Saturday, March 2, 2013
The financial planner
While hanging out at the local coffee shop, I ran into an old friend of mine. She was having a meeting with a financial planner. Papers and binders were scattered all over their table.
She asked where I'd been lately and I told her I'd just come back from Florida and talked a little bit about my trip.
“That's what I want to be able to do,” she told the financial planner.
“How do I do it?” He asked.
“Magic,” I said.
“I want some of that pixie dust,” she said.
Then I went on to say that it's cheaper for me to go to Florida than to buy heating oil for my house. I've got free or inexpensive places to stay: at my dad's, on the boat, or camping. The planner quickly ran the numbers in his head (he appeared to be a real numbers guy), mumbled a few figures, and agreed with me.
I then said it's not so much what you have coming in as what you have going out. That statement seemed to catch the planner a bit off guard. He looked somewhat puzzled by the concept. I worry about the quality of the advice my friend is getting. It appears he's all about big returns on investment.
I don't know much about returns on investment. My track record shows I know nothing about increasing income. Way back in 1993 I made about $35,000 as a firefighter. I've never equaled that income since. That's in actual dollars. Adjusted for inflation, my income looks even worse.
The only way I'm able to live the way I live is watch where that money goes. Solar electric power, wood heat, waste veggie powered vehicles, and a whole bunch of other money saving activities add up.