26 Stories of How Being Childfree Impacts Your Life, Wealth, and Finances
Childfree individuals are an underrepresented, and misunderstood, minority group in the US. While 11% of the US over 55 are Childfree, the financial and popular literature has very little to say about what it means to live a life of Childfree Wealth. Even within the Childfree community, there is very little about how choosing a Childfree lifestyle impacts your life, wealth, and finances.
In Portraits of Childfree Wealth, Dr. Jay Zigmont, CFP®, interviews 26 individuals and couples to understand their lives.
Each portrait provides a different perspective on Childfree Wealth from a diverse population across the US. There are stories from people who are barely making ends meet and others who have achieved FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) or FILE (Financial Independence, Live Early). Being Childfree does not automatically make people rich, as we still suffer from income disparities. The difference is that if a Childfree person is barely making ends meet now, they would have drowned if they had a child.
Some key findings:
- The reasons for being Childfree are as varied as the people themselves.
- There are very few or no regrets from people being Childfree.
- Being Childfree does not automatically make you rich.
- There is a relationship between growing up in poverty and poor and being Childfree.
- COVID-19 had an impact.
- Childfree Financial Independence is simple: 1. Got out of debt (and stayed out), and 2. Maxed out their retirement plans.
- Childfree people may prefer FILE over FIRE.
- Childfree people may be able to take turns growing and providing support (in a Gardener and the Rose approach).
- Childfree Wealth reflects the ability to have the Time, Money, and Freedom to achieve your goals and dreams. While each person might have put those in a different order, the bottom line is that being Childfree allows you all three.
Maggie's Portrait of Strength
Maggie was raised by a poor, single mom. She shares how she grew, met the love of her life, lost him when he died at 50, and now is working to live her best Childfree life.
Carly's Childfree Struggle
Carly, like many others in the US, is struggling. Carly and her husband moved back to the US just before COVID-19 hit and are just trying to make it through.
Jesse's Intentional Balance
Jesse and his wife live in an RV, and are working hard to find a balance that allows for Jesse to follow his dreams and create video games.