A friend’s financial situation got had me thinking about myself, as these things often do. Because we are basically living from paycheck to paycheck, with no savings or retirement plan. We’re not even chipping away at our debt very fast.
I’ve never really been too concerned about saving for retirement. I know, I know, this is a personal finance blog, what am I thinking? I guess when your own parents don’t worry about such things, it kind of rubs off on a person? For one thing, the religion I grew up in told us practically daily that the rapture was going to happen anytime. And most likely soon. We were told in the “latter days” bread would be over $1 a loaf. Well, we’re way past that so I don’t know about that theory anymore. I mean, the one that says the rapture will occur before the price of bread rises.
And I remember that my mom always rented, and never had a home of her home. Every since my dad abandoned us when I was five. My mom to this day has no credit rating to speak of. No savings, no retirement. At least now she owns her home free and clear, but it is a rundown neighborhood surrounded by town homes. They will probably do that thing one day where they kick people out and hopefully her land will be worth enough that she can find a new place to live. What my mom does have going for her is she has six children. I kind of figure my mom will live with me one day, and I’ll care for her until she passes away. So at least she’s got that as a fall back plan. She currently is living on Supplemental Security Income, money she gets because she was married to my stepfather for fourteen years. Interestingly enough, she was divorced from him I think it was twenty years and I guess these are considered survivor benefits for her, because she never remarried.
I had a friend whose mom owned her own home, free and clear. I guess I always thought I’d buy a home, get it paid for in time to retire and then I’d be really frugal. I never saw a need to have a million dollars in the bank to retire.
Now that I’m 46, I find myself wishing we had a bit more stability finance-wise. Mr. A’s businesses are thriving, but nowhere to the point where I can quit my job. I don’t have any retirement benefits at my job, well, nothing to speak of. We have this one thing where once we’re fully vested we get some pitiful amount when we retire. Or we can get it rolled over into an IRA or something like that. A coworker recently retired and I think she was with the company at least ten years and all she got was around $4000. That’s crazy.
So we’re currently pretty much living paycheck to paycheck, but I know Mr. A’s businesses have the potential to earn us much more. That’s why I am willing to work as hard as I am, working my own job, and also doing his bookwork for his business.
I know we’re going to just keep doing better and better, and maybe one day I can share my story of how we made it through living paycheck to paycheck, and are on a much better financial path.
So what about you, do you live paycheck to paycheck?