Millennial Finance Expert Doug Boneparth On Tough Money Conversations & “Earning The Right To Invest”
Each week on our new podcast series, The Financial Confessions, we’ll be sitting down with a new guest to talk all things money, getting ahead in your career, and the financial insecurities that make us tick. In this episode, Chelsea spoke with millennial financial advisor Doug Boneparth on talking about money in his relationship, and what he means by “earning the right to invest.” Listen to the full episode here or scroll down for the full video!
Doug: This is the first year that Heather and I will feel that we’ve earned the right to invest. To us, nothing was going to provide us more comfort in our own financial skin than having a very robust– we went for 12 months. 12 months–
Chelsea: Of an emergency fund.
Of living expenses, which, yeah, and to your point, we like our lifestyle. OK? We have big sacrifices that we make, namely vacations, like we’re always tacking our getaways on the heels of business trips and conferences, which for all of you who want to stay married a long time, don’t keep doing that. Actually go get a vacation. But that’s been our big sacrifice. I mean, our last time we really traveled was our honeymoon six years ago.
Yeah. Like really traveled like that. Get out there. Well, Japan is the goal for our 10th anniversary in four years. The kids have to be old enough, too, to actually like stay here.
Oh, you’d go with the kids.
I’m not going with the kids, but I can’t leave. Yeah. 100% not going with the kids.
Fuck those kids.
On that note, I do not want to travel with my kids until they can appreciate what we’re doing.
And I have a 10– we have a 10-month-old now. So it’s going to take– I need Ruby to be Hazel’s age before I can like trust grandma with them for 12 days, because I’m not going to Japan on this epic trip that I’ve been waiting seven years of my life for to have to rush home after four or five days.
We’re going all in on that.
So that’s like, OK, that’s like a vacation goal. But I’m talking more about, hey, are we funding the retirement goal? We’ve worked so hard in the cash management space since leaving New York City for the suburbs. It meant being able to take advantage of low rates and refinance those student loans. There was a time that it was an average 7 and 1/2% interest rate on those Federal Graduate PLUS loans. Now they’re 3 and 1/2.
And instead of seeing a day where they’re all paid off in my 60’s, it’s going to be while my kids are hopefully still under my roof. I can see that. I can feel that a lot more. But that was all cash management. That wasn’t investing.
That was building the cash reserve, and taking bonuses, and good months, or good years, or side deals for influencer or corporate partnership type stuff, and doing that, and hedging bets left and right, knowing that we, again, have a certain lifestyle that we deem comfortable and are in control because we know our numbers.
We sit down and we look at them. And very often, it’s like, we have to pull back on everything. It’s like, OK, let’s accept and acknowledge that this is what it is. Then how does that relate to what it is we can save? What are the goals? And have these deliberate planning conversations that I hope couples that truly love each other and want to accomplish great things together have. And again, cynical Doug would tell you it’s probably not happening. More often it’s not happening than it is.
Conversations around money are often emotional ones. It’s hard to separate these two. I think it’s one of the things that separates good advisors or good professionals. They’re able to help people separate those two, the feelings of money versus like just money. And what you did is you created that safe environment.
And back to what I was saying, in my own relationship, like there are a countless number of times we both have chosen the wrong time to talk about it.
To talk about it.
Yeah. Like don’t do it right after a long day, you know? Or right before– or late at night, when everyone’s tired, or the first thing in the morning on Saturday when you’re just trying to kick it with the kids and watch cartoons.
Yeah. Make it its own thing.
Set a time and place.