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Here is my Monday morning confession. I have been in a money slump for the past few months.
Since I graduated college, I have always set specific money goals along the way. From buying a house to paying off the mortgage or from maxing out my 401k and IRA to becoming a millionaire, I’ve always set goals for myself.
The problem is that I’ve accomplished all of the goals above.
Now that I’ve checked off all of my goals, I look around and am unsure of the next goal to set.
While reaching FIRE is definitely my long-term goal, that’s not necessarily a goal that I can experience on a daily basis.
Sure, it feels great to look at my Personal Capital account and check out how close I am to reaching FIRE. But for the most part, I feel like my finances are on autopilot. There really aren’t any tangible short-term goals that excite me. When I was paying off my mortgage or maxing out my 401k, I could see myself moving towards those goals on a daily basis. That tangibility helped me stay inspired and continue on those paths.
My 2017 goal of increasing my savings from 65% to 70% just isn’t exciting.
Having reached all but #12 of the Twelve Pillars, I have been disciplined along the way. But now, I am in a bit of a holding pattern.
As I shared earlier this year, my wife and I are deciding whether to go overseas. While I would love to go overseas, I also love being close to our family. There is something special with having your children being able to interact with their grandparents on a weekly basis.
The best part of my son’s week is when I tell him he is going to see one of his grandparents. His reaction is pure joy. Thinking about him not seeing his grandparents is somewhat heartbreaking to think of.
I waffle back and forth when it comes to this decision. This may also be why I’m having such a difficult time deciding on our next financial goal.
Since going overseas is not a sure thing at this point, we have been saving cash with the goal of buying a home debt-free, whenever that might be.
Buying a Home
As I’m sure many can relate, the neighborhoods that we like don’t currently have any homes for sale, or if they do, they are out of our price range. Since we haven’t made a mortgage payment in 5 years, it’s very difficult to think about going back into debt.
And so, we wait.
Now don’t get me wrong. Our current home is adequate. However, we’d really like to move into a home with a yard for our kiddos to play instead of walking/driving to the playground every day.
Since my wife and I grew up seven houses down from each other, we both have a similar vision of the type of childhood home that we’d like for our children to grow up in.
Right now, we’re at a crossroads. I’m trying to balance investing for the future while also having funds available to pay cash for a home today.
I hesitate to throw money into the market since I’d like the cash readily available if we are to buy a home. But everyday that the market goes up, it hurts just a little knowing that we’re missing out on the upside. Although, if the market drops all of a sudden, I won’t feel nearly as bad.
With all that said, I need to get out of this money slump. I need to come up with some tangible financial goals for 2018. Hopefully these goals will deliver me from the slump.