As featured in The Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, and more!
     

Naked With Cash: Kathleen

This article was written by in Naked With Cash. 8 comments.


In January, Consumerism Commentary will begin the Naked With Cash event and series. Several Consumerism Commentary readers will share their financial reports and analyses at the beginning of each month, with insight from financial planners and other experts. To introduce each of the participants to readers, I asked them to share where they’ve been, where they are, and where they’re going, and to describe their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Meet Naked With Cash participant Kathleen. She has prepared this introductory post to give readers a sense of her background before the tracking begins in earnest in January.

Hi! I’m Kathleen, and I write at Frugal Portland. I’m very excited to participate in tracking my finances here!

I’m 31 years old, single, and living in Portland, Oregon. I’m in sales and marketing for a small software company, and I love what I do for a living. I don’t have many responsibilities so I’m focusing on getting my finances in order, and I started blogging about a year ago to hold myself accountable. In that time, I’ve gotten out of credit card debt and started saving toward retirement.

My financial strengths are the ability to set priorities and focus on those. I would also consider working at a place I love (that is almost assuredly not the highest paying job I can get) a financial strength, because in the long run, the amount of money I make matters a lot less than how happy I am in my job, and my life.

My income comes primarily from my day job, though I try to pick up some “side hustles” when they come available — pet-sitting, freelance writing, making salted caramels, and helping small businesses with their social media strategies are all things I’ve done on the side. In 2012, after taxes, I earned just over $33,000, and I’m in a place where I receive no benefits or matching, so I’ve taken it upon myself to save for retirement. This is done through a Traditional IRA.

I love living in Portland, and I love the psychology behind marketing. I have an entrepreneur’s mind, and am constantly starting projects and finding ways to make money working for myself. I believe in simple living, and adjusting my lifestyle to match my income rather than the other way around. I believe that I’m at a turning point in my life, and that things are going to be very different, very soon, and I’m excited about that possibility.

I love cooking for my friends, and I love going over to their houses for dinner as well. I’m in the market for my first condo or house (but probably condo as I have very little in the way of handyperson skills!), and my parents are helping me with the down payment. I think I’ll find something in the next two or three months, and I’m really looking forward to that!

I started reading Consumerism Commentary about a year ago, but really got more involved after the Financial Blogger Conference. Meeting Luke in person helped me connect to his writing.

Thanks for participating in Naked With Cash, Kathleen!

Updated December 27, 2012 and originally published December 20, 2012. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

Email Email Print Print
avatar
Points: ♦127,435
Rank: Platinum
About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Gordon

Hi Kathleen,

Since you’re still young, you should definitely consider funding a Roth IRA while you still fall within the income limits. Paying taxes upfront will help you avoid paying taxes on the gains when you retire. By retirement, your gains will be well over 50% — probably more like 60-70% — of the value of your portfolio (compared to what you contribute in cash). So you’re avoiding taxes on over half of your entire portfolio when you retire! Plus, withdrawing from the account is more flexible since the contributions are post-tax dollars.

Anyway, just think about it. You could potentially have tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars tax-free at retirement depending on how long you are eligible to contribute. I’m excited to read your blog!

Reply to this comment

avatar Midlife Finance

I think going with the Roth IRA is probably a better idea as well. It’s best to do that while your tax rate is lower. Good luck with your condo hunt. The market is really picking up for condos in Portland.

Reply to this comment

avatar krantcents

Being in sales, you have some control over your earnings. In this economy that is a plus. Whether saving for retirement or a home, it gives you a lot of choices. Good luck.

Reply to this comment

avatar Kim@Eyesonthedollar

Looking forward to seeing how this series progresses and hat’s off for getting naked for all the world to see!

Reply to this comment

avatar Jacob @ iheartbudgets

Kathleen! Cool, very excited to follow along! It’ll be awesome to see your net worth grow :)

Reply to this comment

avatar Joe@IGotOuttaDebt.com

Kathleen,
Congratulations on getting started, I’m looking forward to see your progress next year!

Reply to this comment

avatar Kathleen, FrugalPortland

Thanks everyone! I’m looking forward to it, too!

Reply to this comment

avatar CF

Can’t wait to see the progress, especially with the house/condo buying!

Reply to this comment

Leave a Comment

Connect with Facebook

Note: Use your name or a unique handle, not the name of a website or business. No deep links or business URLs are allowed. Spam, including promotional linking to a company website, will be deleted. By submitting your comment you are agreeing to these terms and conditions.

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.

Previous post:

Next post: