After spending most of my 20s rolling my eyes at the idea of saving for retirement, I’ve found myself thinking about my future financial plans very differently in my early 30s. Not only am I working hard now to save for retirement, but I’ve become obsessed with figuring out ways to retire early as a multi-millionaire.
I’ve become quite eager to spend the rest of my income-earning years making smart financial moves so that when I retire, I can do so comfortably. More than that, I want to retire as a multi-millionaire so I can live in several different places, invest in interesting businesses, and not have to worry about sticking to the kind of budget I’m attached to now.
While I’m constantly learning, researching, and implementing tips to revamp my finances, here are the five main things I’m doing now so I can retire rich.
1. Reducing credit card debt:—
After falling into some credit card debt in my 20s, I’ve vowed to be more strategic about how I spend my money and how I plan for both big purchases and pop-up emergencies. To meet hefty saving goals and monthly contributions to my retirement fund, I need to make sure I’m not taking on any lingering credit card debt.
To do this, I put rules into place. For example, I have a few credit-card-free days during the week where I pay with cash only. I also unlinked my credit card from my favorite online stores so I can’t take advantage of any quick-buy purchases. I’ve also made contributions to my emergency fund a monthly task so that I have cash saved if something unplanned and costly happens in my life.
2. Sticking to my retirement contributions:—-
It wasn’t until I was on the brink of turning 30 that I decided to take contributing to my retirement fund seriously. Since then, I’ve done my best to make regular contributions to my SEP IRA, prioritizing putting money into that account and budgeting for it every month.
While my income as an entrepreneur varies month to month, I want to work on increasing the amount I invest in my retirement fund by at least 15% every year. Doing this will help me take advantage of compound interest, which makes the money grow at a more rapid pace.
3. Diversifying my investments:—-
In addition to my SEP IRA, I’ve started to work on diversifying my overall investment portfolio. Over the past few years, I’ve put cash in the stock market, in index funds and mutual funds, bought cryptocurrency and NFTs, and have started learning more about investing in real estate.
A big-money mistake I made was keeping too much cash in my savings account. By putting more of that money into investments, my finances have the opportunity to grow exponentially year after year. As an example, the stock market has returned an average of 10% per year over the past 50-years.
4. Watching my spending:—-
When I took inventory of my finances and money-spending habits in my 20s, I realized that to grow my portfolio and retire as a millionaire, I needed to stick to a budget. For the past year, I’ve mapped out how much I allow myself to spend for the month and track purchases every week (I keep it simple and track this using a homemade Excel spreadsheet).
If I overspend one week, I rearrange my weekly budget to spend less so I can meet my savings goal for the month. This has drastically changed my financial mindset and has allowed me to be more strategic with how I spend cash on a daily and monthly basis.
5. Increasing my passive income streams:—
According to the IRS, the average millionaire has seven streams of income. As an entrepreneur, who has worked for me for the past seven years, I’ve had to find ways to constantly bring in income in varying ways (from products to services, coaching to speaking engagements, freelancing to selling online courses).
While most of those income streams involve me playing an active role and therefore making it hard for them to scale, I’m starting to explore additional ways to bring in income not related to my business. For example, some millionaires say they make their additional income through real estate investments, dividend income from owning stocks, or through capital gains from selling appreciated assets.
Source:— Business Insider