FraidyCat Finance

About FraidyCat Finance:

Tell us about yourself?

I’m a 30-something lady living in a small Midwestern town with my husband and our toddler son. I write a lot about how I’m dipping my toes into financial risk and the associated rewards, but am pretty reluctant and want to share the challenges.

When did you get interested in personal finance?

I always assumed that if I pursued a career as a writer, I’d be close to broke all the time, but when a friend showed me a personal finance publication she was writing for, I realized that it was possible to care about careful money management and work to make more of it even in a creative field. Since then, I’ve been trying to organize my spending and saving in order to achieve goals like moving to be closer to my family and friends who live in a high cost of living area.

Why do you believe learning about money and caring about personal finance is important?

Many of us don’t have a compelling reason to get better at money right now, and I think personal finance education gives us those reasons. Things like month-long challenges and thoughtful mindset-related personal finance lessons have been so helpful for me to get a better understanding of how I relate to money. Finding these things in my 20s, I’m almost sure, will help me in my 40s, 50s, and (I hope!) far beyond.

What inspired you to create personal finance content?

My husband and I took a ton of walks in early 2020 and kept having interesting conversation about where we diverged in our preferences when it came to money. I assumed this was a pretty relatable issue – marital differences and low personal finance risk tolerance being pretty common – and thought it worth exploring in different blog posts.

What is your ideal audience, who are you hoping to reach with your content?

Honestly, anyone who has let fears allow them to not dive deeper into complicated personal finance stuff. I understand this perspective so much, and I hope seeing me trying to learn more will make them more comfortable too!

What are your top 3 pieces of advice about personal finance?

  • Automating the decisions that matter to you, like savings, can really save some decision fatigue. I don’t always feel like saving, so I try not to have to make the decision over and over.
  • If you’re making life work on your current income, make a plan for all increases in income to go toward bigger goals, i.e. 20% of every raise goes to charity and 50% goes to your down payment fund, with only 30% allowed as a lifestyle increase.
  • By choosing inconvenience in some areas of your life, i.e. living in a low cost of living area or driving a less cool car, you are choosing to have the room to spend money on things that really matter to you. It’s an empowering way to look at relative scarcity, in my opinion.

What are your top 3 financial mistakes you can share – how did you grow and improve?

  • We worked really hard to pay down our house mortgage when we probably could have kept it and just gone hard on retirement investing… it’s not a huge mistake, but I think we’d be way farther on the road to wealthiness if we had.
  • Wish I’d started a ROTH IRA at 18 when I started working; my family even mentioned it and I knew it’d be good, since I was earning more than what I needed to live on before/during college.
  • I spent money on junker cars that I bought in cash rather than dealing with a car loan on something nicer, and honestly, the repair bills meant that I was spending as much or more than people with reliable cars.

If you received $5,000,000 tomorrow, what would you do with the money?

Ooh! How fun. I hope I’d have the discipline to: spend $600,000ish to start constructing the zero-energy home we want to build, put another $400,000-$1M into index funds, and then put the rest into a donor-advised fund and start donating the proceeds every year.

Rank the following from most important to least important – Saving money, Increasing Income, Paying down debt – Please explain why you ranked them this way?

Increasing income, paying down debt, saving money has been the order of priorities in my life, but I think it’s weird not to see them as all part of the same thing. I started out making very low wages as a part-time teacher before I went to grad school, so the past few years have all been about increasing income. When that happened, debt payoff became possible, but I was willing to save up to a reasonable emergency fund simultaneously.

What are your top three pieces of content that you created that are a good starting point for everyone to read?


Recent Posts from FraidyCat Finance:

  • Hello out there!
    by FraidyCatFinance on September 30, 2021 at 2:11 pm

    Hi all! I’ve made it about 11 months on this blog, and honestly, it’s been very fun. I enjoy getting to share with you all. But! I’m enjoying the interface over on Medium more and… Read more of Hello out there! ? The post Hello out there! appeared first on FraidyCat Finance.

  • Fear of Inflation
    by FraidyCatFinance on September 23, 2021 at 2:07 pm

    We’re all feeling the pinch these days – it seems like restaurant and grocery store prices are going up, and how could they not? With the labor shortage/mismatch in the marketplace, many places are paying… Read more of Fear of Inflation ? The post Fear of Inflation appeared first on FraidyCat Finance.

  • Fearless Habit: Both of Our Incomes “Count” Toward Childcare
    by FraidyCatFinance on September 16, 2021 at 1:54 pm

    I was fretting, as I’m wont to do, a couple months ago. We were still pre-vaccine availability, and for that time, we’d opted for a part-time babysitter instead of group daycare for the Explorer. We… Read more of Fearless Habit: Both of Our Incomes “Count” Toward Childcare ? The post Fearless Habit: Both of Our Incomes “Count” Toward Childcare appeared first on FraidyCat Finance.

  • Fear That I’m Not Going to Get a Break
    by FraidyCatFinance on September 9, 2021 at 6:01 pm

    I write a lot about the good things in my life and Mr. Blue Sky’s life. That seems fair, since we’re real lucky in a lot of respects and it’s a drag to be both… Read more of Fear That I’m Not Going to Get a Break ? The post Fear That I’m Not Going to Get a Break appeared first on FraidyCat Finance.