249 | Carol connects with The Retirement Answer Man Roger Whitney

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By Jonathan Mendonsa & Brad Barrett | Choose FI Media and The Unstuck Network. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
  • Brad is back after taking August off of work as his Red X month. Though his original vacation plans were changed because of COVID, he made the best of it. They spent three weeks in Long Island visiting family, enjoying the pool, board games, and a digital detox.
  • While Brad was away relaxing, Jonathan used that time to work on a couple of big passion projects. During the month of August, Jonathan created a podcast course and membership group. He also started a new podcast as a way to demonstrate to the group how you start one. The Talent Stacker podcast uses the content discussed on ChooseFI but then goes even further and fills in the holes to focus on skills, certificate programs, and career paths that don't require the high cost of college.
  • The first episode of Talent Stacker has already been released and this coming Monday's episode will feature Bradley Rice where he and Jonathan discuss a carer path you can start for free with no talent stack, no career, and no experience and after 6 months of training, you can make a minimum of 60-80K with the ability to scale for an even higher income.
  • The Talent Stacker membership program has lifetime guaranteed access where they will work with you to as long as it takes to get you working in that new job earning $60,000.
  • Programs such as the one discussed on next Monday's Talent Stacker episode are becoming more popular with examples like Google's new career certificate program which also takes about 6 months to complete at a fraction of the cost of traditional college. The Vice President of Global Affairs at Google, Kent Walker, stated they consider the certificate to be the equivalent of a four-year degree for related roles.
  • The next Households of FI family featured this week is Carol, sho found FI in 2020. In her mid-50s, Carol claims she is financially illiterate and does not want to end up being a burden to her child. Her goals are to change her deprivation mindset when it comes to money, retire with financial security, and kick her lifelong issues with credit cards. Carol was introduced to financial planner, Roger Whitney, to come up with a financial plan of attack.
  • Since finding FI, Carol has jumped right in reading and listening to as much as she can. In that time, she has cut her debt in half. She believes her first steps should be to pay off debt, start an emergency fund, and begin saving aggressively for retirement. She also knows she needs a mindset shift.
  • Carol struggles with budgets, but she's contributing to her 401(k) for the first time and is only giving herself a small amount of spending money with everything extra going to savings after her bills have been paid.
  • Roger suggests there are two ways to tackle the mindset issue, either toughen up and do it, or set up a system to capture her excess money.
  • Rather than focus on the big hill Carol needs to climb, Roger wants her to focus on what little thing she needs to do next to begin to create momentum. He also suggests that having a community like ChooseFI is great for providing encouragement, assistance, and being a virtual mentor.
  • Carol wants to know which is more important paying off her credit cards or building her emergency fund. Because she's been good about not using her credit cards and they have a high-interest rate, Roger wants her to focus on paying off her cards with every extra dollar she has.
  • Second, Carol should set up a system for how she manages her money. It can be helpful to have income deposited into a savings account we don't see and then transfer spending money to checking accounts at another bank.
  • After paying bills and buying groceries and gas, Carol has about $200 leftover at the end of the month before she receives her commissions from sales. With her commission checks, she would like to save 50-60% of her income.
  • Carol's company offers both a traditional 401(k) and a Roth 401(k), but she is unsure what the differences are. Roger explains with a traditional 401(k) contributions and growth are tax-deferred until withdrawn, while Roth 401(k) contributions are made from post-tax income and grow tax-free.
  • The next two levers Carol needs to focus on are earning as much as she can in commissions which is the most effective way to make the plan work. The next lever is to hang on to the money she is earning.
  • Side hustles are another area Carol is looking at to increase her earnings. She's already published two books and is working on a third, as well as looking for another side hustle.
  • Since she enjoys writing, Roger suggested that Carol could share her journey on her blog and collect readers and be an inspiration.
  • Mentioning that seeing her M1 Finance account grow, Roger thinks it would be useful to set up a system around that kind of excitement for continued encouragement.

To watch the video highlights, click on ChooseFI.com/249.

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