I am late getting my Fiscal Friday post up this week. I was so busy at work all week and needed to come home to spend time with my husband each day. The blog took a backseat for a minute. Now it is Saturday and M headed to the game so I am spoiling the dogs and writing.
Now back to my Fiscal (not so) Friday post.
I want to talk about the “why”. Why does it matter if we are fiscally responsible? What are we working so hard toward?
I think we all have our own specific goals we are working toward. When I was 23 years old I remember my dad telling me I could be worth $1 million by the time I was thirty. Wow! Really?! I didn’t really understand him or believe him even but the reality is that he was right.
Now, when he said that he didn’t mean that I would have $1 million cash sitting around in my checking account. He wanted me to start investing and putting money away to grow.
First, a little background on where that conversation started. I had taken a job waiting tables at a really busy restaurant right by campus and was making good money. So good in fact, I made $9,000 in roughly 3 months. And I put every cent into savings. The truth was that my car was almost as old as I was. I was fixing it every time I turned around so I was saving for a new car.
My dad came to visit me one weekend and that’s when I approached him about helping me get a loan for a new car. I was prepared with all my points of why he should help me. I had obviously proved that I was a hard worker and could make enough money to make the car payment. My car was just costing way to much money to fix. I was going to be graduating in 5 months and would need something more reliable.
Sounds pretty good, right? Know what he said? NO! He said that if I had $9,000 that I could buy a car worth that amount. Or even better, I could put the money in a CD and borrow against the CD to purchase a car. He went on to tell me that if I continued to work hard and save that I could be worth $1 million by the time I was 30.
I want to note my brother told me not to buy a car at all and spend the money on travel and experiences.
Of course, I was devastated and totally did not agree with him. I liked the idea of $1 million but I wanted a reliable car. I ended up picking out the car I wanted and my mom co-signed with me. I picked a base model, gently used, inexpensive sedan with a very small loan. Just for the record, it is now 7 years later and I still have that little car.
Even though I chose to take out a loan to get a slightly newer car (in hopes of avoiding costly repairs) the seed was still planted. I decided I would in fact work toward the $1 million goal. Little did I know that roughly a year later I would be living in San Francisco about to lose my job to a rapidly failing economy.
We don’t always meet our goals but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t work toward them. I never forgot that feeling of setting a goal and trying to get there. The parameters are different now but I am still working toward my goals.
In a nutshell, you must have goals to work toward. Here are mine:
- Fixing and updating my house.
- Purchasing a new car for M.
- Buy a new house.
- Retire by the age of 60.
That’s it. Those are my goals.
What are your financial goals?
Remember, everyone is welcome to link up for Fiscal Friday and grab the button!