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Dads say the darndest things....

January 8th, 2008 at 07:04 pm

The other day I wrote about my adult stepson, who already has a very well-paying job just a year out of college. Today he got another well-paying job that is in the career field that he's interested in (as opposed to the other one, which is not).

I mentioned to my husband that I hoped he was saving some of his money and my husband said: "He doesn't need to be saving money. He's only 23."

I could not believe my ears. I'm still aghast by this thinking.

This is why we have more than $55,000 in student loans for his education -- because his father (and mother) were young when they had him and failed to save a dime toward his education (or toward anything else for that matter).

I know my stepson owes his mother a boatload of money and probably has a few credit cards he's paying off as well, but I see no reason why he can't be saving something toward his future -- even if he is just 23....

Not to gloat, but thank God my husband isn't raising Mini Me alone. She may only be 7 but I already have a bank account set up for her that her consignment money goes into (we re-sell her clothes). She's also got a college fund going and I make her put half her allowance into her piggy bank each month.

11 Responses to “Dads say the darndest things....”

  1. denisentexas Says:

    My sons are 24 and 23 and both are trying to save. I'm so thankful they aren't like their mother and father! lol

    I should have done more like you're doing when my sons were young but if wishes were horses, beggars would ride... Wink

  2. simple987 Says:

    I would be aghast too! A dollar saved at 23 is a very powerful dollar! And thats a great idea to have an account for a seven year old. If I had kids, I would get them started early. Once they start earning income at 16, sign them up for a Roth too!

  3. The dad Says:

    Response from the Dad: I was quoted accurately. Let me 'splain, though, that what I meant was that at 23, he has a lot of other things higher on the list than saving. In his new job, he will have to buy health insurance. He has debts. He has a ridiculously high rent in sunny Florida. He's driving a beater car that requires upkeep. He has a girlfriend.

    I do wish that I had taught him more about finances when he was little, but I was too busy fighting his gold-digger mom in court and she was too busy running up bills. What I do know is now that he has experienced real life for a couple of years, he has develolped a healthy aversion to debt and is quite conservative in his spending. For all I know, he may be saving money. I'm just sayin' that it's not a top priority at this point in his life.

  4. Ima saver Says:

    I think it is a top priority in his life. I started saving money when I got my first job at age 12. I owned my own new house at age 21 cause I had saved for the down payment! I have never made more than minimum wage and I am worth about 1.5 million, so starting young is important!

  5. Broken Arrow Says:

    Hehe, I think it's funny that a spouse came in to respond to an entry.

    Eh, I hate to say it, but I will still have to disagree. If you will please humor me, saving isn't just about a matter of priorities. It's also a matter of mentality. Even if one absolutely can not save (which I have yet to personally know someone that literally rather than just not wanting to), if they could just get USED to the idea of saving, it would be good enough. I think it's a mindset that's very important to have ingrained as early as possible.

    If it IS about priorities, I think saving for emergencies is a very high one. Life happens. People experience bumps in the road that they would need money to get out of. That's why saving for an emergency fund is emphasized so much.

    I feel awkward in saying all this, because I don't want to tell other people how to think or raise their children. However, as merely food for though, I hope that one will still give it some consideration....

  6. Nic Says:

    He can still pay off his debts AND save. He has youth on his side and a dollar today will be well worth five tomorrow.

  7. merch Says:

    I see where dad is coming from.

    My 2 cents are that the son be encouraged to increase his net worth. There is 2 ways to do this: increase savings and decrease debt.

    You say that rent is high in FL. You might want to talk about saving for a condo. Smartest decision I made was buying a condo and rolling that into a house.

    I think sometime we forgot when we were 23. At 18, I knew everything. At 25, I releazied at 18 I didn't know jack. But at 25, I knew everything. At 30, I realized I didn't know anything. But at 30, I knew everything right?

    Now just north of 35, I can't believe how dumb I was at 30. I now know, I know nothing.

    Good luck!!!

  8. luxliving Says:

    I vote to saving at least 10% no matter how young one is, and then increasing it as you age. 15% is really too little and saving nothing, why, isn't that one reason why one might be driving a beater? Because he didn't save for something better or to offset those emergencies that do come?

  9. monkeymama Says:

    Dear Dad,

    When I was 23 I was in the same spot. I buckled down, lived on minimum wage & saved $20k my first year out of college, and bought a home.

    My spouse stopped working when we were 25 and I barely worked for 3 years while we started a family.

    My point is twofold.

    1 - There is never an easier time to save. (Everyone else around me is whining that it is too expensive to save any money in the most expensive area of the country, but somehow I didn't find it that hard when I was used to the poor college lifestyle). There is no way I could save $20k so "Easily" today with 3 other mouths to feed, a mortgage, and all of our insurances. When I had high rents and an old car though, it was very easy.

    2 - Saving now can go a long way to making life easier.

    I don't buy into the whole deprivation thing in the least. We did all this so we could have more early on. We didn't save much while we stopped to have kids but our net worth is a solid $200k at age 30. Most of that we built up BEFORE 25.

    At the least he should be starting small. Not saving at all is just recipe for disaster.

  10. Broken Arrow Says:

    "I now know, I know nothing."

    Truly, words of wisdom.

  11. nance Says:

    Ima, I admire what you have done, but I doubt you could have done it alone, making minimum wage. Your husband seems like a very hard worker, who has built a successful business. I think the two of you have done a great job.

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