It’s Per$onal #108 – Age 31, Clifton, NJ

It’s Per$onal is an anonymous blog series designed to shed light on the intricate details of the personal finances and lifestyles of women.


What’s your name?

Emily – see Emily on Instagram!


How old are you?



Where do you live? City and State (or Country if outside the U.S.)

Clifton, NJ


Do you like where you currently live? Why or why not?

Our town is one of the bigger towns in the area. We’re 30 mins from the city but still have the suburb feel. It’s a great area for families, but expensive. Taxes are high and houses are on top of each other it feels.


What is your highest level of education?



Are you single / in a relationship / married?

Married for almost 3 years


If you are in a relationship / married, do you and your partner have joint or separate finances?


Do you have any children / dependents?

No – not yet!


Do you have any pets?

Yes, a dog named Lena


Do you find it easy or hard to make friends?

Very hard. I moved about 30/40 mins away from my childhood home. I haven’t really made any friends in my new area since the move. Especially since the pandemic it’s hard to find activities to even meet people.


Do you have any hobbies? Please explain.

I enjoy reading, I probably read about 30 mins each day. I of course love going for long walks with my dog!


Has Covid-19 impacted you financially in any way?

No, thankfully.


About how much do you spend on groceries each week?

$75 for me and my husband


What is your total monthly rent / mortgage for your household?



What is your current occupation? If not currently employed, please say “Not Employed”

Retirement plan consultant


If you are currently employed, do you like your job? Why or why not?

Yes! I’m in a dual role where I have my own clients and also train our new hires and entry level positions. I get so much satisfaction from helping other people grow their skills and learn. I work for a large national firm so there are always opportunities to support.


What is your yearly salary (or approximate yearly compensation) for your current occupation?

$70,000 and typically an end of year bonus of about $2,000


Do you have a second job or side hustle? If Yes, please explain.



If you have a second job or side hustle, about how much money do you make monthly from your second job / side hustle?



Have you ever been promoted at work? Please elaborate if so.

Yes, I was promoted last year when the person who did all of the trainings at my job left the company. I took over their role.


Have you ever negotiated your salary?

No, I was going to this year actually. But my boss called me a few days before I planned on bringing up all of my accomplishments and I received a raise of more than I would have asked for.


Are you debt-free?



If you are debt free, how much debt have you paid off and how long did it take you to pay it all off?



If you do have debt, what kinds of debt (i.e. credit cards, student loans, car) and how much debt do you have?

I luckily never had student loans (thank you mom & dad). So I just have my mortgage to pay for now and my husband’s car lease payments which have about $3,500 left to pay off.


Are you currently investing for retirement?



If yes, about how much do you have invested for retirement?

My 401k is about $30,000, I have about $90,000 invested with my financial advisor. I also contribute to a Roth IRA every year which currently has about $15,000.


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What’s been your favorite purchase of 2022 so far?

I have not made any big purchases yet this year! So my favorite small purchase is something cute my husband did together. For a date night we did a paint your own pottery which was very fun and worth the money!


What’s one piece of advice you’d give to your younger self? (Doesn’t have to be money-related)

Stop giving a shit whatever anybody around you is doing. Nobody knows more nor better than you do about what makes you happy.


What are your money goals, if any?

I just want to feel comfortable! I don’t think it needs to be a certain amount in my bank account. I hate making quantitative goals and try to focus on quality more.


What is your #1 financial concern right now?

Having enough money to start a family with my husband.


What financial victory/success are you most proud of?

I am incredibly glad I started investing in my early 20s. I have the out of sight out of mind attitude and only check my accounts at year end. My financial advisor handles the nitty gritty for me.


What makes you imperfect?

I have had some tough experiences in life relationship wise and I think those have made me second guess a lot of my decisions in life overall. But they have all been my decisions so I have to accept that this is the path I have directed myself towards. And take everything that comes with that!


It’s Per$onal is an anonymous blog series designed to shed light on the intricate details of the personal finances and lifestyles of women.


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About Taylor

A few years after graduating college, Taylor made it her mission to become debt free. After paying off all $60k of debt, she began to blog about what she's really passionate about: personal development. Nowadays, Taylor blogs about the topics of Mindset, Money, Health, and Career for women.

"It's Per$onal" is a super popular and anonymous blog series about the personal lives and finances of women all over the world. Check it out!

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