Super Saving: Attaining Financial Independence

money_bagIs it possible to attain financial independence through serious saving? It is, however it requires a very high level of self-discipline that many are not willing to do.

Millionaire in 7 Years

Chris Reining looked around his office in 2008 at older workers who will still living the “cubicle” life and decided he did not want to do that for the rest of his working life. He wanted to attain financial independence.

He was earning $75,000 a year and came to realize that in order to build enough wealth to retire early and escape the cubicle life he would need to save on a serious scale. He had to become a “super saver”.

He began cutting all his non-essential expenses and steadily increased the amount he saved. Starting at 5% he eventually was saving and investing 50% of his income. He began this at age 29 and by age 36 he had a million dollars in his investment account. Today he has $1.2 million.

Reining wrote a blog about how he became a millionaire and he still posts to it. See his blog here. Reining’s story is featured with others in a NY Times article by Paul Sullivan.

Impediments to Super Saving

Reining and many others who follow the super saver path have some things in common. They are often not married. He has a girlfriend who cooperates with his goal and having a willing partner is essential.

There is no mention in the articles of any children. Children create substantial expense and unless one’s income is already quite high it is much more difficult to save substantial portions of income when one has children.

The biggest obstacle to saving at such a sustained and high level though is the lack of self-discipline required to do it. It requires one to put off hundreds of wants and wishes and live very simply for a number of years. It requires a high level of self deprivation now to gain independence years down the road. Not a lot of people are willing to do this and that is likely why there are so few super savers.

What You Have to Give Up Now

To be a successful super saver one must give up a lot. It means living in as inexpensive a house or apartment as possible. It means putting off the purchase of many things for years. It means low cost vacations or no vacations. It means foregoing so many of the toys and consumer goods that people think they have to have.

Super savers also have to pay close attention to every dollar they spend and invest their money wisely. This takes time and a lot more of that self-discipline.

The Pay Off

If you can exercise this self-discipline for a number of years (it took Reining 7 years) you can achieve financial independence. You can, like he does now, spend more and take over seas vacations and buy some of the things you’ve put off buying during those lean years of super saving.

If you are in a position to do this; if you are not buried in debt, do not have a big family to support, and you have a steady decent income with which you can survive and still save substantial amounts, this is possible. It is possible if you have that level of self-discipline.

Being a super saver is not for everyone for a lot of reasons. But if it is possible in your situation it is certainly worth considering. Escaping the cubicle life, attaining financial independence, never having to work again, are all very worthy goals.

If Not a Super Saver…

If being a super saver is not for you it is still important to have a saving plan and to stick to it. Although a more modest saving program will not make you rich in the short term it can make your net worth very healthy in the long term and can provide for a much more comfortable retirement.

One couple who achieved a great deal by living frugally and saving is Daniel and Deborah Minteer. You can read all about it in their book or on their blog, Boiled Down Money Goo.

Saving something is better than saving nothing and the more you can save the better off you will be.

Something to think about.

Read more at by Trent Hamm.

Learn how to manage your money, eliminate debt and build wealth in my book, Your Financial Success.

Wishing you well,

Daniel R. Murphy
Educating people for building wealth, adapting to a changing future and personal development.