DiscoverAfford Anything
Afford Anything
Claim Ownership

Afford Anything

Author: Paula Pant

Subscribed: 10,108Played: 244,220
Share

Description

You can afford anything, but not everything. We make daily decisions about how to spend money, time, energy, focus and attention – and ultimately, our life. Every decision is a trade-off against another choice.

But how deeply do we contemplate these choices? Are we settling for the default mode? Or are we ruthlessly optimizing around a deliberate life?

Host Paula Pant interviews a diverse array of entrepreneurs, early retirees, millionaires, investors, artists, adventurers, scientists, psychologists, productivity experts, world travelers and regular people, exploring the tough work of living a truly excellent life.

Want to learn more? Download our free book, Escape, at http://affordanything.com/escape
236 Episodes
Reverse
#236: Kristy Shen and Bryce Leung achieved financial independence four years ago at age 31 and 32. They saved $1 million and live on $40,000 per year while traveling the world. Kristy and Bryce don’t worry about running out of money, they created new identities after quitting their jobs, and their community has quadrupled in size. Here’s how they achieved this lifestyle. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode236
#235: Anna has made the leap to self-employment … but what’s next? She lives in the Bay Area and she’s trying to choose between five business ideas; she needs to make enough money to stay in her high-cost area. Doug recently won $9,000 from an online poker side gig and is wondering how best to use the funds: pay off high-interest student loan debt, or keep it to increase his poker earning potential? Alex and his partner want to househack a single-family property with a mother-in-law suit. What should they consider as far as zoning goes? Darrell is on track to retire in two years at age 55 and wants to know what he should do with his primary residence. Should he rent it out? Or should he sell it and use the profit to invest in rental properties? Or use the profit to buy his retirement home? Mara is curious about 1031 exchanges. She has equity in a rental property that she’d like to harvest, but she wants more information before making the move. Michael and his wife are struggling with competing goals. They want to invest in real estate, but they also want to move into an apartment closer to work to reduce their long commutes. Should they sell their home and invest the equity into a rental property, or should they take a HELOC on their home instead? For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode235
#234: We review 26 quick, easy actions that improve your financial life, plus 10 new added bonus ideas that came directly from our community. We issue a challenge for you to tackle one action per week for the first 26 weeks (six months) of the year, so you’ll build stronger financial health by summertime. Download the free book that accompanies this episode at http://affordanything.com/2020kickoff and join us in the 2020 One Tweak a Week challenge!
#233: Deepak is considering downsizing his family’s home, but wants to know if the savings are worth the transaction costs he’ll have to pay. Anonymous and her husband hold $900,000 worth of privately-owned company stock. How should they plan for handling this money? Shelby is 25 years old and works for a company that awarded her restricted stock units. What should she do with these? Additionally, she traded in a 2013 Prius for a 2018 Subaru, for which she now owes $19,000. Should she sell it for a used vehicle or stick it out? Katelyn is interested in learning more about annuities. What should she know in order to make an informed decision? Max FI and his wife want to retire in 12 years. How should they invest to achieve this? Anonymous’s former employer offered a Roth and Traditional 401k, and his new employer only offers a Traditional option. How should he rollover his former Roth 401k? For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode233
#232: Anthony ONeal is the bestselling author of Debt-Free Degree, a book that teaches parents how to help their children graduate from college without student loans. He’s part of the Dave Ramsey Solutions team, which teaches people how to pay off and avoid debt, and he's the co-author of Graduate Survival Guide, along with Rachel Cruze. Anthony joins us on this episode to share tips and hacks to help you save on tuition and find money for college. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode232
#231: Avie needs to decide between two options: paying off a rental property, or funding a retirement account. Which should she choose? Lisa wants to know: when should you fund an HSA account? Sofia’s parents have lived with her for the past few years, but Sofia’s job is relocating her out-of-state. How can she transition her home to a rental for her parents? Jim is a saver and his wife is a spender. How can he interest her in frugality? Candice wants to know my thoughts about online real estate investment crowdfunding platforms. Good idea or bad idea? Kristen has a mortgage on her primary residence and a rental property. They have similar interest rates. Which should she pay off first? I tackle these questions on today’s episode. Enjoy! For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/epidode231 
#230: Dr. Susan David, a psychologist on the faculty at Harvard Medical School, joins us to talk about emotional agility. Dr. David has researched emotional agility for around 20 years. A few years ago, she summarized her work on this concept for the Harvard Business Review. Her article became one of the most popular articles of the year, and the publishers heralded it as the Management Idea of the Year. Dr. David gave a TED talk on emotional agility, which went viral, gaining more than a million views. She then published a book called Emotional Agility which became a #1 Wall Street Journal Best Seller. The concept of emotional agility won the Thinkers50 Breakthrough Idea Award. She’s provided consulting around this concept with clients that include the United Nations, the World Economic Forum, the NASDAQ, Google, and Microsoft. She joins us today to explain how to define emotional agility, how to develop it in your life, and how it applies to any goal that you want to pursue - whether that’s financial independence, early retirement, career advancement, or greater success in your health and your relationships. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode230
#229: Normally, we’re a once-a-week podcast, with episodes airing every Monday. But on the first Friday of every month, we have a First Friday bonus episode! Helen discovered that her mother fraudulently opened credit card accounts in her name. Eek! How can she protect herself? What will happen to these accounts once her mother passes away? Amelia and her husband cannot fire their financial advisor. How can they minimize the damage and maximize the benefit they receive from him in the meantime? Anonymous asks if she should live off an inheritance and max out her 401k contributions during her first year of working full-time. She wants to reduce her taxable income. Is this a good idea? A different anonymous caller read a USA Today article claiming that “index funds are in a bubble.” How true is this? How can index funds be in a bubble? Shawn is self-employed. He invests in a Solo 401k that features both a Roth and Traditional component. How should he manage this account? Another anonymous listener is thinking about downshifting to part-time work. He holds around $278,000 in home equity. How can he capitalize on this? Former financial planner Joe Saul-Sehy and I answer these questions on today’s episode. Enjoy! For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode229
#228: In November 2005, when Noah Kagan was 24, he was hired as Employee #30 at Facebook. His stock options would have been worth $170 million if he’d cashed out in 2014, he says. But he didn’t see a dime. In June 2006, merely 9 months after he started working at Facebook, Noah got fired. Instead of making $170 million, he made zero. He fell into a deep depression for a year. Then he rescued himself by becoming a serial entrepreneur. He tried his hand at a lot of things -- including developing Facebook games, selling discount cards, creating a payment processor in the gaming space -- but he’s best known for his two most successful companies. In 2010 he started a company, AppSumo, which offers discounts on small business software. By 2012, AppSumo was grossing $4 million per year in revenue, with annual net profits of $500,000. Yet Noah wasn’t fulfilled. He pivoted. In 2015 he started a sister company, Sumo.com, which develops marketing tools for websites and online businesses. In today’s episode, Noah and I discuss reflections on business, money and life. Enjoy! For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode228
#227: Lien is taking a year off of work to live the van life with her husband. She wants to know how she can make the most of this sabbatical to figure out how to turn her less-than-inspiring career into a lifestyle that she loves. Lien called in again to say that she wants to start a new business and a family when she returns from her gap year. Her former job offered excellent health benefits and maternity leave, but she doesn’t really want to go back. What should she do? Eddie wants to build his real estate portfolio. How should he approach downpayments - put down more to net more profit, or put down less to acquire more properties? Wilson is wondering if it’s a good idea to partner with a friend on real estate ventures. What are the downsides? Wilson also wants to know about real estate business expenses, and the pros and cons of short-term rentals vs. long-term rentals. Sean has an inconsistent employment history and is struggling to find a lender that will give him a mortgage. He wants to know if there are any other ways he can get a mortgage for a 4-plex? An anonymous listener is thinking about taking the leap into real estate investing and wants to know how to overcome the fear they have about it. Also, should they put all of their savings towards real estate? Anonymous is also wondering: how do you calculate net worth when you’re married? For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode227
#226: Feeling time-crunched? Today’s episode is for you. Today’s episode features productivity expert John Zeratsky, who shares specific, action-packed time management strategies, with a focus on email management. If the term inbox zero sounds laughable, these strategies are up your alley. John’s interest in productivity began one winter morning in 2008, when he realized that the past few months had been an eerie blur. He realized that time was slipping away. He knew he needed to figure out a better way to manage his time - and his life. He started deep-diving into time management strategies and eventually co-authored a book, Make Time. If you want to learn how to redesign your daily schedule, you’ll enjoy this episode. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode226
#225: Lauren is 26 and earns $48,000 per year after taxes. She saves $12,000 annually in retirement accounts, and an additional $18,000 per year for a downpayment on a home. She wants to buy a home in the next five years. Where should she keep her savings in the meantime? Sawyer has a five-year financial independence plan. She owns two high-end condos in a NYC suburb. She lives in one unit and rents the other, but she’s bothered by the fact that she’s forgoing collecting rent on her home unit. Should she move? Katie’s husband is going to grad school and they want to pull money out of a Vanguard account to fund his tuition. Should they do this? Cassie is in the process of finalizing a divorce. She and her daughter will receive between $80,000 - $116,000. Should they use the funds to buy a home with a 20 percent down payment or pay off their $30,000 debt? Andy is curious: should you re-adjust the 4 percent withdrawal rule if your investment portfolio grows? Joe wants to become self-employed but is concerned about health insurance. What are some affordable options? Laura is ready to retire. She’s also engaged, and her fiance wants to keep working. Should they file taxes jointly or separately? Doug is interested in learning more about equity sharing programs. Are these safe investments? Tania wants to know: can you open and fund a Roth IRA if your only source of income is alimony? Brian took out a 401k loan to buy a car. He regrets his decision. Should he take out a personal loan to pay back the 401k loan? Former financial planner Joe Saul-Sehy and I answer these questions in today’s episode. Enjoy! For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode225
#224: Scott Young, author of Wall Street Journal best-selling book Ultralearning, talks about the 9 principles of Ultralearning, which can help you learn new skills, reinvent yourself, stay relevant, and adapt to whatever life throws at you. If you think you know the best way to learn something, think again. This book will challenge your assumptions. Whether you want to develop hard skills to become more valuable at your job, soft skills for your journey to self-improvement, or you want to honor your love for learning, these 9 principles will help you become more effective at developing new skills. If you enjoyed my interviews with James Clear or Cal Newport, you’ll enjoy this one. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode224 
#223: Elizabeth is curious to know: what does a good net worth breakdown look like? Is it appropriate to have a lot of your net worth tied up in real estate? Marie wants to start her own business, but she’s living paycheck-to-paycheck. Is incurring debt her only option to make this dream a reality? Bria wants to take a second mini-retirement and has a good chunk of money saved up. She wants to come back to the workforce with a cash cushion. What should she do with her money while traveling? Connor is facing a dilemma. Is he correct in not prioritizing 401k contributions given that his employer doesn’t offer a match, combined with his goal for financial independence? Is his strategy of using his savings for real estate investing better? Caroline is wondering: should she aggressively pay off her home and her rental properties, or use her excess savings to fund a brokerage account? Anonymous is relocating from Southern California to Florida. She wants to know if she should rent an apartment and buy a rental property, or buy a primary residence with the $150,000 she has saved. Today’s episode is full of exploring and weighing tradeoffs. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode223
#222: Michael Robinson and his wife, Ellen, achieved financial independence at age 33. They ‘retired’ (they still enjoy working) three years later at age 36 on two five-figure incomes. Today, Michael and Ellen are raising their two children to be bilingual by slow traveling throughout Latin America. Michael and Ellen blog about their FIRE adventures at uncommondream.com. They believe that “the Uncommon Dream is the dream pursued – the dream met with planning, action, and sacrifice. With just a dream and those three tools, you can accomplish almost anything.” Today, Michael joins us on the show to talk about the seven ways that he and Ellen escaped the rat race and achieved FI at 33. If you enjoy hearing stories and case studies from people in this community who have reached FI, then you’ll love this interview. For the full show notes, go here: https://affordanything.com/episode222
#221: Vanessa is curious about Fidelity and Vanguard. She asks: what are your thoughts on the no-fee Fidelity index funds? What are your opinions on Vanguard’s financial advisors? Andy wants to know: should my wife and I continue maxing out our traditional 401k and backdoor Roth IRA, or should we start contributing to the Roth 401k my employer offers? Kyle is wondering - how can he minimize his taxes when he earns $450,000/year? Rob is self-employed and has been maxing out a Roth IRA, but recently discovered that he can open a self-employed IRA. Should he move his Roth IRA money over, or just open a new account and fund it from scratch? Christina is torn. Her and her husband have been saving to buy a house, but because they live in New York, their savings won’t go very far. Is it a good idea for them to continue renting, despite their dreams? Mercedes is wondering how REITs compare to stocks and owning actual real estate. Additionally, she’d like to know more about Forex trading. Craig has an employee stock purchase plan (ESPP). Since these tend to be risky, he’s wondering: is he better off moving the $25,000 that he puts towards the ESPP into mutual funds? Or is an ESPP a good way to diversify his funds? Myself and former financial planner, Joe Saul-Sehy, answer these questions in today’s episode. Enjoy! For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode221
#220: In a hectic world, stillness is the key to a calm, enjoyable life. That idea comes from Ryan Holiday, author of Stillness is The Key. Stillness is finding flow, staying present, and being impervious to the pressures of the outside world. It doesn’t mean removing yourself from society and sitting in a forest; to the contrary, many CEOs and world leaders have practiced remarkable stillness during times of crisis. Bestselling author Ryan Holiday discusses actionable tips on how to practice the art of stillness, as well as its applications to the pursuit of financial independence or any massive goal. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode220
#219: Stella is working toward FIRE and wants to know: how can she create passive income in her retirement years? Is a portfolio with stocks and bonds enough, or should she invest in real estate? Travis and his wife are also on the FIRE path, and are comparing their investment options. Travis is concerned about the inefficiency of reinvesting returns in real estate. How can you factor this into your decision when buying a property? Stephanie and her husband are also interested in FIRE (hooray!) and they have $20,000 to invest. How can they best use this money to help them FIRE sooner? Cade, a 24-year-old listener, wants to FIRE by age 30 (we’re on a roll!). He’s saving $4,000/month and wants to know how to invest these savings. Anonymous and their partner are taking a mini-retirement and have questions surrounding the logistics of healthcare. What options should they consider? On a different note, Amanda works in academia. After listening to Episode 12, she’s looking for tips on managing long-term, complex collaborative projects now that she’s in a leadership position. Steve’s question brings us to the topic of building an online business and social media following. Should he have one brand for all of his interests, or divide these interests into separate channels? I tackle these questions in today’s episode of the show. Enjoy! For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode219
#218: Kristen Berman is co-founder of Irrational Labs, a behavioral product design company, along with Dan Ariely. She has a fascinating job that involves looking into why people behave the way they do with their money, and discovering the easiest solution to help them create more positive financial behavior. In short, she’s a proponent of redesigning the current financial system to make saving automatic and easy, and that’s part of what we discuss in this episode. If creating better financial habits has been a challenge for you, or if you have trouble framing spending as a positive thing, rather than a loss, then Kristen has awesome advice for you. Here are some key takeaways from the interview: 1. Habits are overrated - one-time decisions are more effective. 2. Simplify decision-making by giving yourself a rule-of-thumb to follow. 3. Pre-commit to your financial goals. 4. Measure process versus outcome. 5. Use accountability partners to reach your goals. 6. The Three Bs - Behavior, Barriers, and Benefits. For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode218
#217: It’s September! If you’ve been listening to the show for the past few months, then you know that I’m on what I’ve dubbed my September Sabbatical, in which I’m taking a break from podcast production and traveling the globe. In light of that, we’re digging through the archives and airing some of my favorite interviews on the show, in between airing interviews I’ve done on other podcasts. Earlier this year, Cody and Justin from The FI Show interviewed me and asked some excellent questions about my journey to financial independence, entrepreneurship and passion, and minding the gap between your income and expenses. We talk about the importance of side hustling and how to create a well-paying job from your skills. We touch on real estate and why I chose this strategy to reach FI. We also discuss the bone I have to pick with the financial independence movement. Finally, we chat about what financial independence is really about, because it’s not about sipping margaritas on a beach. It’s about having the freedom to use your time in whatever way you want. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Thank you to Cody and Justin for giving us permission to air this interview. P.S. - Starting with the next episode, we’ll return to our usual routine of brand new interviews and Ask Paula episodes. :) For more information, visit the show notes at https://affordanything.com/episode217
loading
Comments (21)

Charlie Bradley

The first half is just them bantering and if you're interested in the personal life of the interviewee listen on, the second half gets down to the nitty-gritty and is very information-rich with a great summary that makes Paula's work some of my favorite podcasts.

Nov 21st
Reply (1)

Charlie Bradley

just so you all know, Starbucks is an incredibly hard job that would leave you drained. it is not a fun easy side gigs to get health insurance.

Oct 28th
Reply

Charlie Bradley

oh my God, like, you know? I can't, like, listen to this episode dash though I wanted to, you know? because, like, Jay, is like, just so f****** inane!!! ug!!

Oct 28th
Reply

Aaron Webb

never heard of some of the things in this episode before, thanks

Oct 10th
Reply

Billie Archuleta

I really responded to this episode. My path is super similar to Evelyn's. Thank you for this episode.

Sep 15th
Reply

Charlie Hilsabeck

mk.i. m

Sep 10th
Reply

AMama Lala

what was the link to their manefesto site? episode 11

Jul 20th
Reply

The Queen Next Door

The takeaways are always golden. Paula breaks it down so perfectly.

Jul 5th
Reply

Jamie Hanks

this show is life changing! must listen to this advice!

May 8th
Reply

fitzroy harvey

love it! I get so pumped when I listen to you.

Apr 28th
Reply

Gerardo Crolla

Hi Paula! interesting question on which way to invest with funds and rentals. I have to say that in my opinion and journey to FIRE, if you are going to leverage your money then it's wise to invest in rentals first as this will compound vthe returns much better than unleveraged stocks!!

Mar 28th
Reply

Ajit Nafade

Thanks for a very very informative episode.

Feb 3rd
Reply

jinx

Amen to the echo chamber. Love your show.

Dec 17th
Reply

LucilleF

I enjoy Size Orman. I've noticed that when she's talking positively about investing she uses impossibly high interest rates (12%) but now that she's casting a negative light she's using just 4%.

Nov 24th
Reply

Maxwell Sharpe

I really enjoyed this episode it was very informative.

Oct 2nd
Reply

Christie Brown

On the subject of high deductibles- I completely agree with the idea that you will go to the doctor less. I triple guessed myself on doctors visits when my deductible was $50. I also had a mouth full of cavities that were going to cost me about 5000, I did not fix them for another 3 years when I became an intern and took a major salary cut that made me eligible for Medicare!

Aug 23rd
Reply

Joanna B

The Vicki Robin interview is one of favorite interviews of all time, full stop. So much wisdom packed in about personal growth, lifelong learning, and the second part of life. Thank you!

Apr 8th
Reply

Melissa

This podcast drives me to become financially free. Great podcast!

Dec 15th
Reply

David Johnson

I love this podcast and listened to it every day during my work commute until I heard them all! My life's focus and goals have adjusted for the better. Thanks Paula!

Oct 26th
Reply

NASIM BIN JASIM

Great episode

Sep 19th
Reply
loading
Download from Google Play
Download from App Store