6 years ago I had nothing to show for retirement, today I’m easily on my way to becoming a millionaire. Here’s how.
6 years ago I had recently left a toxic relationship of 6.5 years. My ex had become violent so I really just took what I could carry and left our shared apartment to start over on my own. I didn’t have much. 6k in a retirement account. 15k in a whole life insurance plan someone talked me into when I was 22 and over 200k in debt. 15k in credit card debt, 5k on my car and the rest in my law school student loans. I had made a decision to try to use my law degree alternatively and was only making 60k a year while having $1800/mo in debt payments. I was living paycheck to paycheck and then I was fired from my job.
I didn’t think things could get any worse and I found myself working at a restaurant as a server while running through ideas of how to build a business and never worry about being fired again. I was fired because I spoke up and basically said my boss was unethical and I didn’t respect her. So somehow in those endless google searches, I found the FI Community and made small steps that changed my course forever.
I first found Afford Anything and then I found Stacking Benjamin’s podcast. They were great at pointing me in the direction where to start. So where did I start?
I was barely making it with my student loans and CC debt. I also used all of my retirement funds when I was unemployed…. 🤦🏻♀️. I started by contributing to my employers 401k. It was the best way to set it and forget it. I started with 3% thinking that was money I could afford not to have. Then I realized I was missing out on free money by not at least moving to the company match. At that time it was 4%. Then I got a 15k promotion so I moved my investments up to 6% of my pay and with the company match, I then had 10% of my pay being invested.
My next big step that helped me was getting out of CC debt. Some of that debt I was paying 28% interest on! That’s highway robbery. I contacted a financial advisor who was giving free consultations and he advised I take my whole life insurance and pay off that debt immediately. I did that and got myself $500 more dollars a month I could spend on goals so I then worked on building an emergency fund.
My final big move was moving home to my parents so I could further improve my financial situation. I thought it would kill my dating prospects but no one seemed to care. I also met my husband while I was living with my parents. Funny how when you clean up one area of your life, the other areas come together too.
So fast forward to today, I’m making another 20k and I hopefully will be making another 50k on top of my salary next year but even if I don’t, I’m now on already track to be a millionaire.
If I invest the exact same amount I am now, I should be a millionaire in 21 years. If I cut my monthly investment in half, I’ll be a millionaire in 26 years. If I’m able to double my investment, I’ll be a millionaire in 15 years. That’s not that long of a time! In all of those scenarios, I still become a millionaire.
I’m also not including my husbands accounts or investments nor calculating more than 7% growth from compound interest. So basically, I’m here to say you can do it. We all can do it. And if I helped someone else get their finances healthy again, the time I took to post this is worth it.