (and there were many) were borrowing not only the money for their tuition, but for everything... their living expenses, even their toothpaste.

I wasn't about to borrow money for toothpaste if I could avoid it.

And all the while I kept contributing to my 401(k).

A few months before I graduated I quit my movie theater job - both because I had outgrown it and didn't like it much anymore and also to be able to spend more time looking for a new job. About 9 months later (6 months after I graduated) I found my first financial analyst job. Of course, signing up for the 401(k). While my amassed 401(k) money had, by this point, pretty much equalled my income (as a movie theater manager), my income suddenly went up by about 70%, so on the income vs. nest egg scale I slid back down the ladder several rungs.

Obviously, not a bad thing when one considers why I slipped down those few rungs.

After working at that job for about three years (my income rising another 20% over those three years), I found another job - this one paying about 25% more than the previous one had. So, in the span of about four years my income had grown to about 2 and 1/2 times what it had been when I was managing movie theaters. Needless to say, my contributions to my 401(k) couldn't (or didn't) keep up with that kind of growth - so I kept slipping down the income vs. net worth latter with each passing year.

I've picked up adequate insurance along the way, have a big enough e-fund now, and continue to save and invest... maybe I'm still behind pace to actually FIRE - and maybe I need to contribute even more than I am. But I am on pace to have at least a normal, comfortable retirement - and that's no small task these days.

So, my liquid net worth (investments + e-fund, not counting cars, furniture, etc.) is only about 2/3 of my annual income, and I'm already 37 years old.

But when I look back, and consider all of the circumstances I'm left with one conclusion... I'm left saying to myself...

"You could have done better, sure... but not bad... not bad at all."

Regards,

Eldrehad

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I'm 37 years old.

Funny, I always thought you were a crochety old man, er, distinguished elder gentleman, given your writing style. I'm amazed to find that you're a year younger than I am. Whippersnapper.

My mom would say, "Because there's enough junk on television, why do I want to pay for more junk? Besides, there are more important things to spend the money on."

My mother said "it's too expensive!", which is half of what your mother said. Which is too bad, because I could have benefited from that. All I learned from my parents was that they were cheap.

In fact, my father was a terrible negative example for saving. When I was about 16, we decided to get a printer for my home-built Super Elf computer. Now, buying an actual daisy wheel or dot matrix printer was out of the question - those things cost $400 or so, if I remember correctly. So we bought a series of junked special purpose printers from places like banks, and never managed to get any of them to work. We didn't save money this way, we threw away about $150.

The net effect of this is that I developed a distaste for being cheap. I didn't really start saving until I was 30. On the other hand, I was never seriously in debt. I did rack up $5000 in student loans while I was in college, but I paid those off a year or two after graduating. I always regarded a credit card as a plastic checkbook, simply because I realized from an early age that credit isn't income. I live at my means, neither above nor below.

To be fair, my income had its ups and downs during those years. Despite being a programmer, I made all of $15K my first year working, and I kept chasing equity positions at small companies that would fail in those years. When I hit 30, I got my first job for decent pay. I moved to Los Angeles and my salary increased more than 50% compared to what I made in Colorado. Even with the extra housing costs of LA, this made a big difference.

I also met my second wife in Los Angeles, and unlike my first wife, she was a professional with a salary comparable to mine. Two professional level salaries makes a huge difference when you're trying to save. Neither of us had any real savings, but she did have a fairly substantial pension benefit from working in academia, which put our combined net worth at 1.5x our combined annual income.

My income started climbing rapidly from that point. In three years, my income went up 30%. When I hit 32, we finally had enough money that it was clear that we needed to do something more productive than sticking it in a savings account, so I started investing with VFINX.

At 33, I joined a company with a very generous ESPP and a rising stock. It was an obvious win-win deal, so I maxed out my participation at 20% of my salary, and for the next couple of years I was getting really big chunks of money every six months, which I turned around and invested in Vanguard. I started contributing a small amount of money to my 401(k), but I was still pretty focused on keeping our money somewhere where I could access it easily before retirement.

My salary rose over the next 4 years, and by the time the company started collapsing in 2002, my salary was nearly double what it was in '95, and over triple what it was in '93. During this period, I slowly started shifting from index investing to investing in individual stocks. Our savings had kept pace with my income growth, and our net worth was now about 2.5x our annual income.

Actually, it was a bit more than that. The housing market had risen in California, and I was thinking in terms of what we paid for our house, not its market value. This last March we moved to the Boston area, and we realized a fair amount of that "phantom" equity. At this point, our net worth is 4x our annual income, including about $80K of equity between the difference in the price of our current home and the mortgage.

At this point, we're pretty much living on my wife's salary, and saving mine. I estimate we'll hit 9x annual income in net worth in about 7 more years, which given that we spend less than half of that, is more like the 20x annual income level where FIRE becomes possible.

"You could have done better, sure... but not bad... not bad at all."

That's the way I feel now, too. I feel like the years from age 22 to age 30 were wasted, financially, but our net worth is now about twice that of my father's, who retired 9 years ago at age 65, and who is definitely dependent on social security.

- Gus
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Please add your own story to this thread.

My current net worth is about 7.5 times my pitifully small annual salary (I only work half time, semi-retired).

This post is a little old (I'm 24 now), but it gives my basic backstory:
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=14009738
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Funny, I always thought you were a crochety old man, er, distinguished elder gentleman, given your writing style.

Hmmm....

There are a few different ways I could take that.

How about we settle on, "Wise beyond your years"?

Out of the many possible connotations, I think I like that one best.

;-)

Regards,

Eldrehad

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This post is a little old (I'm 24 now), but it gives my basic backstory:
http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=14009738
Congratulations, grasshopper! I avoided this thread cuz I'm looking back over decades and my net worth did one heckuva loop-de-loop over that timeframe.
You are in a rare position for having started so early, and will be able to enjoy a greater percentage of your life than most.
A word of caution from this end of the 20-something semi-retirement party: don't let your guard down for a single, solitary minute. Sounds like "doh!" advice, but in our 20s and 30s, having already reached such heights, we can be a little more easily tempted than those who had to struggle a bit longer than we did.
When Wendell Phillips said, "Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty" he meant it in the political sense, and it is often interpreted in that same frame. But if you consider that we can have no freedom in politics if we have no personal freedom, eternal vigilance begins with our own lives ... our own destinies.
Good luck on the rest of your journney.

I'm InLivingColor
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Please add your own story to this thread

I grew up with parents who were stingy (never got anything from them) and lived beyond their means. Both of them are nearing retirement without a pot to pi$$ in. I learned a lot from their mistakes, but went on to make several HUGE mistakes of my own. The biggest mistake I made was marrying someone who didn't give a da*n about FI or saving for the future, etc. I always knew in the back of my mind that we wouldn't stay together so I never saved anything. I didn't want her to take half (or more) of what I'd worked so hard for. Looking back, maybe I should have saved. Half of something is better than half of nothing. After 10 years of unhappy marriage, we divorced in 1999. I was 30 then. My biggest regret is marrying so young and not deliberately thinking through the ramifications of marriage. We also had four (yes- 4) children from the marriage. Now I pay an unGodly amount of child support (willingly- it's for my kids) each month, which greatly hinders the ability to save/invest/pay off debt.

Some of you may have read my post which described my current situation. Here's the link if you care/haven't read:

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=19470128&sort=whole

I remarried to yet another unFoolish person. To her credit, she IS coming around and thinking more along the lines of a Fool. As of this post, my net worth is around ZERO. Am I happy with that? Of course not. But I do spend a lot of time educating myself. Within a month, I expect a large lump sum bonus from my employer, which will fully fund our retirement accounts this year, pay off all debt, and fully fund both an efund and a freedom fund.

Over the next 5 years, I expect about a 25% increase in salary from today's level. My wife is aware that we will be taking all of this increase and applying it toward retirement accounts and investments.

I'm not happy with where I stand, but I am thankful that I (re)discovered the Fool at this critical point in life. (Believe it or not, I originally registered with the Fool back in 1999!)

Stetson20
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Over the next 5 years, I expect about a 25% increase in salary from today's level. My wife is aware that we will be taking all of this increase and applying it toward retirement accounts and investments.


Hang in there, Stetson! If you're 34 now, and save 15-20 years like you describe, you'll surely be FI by the time you're 49-54!

That's still pretty young... :)
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