Our motto: Living Life 100% at 50% of the cost. What does it mean? It means that you can have a full life without spending every dollar you make. It also means living a full life by not saving every dollar you make. It's a balance between enjoying the life you have and preparing for the future. Regardless if you make $40K, $100K, or $300K, you most likely find yourself spending most of your money and wondering how you used to get by on less money back in the day. Don't worry about what you make, let's focus on what you save!
In a world of Instagram and Facebook envy, saving can be incredible hard. Furthermore, we live in one of the most expensive cities in the world...New York City. We spend $3,500 a month on rent and $250 to park a car that we hardly use. But if we want to live our life on our terms, we need find ways to save.
Make no mistake, we are fortunate in that we make two good salaries, which even with high rent, we are able to save 55% of our income every year, while also exploring what this great world has to offer. However, we are continually searching for ways to cut corners and save money without cutting back on living. Additionally, we want to be prepared if one of us can no longer work or one of us loses a job.
Also, we both know what it is like to be on the poorer side of the equation. From age 22-26 I made barely $40,000 per year and lived in pricey Washington, DC. My husband was in the military for his 20s and early 30s, so he was on a fixed income where he first made $1,012 twice per month. Oh, and I shouldn't forget to mention that he worked at a septic service company where he pumped out porta-johns for four summers making a whopping $5 per hour. We feel very fortunate to have the jobs and salaries we have today, but we also know that we lived on much less in the past, so we should be able to save and invest much more. Right?!
Often we find ourselves turning to the great financing, frugality, and savings blogs. There's a lot of great blogs and many have awesome tips! However, they can get...extreme. We will never be the people that clips coupons to buy 40 cans of Folgers Coffee to save $10. Nor are we the people that live with 3 roommates in a basement apartment or skip much-needed vacations. We applaud those who can go to extremes to save money, but much like a new diet after New Years, it's just hard to maintain that lifestyle and you find yourself burnt out after a while.
On the other hand, we are very turned off by the people that try to live 100% at 200% of the cost. You know who we mean, the folks that buy the $1 million house just because they were able to get a loan up to that amount or they buy a BMW because they feel like they deserve it. Ask yourself if buying that $45,000 truck is worth the "pain" of paying the $700 car loan.
We also make decisions to cook most of the time and not go out all weekend long, unlike many Millennials we know and are friends with. Instead, we save for our world adventures. And when we go on adventures, we spend our money on the things we value the most - experiences. It's not the hotel we stayed in that we will remember when we are old and gray...it's looking at the Northern Lights in Iceland on a windy February night or the sense of accomplishment after we hiked to the top of mountain to look at a glacier.
Look, this blog is not for everyone. It's not for the folks needing or wanting to save every dollar they make by biking 20 miles to work each day or raiding the free snacks at work to replace a meal. It's also not for the folks that live large now and hope for Social Security in the future to take care of them. This forum is for those that make a decent living, who want to learn new tips and tricks about saving without having to completely sacrifice everything. It's for those who want to go the extra mile, but don't want to kill themselves in the process.
Join us on our journey to retire in 8 years, travel the world, and gain financial freedom, without eating rice and beans every night.