I think maybe the most important thing I’ve gotten out of the last few weeks of reading is the message on retirement savings: just start. Don’t pay attention to the series of objections I always had:
1) I don’t have any spare cash
2) My life is so unstable right now; if I do have spare cash, it should be in emergency savings where I can get to it fast
3) I don’t have enough spare cash; don’t you need thou$ands?
4) I don’t know how [ok, this was a big one]
5) There’s nobody pushing me to do it and no obvious beneficiary if I die before I can use the money [this is where singleness comes into play]
6) Shouldn’t all available money go towards the student loan instead? [This is why I didn’t open a 401(k) with my current job — although there would have been no match, which mitigates that choice a little. Still should’ve asked for $200 a month to be taken out or something.]
Instead: just start. Even if it’s small. Even if it’s $25 a month. Even if you have to take the initial deposit ($1000 at Vanguard) out of emergency savings. Whatever. Just start.
It seems sort of like having a kid (nb, I do not have a kid, so YMMV) in that you never quite feel “ready” to take the plunge. Instead you have to just…start.
(An article I found useful on this is at Investopedia, by the way.)