Saturday, 5 April 2014

7 Smart Ways to Spend Your Raise

Did not have the time to make a 3D model of a percentage sign
I got 2%

This week I received an unexpected raise.  Last year I did not get one due to financing difficulties at work (which was really POOR planning by management).  So time once again for the 3 stages of a raise:   Joy, disappointment, and amnesia!   Only somewhat kidding.  When I was married with children, there were always demands that sucked that money away.  As a MGTOW however, the disappointment part is somewhat lessened as I put the raise into my goals, and not someone else's priorities.

I hope to carve out a bit of a niche with my MGTOW blog.  Although complaining about women is so darn FUN and cathartic, I hope to provide some useful content that all MGTOWS can USE.   A corner stone of MGTOW is  the supreme right to decide what YOUR goals in life will be as opposed to having your goals dictated by OTHERS.   This is especially true when it comes time to decide what you are going to do with a pay raise.  No more someone like a wife using your raise to justify buying a new car, granite countertops, a bigger house, or a bag of rocks at Pier 1 Imports (yes, they really do sell bags of rocks there).

Here are my MGTOW flavored tips:

1. Save for retirement. 

Old man prodding feminists with his caneThis is a natural choice for myself as it is a major goal of mine.  Even if it is not yours, at least half of it should go to your retirement account.  What people don't realize is that as your income grows (assuming of course you are lucky enough to be in a good and stable field of work),  you naturally become used to that new income level.  Expenses rise to meet Income, and for many it surpasses it.  If you want a similar income level in retirement, it goes without saying that you'll need to save more to get there.  In 1990 I would of been happy planning to retire on 24,000 a year.  But that $24,000 was 24 years ago... that's 24 years of inflation! 

2. Planning for a worst case scenario

Hair Club for MenJob loss, your dog needing root canal, or some huge unforeseen expense . Way back when I used to own a townhouse condo, I received a special assessment .  Special assessments are large, typically one-time charges by the condo corporation for an expense that is over and above what your condo fees pay for.  Mine was fortunately small compared to a different set of condos in a neighboring city which needed their leaky roofs replaced at a cost of $8000 per unit.  The special assessment I received was for $650 for a new garage door.  Apparently ONE unit had a garage door that got rusty and the board was concerned that it could fall on someone, and leave ALL of the unit holder exposed to a lawsuit.  So over a course of a few weeks, all 46 townhouse units got a new garage door.  The one I had was perfectly fine other than some minor surface rust at the very bottom lip of the door.  Currently I have about half of my gross annual salary in my TFSA (Tax Free Savings Account, for those of you not familiar with Canada). It is in a high interest savings account, and I might put a portion into a short-term bond fund.  Basically you don't want to put it into anything that could lose half its value (like the stock market did in 2008, or silver did from 2011 to 2013). Do not consider this dead money.  This emergency fund can serve double-duty as the income/safe portion of your investments.

3. Pay down debt.

Paying Ye Old Visa Bill.  You probably ALL know this one so I will spare you the story of 19% interest on credit cards, blah, blah, blah.  I am 100% debt free (which I attribute to being MGTOW), and I never carry a balance on my credit cards.  I just collect cash back rewards.  

4. Book a Trip

Peter, we could steal that pig. We could eat that pig!I was weary to put this tip down since I have no inclination to travel.  I never caught the travel bug. However one article I read said that research shows that spending money on experiences, rather than objects, lead to great enjoyment of that money  than buying "stuff".  So a memory from a concert, or a weekend trip, will provide more lasting happiness than dropping a few bills on a new TV or the latest iPhone.   PS:  stuff breaks.

5. Save for something fun

Winter is not fun.This is very similar to the previous point, but the key point is SAVE.  Do not put it on a credit card. Save up until you can pay for it with a credit card (to collect cash back rewards) AND be able to pay the bill in full when it comes 30 days later.  If you buy something  on credit without money saved to pay the credit card bill in full when it arrives, you are potentially putting yourself in a bigger hole if you lose your job in the meantime.

6. Don't get stung

Bee missing its stinger.  Also known as a Mangina.If your raise is actually a bonus, don't forget state sponsored theft, otherwise known as taxes.  The $1000 bonus, easily becomes $600 after taxes so don't be an idiot and go out and buy something that is over $600.

7. Invest in yourself


My favorite investment is me!This could be anything from a series of classes, or a book where you LEARN something.  As a MGTOW one of my goals is to get away from salaried employment, so a course to improve myself for the benefit of my boss is not in the cards.  Instead it would be anything that I enjoy, and/or get me closer to some goal.  If it is something that can potentially earn me money on the side, even better!  Buy (or beg, borrow or steal) a book on how to do your own taxes, then use Studio Tax (a free Canadian tax program) , and e-file it for free!  This is what I did after thinking I would have to go to a company like H&R Block to do my taxes because I was recently divorced at the time and didn't know how that would change doing my own taxes.  I was stupefied when they didn't have an answer of what receipts I would need and what I could and could not claim on my taxes.  Surely I was not the first divorced Dad in Canada?! They said they would look something up and get back to me in a few days by phone.  In the meantime I hopped onto the internet, read a bunch of stuff at the government websites, and found the answers myself.

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