It seems as if we are constantly hearing how tough times are right now (for some they are). I know many of you are thinking that it would be great to save money for retirement and live a wealthy life but you just don't make enough to do so. Well, I am here to tell you that you can.
My name is Danny Kofke and like some of you, I am a teacher. I currently teach special needs children in Georgia. My wife, Tracy, was a school teacher before becoming a stay-at-home mom to my two young daughters. That's right, we have two children and make it on a teacher's salary. Not only do we make it, but I like to think we thrive on my teacher's salary. You see, in addition to being able to have Tracy stay home, we have no debt except our house - which we actually just refinanced to a 15-year term which will save us almost $100,000 from our original 30-year loan-, we have a 1-year emergency fund in place, invest so that we will retire with a sizeable nest egg and live a wealthy life on a teacher's salary. I feel that my family is in this position because of my profession.
How many people get into teaching to make a lot of money? Not many. If they did their college professors lied to them. While teachers will never make what Tiger Woods does we can still retire comfortably. In addition, many of us love our jobs. There are so many people out there that hate getting up in the morning and going to work. That is not the case for many teachers. In fact, according to a recent social survey, teaching ranks among the top ten most gratifying jobs. These same people are the ones that ran up credit card debt and bought things because they thought it would make them happy. I know that having new things does make you feel better for a little bit but this feeling eventually goes away. When I put on a brand new shirt it does feel good but after wearing it a few times it becomes old. If my happiness depended on items I would be in a vicious cycle ofbuying things to make me feel better.
Many of you reading this love your job - that is PRICELESS. Did you know that, according to a 2006 study done by the NEA, 50% of teachers quit the profession within 5 years because of poor working conditions and low pay? I don't want you to be a part of that 50% if you don't want to. That is why I decided to write my book. In it I show how this 33 year-old school teacher has done very well on his salary. Iwas actually part of that 50%. I had the opportunity to double or triple my salary a few years ago. I decided to take this risk and became a flooring salesman. After 2 months of trying to sell flooring I realized that I was meant to teach. I even sat down with my wife and said that even if I made $1,000,000 a year selling flooring I was not as happy as I was in the classroom. Some of you might be in a similar situation. I hope that I can show you that you can still do well on a teacher's salary and that wealth does not always mean how big your bank account is.