Finances and Debt

Finances and DebtDragon

I got turned onto The 4-hour Work Week years ago. It helped guide me in so many ways and I spent a year closely listening to Tim Ferris as he began an amazing podcast series which has since gone on to be the #1 business podcast many years running, I believe. Tim spent all this time interviewing many people who run the companies we all use every day. This podcast shares all sorts of ideas, but one that regularly comes up is reducing debt and ways to do that.

Really, the key thing I’ve learned is to try to avoid getting into debt in the first place. But if that’s not possible then reducing your debt takes precedence over other things. If you consider the interest one pays for keeping credit card debt you can see that that can quickly add up over time and can definitely weigh on you in many ways. A way I was able to pay off my college and grad school student loans was by taking a job in the high-tech sector for a couple of years. It was boring work, but it paid very well. Once I had my loans paid off I moved away from that sector mostly. I realize this is not possible for everyone, but if you do have debt figuring out ways to reduce and eliminate it will help you out greatly. I’ll never forget the day I paid off my loans and the smile that crept over my face when I realized I was done with the monthly payments.

I wonder if that’s partly why I’ve been unwilling to start down the road to home ownership. Or, home moanership as I hear it referred to, often. I do think I’ll own a home at some point, but up till now the goal as evaded me. I was actually close, once – during the time I was working for those high-tech companies. I qualified for a $400,000 loan, but I was pretty sure my time in Seattle was coming to a close. Had I bought a house then it probably would have doubled in value in the last 20 years, but what can you do?

Back to debt and finances. Another wonderful resource in this area is Mr. Money Mustache. His tagline is “Early Retirement through Badassery”, and he really walks his talk. I think I’ve learned more about life and how to live a good one from Mr. Money Mustache than any other source. I recommend signing up for his newsletter. It comes out very infrequently, but often has something interesting and different to say about living in our society. One of his main themes is about how to live a high-quality life through things like – killing your commute; what kind of car or truck to buy; the types of phones and phone plans that are out there and his encouragement for us all to learn to repair what we own vs. paying someone else to do it or buying new things.

So, what are your thoughts about debt and finances? If you’ve got anything to add please leave a comment below – especially if you have any great stories when it comes to this topic. I’ve learned a lot over the years from peoples’ comments on my writing and I hope that continues as long as I live.  Thanks for reading and enjoy the day!

Sincerely,

Albert Kaufman, 7.19.21

 

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