Frugal Idea #43: 15%

It has been about two months since I was able to make my last student loan payment which has allowed me to become 100% debt free. Now that the worry of debt is no longer on my shoulders, I have been able to put energy towards other aspects of my life such as my full-time job, focusing on cleaning the apartment to become even more minimal, and future endeavors. Despite striving towards a minimal lifestyle, there are some household items I really do want to upgrade. For example, I can not stand looking at my toilet seat cover! It was a beautiful dark gray when originally purchased, but I see the colors fading away. Now, it is a mediocre gray. I also want a new mattress and new laptop. Luckily, I have a new-found discipline that allows me to tell myself to be patient and wait until I can save for the total cost. I also need to buy a new car soon (190k miles, baby!). After all of the internal debate of what to buy next, I am training myself to always think long term. My long term financial goal is simple: retire early.

Well, what is retiring early? I had a lot of questions to ask:

  • What is considered early retirement?
  • How much do I need to retire?
  • Am I on track to early retirement?
  • What are my retirement savings plan options to build a nest egg?

As you can see, I have a lot to figure out. I currently am saving 10% of my income into a retirement account, but lately, I have been reading and hearing about saving 15% of your income if you really want to achieve freedom at an older age.

I am now ready to make that percentage increase! I actually am not worried about it as I utilize my Every Dollar Budgeting tool almost daily now, I have been more conscious of how every dollar is spent. I also visited this website to see if I am on track: RIQ. RIQ is your Retirement IQ. Depending on your contribution amount and rate of return, you can determine how much you might make by a certain age. I have always wanted to become a millionaire and it looks like it will be possible! Well, in 25-30 more years. Then there is that lingering question, will $1 million even be enough 25-30 years from now?

If you have any tips on steps towards retirement, let’s chat!