This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure policy for details.

25 Personal Finance Bloggers Answer:

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Do you ever wonder what you would do if you could start your money journey all over again?

I’ve often wondered if what I think is the same as others around me. Now I know. After asking 25 amazing bloggers I have some great answers. You will see a common theme among them but it’s all great. I trust you will enjoy their answers.

If you would like to be included in future round ups send me a message about being featured on our Behind the Screen Interview Series.

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I think I would have been a bit more balanced with my approach to paying off debt. I’m a very all-or-nothing type person and did the same thing with my finances. I paid off my debt and didn’t really save for the future, for retirement or begin investing. It’s been tough to effectively start over now that I’m debt-free. It feels great being debt-free, but I’m in rebuilding mode now.

Check you the full interview here

Grab her book Dear Debt here

Life Impacting book: Your Money or Your Life by Joe Dominguez

Melanie

Dear Debt

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I would start earlier and invest so much more than we did from the very beginning (in our 20s and early 30s), even when we were paying down debt! We could have taken that money we spent on buying/trading/financing vehicles and invested it. If we had done that, we would be FI by now. Seriously. Saying that makes me nauseous, but it’s the truth.

In addition, I would have delayed taking on a mortgage a few years and saved for a more significant down payment. That would have put us so much further ahead!

Check out the full interview here

Life Impacting book: Your Money or Your Life by Joe Dominguez

Amanda

Centsibly Rich







If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Hands down I would be more intentional about finding free and low-cost experiences for my family while we were paying off our debt. We were super intense during our journey, which I don’t regret, but I think we could have been more creative in that area.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book: The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

Alaya

Hope+Cents

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Start earlier! When I was in school, despite knowing that watching my money was a good idea, I lived in a blissful fantasy world of having no responsibilities and lots of disposable income and I never considered that there was a real world after university that I might want to save for.

Just think of how awesome my investments would be if I had started 10 years ago. Ohhh that beautiful, elusive compound interest.

Check out the full interview here

Life impacting book: The Wealthy Barber Returns

Kate

Kate Saves

“I would have just started EARLIER – like, in high school – saving and investing. I’m happy with how I’ve progressed over the years, but had I been doing it for a decade or two earlier I’m pretty sure I would have been retired by now”

J Money -Budgets Are Sexy

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I don’t think I would do anything differently. I never really dug myself into too deep of a hole, and thankfully I realized quite quickly that I needed to change things. Plus, I learned a lot from my mistakes, so they made me into who I am today.

Check out the full interview.

Michelle

Making Sense of Cents

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

If there’s one thing I’d do differently it would be to start earlier. The power of compounding interest is amazing.

I didn’t have my financial epiphany until about 7 or 8 years ago (in my early 30s). I wish I would have figured all of this our much earlier, but at the same time I’m soooo glad that I figured it out while there was still plenty of time for me to reach financial independence.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book:  Dear Debt

Ty

Get Rich Quickish

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I would have just started EARLIER – like, in high school – saving and investing. I’m happy with how I’ve progressed over the years, but had I been doing it for a decade or two earlier I’m pretty sure I would have been retired by now 🙂 I think that’s the trick to any of this stuff really – just starting as early as possible and getting that magical compounding going while you have time on your side. Most of this stuff is pretty straight forward, but *time* is the magic ingredient needed to fuel the fire.

J Money

Budgets Are Sexy

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I thought I was Dr. Big Stuff when I got my first real anesthesia job, and in hindsight, it’s fair to say I overbuilt when planning our “dream home”. The dream became something of a nightmare when the local hospital closed, and I had no job, and few people left that could afford such a home. I have a post describing five things I would tell myself as a newly minted physician.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book:  The Only Investment Guide You’ll Ever Need by Andrew Tobias

P.O.F.

Physician On Fire

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Garrett:  It would have been great to start this process earlier in life.

Claudia: I worked hard to get to college, but I would have worked harder to find more scholarships so as to avoid student loan debt.

Check out the interview here.

Life impacting books:

Garrett: Cashflow Quadrant

Claudia: Think and Grow Rich!

Two Cup House

Two Cup House

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I wouldn’t take out student loans. When I was 18, I really believed that my only options were taking out student loans or not going to college and spending the rest of my life flipping burgers. It’s sad how many kids believe that student loans are their only option. If I could do it all over again, I would work for a couple years, save up money, and then get a two year degree. I probably wouldn’t get a four year degree unless I could find a way to pay cash for it. I would live with my parents for a couple years after college in order to save up enough money to buy a house.

Check out full interview here.

Life impacting book: The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey.

Jen

Frugal Millennial

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I would have taken full advantage of my employer sponsored 401(k). I had no idea how great of a deal that was until I started freelancing.

Check out the full interview.

Life impacting book: Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover

Kristin

The Wild Wong

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

This is going to be a weird one, but I’d give myself a pass on saving 30% of my income right off of the bat. I would have scaled it down to 20%, and here’s why: I can remember so many times when a small thing, like a tear in my jeans, would send me into a total tailspin. I felt like my budget was so tight that there was no way I could handle replacing a $40 pair of pants, and it was one of the most stressful periods of my life. Had I just relaxed a little bit on my savings rate and realized that yes, this was temporary and I could catch up when my salary went up a bit, I’d have been so much happier – and 20% is a totally fine savings rate! That extra 10% wasn’t really worth the mega-tons of stress it caused me.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book:  The Wealthy Barber

Des

Half Banked

“Start diversifying my income sooner! The more streams, the better, and I think that’s something that isn’t taught early enough…”

Britt – Britt and the Benjamins

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Start earlier. It is never too late to start saving, but if I had started soon after I graduated college, I’d easily be retired by now. I had a lot of fun in those days, but I also wasted a slew of cash. I’ve always had a 401k, but I didn’t seriously begin saving money until my early 30s.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book:  The Millionaire Next Door

Steve

Think Save Retire







If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Starting over would be absolutely crazy considering the knowledge I have now. I obviously would have made a more conscious effort to save money for goals, retirement, and travel. I would have never allowed myself to use a credit card before the age of 20. However, I would never want to give up some of the memories and lessons that all of these bad financial decisions have given me. Just don’t do what I did, kids.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book:  Million Dollar Women

Alyssa

Mixed Up Money

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I am very grateful that I do not have too many financial regrets at this point in my life. Please don’t take that the wrong way; I have made plenty of mistakes with dollar signs in front of them. However, the mistakes I have made have helped me and my wife learn and get to where we are today. They have also driven my passion to help others with their finances, which is the primary reason I started FinanceSuperhero.com in March 2016.

That said, if I could go back in time, I would not have purchased my Grandpa’s 2008 Honda Accord in the summer of 2011. I was in love with that car the moment he drove it home off the lot in 2007, and when he told me he was selling it, I just couldn’t say no. While I still have the car and plan to drive it for many more years, it was not a smart purchase at the time.

Check out the full interview here.

David

Finance Superhero

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Invest in Apple in the nineties. Just kidding. I would get around the people I wanted to be like. There are groups of money people and if you can identify the person you want to be and get around those types of people it will make a huge difference in your life earlier on. I also would start making more mistakes earlier on.

Life impacting book:  Secrets of the Millionaire Mind

Andrew

Family Money Plan

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Start diversifying my income sooner! The more streams, the better, and I think that’s something that isn’t taught early enough.

Check out the interview here.

Life impacting book: Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Roberty Kiyosaki

Britt

Britt and the Benjamins

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

This is an easy one! Not borrow as much student loans as I did! I would’ve only borrowed how much I needed and either returned or saved the extra money I received.

Check out the interview here.

Life impacting book: Smart Women Finish Rich by David Bach

Jaymee

Smart Woman

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I would have started aggressively saving earlier on. While my wife and I have never been big spenders, I believe we had a lot of leaks in our spending early on. If we treated our finances like we did back then, our path to FI would have been greatly reduced.

See the full interview here

Life impacting book:  Millionaire Next Door

Thias

It Pays Dividends

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I’m not sure I would’ve gone back to school for an M.A. in Theatre. It’s not the most useful degree and between expenses and lost earnings, it probably cost me close to $60,000. Unless I go on and get a PhD someday, it was pretty much useless (although living abroad for a year was amazing and I loved what I learned there).

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book: Money Girl’s Smart Moves to Grow Rich by Laura D. Adams

Mel

Broke Girl RIch







If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I would start sooner or worry less. In fact, I try not  to think about my journey from this perspective because it makes me unnecessarily anxious and frustrated with myself.

Check out the full interview here. 

Life impacting book: The Theory of the Leisure Class

Penny

She Picks Up Pennies

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I would have saved so much more money – with no student loan debt, no kids and being in the same situation that I was, I had every opportunity to save so much more. I would learn as much as I could about investing as early as I could and I would have retired by now.

But in retrospect, I think I needed to make the mistakes I made with my money because I needed to learn those lessons otherwise that money would found other ways to leave me anyways. I think that’s how life works.

I’m ok where I am now and the decisions I make with money now are because of what I know based due to the mistakes I made and I can teach my children about money based on those lessons I’ve learnt.

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book: Smart women finish rich by David Bach

Bola

Clever Girl Finance


“Start earlier. Start Now! Make a plan and get going with it. Time is your greatest ally, make use of it. “

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I’d save and invest more. I wish I opened a Roth IRA when I started working in high school. I also wouldn’t buy as many DVDs and video games. I had hundreds! I used to be a huge movie buff and spent all my money collecting DVDs. Who needs to see the movie Lost in Translation more than once?

Check out the full interview here.

Life impacting book: Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover

Vic

Dad is Cheap

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

I suppose you could say my money journey started when I decided to go to the in-state university for my Bachelor Degree. And if I could do it all over, I sometimes wonder if I would have been better off pursuing a degree from a more prestigious, private university. I don’t know the answer to this question.

At the time I simply applied to one college and when I got accepted I was done with my search. Not that I don’t feel fortunate and proud to be in my current position when it comes to career and life path, but I wonder how things would have been different. And the other reason I ponder this is in preparation for my little one to eventually be in a similar position and what I’d encourage him to do when that day comes.

If anyone has any thoughts on this, I’d be interested to hear them in the comments!

Check out the full interview here

Life impacting book:  Rich Dad, Poor Dad

JW

The Green Swan

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Work one year full time after high school to save money for the first couple of semesters. Do the first year of my accounting degree in college, then transfer to university for the last 2 years. Work more years than I did before pursuing my masters and fully cash flow my master’s degree. It might have taken me twice as long to complete the degree, but I would have had less debt coming out of it.

Oh, and I would also save $50-$100 each month for retirement from the age of 21. Even if I didn’t have the money I would find it somehow. There is not a month that goes by after being debt free that I do not pay myself first.

Check out the full interview here

Life impacting book: The Total Money Makeover

Pamela

My Money Counts

If you were to start your money journey all over what would you do differently?

Everything! I would do everything that I could to earn extra money. All of the side hustles that I do now, I could have done even when my daughter was a baby – I just wasn’t aware of them at the time. If I had earned more money then, I would be in a better position now.

I also wish that I had dived into the personal finance blogs sooner, as they are a wealth of information and are so helpful. There are personal finance blogs to help you with every stage of your money journey.

Check out the full interview here

Francesca

From Pennies To Pounds


Ready to take control of your money?

Take our Free Course: The Money System That Changed My Life.

Want more mortgage tips?

What would you do if you could start your money journey all over again | Great Money Advice From Top Bloggers | Looking for some great money tips from some amazing personal finance bloggers |