Financial Independence

Reader Tip Tuesday #1

We understand that frugality, battling debt, or searching for financial independence is hard; it takes consistency and determination. We mentioned it last week: the path to financial independence doesn’t have to be a solo journey, there’s a strong community of supporters who all have something great to share. We want to take that idea a …

Financial Independence: What Does It Mean?

We’d like to thank Experian for having us on their Twitter chat a couple of weeks ago. The topic was financial independence, and we heard a lot of great opinions from Ready for Zero, Wise Bread, the Better Business Bureau Military Line, Madam Money and everyone else who participated. Here’s a look back at the …

“Eighteen and Out” – Good Parenting or Bad Parenting?

A young reader writes in: I’m a high school senior and I’m going to college next fall. When I go to college, I want to be completely independent, paying my own bills. My parents insist that this is financial suicide and that they should support me through college. What do you think is the right …

Helicopter Parenting, Baby Boomers, and Financial Dependence

A few days ago, the AFL-CIO released the results of a surprising survey of workers under 35. This report, entitled Young Workers: A Lost Decade, contains some frightening statistics about the current state of employment and financial independence of people 35 and under. A few of the most shocking facts: – One in three young …

Financial Independence as a Goal

Whenever I read personal finance books and articles, I often see the term “financial independence” bandied about. To some, it merely means not relying on a parent or other loved one to help pay the bills. For others, it means freedom from all debt. For yet others, it means freedom from having to work for …

One Big Way to Get Intense About Financial Independence

You are going to be fired from your job this Friday. Read that statement again. Close your eyes for a moment and imagine if that sentence were true in your own life? Would you be ready? Most people would panic if they came into work and found a pink slip, simply because they’re not in …

How Much Money Is “Walk Away From It All” Money?

Roger writes in with an interesting question: When you talk about “walk away from it all” money, how would you estimate that? I know it would be different for each person, but what elements do you take in mind, and what percentage of savings or what size emergency fund (24 months of living expenses, for …

Financial Freedom Is Making Me Rethink My Life

It was last April, a year ago now, that I really suffered the worst of my financial meltdown, and I finally woke up to the realization that I needed to make some drastic changes in the way I spent my money. I cut a ton of fat out of my spending, paid off all of …

Financial Independence Week: The Dangers Of Damaging A Relationship

I wanted to finish up this week with what I felt was the biggest danger with financial independence. From my perspective, the biggest challenge that people on the cusp of financial independence face is the danger of a damaged relationship. Parents are afraid to let go, or push their children away roughly in an effort …

Financial Independence Week: The Dangers Of Financial Dependence

For many people, adulthood is a time to find your own path and walk alone, but some parents and children have difficulty breaking the financial ties that bind and the financial dependence continues well into traditional adulthood. This is a dangerous path, fraught with many challenges for both the parent and the child, some of …

Financial Independence Week: Paying For Your Own Education

College-age readers (and younger), this post is directly aimed at you. Paying for college isn’t easy, whether it’s you doing it or your parents covering it for you. Unless you were very lucky in the scholarship department, someone is facing a financial hardship from this: your parents, you, your future self, or maybe even someone …

Financial Independence Week: Paying For Your Child’s Education

As a parent of a young child, I’m already struggling with the question of whether or not I should pay for my child’s post-secondary education, and how much I should pay for if I do. To put it simply, there is no easy answer to the question; if you were hoping to be told what …

Financial Independence Week: Should I Expect My Parents To Rescue Me?

For many young people, one of the biggest fears of financial independence revolves around what happens in the event of a disaster. Should you expect to be able to move back in if something goes awry? Will they provide financial assistance? Or are you on your own? Although it is best to expect no assistance …

Financial Independence Week: Should I Rescue My Children?

As a parent, there is a strong likelihood that at some point, your child will fail at their goals during young adulthood. Their situation may even become dire, and as a loving parent, you may feel a very strong desire to jump in and rescue your child. Before you do that, consider the following advice: …

Financial Independence Week: Handling Independence For The First Time

That moment when you are left without financial support for the first time can be a scary one, and it can lead to a lot of complex emotions (fear, resentment, anger, sadness) that can lead directly into irrational behavior. This is a time of independence and freedom, a time to step forward and walk on …

Financial Independence Week: When And How To Cut Direct Financial Ties

For some, deciding when to cut financial ties is easy. In my situation, it was the day I left for college: other than birthday and Christmas gifts, I was basically on my own after that (though my mother would irregularly send me small amounts of cash with the purpose of “going out and having fun” …

Financial Independence Week: Talking With Parents About Money

Earlier today, I discussed methods for parents of young adults to talk to their children about money. Now, I’m going to tackle the opposite direction: how can a young adult (a college student or a young professional) discuss financial matters with their parents? Many college students dread talking to their parents, mostly because they believe …

Financial Independence Week: Talking To Adult Children About Money

Many of my friends during my college and early post-college years were swimming in debt, some of them to the point of being scared to open the mail. Whenever I would suggest talking to their parents or guardians about it, their faces would freeze with an additional layer of fear, as though it was the …