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Is My Future Okay?
I’d like an honest opinion from the smart Dividend Gurus and Retirement Experts on CommonStock.

Based on this information, am I at a good standpoint for my future if I keep pushing?

  • 24 y/o
  • Engaged and no kids (2 dachshunds that are basically like kids)
  • Brokerage of $9.2k
  • IRA of $2.1k
  • Work 401k around $4.2k

I see many posts giving a multitude of different numbers and statistics, and want to know from the people that have been through this already what they’re thoughts are.

Conor Mac's avatar
Conor Mac
@investmenttalkMay 12
Jealous of your dogs!

I would say yes, because you are 24 and you are already caring about these things. You have the mindset, the rest will take care of itself. It's easy to get disheartened by other people posting things that make it appear like they are "ahead" of you. Life isn't a race, gotta slow down to enjoy the moments between point A and B.

There will always be someone doing better than you, and there will always be someone doing worse. Focus on yourself, your family, and your dogs, and you'll be just fine.
AverageInvestor's avatar
@averageinvestorMay 12
The goal that I’ve read is to aim for 10-15% of your income towards retirement. That number will ebb and flow based upon life’s circumstances, but serves as a great goal.

The big things are to figure out what type of life do you want to live in retirement, and what age you want to retire, and then work backwards from there. Living in certain parts of the country will be cheaper than others. Luxury trips and a vacation home will impact that final number. The key is to keep putting money away, even during the tough times.

Compounding interest is your best friend right now.
Nathan Worden's avatar
Nathan Worden
@nathanwordenMay 12
Yes, that's a great start— keep up the great work and keep building on that foundation.

One other element is— do you mind sharing how much debt you have? (Student debt, credit card, card payments, or otherwise?)

Thanks for the transparency! I can't tell you how much that trait puts you ahead as well. A lot of people don't want to talk actual numbers because they'd prefer to ignore them— and what you ignore does not improve. Overall, I think even more than the amount you have right now is the direction you're going in. Are you saving a significant portion of your income every month?

You've got long enough of a time horizon that direction will matter a lot more than current location. To use a travel analogy, if you're in LA and you want to get to New York, you might think that you're farther away than someone in Omaha. But if you're moving towards New York while the person in Omaha is moving towards Mexico, it's only a matter of time before you overtake them.

The fact that you're on Commonstock and you're asking questions like this tells me you're heading in the right direction, which is great.
Corey's avatar
@klakodileMay 12Author
@nathanworden Absolutely!

Debt wise this is where I’m at:

Student Loans: Roughly $6k
Credit Card: $900 (Kinda splurged on traveling recently 😬)
Vehicle: $29k
Misc. (Engagement Ring, TV, etc.): $2.5k

Currently my biggest focuses are trying to completely eliminate that “Misc.” category while still putting money aside (savings, investments). With how much I’m doing towards those, that category should be gone in roughly a few months.

Nathan Worden's avatar
Nathan Worden
@nathanwordenMay 12
@klakodile yeah I’d still say doing great. I agree the Misc. category is a good one to go after first. It will be interesting to see what happens with student loan forgiveness, but either way your balance isn’t nearly as crazy as many others out of college.
Andy Buchanan's avatar
Andy Buchanan
@andybuchananMay 12
You're killing it with that portfolio. Keep investing like this and you're doing great for your age.
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Jazzi Young's avatar
Jazzi Young
@jazziyoungMay 12
Your future is bright because you started.
At your age, don't underestimate how much of an achievement it is to JUST GET STARTED.
I have friends I knew in my 20s who never got started. They talked about getting started, but never did because life just got in the way. It's easy to just put it off when you're young, but life comes at you fast. Blink and you're into your 40s and that financial freedom hill you need to climb gets so much steeper.
Don't worry about comparing your balance to others or falling behind investors you might see on social media. Pay no attention to that, you're on your own path. You can secure a very bright future by building up "patient capital". You get rewarded for consistency of process.
Investors tend to obsess over returns, but the biggest determinant of your wealth is really going to be how much you invest and how early you do it. Compounding takes a really long time to build up momentum, but once it gets going it's really life changing.
Frame your investment as "patient capital", value the process, stay the course, ignore all the "make money fast" racquets and enjoy the humble journey. The rewards will come. Slow wealth tends to be sustainable wealth. Fast wealth tends to get lost.
Nathan Worden's avatar
Nathan Worden
@nathanwordenMay 12
@jazziyoung great advice right here
Dissecting the Markets's avatar
Dissecting the Markets
@dissectmarketsMay 13
You're phenomenal. The phenomenalness of your life is well beyond the finance side. You're engaged to the love of your life at 24, which is amazing! Many people don't even find the love of their life until they're 30 or older so kudos to you.
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