Let the fun begin! I am a 26 year old accountant* by trade, currently living in Manhattan. I moved here from not far away New England at the beginning of 2014 to take on a new role at my current employer. In my earlier posts, such as Starting the Path to FI/RE and Rich Uncle Pennybags, I explain how I have always been interested in personal finance and investing since a very young age, but I did not think financial independence was attainable for me until I found this great online community.
Growing up I always wanted to be a stockbroker which started in 5th grade where we participated in a stock market project and visited the NYSE on a field trip. The following year my 6th grade teacher told us a story of his friend who lived in Manhattan, would get picked up every morning in a limousine and get driven down to his highfalutin job on Wall Street. From then on I was mesmerized by anything involving the stock market.
I had always been a fan of making money as well, as I knew I needed income to build my nest egg. It started with helping the grandparents with chores and projects, then babysitting, then manual labor jobs during high school and college, and side projects for a local electrician and contractor in town.
I opened up an online brokerage account shortly after my 18th birthday with my own earnings from work during high school. During that time the U.S. was experiencing a strong bull market and I could not lose a trade which added fuel to the fire. It took a couple of bad investments during college to right the stock trading ship. I knew that the path to long term gains and building my nest egg was stock trading, but then again I was young and naive and wanted money faster.
I majored in accounting because I wanted a career with a secure job market, while still somewhat appeasing to my financial interests. After graduation I lived at home for a year, paid down some student loans, bought a used car (with a loan), began contributing to retirement, and built up an emergency fund. According to all the “experts” I was reading about online, I was doing everything right. But it didn’t feel right. This was not getting me ahead. I would still have to work until at least 60 years old in a career I didn’t really find fulfilling before I could retire. The last thing I wanted to be was one of my miserable superiors 20 to 30 years down road. There had to be a better way!
That is when I stumbled upon Financial Samurai and from there my eyes were opened to Mr. MMM, 1500 Days to Freedom, madFIentist, Lacking Ambition, Root of Good, Frugalwoods, LivingaFI, jlcollinsnh, and many more. My income was higher than some of the bloggers I was reading about, and they were well on their way to financial freedom. That alone kicked my financial independence butt into overdrive. I reevaluated my spending, savings, and lifestyle overall. What I think also helps is that I was already transitioning to the mindset where I wanted to do things that made me happy instead of conforming to what others were doing around me.
Therefore I decided to start to put pen to paper and document my journey for three main reasons:
- To hold myself accountable. The first reasons is quite selfish and I’m not afraid to admit it. It’s real easy to say I’m going to spend less, save more, invest in index funds, max out my retirement accounts, etc., but if I don’t put these goals out in the open, the harder they are to follow.
- Share my story. While I am only 26, I believe I have experiences that are different from many telling their personal finance stories. For one I do not have a career in the tech industry (you know who you are), I was the first in my immediate family to graduate from college, and I currently live in one of the highest cost of living areas in all of the U.S. – Manhattan.
- Learn from and be among other like-minded individuals. Working in business and living in Manhattan does not lend itself to meeting people with like-minded personal finance goals. It seems like everyone is trying to cram in as many boozy brunches as physically possible (my fellow New Yorkers will understand this), while breaking records on how many Uber rides they can go on.
I will do my best to share interesting stories, be open-minded, and hopefully teach and learn something along the way. I hope you enjoy the journey!
Thanks for stopping by,
* Although I am an accountant by trade, this site is for entertainment purposes only. Ideas and comments are my own and are not intended for others’ situations. Please do your own research and/or consult a professional before making your own personal finance decisions.