What Are Your Top Financial Goals?

Beach hammock at Happy Simple Living blog

Photo: SarahC73

Personal finance is one of my favorite subjects to write about and research, and given the enthusiastic participation  by so many of you in the January Money Diet each year, the topic seems to resonate with many of you as well.

So, I’m curious. What is your #1 priority right now related to money? Is it getting out of debt? Creating a source of passive income so you can work less? Reducing expenses? Saving for retirement? Earning more? Investing? Paying off your mortgage? A vacation on a beach with a comfy hammock?

I’d love to hear from you in the Comments section below about your own financial hopes and dreams, so I can tailor some upcoming posts to what matters most to you. Feel free to share several goals, if you like.

I look forward to hearing from you, and here’s to having control of our money instead of letting our finances control us.


The signature for Eliza Cross

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

What Are Your Top Financial Goals?

  • So I’m a bit late to the post, but we have some radical plans for the rest of the year. In fact, I think my blog post links to this plan! We are hitting our mortgage hard to hopefully pay off the house by the end of the year. We are willing to go down a bit in our cash-on-hand temporarily, with the understanding that we’ll be able to bounce back quite quickly. Without the monthly payment we want to be able to fully fund Roth IRAs every year, give more, and start college funds for our 4 kids. To get there, we’re cutting our food budget significantly and making NO unnecessary purchases. We noticed that after our fixed expenses are paid, we should have more left at the end of each month, so we’re being miserly for the time being. Been 2 weeks and I’m already feeling so much more in control of where the money is going! And I know that a “no” is not no forever- just for the time being. I know I can make do without black boots for a few months… 🙂

  • Mandi

    I actually have a passive money stream. I sell Miche bags.

    I want a full time job so I can contribute to our bills and have more money for fun expenditures.

  • We have two in college and this is our first year being home alone. We’ve lived frugally for so long that we struggle to spend extra on ourselves, but my husband wants to finally jump into some hobbies he’s been itching to start. Our children will graduate undergrad with little to no debt, so our main goal now is saving for retirement.

  • Sara

    Hey Eliza,
    Thank you for your inspiring blog posts and the community you create here.

    I am in my late 20.thies, single, no children. I have only been working full time for the past 2 years, but I already feel the need for a sabbatical of some sort. Either to take 3-4 months off completely and find an meaningful project abroad to support with my time, or to continue at my current job but decrease my working hours and work maybe 80%, to have more time for volunteer work and community involvement locally.

    I would love to read some posts on sabbaticals and the planning and saving process for those, as well as more community-related posts, how can friends or family help each other be more frugal and have fun at the same time.

  • Dear Christine,
    I love this topic! We only have a certain amount of time on this earth, and how can we make the most of our time while still being financially prudent? Thanks for sharing your thoughts, and may you find the perfect life/work balance. 🙂

  • To me, money represents time and as I have aged I look at money differently. How much time am I willing to give up to make money? These days I am leaning more towards having the time instead of having the cash. That is a scary proposition given that everything we are taught in this country is that work and money come first. I would be interested in seeing more about how to balance the value of time against the value of money/security.

  • Brooke

    Paying tuition for 2 more years of private HS and helping my daughter get launched at college! Dropping her off at school each morning reminds me why I keep hustling and pinching pennies…I have just started posting on ‘Teachers Pay Teachers’ as a passive income stream, it’s a great site and lets me sell materials that I would be making for my classroom anyway!

    • Thanks for sharing your goals, Brooke. I appreciate your reflection that hustling and pinching pennies can pay big rewards – in your case, helping provide your daughter with a great education. It’s great that you’ve found a passive income stream, too!

  • Cara

    We’re in our mid-thirties with two young kids. A lot of our monthly income is saved for retirement and extra payments on our mortgage. We have a goal to save for our kids’ educations, but that is funded mostly by end of year bonuses and other unexpected income.

    If I had to narrow our goals to just one it would be to live below our means so that we have extra to save and extra to give away.

    • Dear Cara,
      My heart melted when I read that you want to live frugally so you have “extra to save and extra to give away.” I love your priorities! Here’s to your success in accomplishing all that you want.

  • We are about 8 years off from retirement, and pay as much money as we can into our mortgage. We should have it paid off in five years, and then we will continue to pay that money into a savings account so that we can do some upgrading to the house ready for retirement with a little nest egg to boot! My kids live overseas so I visit them every second year. The best idea has been for us to meet somewhere halfway and then have a backpacking holiday! Last year we did Malaysia. Next year it is Spain and Portugal.

    • Gillian,
      What I like about your strategy is that you’re paying down your mortgage but you’ve also figured out a way to travel overseas and have vacations with your kids. Hurray! Thanks for your inspiring comment.

  • Lyn

    I would love to pay off our home equity loan – a loan that has enabled us to make some wonderful upgrades to our house inside and out, but it feels like a burden nonetheless. With a low interest rate, it does not feel like a big deal, but if we did not have that monthly payment, we could do so much for our kids!

    • Thanks for sharing this important goal, Lyn. It’s always so satisfying to get those debts paid off, and I hope you’re able to make good progress and lose that monthly payment soon.

  • Judy Schlipp

    Hi, Eliza
    We are trying to live more simply (and smaller) and anticipating a move to a farm – maybe in about a year – where we will launch a ministry. My husband will be leaving his traditional job after 30 years, and we will be depending on our savings + donations; so it will be a big adjustment. I’m trying to scrimp wherever possible to save money now and get accustomed to a more frugal lifestyle for later. We also have a 20-yr-old daughter and trying to get frugality to rub off on her as well.

    Thank you!

    • Dear Judy,
      How exciting! You and your husband have some exciting transitions ahead, and it’s great that you’re already anticipating some of the financial shifts. Do you read Mother Earth News magazine? You probably do, but it’s one of my favorite sources for practical sustainable living advice and they run a lot of small farm-related articles. Good luck and let us know how it goes!

  • rzg123

    I would love to learn more about creating passive income streams, and making my money work for me instead of me working for my money! Thanks so much.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>