Well, here is a list of beatitudes we must have to achieve our retirement goals in the military. If we follow these beatitudes we may not be working until 70 years old with a second career.
1. Blessed are those that save for retirement (Roth IRA and TSP) early for they will have financial freedom. Yes, that is correct you will have more freedoms to do a lot more than if you did not save any money. For examples if you were to save $ 4000 in a Roth IRA every year for just 5 years that money (with 7% return for 35 years) could be worth $ 213,530. So remember to start saving early so that interest works for you.
2. Blessed are those that pay down their credit cards with the highest interest first for they may save a lot a money in the future. Credit card debt is one of the worst things one can get into. It is almost financial suicide unless one can pay it entirely off every month. Most of us don't have the discipline to due so. So my advice if you have a lot of credit card debt is pay the minimum balance on the credit cards that have the lowest interest rate and put that extra money into the high interest rate credit until they are paid off first.
3. Blessed are those that create a budget for each paycheck for they may have money left over to save in their high yield savings account. Yes, a budget is always a good habit to get into. I recommend writing down a budget and then try to stick with it. After a few month than adjust it some. Most financial advisor say pay yourself first for retirement then your high yield saving account for emergency funds, then finally the rest of your expenses. I cannot stress the importance of having money in a high yield savings versus a savings account down the street. A high yield savings account is 10X the national average rate.
4. Blessed are those that sacrifice those expensive toys (ie boats, 4 wheelers etc.) for they will have some money for retirement. Some of us can afford these toys so I am not against buying these things when one has the actual money to buy it. However, may people what to have these toys but they want to finance them through the bank. Later, they find out they either cannot pay the payments or they lose interest in these toys.
5. Blessed are those who do not accrue late fees / ATM fees for they will have more money. Sometimes we do stupid things with our money. We forget to pay for items on time so we are charged a fee. Sometimes we use the ATM machine more than we should and accrue fees. My advice is to go to the bank and get enough cash that will last for the next payday instead of using the ATM. Secondly, we need to set up a time once a month / or once every two weeks to pay our bills on time.
6. Blessed are those that will never take out a PAYDAY loan for they will be charged a very high interest rate fee. This is one of the best ways one can waste money. I cannot believe it takes the power of congress and the president to limit these companies to lend to servicemen. It is better just to stay away from these companies.
Remember these Six beatitudes and you will be able to receive your reward in those retirement years.