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Woman Highlights 4 Money Habits That Have Ensured That She Can Retire by 45

For starters, she recommends using an interest calculator which was instrumental for her in her financial education journey. 
Cover Image Source: Kimberly Hamilton plans to retire at 45 | Instagram | Kimberly Hamilton
Cover Image Source: Kimberly Hamilton plans to retire at 45 | Instagram | Kimberly Hamilton

As prices go up along with rent and other expenses, savings are drying up and most young people seem less likely to be able to retire by the age of 60 like previous generations. But despite these challenges, some people have gone a step ahead to become so financially secure that they now dare to dream about retirement at the age of 45. Kimberly Hamilton, the founder of Beworth Finance, talked about the four small yet powerful wealth-building habits in 2012, that made her achieve financial freedom. In a first-person narrative, the 36-year-old talked about the time when she had just graduated from college and could not help but feel "constantly anxious about money." With a $40,000 starting salary and almost $45,000 of student debt, Hamilton moved to Washington DC. However, with proper planning, she was able to pay off her debt in just three years. She recommends using an interest calculator for a start since it was instrumental for her in her financial education journey.

At this point in her life, she started earning $2,492 per month after taxes and began saving. At first, she would set aside around $120 per month and she made it a point to negotiate her salary every year. "While I may not have gotten a 'yes' or the exact number I pitched every single time, I was often successful, and landed a few 15% to 20% raises over the years," she says.

Hamilton, like many others, understood the importance of having more than one source of income. "I increased my earnings by working several side gigs that included mystery shopping, participating in focus groups, and flipping items on Craigslist," she writes. Hamilton also shed light on the importance of automation which helped her reduce her financial stress. "That simple system of automation ultimately helped me accomplish one of my biggest goals: homeownership," she says.

She also made sure that she was not spending more than what she could afford. Hamilton talks about how even with her six-figure salary, she still monitors her variable spending so that she can continue to invest in the stock market. "Today, I still cook most nights, and I haven’t owned a car in 10 years," she added.

Hamilton also talked about how it's important to invest in the future, and not live paycheck to paycheck. "Last year, I invested over 45% of my income, a big jump from when I only invested about $133 per month," she says.

Currently, she not only maxes out her 401(k), she maxes out an individual retirement account and invests everything else in a taxable brokerage account. She describes how contributing so much has made it extremely easy for her to retire. "If I never contribute another dime to my retirement, I’m on track to have over $3.7 million by age 65," she told CNBC Make It.

However, Hamilton doesn't see the ability to retire as freedom. "My view is a little different. I found financial freedom when I took control and automated that first extra debt payment," she concludes.

You can follow Kimberly Hamilton on Instagram for more financial advice.