The Church of FI – September 2016 Expense and Net Worth reports from the blogosphere

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When I searched “ripping hair out”, these two guys showed up. I like them so much they are featured here.

 

It is often quoted that it costs $250,000 to raise a child. That high number is meant to shock, to evoke outrage over the high cost of living in the United States. But how high is our cost of living really? This number is hard to track down given variables such as location, and it is true that the cost of living will vary depending on where you live. However, there are many examples from all over the country that show you can live easily, on $40,000 or less, given some flexibility.

My personal goal is to get my families spending below $35,000, and this includes a mortgage payment around $15,600 per year. Honestly, I don’t even notice how much *extra* Little Miss TJL costs us. In fact, if I truly thought that it would cost such an outrageous amount to raise her, couldn’t I just match what I spend on her in a low-fee index fund? Would I hardly notice that as well? It might end up being a great savings plan, and an extra $250,000 plus interest in my pocket.

Taking the step to actively secure a bright financial future is actually pretty easy once you get past the psychology of it all. I went all in, saving >50% of my take home pay, because I want it so badly. You might take it in baby steps. Try investing $50 per week, then $100. Look at places to cut wasteful spending in your budget, and invest the difference. Keep it simple and invest in low-fee index funds (Vanguard has some great low-fee options). You can even set this up automatically through an electronic bank transfer. The sooner you start, the sooner you can watch your net worth grow, like these folks in the Church of FI.

 

And now the Expense and Net worth Reports from the blogosphere!

The Jolly Ledger (expense report)

The Jolly Ledger (net worth report)

1500 days (August’s performance update – published end of September so I’ll include it here)

Retire Before Dad   *new* reports investment income

Mr. Tako Escapes

Root of Good

Northern Expenditure

Distilled Dollar

Budgets are Sexy

Financially Alert

Frugal Paradise

The Frugal Vagabond

Travel, Travel, & Retire

 Retire by 40

Frugalwoods

Fiery Millennials

Dividends Down Under (Dividend Update)

Dividends Down Under (Savings Update)

Slowly Sipping Coffee

Money Commando  (net worth)

Money Commando (Investment Income)

 

All Church of FI articles are archived in Featured Links on the Church of FI.

 

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10 Responses to The Church of FI – September 2016 Expense and Net Worth reports from the blogosphere

  1. Thanks for including me! I like to share my numbers so people in similar situations can see what I’m doing and see if there are ways they can emulate it. So often spending is kept so secret that people never get a good example of what a proper budget looks like. Great idea!

    • ska@thejollyledger.com says:

      I feel the same way and it is the underlining purpose of this blog…to provide an example of what is possible and how to organize your finances.

  2. You know, I’ve seen that $250k cost estimate for raising a child before as well, but it’s always seemed a little sensationalistic and (like you say) maybe meant to evoke some kind of response rather than really provide a meaningful benchmark.

    I’m sure you can pretty easily spend a quarter mill raising a kid. You can probably spend lots more if you put some real elbow grease into the effort. But if I start to get the impression Little Libre’s running us anywhere near those kinds of figures (not including college tuition, which is kind of another topic), he’s gonna be working in the fields!

    • ska@thejollyledger.com says:

      I like to focus less on how much it will take to raise a child and more on actually raising the child by, you know, teaching them stuff. If it takes a little dough to do it, I am okay with that. But never should buying your kid the latest fad take precedent over investing in your future. College tuition is another topic and not one I am entirely sure I will pay for. Still hashing that one out on my end.

  3. Thank you very much for including us as always TJL, you are very kind 🙂

    I agree – that kids average figure seems high, but most people can do it cheaper than they are/have.

    Tristan

    • ska@thejollyledger.com says:

      Childcare can be quite high. We have avoided that (mostly) by having only one working parent. We sacrifice the income, but we really don’t need it. Other than that, we utilize hand me down clothes and are selective about activities that keep costs lower.

  4. Aside from childcare costs, I’m pretty sure we can focus on keeping ourselves well below that average, though, we have been able to absorb the increases to our monthly bottom line fairly well. If I could also crack the childcare nut, we’d really be in business! 🙂

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