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112R | Planned Obsolescence

An evaluation of the long-term savings that result from driving old cars, a review of how Naseema McElroy has optimized her finances and reversed lifestyle creep, and a series of voicemails and messages from the ChooseFI community.

  • Planned obsolescence is the idea that a company makes something knowing that you will have to replace it in a relatively short time period.
  • ChooseFI started a new DIY Facebook group to help the community tackle DIY projects.
  • Brad explains how economically efficient it is for him to keep driving his 2003 Honda Civic:
    • Brad aims to use his car for 15 years, and chooses to invest the money he would’ve used for car payments, anticipating that he’ll need 3 cars in his adult life.
    • Total that he’ll invest, instead of spending on a car payment: $742k.
  • When we optimize housing, transportation and food it makes the difference of hundreds of thousands in savings over a lifetime.
  • Naseema, from Monday’s episode, chose to optimize her finances and resist lifestyle creep.
  • Do you really value what you’re spending your money on?
  • Naseema’s $200k+ income as a nurse is not uncommon for her location.
  • Even if you’ve taken a specific career path, if you want to make a change, you are never stuck.
  • Having options is a hallmark of financial independence.
  • Naseema is making the most of geoarbitrage by living in Nevada and working in California.
  • A message from Kim, excited to prioritize her quality of life and incorporate lessons learned from Naseema.
  • Voicemail from Ryan, who explains how the U.S. government shutdown has given him the opportunity to practice a “pre retirement” and explore new side hustle and hobby opportunities.
  • Jill shares how she got her spouse fully on board with FI: sent him to CampFI using the power of a “tired parent” and 4 days away as a vacation.
  • In order to bring your spouse on board with pursuing financial independence, a good starting point is to start talking about what truly brings you joy.

From the Mail Bag

“Are you allowed to use your company match when calculating your savings rate?”

Brad includes the company match in his savings rate. If you do though, be sure to include it in both the total savings computation as well as total compensations sum (e.g. the denominator as well as the numerator of the rate calculation).

Choose FI has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Choose FI and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. American Express is a ChooseFI advertiser. Disclosures.
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