Live like no one else – part 1

Have you heard the term before, “Live like no one else, so you can later live like no one else”? The term has been coined by Dave Ramsey and is synonymous with living a life different than our current culture. One that says no to debt, big mortgages, and Rolex watches. However, it is one that embraces thriftiness, saving for retirement/emergency, and living a debt free lifestyle. As simple as the term is and basic in its form it has caught on in our current economic recession culture and people are finally starting to get it. Living a life like no one else means you have to pay a price in order to sacrifice. The Bible says, “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but yields a harvest of righteousness.” Here are a few examples of things people have done in order to live a life like no one else.

  • Get rid of a car(s) – recently while reading EarlyRetirementExtreme Blog I found that Jacob, who retired at 33 years old, doesn’t have a car or a drivers license. He has committed to this lifestyle, so that he can be freed of the costs associated with a car that include depreciation, maintenance, taxes, inspections, and driver license fees (instead he rides a bike). As weird as his lifestyle choice may be to some his is continuing to live a lifestyle like no one else, which has freed him of the corporate world.
  • Save up to pay for a house in cash – when I used to live in Sioux City I had a number of east Indian friends that I worked with. Almost all of them lived in rental apartments, which really intrigued me. I once asked one of my best friends (Vijay) why he or none of the others bought a house. He proudly said that no one had enough cash to buy a house. I said, you know there’s a thing called a mortgage. He promptly laughed at me, and said most east Indians despise debt and taking on a mortgage would be absurd. As strange as this sounded to me in 1999, it would have saved a lot of people heartache in 2008 when we had the mortgage meltdown.
  • Go without TV and cable – on average the typical American watches about 35.7 per week (or 5.1 hours per day) – Nielsen blog reference. Its hard to believe that so much of our lives is taking up by TV,  and the costs that are associated with it both in terms of time and money. For a family, to own a TV and have basic cable these costs can average (Average TV costs $800 – $800/3 years = $267/year = $22.22/month) + (Average Cable/SAT costs $50/month) = $72.22/month or $2600 over 3 years. If you took that same $72.22 every month and invested it in a ROTH IRA and in 30 years you’d have $107,000+ tax free! Growing up I had a set of cousins that had no TV set, and I always remember how quiet and simple their lives were. They had so much more time for things to better themselves, and not to mention they were saving money continually.

Next week I’ll post part two of this series, but in the mean time what things are you doing currently to “Live like no one else”?

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