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FI Weekly – August 15, 2023: Negotiate Your Salary, A Family Taking Action Plus Community Wins

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. Disclosures.

Negotiate Your Salary

One of the enduring lessons from our podcast is this:

“Everything is negotiable.”

I was reminded of this essential lesson by the Financial Mechanic, who I just recorded an episode with that will come out in early September.

She gives us an update on her ‘7 Negotiation Tips and Scripts’ for salary negotiation and really dives into the lessons that she used to double her salary and negotiate an international work arrangement.

In the meantime, if you’re thinking about getting a new job and don’t want to leave money on the table or want to negotiate your salary in your current job, these are the 3 essential ChooseFI episodes you must listen to:

  • Episode 211 with Financial Mechanic. “Negotiate Your Salary Without Burning Bridges”
  • Episode 147 with Tori Dunlap. “Negotiate Your Salary”
  • Episode 121R with Chris Hutchins. “How to Get Any Job”

A Family Taking Action

I received an amazing email from Rick that I wanted to paste here in the newsletter for your reading enjoyment. This is a remarkable tale of action in a short time period they’ve listened to ChooseFI and I hope it’s inspiring to you:

First, thank you! I found this podcast probably about 6 months ago and its now a must-listen for me every week in addition to running through all the great historical content. I didn’t think it was possible to feel a sense of community from listening to a podcast but I do with Choose FI. You and your guests inform me and when I am informed, I am empowered to act. The podcast has given my wife and I a common language to have these financial conversations. So what have we done recently on our FI journey?

Moved an old 401k and Personal Retirement Account from a previous employer to Vanguard (of course into VTSAX and VBTLX)

Changed our investment allocation for our current 401ks to a similar low-cost index fund

Opened a Chase Sapphire Preferred account and we are on track to get to the $4K in spending to unlock the 60,000 bonus points while ensuring we are paying on time and in full each month (we love to travel with our boys)

Read Die with Zero (really drove home so much for me and the distinction between deprivation and intention when it comes to spending)

Made the final payment on a credit card consolidation loan we took out 3 years ago (it was a $25,000 loan, so very thankful we were able to get that significantly lower interest rate through the consolidation and get to credit card debt free but man am I embarrassed about the multitude of bad financial decisions that led us to that place)

Working on plans for how we will invest that additional $750/month we no longer have to pay on the credit card consolidation loan (weighing contributions to a 529 vs. setting up an investment account for each of the boys)

I’m a lucky guy, Brad. I’ve had the benefit of an outstanding education and I’ve got a high-paying job. Despite these advantages, I’ve made some big financial missteps that we’re fortunate to really be on the other side of now. Your podcast is helping me to strike that balance between my financial goals and personal goals; and, most importantly, helping us to think about how we set up and educate our children. Thank you again!



ChooseFI Community Taking Action This Week

  • Kevin said, “My 1% better is that I changed my CIT Savings Connect (4.65% rate currently) to CIT Platinum Savings (5.05% current rate). The CIT Platinum makes sense if you have more than $5000; because balances less than $5000 Earn only .25%. I’ve had over $5000 in my CIT Savings Connect account and didn’t know (until I opened a link in your FI newsletter that led me to CIT bank rates) that I could earn about 1/2% more! As an existing CIT bank customer, it was easy to open the Platinum Savings Account on line. Every little bit helps!
  • Jessica said, “My husband bought his first truck, all cash. We paid off 16K in credit card debt that was costing us 1K a month in minimum payments and fees. We were able to pay cash to have our 4th child at a birth center. We also were able to put aside 2.5 months of expenses to cover our bills when we have our baby in December, due to me not being FMLA eligible from starting a new job. Now I can afford to take the time I want, versus accepting what I am offered unpaid. Quite a few wins.
  • Zack said, “My 1% better was taking the family on an 8 day trip to Costa Rica for my sons high school graduation present. Although we have done many trips over the past few years on travel rewards and points, this one was actually paid for in cash saved from my bonus last year. We were only in the position to afford this luxury because of the great learnings we have put into action from the FI community. The fact that I’m still saving upwards of 20% of my income while knocking off items from our bucket list before we turn 40 is hard to even put into words. This is on top of being able to fully fund both our son and daughters’ education and let them enter adulthood debt free. With over 100k travel points again in the account ready to spend we are already talking about our next adventure in the winter, thanks ChooseFI and the FI community for being so welcoming and supporting each other with great lessons and guides.
  • Lindsay said, “We’ve done 3 big things this past week:- My husband and I just moved our daughter to a daycare that’s $65/week cheaper! Not only is it saving us but it’s closer to home and we already like the teachers and staff better than previous care! Such a win! – I also cancelled my expensive reoccurring unlimited yoga membership and swapped it for a never expiring 20 class package so I can be more strategic in when I attend an in person class vs doing my own flow at home or following along with a free YouTube video. – I sold net profit of $112 of flipped items on FB Marketplace
  • Tim said, “My wife and I just setup a recurring transfer for each of our kids (5 and 2) to contribute to their 529 accounts. We’re sending $300/month to each kid to be invested in Index Funds, so feeling happy that over the next 15 years, this money will grow significantly.
  • AJ said, “My 1% better is giving my notice as an Engineer this week to pursue a new career in sales that is 100% commission. This change will allow the time and location flexibility that we desire with our first kid coming this month! Without this community we would never have been in a position to walk away from a secure income to start over to try and create our dream lifestyle!
  • Daniel said, “Sent in paperwork for an FMLA leave from work after the birth of my second child. Having 5x-6x annual expenses by age 29 helps me to be able to be there for my family and return to work on my terms, not my employer’s.

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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. Disclosures.
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