Autumn is here, people! Well actually, it’s been here for two weeks already, but I was too busy – and lazy, if I’m honest – to write a wrap-up post last week. Don’t worry, don’t worry, I’m not abandoning you guys and still love you all very much. So let’s get to it for this week!
With September ending lots of personal finance bloggers have been publishing their income and expenses. Yours truly did exactly the same and was pleased to report saving 72.3% of his income. Since work has been crazy the past few weeks – yay for budgetary reviews – I’ve hardly had any time to be a Spendy McSpenderson.
A bunch of other frugal bloggers also achieved impressive results. Weenie from Quietly Saving managed to save 50.6% of her net salary, bumping her investments over the £20,000 mark. Brand new dividend growth investor Dividend Developer also managed to save and invest about 50% of his paycheck. Charles and Marie, the new kids on the financial independence block, kept over 80% of their September income, which is truly spectacular.
Henry from Living at Home didn’t specify a particular savings rate, but he had a stellar month again by continuing to live at home. He spent only $526 this month to cover his basic living needs and an amazing first date. Be sure to hop on over because he’s looking for second date ideas!
Someone else who should revel in her accomplishments is Alicia from Financial Diffraction. She payed off her personal loan and now only has one creditor left to repay before being completely debt free. Soon her savings won’t go to debt repayment anymore, but to building her own wealth.
Alicia will soon experience what Noonan from Frugal Fringe described this week in his excellent post 10 Ways the Financially Independent Spend Less than Wage Slaves, namely that life becomes exponentially cheaper once you’re no longer a wage slaver, but a wage saver. Living frugally and investing your surplus income is by far the road less travelled these days, even though it is definitely easier than the uphill debt battle so many people take on.
Two bloggers this weak showed us both sides of that equation. From the home of the 1500 Days to Freedom family comes a positive story about secret millionaires in their neighbourhood. Apparently the street they live in is a breeding ground for frugal and wealthy folks who fly under the radar. Interestingly though, they’re not fooling Mr. and Mrs. 1500 Days. It takes one to know one I guess?
What surprised me about the secret millionaires was how much their way of life, as described through the eyes of Mr. 1500 Days, correlated with Kassandra’s recent post. She is totally right in that there’s a point in life when you outgrow your money; when money is no longer a leading measure of what you consider as living a succesful life, as she describes it.
For every frugal person there’s obviously also someone who doesn’t make the best financial choices in life. Asset-Grinder wrote a touching story about his friend Ali, who had everything going for him, but racked up so much debt that he fell into a severe depression. It’s weird how people just stop functioning and have everything fall apart just because of bad financial decisions. Let’s just hope that AG’s friend gets better soon.
Talking about savings rates, and good and bad financial choices, I’m left with a dilemma. As a pc enthusiast and gamer I’m always aching to buy the latest tech. Tawcan advises to buy refurbished or used, but sometimes that’s just not an option. The question then becomes “do you really need it?”
Why am I asking myself this question? I’d love to buy a new graphics card for my PC! Currently I have a GTX760, but I wish to upgrade to the brand-new GTX970 – for those in the know, I can’t justify spending over €500 on the GTX980, so the GTX970 it is. Do I absolutely need a new card? No, the GTX760 is great, but my triple monitor setup would run so much better with a 970 because it has almost twice the horsepower.
After lots of going back and forth, I decided not to upgrade my current graphics card, mainly because of Zee’s post of how well the Minimalist Game is going for him. Decluttering your life and not attaching too much value to physical items is something I’m all for.
But then it hit me! I could sell my current graphics card and buy a new one. A friend of mine is willing to take the GTX760 off my hands for €150, while the GTX970 will set me back about €350. Is it worth €200 to increase my gaming experience? The jury is still out on this one, folks. What would you do in my case?
Have a great weekend!