How to Become a Millionaire in Your 30’s – Interview 4 (Anonymous from the Midwest)

August 30, 2018

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Wouldn't it be such an amazing accomplishment to become a millionaire before the age of 40?

One of the listeners of the Marriage, Kids and Money Podcast is marching toward that 7-figure status and she wants to share how she's getting there.

As I've mentioned in the past, some of our young millionaires prefer to stay anonymous so they feel comfortable sharing ALL of the juicy details to help you win.

Here's Mrs. Anonymous from the Midwest to share how she's helping her family grow wealth and reach millionaire status!

The Details

How old are you? If you have a family, tell us about them and their ages.

I’m 38 years old and I’m married with two children, ages 3 and 5.

What part of the country do you live in? Do you own your home or rent?

I live in the Midwest and own a 1950s ranch in the suburbs that my husband and I purchased four years ago.

What is your current net worth? And what is it made up of?

My net worth is hovering around $875,000.

We have about $500k in tax deferred vehicles including 401(k)s for my husband and I at work, and an IRA from my previous employer.

We also each have Roth IRAs that total about $135k. We have $30k in a brokerage account, $40k in cash and about another $35k in 529s and UTMAs for our children.

To round things out, we have about $135k in equity in our primary residence.

A Young Woman Looking at the Sky Brushing her hair

The Process

What are your current sources of income?

My husband and I are both W-2 employees. I’m in the communications field and my husband works in operations.

What has been the single best thing you’ve done to increase your income up until this point?

My strategy to increase my income over the years has been to be willing and good at a job other people don’t have the skills to do, or don’t want to do.

I started my career as a communication generalist, which was a great way to learn the field. Through the years though, I was able to develop a niche in executive communications. My writing is a valuable skill to the executive I serve, and I think I do a pretty good job at capturing his voice which takes a special knack.

While I really enjoy my work, it seems to be a job most people don’t want to do because it’s a fair amount of pressure. This combination of circumstances has helped me increase my income.

What ways do you invest your money?

A few years ago, I had never heard of an index fund. As I became increasingly interested and educated in personal finance and financial independence, I quickly learned that my investment strategy was not the most effective and that I was paying too many fees. I have made great strides since then in shifting to index fund investing.

Did you receive an inheritance or windfall of some kind during your life so far?

An inheritance or windfall has not been part of my financial story. I have had a wonderful financial gift though. My parents paid for my college education and my husband’s parents paid for his degree as well. This set us up very nicely to begin our lives on solid financial footing directly out of college.

I’m eternally grateful for that privilege we both had, and therefore, I’m very passionate about saving for higher education costs for our children. If they go a different path, that’s just fine; we could then pass the funds along to their children.

Related PostWhy More Parents are Getting 529 College Savings Accounts

What debts do you have (if any)? If so, what are they? Which have you paid off?

My only debt is a 20-year mortgage on my primary residence. The popular debate on investing vs. paying off a mortgage is something I certainly pay attention to, and I appreciate the merits of both approaches. So for now, I’m doing both in moderation: paying some extra on the house to knock it out ahead of schedule while also attempting to invest as much as possible.

How do you track your net worth?

I track my net worth with a simple spreadsheet each quarter. I learned this habit from the financial independence community and put it into practice about two years ago.

(Andy here … for you spreadsheeters out there, check out Tiller as a way to track your net worth through automation. A great time saver!)

Do you budget your money monthly?

For many years, I automated savings each month and then spent what was left wisely. If I noticed I was accumulating extra over time, I would move it to savings.

That worked very well for me as a young, single person. But as my life got more complex with a spouse, a home, kids, day care bills, college savings and the like, my husband and I started using a shared monthly budgeting tool on our smart phones.

I think it helps us be very intentional with our money and gives us a better picture of where all of our dollars are at any time.

What is your favorite fintech tool that helps you grow your wealth?

Not a fintech tool per se, but the technology that has helped me grow my wealth the most has been podcasts. I listen to numerous financial podcasts (of course Marriage, Kids and Money is a favorite!) and I learn so much useful information for growing my wealth.

Also, listening to this type of content on a daily basis while commuting, exercising, cooking or cleaning really keeps my mindset in the right place. The daily inspiration keeps me motivated.

Like listening instead of reading? Check out my net worth boosting podcast!

Millionaire in the Making

How do you plan to become a young millionaire?

My hope is to become a millionaire by age 40. In full disclosure, my husband will be 44 at that time since he is four years older. I think that still makes us young millionaires, right!?

The plan to reach the double comma club is to maintain a high savings rate and steadily invest each month. A boring but tested approach!

Why is it important for you to build up your wealth?

I’m motivated to become financially independent because I want more options, more freedom and less stress. I love like my career field, but it is demanding on my time and it comes with a lot of responsibility and pressure.

My husband’s career is also demanding on his time and comes with evening and weekend hours. Building our wealth shifts some power and choice back into our court. For now, our careers work for us, but we like the idea of having more options and more freedom in our lives for whatever happens in the future.

What is one financial mistake you’ve made along your young millionaire journey?

My financial story is great proof that you can make many non-optimal money decisions on your financial journey and still win.

  • I’ve leased a car. I’ve bought a new car.
  • I bought a house that needs too much TLC.
  • I didn’t max out my 401(k) when I probably could’ve afforded to do so.
  • I’ve likely paid thousands in financial advisor fees and mutual fund fees through the years.
  • I waited far too long to start a brokerage account because I simply didn’t know what to do with my mid-term savings.

Luckily though, I made enough good decisions to still have a solid foundation, and then I lived and I learned. If you have a growth mindset, you can continue to gain knowledge over time and make decisions that put you on a great path.

Related PostHow to Leave Your Investment Broker in 5 Simple Steps

What book has been influential to you on your financial journey?

Here’s an honest answer for you…

Unfortunately, I picked up far too many mainstream finance books early in my life that resulted in me learning and following mainstream financial advice. What has been most influential to me has been finding the financial independence community through blogs and podcasts.

It's been an absolute game changer and what I had always been looking for.

What is one financial hack that has helped you that you think most people don’t know about?

I have no-gifting agreements with my husband, my siblings and my friends. It’s huge. Rather than stressing over gift ideas surrounding special occasions, the focus shifts to meaningful time together. We all save a bundle in the process and accumulate less things.

Of course, if I find something special for someone I love, I feel free to surprise them with a gift. The beauty is that it’s not expected.

Where do you find the most joy in your life?

I REALLY love some of the simple things in life: a hot cup of coffee in the morning, a mid-afternoon nap, a bike ride in my neighborhood, a great book or a warm snuggle from my kids. When simple things bring joy to your daily life, then every day can have sweet moments.

I also get joy from creating and surrounding myself with creative things. I love taking portraits of my kids, making home-made decorations and cakes for parties, finding interesting pieces for my home at estate sales or yard sales, and integrating pieces I inherited from family members into my home décor or wardrobe.

Above all, I love spending meaningful time with my husband, family and friends. Often, that’s right at home.

Where can people find you and learn how to become a young millionaire?

I’m just a regular person and not a blogger, for now. But I like being a voice for the family with kids and working mom path to financial independence. If you want to connect, leave a comment in the comment section below or send Andy a note and he can get us in touch!

Where are you in your net worth journey?

Please let me know in the comments below!

Track your net worth today for FREE with Personal Capital. It’s the first step on your journey to becoming a young millionaire!

Andy Hill

Andy Hill is the award-winning family finance coach behind Marriage Kids and Money - a platform dedicated to helping young families build wealth and happiness. Andy's advice and personal finance experience have been featured in major media outlets like CNBC, Forbes, MarketWatch, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and NBC News. With millions of podcast downloads and video views, Andy’s message of family financial empowerment has resonated with listeners, readers and viewers across the world. When he's not "talking money", Andy enjoys watching his kids play soccer, singing karaoke with his wife and watching Marvel movies.


  • Personally, I don’t count the home I live in for my net worth. We have to live somewhere, so if you sold your home, you would have to either pay rent or buy another home. Just a thought. Great job though.

    • To each his own. Given that it’s an asset with a boat load of equity, we like to count ours.

      That’s why I love “personal” finance! We all find what’s best for us 🙂


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