Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Topic Author
bo105954027
Posts: 119
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:00 pm

Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by bo105954027 »

I am stepping into my 30s at the end of this year. 30 is generally taken as a milestone age in a person's life. Most people in this forum have accomplished building a significant asset (I believe at least half here are millionaires). To become as financially successful as you guys is my dream. so I am wondering how was your financial condition when you were at my age.

me:
single
no debt
one paid-off car
no real estate property
50k/yr income, stable job, no ladder-up, considering career change
20k saved in cash, 15k saved in 401K and Roth IRA

In this forum I'm with no doubt far behind; In reddit.com/r/personalfinance I feel like I'm doing average; In some other websites like this http://www.mybudget360.com/the-average- ... net-worth/ it seems I'm doing pretty good. Whichever is true, I feel I will never achieve financial independent before 60+.

What was your financial condition when you were at 30? It will help much more if you could also list your current condition to show your financial achievement since then. :)
Time in market beats timing the market.
rbaldini
Posts: 1436
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2015 3:20 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by rbaldini »

I'll tell you in a year.
awval999
Posts: 1186
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 10:17 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by awval999 »

me (30):

married
student loan remaining: $58k
car loan remaining: $2k
mortgage: $180k (house value ~$215k)
income: $115k, stable, will only receive COA adjustments
savings: cash ($4k) + roth ($6k) + 403b ($120k)

Have dialed back 403b contributions (still getting up to the match) and going crazy on the debt and going crazy on trips/vacations before children.
Last edited by awval999 on Wed Jun 29, 2016 4:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Shredder
Posts: 215
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 1:00 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Shredder »

I'm 31 so here's my current:

Married; 2 year old daughter (wife is 29)
No consumer debt
Two paid-off cars (2014 Kia Sorento, 2011 Kia Optima)
Own home; worth $280k; owe $195k; paying early on 30 year mortgage
Salary: Household: $165k (him: $97k as senior insurance analyst; her $68k as RN) - recent promotions for him last year
25k saved in cash, 160k in retirement investments; investing 15% of gross into pre-tax + HSA

Keep truckin'! You're on your way!
mx711yam
Posts: 216
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:51 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by mx711yam »

I always wonder the same thing. I just turned 30 in February.

me:
Married with 2 kids
No consumer debt
2 paid off cars
1 paid off rental house
167k left on primary mortgage
140k a year between my wife and me
180k in 401/457/roth ira
User avatar
FrugalInvestor
Posts: 5649
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:20 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by FrugalInvestor »

I was basically broke with a car loan, renting a 'home' (really a cabin), and a fairly good paying job. I didn't complete my college until age 27 (paying my own way) so was really just getting on my financial feet. I would build a new home a couple of years later but little did I know that the regional economy would collapse and I would have to move away within five years. By age 35 I was broke with a house to pay for that I couldn't live in (I had moved to a different part of the country for work and rented the one I built). Funny thing was, I was very happy and dreaming of the future having met a wonderful woman who would become my wife! Everything has turned out great.

Life takes a lot of twists and turns which causes me to marvel at those who have a vision of what they want to do when they're very young and actually manage to do it!
Have a plan, stay the course and simplify, but most importantly....Ignore the Noise!
stoptothink
Posts: 8338
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by stoptothink »

I just turned 35. 5yrs ago I was halfway through my PhD, had just finished putting my (now ex) wife through dental school, and mired in an ugly divorce. Income ~$50k/yr thanks to PhD stipend and some consulting work, low 6-figures in retirement accounts (which I would have to fight for in court), and no debt (hardly owned anything). My then wife was in a much better position than I, thanks to my generosity in completely cash-flowing her education and living expenses for 6yrs (likely the only DDS in her class who graduated totally debt free).

Today: finished PhD, remarried, doubled salary (and wife makes just slightly less), nearly tripled retirement accounts (help from new wife), owe $135k on house worth ~$225k (15yr mortgage, on track to pay it off in ~8yrs), paid for car, no debt, and two beautiful children. Feeling like I had to pretty much start-over at 30, the last 5yrs have been quite fruitful; financially and otherwise.
TheColorist
Posts: 26
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2015 10:32 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by TheColorist »

I turned 30 in May and I can say that you're doing better than a lot of people I know personally. Never underestimate the under-coverage bias inherent in these types of finance forums that hide the true number of people who, 1) Don't have an emergency fund 2) aren't investing for retirement 3) are up to their ears in debt. You're ahead more than you realize, or appreciate. Nevertheless, if you're worried about not having enough to be financially free at 60 then you should make responsible steps to improve your earning potential and look into ways that would reduce your expenses, allowing you to save & invest even more aggressively than you are now.

I make around 55k/year and I hit about $108k net worth when I turned 30 two months ago, I'm around $112k right now. I was lucky enough to have very little student debt after I graduated, and I was able to save up a lot by living with roommates for the last 8 years, never spending more than $600/month rent (my gf and I pay $425/month each right now in Chicago).

Only you can know whether or not a career change is right, but so far it looks like you've got the right mindset to further improve your financial situation. Good luck!
Stonebr
Posts: 1472
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:19 am
Location: Maine

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Stonebr »

I am 64. When I turned 30 I had just started my first white collar job. Previously, I'd been a student (BA, MA and work toward a PhD in Math), did blue collar jobs when I wasn't studying. At 30 I had no debts and about $1500 in savings -- mostly in a money market mutual fund earning about 15%. The MMF was my entrance into the world of mutual funds. I started reading about stocks and mutual funds that year. The journey to happy retirement took the next 30 years.

I remember reading Random Walk and knowing about Vanguard's 500 Index fund, but dismissing both on the theory that "I could do better than average."
"have more than thou showest, | speak less than thou knowest" -- The Fool in King Lear
User avatar
gasdoc
Posts: 1992
Joined: Mon Nov 03, 2014 8:26 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by gasdoc »

-$100,000

Sincerely,
gasdoc
User avatar
HomerJ
Posts: 15190
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 12:50 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by HomerJ »

bo105954027 wrote:What was your financial condition when you were at 30?
Broke and in debt.
It will help much more if you could also list your current condition to show your financial achievement since then.
I was only making $30k. Had just gotten married, wife was making about $50k.

Worked hard, we both got promotions, found ourselves making $45k and $70k a few years later... DIDN'T increase lifestyle very much at all. Paid off debt.

Continued to work hard, got more promotions, by 35 was making $60k, wife making $100k. Increased lifestyle at this point, but far less than our raises. Savings rate was solid.

Continued to work hard, got more promotions, by 40 was making $90k, wife making $130k... Didn't increase lifestyle, kept same house, I guess we spent more on better vacations. Saving tons at this point.

At 44 was making $120k, paid off house, wife quit job she hated. We had saved enough in those 15 years that we could easily coast to retirement in 11 more years for me.

47 now, wife actually got a work-from-home-job for some extra spending money... Not sure how long she'll do that. No money worries at all. Amazing that it has only been 17 years since I was flat-broke.

This is all in the Mid-west, where you can live very well on $100k... Making $120k, and with a paid-off house, we feel rich.

NOTE: Promotions for wife was in the same company; for me, it required changing jobs every 5 years to get the big raises.
Last edited by HomerJ on Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.
tomd37
Posts: 3393
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 10:39 pm
Location: Middle Tennessee

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by tomd37 »

Post deleted.
Last edited by tomd37 on Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Tom D.
User avatar
mlebuf
Posts: 1915
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Paradise Valley, Arizona

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by mlebuf »

I was 30 years of age in 1972, single, living in an apartment and owned no real estate. All numbers to follow are in 2016 dollars. My 12-month university teaching salary was about $105,000. I had about $15K in savings/investment but owed about $7500 in student loans. I was making car payments on a 1972 Ford LTD that cost about $28,000. I clearly had a negative net worth but was unaware of it and could not have cared less. I had spent most of my 20's as a poor starving grad student and was happy as a clam to making good money for the first time in my life.
Best wishes, | Michael | | Invest your time actively and your money passively.
bigred77
Posts: 2040
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 4:53 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by bigred77 »

OP is doing quite well for age 30.

I would encourage him/her to focus on increasing income and getting to a healthy, consistent savings rate.

I think there were a number of threads similar to this one in the past if OP wants to search for them. Don't be discouraged by the wunderkinds who claim to be worth $1.2 million at 30 through simply living below their means :D
ND Fan 1
Posts: 322
Joined: Fri Oct 30, 2015 12:29 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by ND Fan 1 »

I'm 31, wife is 30, about to have baby #3, oldest is 3 :). Captain in AF, about 160K in retirement, 100k in college savings, 90K in taxable and 50K in cash. Wife i
s RN, though only works 12 hrs a,week now. We just live super frugal and save about 50% of net pay. About 160K left on mortgage, home value around 205K. Gross income around 85K. Helped having military pay for most of college, had very little student debt. Though with 2 deployments already, they are getting their money's worth
User avatar
mhc
Posts: 4186
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:18 pm
Location: NoCo

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by mhc »

Living in an apartment with no debt. I was earning more than I could spend. Not a financial care in the world. I was maxing my 401k and buying stocks and mutual funds based on recommendations from friends.
Tekk
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2016 4:50 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Tekk »

I just turned 30 a few weeks ago, currently around 275k NW thanks to no college debt and a fortuitous career choice

Salary: 150k + bonus of between 10-40k
401k: 142k
IRA: 55k
Brokerage: 28k
Cash: 50k
No house
Paid off car (2005 Acura)
Last edited by Tekk on Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Crimsontide
Posts: 729
Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2013 5:32 pm
Location: DFW Metromess

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Crimsontide »

When I was 30 I was still sleep walking through the financial side of life. I had been married for 9 years and had a 3 year old child. I'm sure we had a couple of car payments, a hefty mortgage, a boat payment, lots of rotating balances on credit cards (interest was tax deductible back then, party on). We finally woke up a few years later...
FinanceDad
Posts: 46
Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2015 6:27 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by FinanceDad »

Appreciate the question and will enjoy seeing the replies. I am just 32 myself, but while those who have ~10 or more years of diligent savings have a good head start, there is plenty of time to accomplish our goals.

Me (32)
Married (wife 31) with 4 kids
One income (wife cares for children)
Income - $90K
Mortgage- (15 year- $117K owed, est. value- $200K)
Other real estate- $30K
ROTH IRA- $90K (maxing out mine and wife's)
Emergency- $5K (working to build up)
Taxable- $2K
HSA- $2K
Car loan- 1.25 years remaining (~$6K owed on 2012 Honda Odyssey)
A second paid off car- est. value $10K
No Other Debt

While I still have work to do, this financial picture has improved significantly the past 2 years (since I turned 30). I've tried to have a savings rate in the 35-40% range. Trying to now increase this rate.

Keep saving and keep/reduce the lifestyle as much as is reasonable and you'll get there.
alaskantraveler
Posts: 274
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 12:26 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by alaskantraveler »

31 here
Married, 1st child on the way
Salary (me) $75k Wife $40k
no consumer/car/student debt
$125k in TIRA/401k/ROTH
$220k mortgage @ 4% house worth $310k
2 rental properties with $115k equity cf positive
Total assets $325k

Took a few years off work to travel the world. Now we are settling down. Plan to max out two IRAs, 1 457b and HSA for a total of about $36k retirement savings.

Plenty of friends around my age that are swamped in student loan debt, credit card debt, with little retirement savings. I'd expect many of them have negative net worth.
User avatar
blueblock
Posts: 881
Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2014 6:06 pm
Location: Wisconsin

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by blueblock »

I was 30 in 1982:
- Debt: $16K in student loans
- Car: none
- Real estate property: none
- Income: Small TA stipend while attending grad school
- Cash & Investments: minimal cash, no investments

Thirty-four years later:
- Debt: none
- Car: one (paid)
- Real estate property: home (paid)
- Income: SS (retired)
- Cash & Investments: "2 commas"
User avatar
alpenglow
Posts: 1027
Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 12:02 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by alpenglow »

I didn't retain good records from back then, but at age 30 I was single, switching jobs, and buying a house. I think my net worth was about $300-400k, maybe more. About 10 years later, I'm married, in a different house, 2 kids, and net worth about $1.1m. Life is good.
Rodc
Posts: 13601
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 9:46 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Rodc »

Way back in the past!

And broke.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.
travellight
Posts: 2868
Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2008 5:52 pm
Location: San Diego

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by travellight »

I was 2 years into working and had paid off 25k in student loans within the first year. I made about 140-178k per year.
364
smitty1515
Posts: 152
Joined: Fri May 13, 2016 6:34 pm
Location: United States

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by smitty1515 »

Me (34), wife (33), and daughter (4)
Combined income: $138,000

Liquid cash: $19,500
401k/403b/Roth IRAs:$181,000
529: $7,000

2 vehicles paid off
Our only debt is home: 30 yr fixed, $340,000, 4.125% (value $360,000)

Sidenote: we've come a long way in the last 3-4 years. Keep working your plan and remain diligent. I feel like for our age we are doing well and I know that if we continue to stay on track we will be very comfortable in years to come. Remember it's not how much you make, it's how much you spend. Create a plan; one rooted with solid principles that will provide you a great future over the long term and stick to it.
Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful. -Warren Buffett
jharkin
Posts: 2596
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:14 am
Location: Boston suburbs

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by jharkin »

TheColorist wrote:I turned 30 in May and I can say that you're doing better than a lot of people I know personally. Never underestimate the under-coverage bias inherent in these types of finance forums that hide the true number of people who, 1) Don't have an emergency fund 2) aren't investing for retirement 3) are up to their ears in debt. You're ahead more than you realize, or appreciate.
+1 In a forum like this one the population naturally self selects for the unusually well off - simply because everyone that comes here has a desire to work hard at managing their finances well. And will thus do better than the average person in whatever income bracket they are in.

To the OP: I'm sure you have seen the articles lately that almost half of Americans have no savings whatsoever. Only a small percentage of people will ever attain a 7 figure net worth or become truly financially independent. Many retirees outside the cohort here live primarily on SS benefits and live very modest lives. By any objective standard you are already above average.

You are dong well. Will you ever have 7 or 8 figures? Who knows? Who cares? The one thing I can guarantee you from being here a short while is that if you follow the boglehead way and the excellent advice on this forum, YOU will be in control of your finances and not the other way around. That alone is priceless.

--

If you want a direct answer to the original question - when I was 30 I was single, making in the 70s and had about an 80k net worth. At 40 now Ive moved up in income significantly since then, got married, had kids, bought a house but I dont think I'm ever going to be one of the 300k/400k/500k etc high rollers who humble brag around here. Nevertheless I think I am on track to join the 7 figure worth club by 45ish and retire by 60 (assuming the tech job market and the stock market dont implode more than average), so I see no reason you can't get there as well if you put your mind to it.
Dottie57
Posts: 9195
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm
Location: Earth Northern Hemisphere

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Dottie57 »

Me (30)

Bought my first and only house.
$15k in savings
1 year away from employer having a401k
No ira.
Roths were not available.
Salary 28k

Now

House paid off.
Nearly 7 figure stocks and bonds
Over 100k in cash.
HSA -15k.
Salary 104k and feeling damn lucky.


Just starting to think of retirement.
Last edited by Dottie57 on Wed Jun 29, 2016 6:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Jags4186
Posts: 5125
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Jags4186 »

Me 30
Wife 31

Household income 150k
No kids
Paid off 2012 imprezza, paid off 2016 civic
50k cash
360k in investments
No real estate
No debt
User avatar
Toons
Posts: 13794
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:20 am
Location: Hills of Tennessee

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Toons »

30
Working hard,
Saving the best I could..
lived in a duplex ,rented part of it out,
lived in the other unit.
Mortgage debt.
small car loan.
About it. :happy
"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee
Ron Ronnerson
Posts: 1721
Joined: Sat Oct 26, 2013 6:53 pm
Location: Bay Area

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Ron Ronnerson »

Age 30: net worth was -40k. I had $20k in credit card debt and my wife (who I married at age 30) also had 20k of credit card debt. We had nothing saved in any account and I had recently become unemployed due to being a new teacher with low seniority in a school experiencing declining enrollment. Wife made a tad above minimum wage back then and we were in a bad state.

Age 41 (now): net worth is about 700k. Wife and I got our act together early on in our marriage. I got rehired at a new school and wife found a better paying job. We paid off all debts and started saving and investing. We bought a home and it's value is double what we owe. We invest $3k a month in retirement accounts now and I am expecting a nice pension at retirement too. We don't earn big salaries for where we live but are on a good trajectory now by keeping expenses relatively low.
User avatar
Lucky Lemon
Posts: 96
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2013 1:44 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Lucky Lemon »

Adjusted to 2016 dollars as best I can -

Single
~19K in debt (car and CC)
No real estate
~39k/yr in income
~36k in rIRA – soon to be cut in half in the aftermath of the Dot-com Bubble (no other savings)

17 years later things are significantly better.

OP is doing very well in my opinion.

LL
If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy. - Red Green
User avatar
windaar
Posts: 419
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:31 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by windaar »

I was still in grad school with no savings or assets, eating egg-drop Ramen, spaghetti, and bean burritos every night. The schooling paid off and I am now very financially secure but still enjoy spaghetti and burritos, the Ramen not so much.
Nobody knows nothing.
DVMResident
Posts: 1489
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:15 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by DVMResident »

I could tell you, but I am an inappropriate benchmark for you. Your life, your numbers. So I'm not going to say 8-)
IMO your numbers look pretty good.

Read "Money Ratios" (I got a copy on Amazon for $4) to get an idea of where you should be based on age. Understand the math behind the author's argument. Adjust them by your goals.
Dollarsign16
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:24 am
Location: CA

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Dollarsign16 »

This post couldn't have come at a better time... I had lunch with a former coworker today and was horrified at her financial situation (or lack of a situation). She is early 30's with basically no retirement savings and was telling me how she wanted to get it together and open up a Roth but had no idea how to do it or what to invest in. She has a spouse and a 2 year old. OP, you are in better position financially than most people your age.

Me (us)

The wife and I both early (to mid) 30's.
1 child (newborn)
Joint household income 170K-ish
2 cars (loans about 20K between 0.9 and 1.9%)
Mortgage 350K-ish on a home worth around 625K
Retirement 270K-ish between 2 401K/403bs, 2 IRAs, 2 Roths
Outside retirement 100K-ish (some inheritance)
No CC debt.

Looking to start 529 funding for the kid.

KH
Too many people spend money they earned..to buy things they don’t want..to impress people they don’t like. –Will Rogers
yellowgirl
Posts: 179
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:12 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by yellowgirl »

Did you go to college? I think people that didn't go to college get an advantage at the early years but then they will fall behind later. People that went to college continue to grow in term of income. Dh and I didn't have student loan at your age because we didn't go to college. Now at 35, our retirement accounts are about 320K excluding home equity. Our income will stay the same or decrease since we both don't have a college degree and this will hurt us I believe.
Last edited by yellowgirl on Wed Jun 29, 2016 7:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Dopey
Posts: 171
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:41 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Dopey »

I'm 30 as of last week, wife is 27. She has one year left of her masters, I'm finished with mine. She's a stay at home mom, full time student with our 2 year old. I work full time.

I make $88k.
No debt other than $158k mortgage on a house worth $205k.
$25k emergency fund.
$185k in retirement accounts.
$10k in HSA, $3k of which is invested.
A 2011 and 2013 paid off basic vehicles.

Probably not as far along as my ignorant younger self would have predicted, but I'm happy and don't think we're that poor off. Things will definitely accelerate once my wife finishes school and begins working for really the first time in our married lives.
ndizz
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 5:09 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by ndizz »

At age 30 I had:

no car
no wife
no savings, living paycheck to paycheck
was revolving credit card debt
had about $5k from a previous employer's 401k rolled into a tIRA
had just moved to a big city with higher cost of living, rent, etc
went from about $13.25/hr to $40,500/yr on salary.

The real exciting thing was I had just jump started my career and moved to a new exciting area and had a lot of great experiences. Sadly, I ended up cashing out the tIRA and in a couple years stopped paying off all my credit cards (for the 2nd time, I had previously spent years cleaning up my credit and disputing items off of it).

I'm one year away from 40. Excellent credit, max out my Roth IRA, 401k, HSA. Married, wife will be doing the same. Our net worth is about $350k which is a little less than the condo we just bought at a 3.50% 30 yr fixed rate (net worth after we put 20% down). I make $85k/yr, my wife makes a little bit more.

A lot of things can happen in a decade. I see most of you in this thread have something I wish I had at your age, common sense and the willpower to execute it. If I can turn it around in a decade just think what the next decade will do for you!
User avatar
InvestorNewb
Posts: 1646
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 11:27 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by InvestorNewb »

Here is my net worth progression from what I remember (milestones):

Age 22 - 30k (finished school)
Age 26 - 100k (moved out of my parent's house; business began taking off)
Age 30 - 500k (age 26-30 I had strong business growth and saved most of the profits)
Age 33 (current) - 900k (business slowed down significantly after age 30; investments grew nicely along with US dollar)

I started investing at the age of 30 thanks to this forum. I don't own a home so 99% of my assets are stock ETFs.
My Portfolio: VTI [US], VXUS [Int'l], VNQ [REIT], VCN [Canada] (largest to smallest)
Non7WoodUser
Posts: 213
Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2014 5:38 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Non7WoodUser »

You're doing fine. Stay at it. Don't be discouraged by the HCOL types who exaggerate their incomes and house values.
sfnerd
Posts: 207
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 1:16 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by sfnerd »

At 30 I was well on my way to a second million, which came shortly after. Comparing yourself to others is a waste of time though. I'm a natural saver who happens to work in a lucrative industry, and who had a successful business. I have friends with more than 10x what I have, and friends who have negative net worth. Just focus on saving, put your investments in a "set it and forget it" Boglehead-style portfolio, and live your life. You're doing great.
User avatar
MikeWillRetire
Posts: 422
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:36 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by MikeWillRetire »

At age 30 in 1993, I was a single civil engineer with no debt and about $20,000 in savings due to an inheritance. Got married later that year and spent the $20,000 on the honeymoon and house downpayment. My wife and I had no retirement savings at all at age 30. We worked for small engineering firms that did not offer 401k's. We left the private sector at age 33 and joined the federal government. Now at age 54, my two sons are in college, and we are on target to retire before age 60, thanks to a working wife, LBYM lifestyle, and a modest government pension.
coachf
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Aug 02, 2014 2:35 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by coachf »

I am 32 now, here is where I was two years ago.

Single
Salary $38,000
Student Loans $8,500
Credit Card $2,000
No Car Payment
No Real Estate
Retirement Savings= $28,000
Emergency Savings= $7,200
User avatar
ClevrChico
Posts: 1767
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:24 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by ClevrChico »

@ 30 in 2016 dollars:

single
one paid-off 20 year old car :shock:
bought fixer upper house, 50% down, 50% mortgage, 100% blood, sweat, and tears
$81k/yr income, made lateral career move that year (super stingy company), used experience to jump ship @ age 32 and get paid market
$301k total net worth

At thirty, most of us are just hitting our stride in our careers. It's the decisions you make before 30 that really propel your wealth after 30.

Forty is going to look much different. Family, kids, 10 more years of investment contributions & growth, etc.
Last edited by ClevrChico on Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Runner01
Posts: 291
Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2013 7:14 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by Runner01 »

OP,
In my experience you will always feel more content comparing yourself to those who have less than you, not more. For example, you earn almost double the median individual income in the wealthiest nation to ever exist and you have more retirement savings than 40% of households aged 55-64. Also, you have clean drinking water that comes out of a faucet for pennies per gallon and a functioning (I assume) automobile but we won't go into all of that!

Wife and I are 30 and here are our details.

$66k hh income (wife only works 8 hours per week so she can take care of our toddler)
$90k mortgage
$90k retirement savings
$32k cash (I have a big tuition bill coming up for my final semester of college)
No other debt

We could potentially earn about $120k household if my wife worked full time. However, our son was born shortly after she finished her master's degree so we have never really earned over $70k household yet. I look forward to really accelerating our investing when our son starts school.
gbru316
Posts: 279
Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2015 11:59 am

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by gbru316 »

I'm 31:

Married, 1 child
$50k student loan debt
$20k credit card debt (due to serious medical condition which took spouse out of workforce and 2+ year wait for disability thus far)
No emergency fund (see above)
$220k mortgage (required move due to medical condition)
$46k retirement savings
$68k income with lots of room for growth


OP: It's hard to do, but try not to compare yourself to others. Everyone's situation is unique. You don't need to earn $400k/yr (nor do you need millions in the bank) to retire so long as you're comfortable with a modest lifestyle.

Develop an IPS and stick to it. If you've never used FIREcalc, check it out. It'll help you determine if your savings rate will cover your retirement (albeit with several assumptions). And again, try not to keep up with the Bogles.


If you really feel the need to compare, just google the average retirement account size in the US.
ZedThou
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 9:01 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by ZedThou »

I was married, just having gotten out of debt. Net worth was maybe $40k, and our combined household income was somewhere around $80k. We've always rented, hopefully always will.

That was 13 years ago. By now our incomes have more than doubled. The chart below shows the progression of our net worth over the years, mostly from maximizing tax-deferred account contributions. Being a DINK household makes a world of difference.

Image
heyyou
Posts: 3797
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 4:58 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by heyyou »

From high school to age 25: A couple of years of college, a couple of years of Army, and a couple of years of tech school, then I went full time at my part time blue collar job. Retired thirty years later from there without ever moving up, but only the entry level jobs offered the pension.

At thirty, I was single, and had been laid off temporarily for six weeks within a year of getting a mortgage. Next, in my hurry to grow my savings, I was soon to be broke after speculating in a real estate limited partnership that would go bankrupt. Not long afterwards, my employer would offer an index stock fund (only the S&P500 was indexed then) in that new savings plan called 401k. I maxed the contributions to it and to my IRA for every year after that. It was a good time to start being an investor, while living in a low cost of living area but earning slightly above national median wages.

Live below your means for 25-30 years and you will have significant assets. Luck seems to eventually happen to those who save for that long. At work, someone else will have the nice house, someone will have a motor boat, someone will spend on nice vacations, and when you retire early, they will say that you got lucky in the stock market.

I retired at 55 with an almost two comma portfolio and $41K of no COLA pension income. SS at age 70 will be $36K. We are like the poster who said that he was not a rich person, he was just a poor guy with some money.
User avatar
HomerJ
Posts: 15190
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 12:50 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by HomerJ »

ndizz wrote:I make $85k/yr, my wife makes a little bit more.

A lot of things can happen in a decade.
This! You can save a lot in just 10-15 years.

There's a few posts on this forum from people who don't want to wait until they are 70 to be "rich", so they justify spending more now.

But it doesn't take until you're 70 to get in good financial shape... After 15 years, we had the house paid off, a bunch of money invested, and realized we really were financially independent.
User avatar
mlebuf
Posts: 1915
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Paradise Valley, Arizona

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by mlebuf »

ClevrChico wrote: At thirty, most of us are just hitting our stride in our careers. It's the decisions you make before 30 that really propel your wealth after 30.
+1 Excellent observation. I tell young people that the choices they make between ages 15 and 25 will have an enormous impact in determining who they become and how successful they will be. Smart choices in those years can make the rest of the journey far better.
Best wishes, | Michael | | Invest your time actively and your money passively.
User avatar
HomerJ
Posts: 15190
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 12:50 pm

Re: Where were you financially when you were at 30?

Post by HomerJ »

Runner01 wrote:We could potentially earn about $120k household if my wife worked full time. However, our son was born shortly after she finished her master's degree so we have never really earned over $70k household yet. I look forward to really accelerating our investing when our son starts school.
That's the trick... When she goes back to work, don't increase your lifestyle too much... At least not at first... Stay with the same house, the same cars, maybe go out to a dinner a few extra times, or an extra nice vacation once a year, but save most of that money.

5-10 years later, you'll have a very nice nest egg saved up.
Post Reply