This is an excerpt from the CNBC Make It newsletter. Subscribe here.
When the lease on my old apartment expired at the end of March, I made the decision to finally go it alone: Thanks to Covid-19 rent deals in New York City and a raise at work, I was finally able to sign a new lease for my very own one-bedroom apartment in Manhattan starting in April.
If you live outside of New York or another high-cost-of-living area, this probably does not seem like a big deal to you. But for me, it was a seven-year-long dream that finally came to fruition.
As the year winds to a close, the Make It team is reflecting on some of our biggest career and financial wins from the past 12 months. Renting a one-bedroom apartment on my own (and paying for everything to furnish and decorate it) in one of the most expensive cities in the country is mine, and I am especially grateful for everything that made it possible this year.
What about yours? Have you taken some time to reflect on the year and celebrate your victories (big or small)? If you could use a little inspiration, here are some of the Make It team members’ biggest wins of 2021:
“I would say my biggest career win this year (like many people at Make It!) was starting a new job in a completely remote environment and building close relationships with my teammates, even if we aren’t all together in an office. Their energy and thoughtfulness makes working from my apartment a lot more exciting!” — Morgan Smith, Work Reporter at CNBC Make It
“I’ve been collecting credit card points for years, but have always been hesitant to spend them. I recently decided to take a vacation to Aruba and used my points to pay for one of the flights. It feels great to reward all the research I did to pick my card with a relaxing week on the beach.” — Nick Vega, Money Reporter at CNBC Make It
“September was really exciting as I brought in 2 million page views. It’s always a thrill to see people connect with my work, but when it’s that many it’s hard to grasp! I was euphoric.” — Gili Malinsky, Reporter at Grow
“This summer, I went on a bucket list vacation: a solo Amtrak ride from Chicago to Portland, Oregon. Financially, it was exciting to have saved up enough to afford the trip (my train ticket alone was over $1,000), and personally, it felt like an important milestone to travel alone for the first time.” — Emmie Martin, Money Editor at CNBC Make It
“I haven’t been great about making the most of my employee-sponsored investment accounts, so this year I contributed enough to receive 100% of my employer’s matching contributions. Better late than never!” — Mike Winters, Money Reporter at CNBC Make It