“Adulting 101: Learning to work, play, and plan hard”

Jennifer & Justin 

AGES:28 and 30

Primary Goal

Live life like there is no tomorrow while traveling and creating long-lasting relationships.

After bouncing between companies like Yelp, TEKsystems, and Marketo, Jennifer has a solid position as a Sales Executive at Salesforce. She is consistently earning $100,000+ but she doesn’t have much to show for it. She does, however, have a big career and LOTS of time on her side.

Justin is wrapping up his 4th year of residency and is loaded down with student loans. He knows he has a substantial task ahead of him, but he loves trading his Robinhood account.

Jennifer currently holds an old 401k and she is the recipient of her parent’s proactive annual gifting.

Jennifer and Justin are unsure what the proper order of operations should be.  Should they pay-off student loans, invest, or buy a house?

After “roughing” it through medical school and dead-end sales jobs, they are finally making a nice living.  Between happy hours, Saturday brunching, and keeping up with their friend’s bachelor/bachelorette parties and weddings, they just cannot adequately track their cash and it seems like they are going nowhere, and fast.  The thought of saying no and saving and investing for their future gives them major FOMO.

Jennifer and Justin want to create great memories together and see the world before they bring small humans into the world.

Their future earnings are bright, but procrastination and simple financial mishaps could cost them millions of dollars over their lifetime:

Procrastinating because of lack of clarity is their biggest nemesis.

  • Cost of “waiting” to invest
  • Mishaps over student loan forgiveness programs, private refinances, and potential tax bombs
  • Purchasing too much home for their goals, or renting for the wrong reasons
  • Failing to “merge” finances and create accountability as a couple

By engaging a professional, they will not fall victim to procrastination, and they will have someone help them take tactical steps in the right direction.

As they approach their 30’s, they realize the importance of having a trusted partner to help them make smart financial decisions and manage trade-offs in life.

Jennifer and Justin admit that although knowledgeable and educated, they are not financial wizards.  They know they don’t know enough, which is why they hired a fiduciary, flat fee financial planner.  They are, after all, going to be spending their time in hospitals and businesses developing software, so how could they not spend the necessary time honing in on their optimized financial plan?

After having honest and thoughtful conversations, they realized their financial planner wasn’t just a number cruncher, but someone to lean on for objective life advice.

Pathways to experience life on their terms were created:

  • Created an actionable plan to minimize the student debt burden while investing
  • Understood the true cost of homeownership and historical real returns
  • Balanced 401k/IRA contributions to outweigh the effects of accrued loan interest
  • Developed a framework for operating joint finances

By visualizing the dollars behind waiting to invest and losing precious compounding time, easy and guided decisions were made.

Student debt paydown scenarios were presented through the various structures of working for the non-profit children’s hospital compared to working privately and aggressively paying loans upon refinancing to low market rates.

Through collaboration and tough love, Jennifer and Justin feel safe knowing exactly how much money they can spend on current life experiences while maximizing the gift of time, allowing their money to work harder for them than any of their peers.

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