Why You Should Practice Poverty For One Week This Year

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I wish I could take credit for this idea, but I first head about the idea of practicing poverty on the Tim Ferriss podcast. Tim says that, every so often, he’ll take a week to “practice poverty”, in which he actually lives out the worst-case scenario of life as though he had very little to no money. Unlike a shopping ban, he doesn’t just forego dining out and shopping. He also commits to wearing the very basics when it comes to clothing and even takes his meals down to cheap staples like rice and beans. Now, you might be wondering why a millionaire would try living like he has so much less, but Tim’s rationale is sound and its worth copying his practice yourself. Canada seems reluctant to call anyone “poor”, but there is the low-income cutoff (LICO) which seems to be the polite way of doing exactly that. The LICO is determined […]

6 Things Alberta’s Recession Taught Me About Money

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In the summer I wrote about Surviving an Economic Downturn. I talked about the waning morale and falling house prices in the Calgary’s eroding economy. At the time, I apologized for the doom & gloom. Now I wish things were as good as they were then. Until late 2013, Calgary was Canada’s economic powerhouse. High-paying work was everywhere, and very easy to get. The city was defined by high wages and exorbitant wealth. So high the top-fifth of Calgarian households earned more than $363,000 per year — a figure that would propel you to the upper 1% or 0.1% virtually anywhere else. The bottom quintile still has a net worth of six-figures. Everyone had money, and everyone liked to spend it. Oil started to fall in late 2014. The first wave of lay-offs happened in March 2015, and now as many as 25,000 Albertans are without jobs. With the layoffs came empty offices, […]

How To Create a Wealth-Building Budget

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Over the years (so many years) that I’ve been writing on Money After Graduation, I’ve left many posts about money basics back in the archives. Which is too bad, because I feel like over time, not only has my knowledge of more complex financial topics increased, but my philosophies and perspectives of the fundamentals has also expanded. When it comes to budgeting, most people think of it in the context of managing their spending, and that is the purpose it will initially serve. But what if you changed your perspective to develop a budget where the goal was to make you rich? Below is an outline of the very basic budget, and how it should transform over time as you take control of your savings and debt. Remember, building lifetime wealth is a lifetime journey, so be patient with your progress! What should my budget look like? I get this question […]

20 Things You Need To Know About Money in Your 20’s

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Yours truly is turning 30 on Saturday, and I’m feeling reflective about my youth. I’ve been thinking lately what I would tell my 20-year-old self about money if I could go back in time. Even better, I thought about the advice I would give 20 year olds today about finance. I had a lot to say. When I wrote the list below, I was surprised how much of the points were merely philosophies and perspectives, rather than hard, concrete suggestions like “save 10% of your income”. Though maybe not that surprised, since this is consistent with my belief that financial strategies are better than financial plans. Numbers still matter. They matter a lot. But I think the motivation behind them matters more. In any case, I hope the advice is valuable and resonates with 20-somethings and 30-somethings alike. Enjoy! 1. A little matters a lot. If you can put another $10 towards […]

Drinks & Dollars Episode 1

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For those that didn’t catch it when I first posted it this week, I shared the FIRST edition of Drinks & Dollars — where I consume wine while answering your personal finance questions. What could go wrong? Please enjoy the video below! Want more? Like, comment, and subscribe to my channel! *These episodes are for informational and entertainment purposes only, and do not constitute professional finance advice. Please consult with your trusted and sober financial advisor before making any major decisions with your money! In this episode, I answer: How do you handle bad days when everything goes to shit? What did you do financially to prepare for the transition from employed to self-employed? How did the shopping ban help you prepare for self employment? What is the best online banking site to transfer funds to a self-managed investment portfolio? Now that I’m “funemployed”, was my MBA still worth it? Was I […]