When Frugality Affects Quality of Life
What happens if you follow all the smart money rules to get ahead, but find you're not getting anywhere at all?
You pay off credit cards every month, pay extra toward your mortgage and fund two retirement accounts, plus a 529 and an emergency fund.
You rarely spend on new clothes; you always pack your lunch and work extra hours every week to fund your savings goals.
This is the situation one frustrated reader over at Get Rich Slowly describes. Even in good times, when you can watch savings compound and debt dwindle away, this nose-to-the-grind lifestyle is challenging to sustain and best linked to an end goal. In a bad market (as we've had), it can be crushing to watch everything you save disappear. Those market conditions do not make an extreme, savings investment plan worthwhile.
So what to do instead? JD at Get Rich Slowly recommends a balanced spending formula from All Your Worth. It suggests that 50% of income should be spent on needs, 20% on savings, leaving 30% for wants. Try our online budget worksheet to see if your expenditures can fit this formula.
Also, our savings calculator estimates how long it will take save a million. You can see for yourself: It's not going to happen overnight ... So how about budgeting for a little breathing room?
How do you keep financial burn-out at bay?