I’ve been seeing a financial advisor, of late, mostly because my parents wanted us all to get our estate planning sorted out while they did theirs, but it’s also good timing: they’re going to help me work out whether I can afford to buy a house. Among other things.
It’s interesting. And a little confronting. I’ve had to fill out all these forms determining how much money I spend on different things, and how much I want to be able to spend. From there, there’s also questions of what happens if I’m permanently disabled, or if I die, or if I’m temporarily disabled and there are major medical bills, or, or, or… It goes on and on and on. I don’t think anyone really wants to think about these things, but it’s worthwhile. And interesting, if in a slightly morbid way.
Talking about what happens if I die is especially strange. My first instinct is ‘well, I’ll be dead, why should I care?’, but it’s more complicated than that: people I care about are involved, and it would impact them a lot. For me, the biggest issue is, I think, that my death doesn’t cause financial hardship to anyone I care about. Beyond that… well.
Numbers scare me a little. I try and keep track of what I spend, but things always add up in ways I haven’t quite anticipated. I spent more than I ought to… but I like to think I’m getting better about it. I definitely don’t live beyond my means, though, and that’s comforting: I can do better, but I’m not in a hole. I’m not good with strict budgets that say I can spend x amount on y thing; I feel limited by them. Instead, I’m trying to focus on bigger picture: save x amount, put less than y amount on the credit card each month. Pay off the balance. If I end up buying a house, I know it’ll be a lot more important to absolutely stuck to this kind of thing, though, so I’m trying to get into the habit of sticking with it now.
Not that I want to end up having to change my entire lifestyle in order to buy a house – I want to buy, but I don’t want to do it if it means giving up my lifestyle. That’s a big part of why I’ve been having to try and work out all the expenses, so that the financial advisor and I can model it.
It would all become much, much easier if I’d just win the lottery or something, though.
Which… would take entering the lottery.
Which isn’t going to happen.