My First Post!
Hello! Welcome to the Graduate Investor. This blog is just getting off the ground, but I hope that it will soon be a useful resource for graduates who want to take control of their finances. Like many of my peers, I graduated with both a doctorate degree and nearly $200,000 in debt at a blended 7.4% interest rate – insanity! Traditional financial advice targeted at previous generations with little student loan debt wasn’t going to cut it.
Over the past four years, I’ve paid off over $113,000 in student loan debt, using a lot of unconventional ways. I’ve purchased rental homes, hosted on Airbnb, sold stuff on Craigslist, saved credit card points, and hustled at my day job. But I still have $76,400 to pay off before I’m debt free.
And in April I’ll marry my best friend, Mr. Graduate Investor, who will bring another $351,000 of student loan debt to the table (he started with $400,000 and was getting swindled by the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program…but more on that in a later post). We’re lucky in that we’re relatively high earners (though not super high earners – no plastic surgeons here!), but we’re definitely not rich yet.
And, despite our degrees, we were never taught even basic financial literacy in school. Taxes, investments, capital gains, insurance, retirement accounts, the basics of obtaining a mortgage – all things I’ve had to teach myself with help from the internet and more than one mistake along the way.
What I’ve learned is that having a good income doesn’t automatically make you wealthy, and managing your finances can sometimes feel like a job in and of itself. This isn’t a blog about super frugality, but it’s about being smart with your money, not letting the system beat you, and striving for increased net worth. (True story – I didn’t really grasp the concept of net worth until just a couple years ago!)
Many of my posts will be about basic financial building blocks – i.e. saving an emergency fund – but I also want to spend time deep diving into how moderate to high-income earners can accelerate their path to financial independence.
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