It ended up being a breakthrough year for me and my fiancée as we set and hit a crazy goal to double our savings. We ended up tripling it in the end as we went from saving 20% to saving 60% of our after-tax income.
Our journey started off much worse.
I still recall one quarter in 2013 where I saw my net worth go down. It felt miserable as I felt things were spiraling out of control.
The truth is, we don’t need to have a high IQ to become financially independent, we only need to avoid real stupid mistakes.
It took us a full nine months to get out of the trenches, and I won’t rehash it here since you can catch our story on The Huffington Post.
Summary: By the end of 2014, we saved close to 10% of our combined post-tax income. It took another year to reach 20%, making 2016 our breakout year; we ended up saving over 60%.
As we tested different ideas through the years, we noticed some that stuck and some that didn’t. At times it could be frustrating but we already felt confident we were inching our ways closer to the result we wanted.
During our 90 day period I ended up detailing each of the strategies we used.
We have our sights set high for 2017 as we aim to save $100K by using 3 guiding principles.
Most recently we’re in the end stages of another frugality challenge, this time narrowing down a different list altogether (for the most part) with 14 frugal strategies of which my favorite:
It takes only 5 minutes a day.
Below are a few of my top posts that link together the story of how we escaped the life of living paycheck to paycheck.
Distilled Dollar Approach To Money:
- 4 Phases of Financial Independence
- Understanding and Ultimately Curbing Lifestyle Inflation
- Frugality is Not a Sacrifice
- Lessons from the First Early Retiree
- Snowballing Liability of Retirement
- How to Buy Retirement
- My Millennial Manifesto (featured on Huff Post!)
- 7 Paths to Becoming a Millionaire
- Transitioning from Employee to Investor (and eventually to Philanthropist)
Creating Financial Freedom:
- 17 Money Strategies We Used to Save Over $50K (mentioned above)
- 1% Increase in Savings = 2 Years More Freedom
- How to Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half
- The Smartest Decision We Made to Build Wealth Rapidly
- How to Maximize Your Wealth While Paying Loans
- $1,000 Savings with Amazon’s free Subscribe & Save Feature + free delivery!
- My Alternative Approach to creating a budget.
- Investing 101: Getting Started: My entire investment philosophy explained in 591 words.
Book Reviews: these have been exceedingly popular because I do not give a summary of the book. Instead, I tell you what practical steps I took as a result of the lessons in the book. Steal some or just copy them, either way, here are all my book reviews.
Podcast: If you’re looking to learn about all things money via audio, then check out the 5 minute episodes on the Millennial Money Minutes Podcast. We’ve seen over 325,000 downloads in our first year so far (through June 10, 2017) and glad to see all the positive responses so far!
For the best money tools & resources I’m currently using, check out my resources and recommendations page.
Enjoy all that Distilled Dollar has to offer!
P.S. For more about me, my fiancee and our journey to creating financial freedom, check out the About page.