The personal finance community is filled with so many talented writers and truly inspiring people and families who want something much different in life than the traditional plan of buying lots of stuff and retiring in their 60s. Here is a look at the best of this week’s personal finance blogs.
In this episode of Friday Feast: Dividend Mantra, Gen Y Finance Guy, MillionIn10, Budgets Are Sexy, Our Next Life, Northern Expenditure, Fervent Finance, So Over This, Money Mozart, Slowly Sipping Coffee and Root of Good.
Once again, welcome to the best working day of the week! It has been a little while since we’ve published a Friday Feast, so let’s extend our “week” a bit and take a look at some of the best personal finance gems that graced the digital airwaves over the past month.
First and foremost, I am always impressed by Dividend Mantra‘s ability to meticulously stay the course, watching his dividend income slowly but surely increase in size. This year’s August income increased by 20% over last year’s income. Moral of this story? This shit works. Sometimes it takes patience. Sometimes the market goes down. But over time, this investment stuff will get you rich.
And truthfully, there are so many different ways to “get rich”, but the easiest way is to follow a very simple process laid out by Gen Y Finance Guy. To join that blessed double-comma club, all that’s required is saving your money. Max out your 401k, pay off your debts and continue to save at least half of your income every year. Believe it or not, it’s easier than it sounds.
For example, MillionIn10 published an article last month about their savings from switching over to LED lightbulbs. A simple switch, insanely easy to implement, and the savings are nearly instant.
Of course, there is no need to go overboard, as J$ from Budgets Are Sexy blogged about last week. It is okay to spend money so long as we’re aware of how these expenditures are directly influencing our happiness. “The best type of spending is on our dreams”, after all.
Remember the “Our Next Life” blog series that we posted during our trip to New York? Well, the blog Our Next Life continued the series by discussing in detail their own plans to totally rock early retirement and turn their lifestyle into a jobless paradise. Then again, so did Northern Expenditure – I love reading about the early retirement plans of other badass personal finance bloggers.
One of the things that my wife and I will be doing post-retirement is traveling. A lot. Earlier in the month we traveled out to Fervent Finance‘s neck of the woods for a wedding on Long Island, but spent a night in Brooklyn. His recent post about leveraging friends and family when traveling was timed perfectly – we spent a couple hundred bucks, total, for a week in New York, which included an AirBnB stay and a small purchase at B&H Photo (the fucking mecca of photophiles).
It was fun, and we got quite a bit of exercise walking around the city – which reminds me of a post from So Over This about turning to physical fitness to improve your overall health and reduce costs related to healthcare. As a tried-and-true gym rat myself, I whole-heartedly endorse this plan! 🙂
Chris from Money Mozart wrote a thoughtful and interesting piece about “Labor Day” and what that truly means to those of us who still have jobs. What if, instead of celebrating JOBS in this country, we instead celebrated living? Freedom from work? Celebrating Non-Labor Day sounds so much better.
And speaking of “non-labor”, layoffs are a bitch. Just ask Mr. and Mrs. SSC who wrote about their saga earlier in the week dealing with the looming inevitability of being laid off. But, they are keeping their heads up and thinking about this whole mess in a positive light. Maybe it’s time for a career change. Maybe now is the opportunity to reflect on the career a bit more. Maybe…maybe it’s time to just freaking retire?!?
Root of Good celebrated his two-year early retirement anniversary last month. What has he accomplished over the course of two years? “Everything and nothing”, of course. Traveling here, video games there. You know, spending time not worrying about the next status report, performance review or Powerpoint presentation.
Thanks for reading, and cheers to another financially productive week ahead!
Steve is a 38-year-old early retiree who writes about the intersection of happiness and financial independence. Steve is a regular contributor to MarketWatch, CNBC, and The Ladders. He lives full-time in his 30′ Airstream Classic and travels the country with his wife Courtney and two rescued dogs.