• The Sprint to FI

    Corona Virus (COVID19) Bandwagon

    Yup, I’m going to write a COVID19 post and why not? It seems like every man, woman and dog under the sun has a pandemic email or blog post. And I guess it is a big deal, but here’s the thing; I work from home. Before the pandemic, my wife and I used to joke about Saturday being my “going out” day. And here we all are, leaving the house maybe one day a week to grab some groceries and some toilet roll. I must be some sort of trend setter. So right in the middle of the lock-down announcements, we moved apartments. Badly timed but we had no way…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Breaking your Default Programming

    As small children and through our teens to adulthood, we learn a lot from our environment, families and friends. Much has been written about this and I’m not going to delve deep into that. However, what I learned as a kid has stayed with me for a long time, some of that to my detriment. An example of this is my drive to clean my plate of food. It didn’t matter of how much food was put in front of me. From a very young age, my parents would encourage me to ‘eat up’ sometimes to the point that I was not allowed to leave the table until all my…

  • The Sprint to FI

    We are moving again

    We moved last year to be close to where Cat works. I can work anywhere as I am a remote worker, but Cat needs to be in the office most of the time. Just recently she accepted a permanent position with a different company. That company is currently a 45-60 minute ride away on the light rail, so including getting to and from train stations, she is spending 2-3 hours a day commuting. We need to fix that. For us, moving is little more than an inconvenience. We have moved quite a bit over the past few years so we are pros at this. The issue for us is the…

  • The Sprint to FI

    BaristaFI

    What is BaristaFI? BaristaFI is that point where your passive income can provide most of your basic needs with only a part time job required to feed yourself and pay your incidental bills. For me, BaristaFI is also a position of security. Its not exactly Fuck You money as you should already have that if you are close to BaristaFI. Rather, it means that if anything happens to your employment, you can at the very least cover rent. That for me is BaristaFi. This is different from other definitions of BaristaFI. In our case, we are pegging Barista FI as our passive income able to pay our rent. Our other…

  • The Sprint to FI

    That Table – Reprise

    A few posts back I wrote about how much the extra square footage costs us just to keep the dining room table. To be honest I was a little unfair to Cat with my analysis, so I am here to make amends. I also wrote a post about systemic spending; how non optimal spending can increase happiness. With increased happiness comes a higher probability that you will achieve your goals. So how do these two posts relate? I suspect some of you see this already: From the dining room table post, Cat and I rent an apartment that at face value is larger than we need. As I detailed in…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Making Incremental Changes

    In order to pursue FIRE, we have to make changes to our lives. There is always a pressure from within to make those changes all at once. However it is better to make incremental changes rather than big changes, as incremental changes tend to stay with you. Making a lot of changes at the same time is often a recipe for failure. Let Me Explain I used to have terrible eating habits; I would overeat, eat junk, eat too many sweets etc. I also had a thing for lemonade although I never did get into soda except as the occasional treat. Several times I tried to change this as it…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Keeping Up with the New Joneses

    As proponents of FIRE, we often laugh at those who wish to keep up with the Joneses, but we have to take care not to fall into that trap ourselves as it is easy to do. I don’t mean buying a Mercedes or a new house or any of that jazz. What I am talking out is keeping up with the Joneses on FIRE! We listen to other people’s stories and we are inspired to do better. This is a good thing, but there is also a dark side to this. Sometimes that inspiration can turn to competitiveness. This is the path to despair and pain (yes I have recently…

  • The Sprint to FI

    The tyranny of the calendar

    From the age of 11, I have been at the mercy of someone else’s calendar and I suspect you have too. I was given a calendar on my first day of secondary school.  My days were spent moving from class to class directed by that calendar. Even after leaving school and moving on to further education, it was more of the same. Every day there was a calendar that had to be followed. Post graduation and here I am again at the mercy of my various employers over the years. The all had the calendar in common and it must be followed. I was given some time to spend as…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Risk Tolerance

    I was considering the difference between Flex FI and FI. The difference of course is two fold:   the amount saved the withdrawal rate (SWR) Flex FI vs FI With Flex Fi you are only saving 20x your annual spend and for FI it is 25x your annual spend.  In order to have a decent income from your FlexFi number you need a 5% withdrawal rate vs the 4% rate for FI. (For those approaching FIRE in their 30s and 40s a more appropriate SWR may be as low as 3.5%). total yearly spend: $50k Flex FI number = $1M      @ 5% = $50K FI number     …

  • The Sprint to FI

    Improving Your Income

    The basics of FIRE go like this:   Maximize your income Minimize your spending Save the difference the higher your savings rate, the shorter your time to FI A lot of people focus on minimizing the spending because this is something we a have more control over. However it is also possible to increase income sometimes. In fact I quite successfully did that and in this post I explore how I did that. There are a few basic ways to increase income: Ask for a raise at work Jump to another job Start a side hustle The Side Hustle The side hustle is probably the easier of the three because…