Fear grips the kingdom. The King himself has issued a decree that taxes will be raised in order to cover the costs of a new recession. Everyone will have less money to live on, and the economy is expected to come to a standstill. Both rich and poor are frantically selling their possessions. Others are packing up and leaving the kingdom all together, as they can no longer afford the cost of living.
You too, are among them. Your desperately walk through a crowded marketplace, trying to get a sense of what to do. Just then you feel a strong presence behind you. You turn and glance at a man who has just passed you. His demeanor is that of a man without fear.
You watch as this man casually walks through the market, picking up the food he needs. You begin to follow the man. You’re completely astonished at how casually he walks. The entire kingdom is gripped by FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt) Everyone except for this man.
As he walks through the market he sees a young pair asking for bread to spare. He smiles and reaches into his coin pouch and pulls out a week’s’ worth of wages and happily gives it to the children. You are in complete disbelief, how could a man, in the midst of recession, have extra money to give?
As the man rounds the corner you get a glance at his chest plate. You immediately recognize the kingdoms crest embossed into the metal. You see a sword handle sticking out of a very expensive belt. You are envious of this man. This man, is survivor, this man is a warrior who will defend other during a time of financial crisis, this man, is a knight.
The Knight is the Financial Warrior who values stability and safety above all things. He is able to live without fear because he has organized his finances in order to achieve maximum stability. He owns his own castle, his own assets, and he even prepares for his retirement years before his time.
In order to ascend into Financial Knighthood, a knight first must do the following steps.
1. Take the Knight’s Vow
One must first make a verbal and mental oath to the Knight’s Investment Code. For the path to Knighthood is long and fraught with adversity. Many squires get a small taste of knighthood, only to be tempted by treasure and adventure, and abandon the path. Only to find themselves in financial ruin, wishing they had stayed on the path.
2. Stop Spending Money
For a knight, the road to stability will be a challenge. It will require you to make great sacrifice. Vanity spending such as vacations, and dinner dates will need to be removed from your budget. There will come a time in a Knight’s journey where he or she will be able to enjoy the finer pleasure of life, but that time will come after knighthood has been full achieved.
3. Begin the Search for your Castle- For This We’ll Defend
This is one of the more fun parts of being a knight. This step involves dreaming big and planning on what type of home you would like to obtain. This step involves deciding how much of a mortgage you can afford (mortgage calculator insert) You will also decide which type of kingdom you would like to be a part of. Are you seeking a home with an excellent school district, or is acreage more important to you?
4. Pay off all Debt BEFORE buying your Castle
There is no point in trying to defend a castle when you allow enemies to set up camp INSIDE of your castle. No matter how small or non threatening they may be, it’s foolish to allow evil to have a home inside your castle. This is also true of debt. No matter it’s size, debt will ALWAYS threaten your castle. And with debts like student loans and credit card debt, your castle can be seized to help pay back those debts. So no matter how tempting it might be, you must NEVER buy a house while you are still in debt. Debt will always chip away at your castle walls and be a constant drain on your goal of paying off your castle early.
5. Start Saving for Retirement
A recent survey completed by GoBankingRates.com discovered that over half of Americans have only $10,000 saved for retirement. The survey also found that 1 and 3 have nothing saved for retirement. At the heart of the Knight’s Path is the goal of having a well funded retirement account in your name. You don’t want to be looking for a job while your in your 60’s with poor health.
Being a Knight will provide you with a unique opportunity to maximize your retirement savings. You will become a debt free home owner faster than any other warrior class on this site. And this will allow you to maximize an employer sponsored 401k or Roth IRA. Not only that, but you will have time on your side as well. See the example below.
35-year-old 401(k) participant.
Max’s out 401k at $18,500 every year
Increases contributions to $24,500 per year once turning 50.
Based on 7% annualized returns, these maxed-out 401(k) contributions could be worth roughly
Financial Stability could be yours
Choosing the Knight’s path is not for the faint of heart. You will be sacrificing time, energy, and money in order to build your kingdom. You will not be in position to be as social or traveled as the other classes, and sometimes Knighthood can be a downright lonely path. Your friends might abandon you due to the fact you no longer spend money going out, your family may resent you because you no longer give them money to fund their bad habits. The path of Knighthood may even put you at odds with your partner or spouse. Either way Knighthood is all about commitment. A commitment to your future castle and all the stability it will bring. For there is no greater feeling than that of being a Debt Free Lord of your own Castle. To never again have to worry about money again. And for many, that feeling, is the greatest feeling there ever is.