Time to get going for 2023. The 401k limit was raised from $20,500 to $22,500, so update your contribution as needed.
I think my goals are similar to last year, I’m basically on auto-pilot at this point.
Contribute $32k to brokerage
Pay an extra $4k on the mortgage
Exercise 3,000 options in my company stock - I did this last year and I think I forgot to include it in my 2022 post
I’m still working through my priorities for home projects but I think 2023 will include a new porch, new HVAC, and a water heater, and that’ll be something like $45k-ish. The price of lumber is plummeting and that will save me a ton on the porch.
I guess here’s a list of my goals, which are mostly similar to others.
Max 401k and 401k “ketchup” because I am over 50
Add $X per month to brokerage account (i prefer not to be exact, but it’s a figure that is written down)
Add 10k to youngest kid’s 529 plan
Save the majority of any bonus I get
Acquire a new vehicle (SUV) for myself, as my current one is old and tired and I have been waiting out replacing it b/c pandemic and supply issues (will require dipping into savings)
Rebalance portfolio to a better asset allocation than it has been for a few years. Investigate switching brokerage houses.
Not touch the life insurance cash balance and let that grow
Buy something like a jet ski
I have a budget. It’s in Excel (of course). Live by the budget. Review the 2022 budget vs actual. and plan 2024 budget.
Update will, trust, and all account beneficiaries
OK, I don’t think I really want a jet ski. But I want to spend some money on myself. I am recognizing the need to reward myself for my work efforts, and not squirrel away every possible dime. I need to spend some money taking care of myself and having some fun, and I have not done that for years. Most of the last decade I have been putting kids through college and “free cash flow” has been tight. Maybe it’s a vacation. Maybe it’s scuba lessons. Maybe it’s a bicycle or a bike trip. It cannot be a TV or a computer because I do NOT need to encourage myself to do any more sitting around on my ass. Last year I bought some furniture - a couch and loveseat. That’s fine but it’s not like that helped me enjoy life any better. Suggestions welcome.
I may do this. I plan on being retired or something close to retired in 6 years or so. Want to pay off the house so I can keep my income lower, so if I don’t pay extra now then I will pay it all off in 6 years.
I get the concept, but it’s an incomplete thought.
I don’t know the magnitude of the numbers but which is preferable?
In 6 years you have 1Million in assets and $0 in debt
In 6 years you have 1.15Million in assets and 100k in debt?
Suze Orman spouts off that choice number 1 is the only way to go. Her advice “YOU MUST RETIRE WITH NO MORTGAGE” and for most of the plebs in her audience maybe that is a decent goal. But that advice ignores some advantages of judicious use of good debt:
A fixed rate mortgage is the best inflation protection you can have
You can expect more long-term return on investing that your mortgage rate. Right now, I could get a higher CD rate than my mortgage interest rate
Your assets (left side of BS) will be higher giving you more choices down the road
The question is not “I will have $1million in assets and do I want $0 in debt or $100k in debt?” The question is “what is the best leverage ratio I could have at retirement given that I want to maximize my net worth until then?” In my example, 1.05M net worth is more than 1.0M.
Student loans, car loans, and for goodness sakes credit cards… pay that crap off. Variable rate mortgages - pay them off too, Long term fixed rate mortgages, on the other hand, are your friend.
I would at least have to refi. My current payment is about $3k and I don’t want that kind of payment after I’m retired. It would require me to have a higher income, which means higher taxes, and higher health insurance premiums. I’d be on an ACA plan at that point.
Oh, I’ll also be buying a car this year, and that will make my goals a bit more ambitious. Current car will go to my son, so no trade-in. I have some cash saved but not enough to pay cash, particularly if I buy a nicer car.
I could not agree more with those saying to examine your rates and invest accordingly. I consider two major assets of mine to be my 30 year 2.75% mortgage and about 60K in wife’s student loans at 2.875%.
Had we been paying extra to those, we would probably be done by now with them….instead we have an account that has 240% of the initial amount of both loans.
We’re both around 40, so started having kids late. Infant daycare is a good chunk of change that gets more reasonable as they hit 2, 3 and school age. I’m sure there will be plenty of other expenses though.