Post of the Day
November 5, 1998

From our
Living Below Your Means Folder

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Subject: Why live below your means?
Author: kmcilro

Why live below your means?

Why? 3 years ago my wife and I paid off both cars. We continued making those payments to a money market account, planning to pay cash for our next car purchase. This money was in addition to our long term savings and investments. This past June on the spur of the moment we decided we wanted to go to Europe (a long time dream of mine), but we did not want to go for just a week or two. We each managed to get a 6 week UNPAID leave of absence from our jobs and spent 41 fantastic days in Europe, seeing 7 countries and 17 cities. We decided a new car can wait. This was the most worthwhile money we have ever spent, providing us a lifetime of wonderful memories? I have told people twice our age (31) and who make twice the money we make who cannot believe anyone would be able to take an unpaid leave for 6 weeks and pay cash for a trip to Europe as well as cover the bills back home. These are people who are driving two brand new cars, living in $250,000 houses, and eating out every night.

We all make choices. My wife and I have no debt outside our mortgage. We have saved every raise since we were married. Have we been deprived? Only if you call driving 6 year old cars and living in half the house as our friends deprived. I call it being free to do things that most others will only ever dream of. Remember, when you have no debt and dont have a lavish lifestyle you dont always have to earn a paycheck. Life is short and nobody ever went to their death bed wishing they had spent more time at the office.

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