Try to be not broke.

May 19, 2013 · 33 comments

Over the last two weeks I’ve purchased six round trip plane tickets. It’s insane. Between baby showers and weddings, we knew we’d be dropping some serious coin on flights this summer. But dang, $1,600 disappeared from our bank account faster than a Twinkie at fat camp.

Fortunately being not broke is pretty awesome. It allows you the ability to take advantage of incredible deals when they pop up. It gives you peace-of-mind in the event of an “Oh $#@!” emergency. And it gives you the freedom to experience things you may have otherwise missed out on like weddings and graduations.

There really is nothing else to be said besides…

Financial freedom rocks my face off.

Don’t be discouraged if you aren’t there yet. Stay the course. Work hard. Focus on the end goal. You didn’t get in debt overnight, and you probably wont get out if it overnight. Patience and perseverance is the name of this game.

Being not broke is awesome. I hope you are either right there with me, or plan to join me soon.

On a scale of broke to loaded where do you fall? Has your financial freedom allowed you to take advantage of any incredible deals or opportunities lately!?

{ 33 comments }

1 Matt

I am about at a Brokelo.

2 Mercedes

I have the money if something happens and I need some cash reserves. ie: I can easily fly to see family if there is an emergency or a simple medical procedure needs to be done I’d be okay.

So I’m not broke, but I sure as heck don’t have $100,000 sitting in an account somewhere.

3 Jane Savers @ Solving The Money Puzzle

I got paid on Friday and I have just under 50 bucks to last me the next 2 weeks until the next pay day. Lots of rice and frozen vegetables in my near future. I have a big tub of protein powder from some crazy diet I was on last year so I will be using that to make sure I get enough protein.

Queen Victoria’s birthday here in Canada means a paid statutory holiday for me today but I am staying home because I can’t waste any of the gas in my car.

Broke but not poor. Paying as much as I can toward debt means no money for anything else but paying down debt is the goal so I can live with some broke. FI is my goal.

4 Larry

Financial freedom is relative. This year my out-of-pocket medical expenses are higher than usual because I need to pay for a dental implant that is only minimally covered out of our insurance. It’s not a huge amount, but it impacts my ability to do some other things I’d enjoy more. At the same time it’s not seriously hurting me financially.

5 SavvyFinancialLatina

We are not hurting financially, yet I still feel broke! I think it’s the college mentality. We have only been out of school for a year, and I still feel like money is tight. This mentality is not necessarily a bad thing, since saving and investing is one of our main goals.

6 BD

Not being broke allowed me to take advantage of the furlough to take a my mother on a vacation. I’m glad I’m not so strapped for cash that I had to spend my furlough days at home feeling sad. I still hate the pay cut but at least I was able to do something productive with the time.

7 Zach @ The True Generalist

I started this journey about two and a half years ago and I’m right on par with my expectations but it takes diligence and constant awareness of my finances. I’ve tripled my net worth in that time!

Being not broke IS awesome. It allows me to fund projects that I love doing, like writing! I have a new book coming out TODAY. It’s a short, so a quick read. Best part is it’s FREE TODAY ONLY! Sorry for the little self-promo here but I’m super excited! You can download “Mortimus Walker and the Secret of the White City” from my amazon author page! Thanks for the support and keep being fiscally responsible!
http://www.amazon.com/author/zachturner

8 Cordelia Parker

Wow! Good job. That must be fun and exciting. And you got a good review, too.

9 Q

If we are going by amont on the bank statement I would be loaded, but I don’t feel that way. Before I bought my house I never worried about money. I guess using a third of your available cash for a down payment, being in a large amount debt and reduction of monthly cash flow will do that. I think once I build my reserves up to where I could pay the mortgage off (125k) left I would feel more like I did a couple of years ago.

10 StackingCash

I will be in that same situation soon. You should really include the equity in your home from your downpayment. A HELOC can be used to access it if necessary or you can always try to liquidate your home if worse came to worse. However, the money pits (taxes, utilities, etc.) that a house can be will always be a burden. I hope your home is located in a great area and gives you more satisfaction than renting. I’m pretty sure mine will be :-)

11 Q

I am not having any financial problems and owning my place has been great. I just haven’t adjusted yet to my new situation. I was more commenting on how before I bought I was use to my bank balance increasing about 2k a month after expenses. Also, everything I owned fit into my mid-sized car (started living with parent -> renting fully furnished rooms from friends – > 3bed 2.5 bath house) so you can understand what other expenses I have in the past year.

12 Kyle

Temporarily broke for now, though there’s a difference between broke and poor. My cashflow each month is pretty limited, however we can meet all of our basic needs so I wouldn’t consider myself poor. Once our debt is paid off we’ll accelerate over to “loaded” like crazy!

13 Jillian

If it is the mentality then no, I don’t feel broke. If it is the physical, I still don’t feel broke, but maybe someone else in my situation might say something different. I am working towards paying off debt, but I just read an article about not letting the debt take you from things you love. I have money in the bank for emergencies, but I definitely don’t feel rich.

14 Karie

We were doing great. I pay slightly more on my mortgage payments than I’m supposed to. All was great. THEN we opened up a HELOC sort of as an emergency fund and sort of if we wanted to use that money as an investment or small home renovation we could quickly pay off. We ended up putting a vehicle purchase on it, a trip and a home renovation. The amount has run away on me. I’ve always been very responsible but that money is so accessible. We are not broke but there are times when we’re no longer living below our means and just one or two decisions can get a person off track! Our position is relative – some people would think we’re doing well and others would say we could do better.

15 StackingCash

Sometimes it just takes time. Everyone needs certain necessities in life. Food, clothing, shelter, transportation are such basic needs but usually requires a great deal of money to achieve. Well food is a constant drain, but clothing, shelter, and transportation costs can be minimized once the initial costs are paid off. Once that is achieved, hopefully the maintenance of these costs will be minimal and the rest of your money can be saved for bigger and better things. Then again a high income is always a necessity no matter what…paramount in fact…

16 t

I didn’tfind this post to be helpful. Just kind of arrogant. Eh, maybe it’s just me.

17 Cordelia Parker

It’s a bit unkind to those of us who are struggling.

I’m also pretty sure that it’s a recycled post, like the last one was.

18 Lisa E. @ Lisa Vs. The Loans

I’m right smack dab in the middle of broke and loaded. I have the money, but I’d rather put it into savings/debt payment then spend.

This is one of my life goals! To be able to spend on things I really want without really feeling it in the wallet. That means two things: getting my financial picture as debt-free as possible as well as modifying my wants.

19 Grayson @ Debt Roundup

I don’t think I have ever been broke, but I did have a massive amount of debt that made me feel broke. I am slowly gaining my away up the net worth ladder and that makes me feel good. I do have cash on hand in order to enjoy life, which is the end goal.

20 T'Pol

Neither broke nor loaded. Have enough on the side for emergencies and some spare money to spend on home repairs and small vacations.

I am probably never gonna be loaded but I hope to stay comfy.

21 Moi

Only debt I have is a mortgage which is awesome. I have emergency cash set aside and a decently new car plus my ‘fun money’ in motorcycles and racing which I do not go into debt to do. I’d say I’m rocking it out…and 33 years young.

22 TD

I am fortunate to be financially stable, which has made a recent interstate move a lot easier. I can’t imagine the additional stress my wife and I would incur if we were living paycheck to paycheck and trying to make the move, especially given all the unforeseen costs that have come up during this process. As I have told a lot of people I know, money doesn’t buy happiness but it definitely provides options.

23 Jenn

On a scale of broke to Ninja-like, I’d say my husband and I are not quite Ninja level (we can’t say we have 100k in savings), but we’re definitely not broke either. Our only debt is our mortgage and a student loan that we cannot justify paying down early given a very low interest rate (about one percent). We’re doing pretty well. We have emergency funds that we can tap if we need to, plus separate savings for home remodeling, traveling and a car replacement within the next year or two. We haven’t really taken advantage of any great deals lately other than stocking up during sales at the grocery store, but we could if something came up — which is great.

24 Justin of Insert Witty Comment

Between Broke and OK.
Not poor though.

25 JJ

Ninja,

I became debt free last week Thursday! I graduated from college with well over 60K in student loans. After paying the minimum payments for 4 years, I finally got “gazelle intense” and got my debt snowball rolling…thanks to Dave’s class. Took a part time job in addition to my full time job and paid it all off in 2 years!

I feel so free. More than anything I’m really grateful for the knowledge I gained in learning how to handle my personal finances. This experience was empowering! Now that I’m out of debt, it’s on to saving and investing mode and racking up some net worth :)

26 luxuryoption

CONGRATULATIONS!!! WELL DONE!!

27 j

Want to hear something depressing ninja? If you bought your $300k home today and put in 60k for a down payment, your net worth would be between $0 and -40k. That’s one thing about renting, it sure makes your net worth look nice.

28 Ninja

Are you implying that when one purchases a house the house has no monetary value? I disagree. While it is more illiquid then cash, it doesn’t suddenly become worthless. If I put $60k down on a $300k house, the house is still worth $300,000. Why would you only count it as a liability and not an asset? I’m confused.

29 j

Well, what is net worth? Assets minus liabilities right?

Right now you have:
Assets………. Liabilities
401k ……… none
roth
savings

After purchasing a home, you would have:
Assets ……….. Liabilities
401k …………. 240k mortgage/debt
roth
savings-$60k
60k equity in home

30 Ninja

??????

All that matters is what my house is worth and what I owe on it? Down payment doesn’t matter.

Wouldn’t matter if I put $10k down or a $100k down. If I buy a $300k house today, the house is worth $300k tomorrow regardless of my down payment. A more accurate break down would be…

Assets……………Liabilities:
401k……………..Mortgage debt
Roth Ira
House Value

31 j

I actually agree with you.

32 Greg Platon

That is right! Focusing on the goal is key because the journey to being debt-free and/or financially free is never easy. It consists of many situations that are challenging to a person’s determination to be in control of their finances. Thanks for sharing this post, by the way.

33 American Debt Project

Yeah exactly. $5,500 in debt left to pay off. So close to feeling free each month as my expenses have shrunk and my income is increasing. This equation gets easier after a while!!

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