With 2020 wrapping up, there have been a lot of ways your financial life has been impacted. We had the Coronavirus stock market crash which was the first >20% decline in the stock market since 2009. We had the CARES Act pass in late March with several important financial provisions, including the creation of the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans which helped small businesses. We now have the COVID Relief Bill waiting to be signed by the president.
However, what I believe is one of the most long-lasting changes is the shift to remote work. Even once COVID passes and/or everyone is vaccinated, remote work will hopefully be here to stay which will open up possibilities that never existed before.
Do you still need to live in an expensive city? Can you travel and work remotely for a few months? Are you only limited to jobs physically located near you?
While there will always be jobs that require you to be physically present, the number of jobs that can be done from anywhere is rapidly increasing. In turn, this will more strongly challenge the “9-5, work-until-you’re-65 concept”. Why wait until age 65 to start truly experiencing your life when you can now work from anywhere? Why stop working if you could generate income doing something you love when you want, where you want, and how you want?
This theme of challenging “retirement” and creating your own work-life path is prevalent in all of my top blog posts from 2020. Money is simply a tool that, if managed properly, can help you live your ideal life as soon as possible. Looking at financial decisions through that lens, here are the top 5 blog posts of 2020 to help you make the most informed decisions with your money.
#5) An Overview Of Fire And A More Practical Approach To It
An Overview Of FIRE And A More Practical Approach To It takes a deep dive into the Financially Independent, Retire Early (FIRE) movement. The FIRE movement is hugely popular among millennials, but the requirements can be a bit extreme.
At its core, FIRE requires you to drastically cut your expenses, save between 50% – 70% of your income each year and then build enough savings so your investment portfolio totals 25x your annual spending. This would allow you to stop working at an early age and then spend your precious time doing whatever you want.
Sounds great, right? Well, I have some critiques from a financial planner’s perspective on this method which I share in this blog post, so you can make the FIRE method actually work for your unique lifestyle.
#4) 3 Better Ways To Save Before You Max Out Your 401(k)
3 Better Ways To Save Before You Max Out Your 401(k) outlines some alternative ways to save money before contributing the maximum amount to your 401(k). Maxing out your 401(k) is the most common way to save because it’s easy – you already have the account set up, money gets invested automatically and all you need to do is change the percentage or dollar amount you are contributing.
However, having the majority of your savings in a 401(k) can limit your ability to experience your money throughout your life. You may be locking up money until at least age 59.5, or else you will pay a penalty (and possibly income tax!).
Assuming you value flexibility over minimizing tax, there are other beneficial ways for you to save which future you will thank you for after reading this blog!
#3) How To Ditch The Work Until You’re 65 Mentality
How To Ditch The Work-Until-You’re-65 Mentality brings you through a hypothetical “modern work path” instead of the traditional path of working straight until 65 and then stopping all work. This blog talks about mini-retirements, prioritizing work-life balance when your kids are young, and the choice to work longer, but with more breaks during your life.
When you want to experience your money throughout your life rather than waiting until “retirement”, it changes the financial decisions that you need to make. Learn more in this blog.
#2) 5 Financial Planning Questions for Young Families To Ask Themselves
5 Financial Planning Questions For Young Families To Ask Themselves is a financial planning guide for young families. It discusses topics like holding cash, managing your student loans, creating an investment strategy, crafting a plan for college funding, and reviewing life insurance needs.
Although there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to financial planning for young families, there are some common themes that almost every young family needs to address. Save yourself the time googling and use this blog to help point you in the right direction on how to properly manage your family’s finances.
#1) The True Measure of Wealth Is…Time
The True Measure Of Wealth Is…Time challenges what society tells us about what wealth traditionally means. It introduces a concept that I call Time Wealth which means rather than trying to have a 7-digit investment account, we should all aspire to spend our precious time in a way that is most aligned with our values.
Time is finite, whereas money is infinite. We get trapped sacrificing our valuable time in the endless pursuit of earning more money when we don’t know how much money is “enough”.
This blog will provide you with a new lens to look through when making financial decisions. In the end, it’s about the experiences and relationships you have, not the amount of money.
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