5 Dreams You Won't Achieve Unless You Live Below Your Means
Living below your means is probably a personal finance tip that you already know about. In fact, spending less than you earn has been talked about so often that it doesn't even feel like advice anymore — many people's reaction is, "Isn't this obvious?"
However, not everyone who knows what to do actually practices what they know. If you are one of those people, you probably won't be able to achieve the following dreams unless you start living within your means. (See also: Living Within Your Means Isn't Nasty)
Having More Time (and Working Less)
Spending less than you earn gives you the option to have more time to do things you actually want to do. You don't have to take a job with tons of overtime just because you need the money or a far away job that sucks out all your time because the daily commute is extremely long.
If you still choose to work like everybody else who absolutely needs every penny of their paychecks, you can actually retire much earlier than conventional wisdom dictates. I know plenty of frugal people who retired in their 50s even though they never earned a high income. When you spend less, your need to accumulate a really high nest egg reduces too.
Finding a Job You Love
If you love what you do, you won't feel like you are working a day of your life. Yet, too many people work at jobs they hate because they need the income to keep coming in. Funny how most people actually can't stop themselves from buying even though the mortgages, car loans, and credit card bills are like chains that link their lives to everything they find miserable.
Getting Better Raises
Unless you've been living in a cave (or have so much money that you have your assistant carry your wallet and pay for everything), you know that prices of just about everything have gone up. Fortunately, not all is bad in regards to inflation. People who spend less than they earn are have an easier time adjusting to the new prices because even though their companies' raises might be smaller than the inflation rate of goods, these people are more likely to have the increases to their cost of living fully covered by their raises.
Here's an example. Let say you make $50,000 dollars and get a 2% inflation adjustment this year, giving you a $1,000 raise. If you only spend $20,000 a year, and a 2% increase on $50,000 is $1,000, it's like you have a 5% increase on what you can spend.
Buying When You Want To
Before you know it, living below your means will equate to having a small cash reserve of your own built up, giving you the power to buy the items that you want, when you want. And if you are like many people out there, the urge to buy immediately might actually dissipate because you know that you can make these purchases at anytime, even if there is a coupon that urges you to buy now. Furthermore, once you skip a few purchases, you will probably find that most of all those impulse buys are really just unnecessary to begin with, saving you even more money.