• 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…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Savings and Where to Put What

    When I first started on my path to FIRE, I had lots and lots of questions. One of them was where to put my money and in what order? I am not a teacher or government employee so what I have available to me are my 401k, IRAs, savings and brokerage accounts. So how much money and into what bucket ? Lets take a look at the features of each type of account. The order in which you fill these buckets is dependent on your own circumstances, but general wisdom is the following: 401k match Debt elimination HSA 401k Maximum IRA Savings and brokerage Accounts The 401k Common wisdom dictates…

  • The Sprint to FI

    2019 End Of Year Review

    I haven’t done this before, but at the end of last year I wanted to write a review of the year and never really got around to writing it. This year however I will write my end of year review.   The Numbers Our combined net worth according to Personal Capital is currently $539k.  We got there by maxing out both of the 401k’s however, Cat was not able to complete the top up and I only managed to get $4k into my Roth IRA. The issues in savings stem from starting the 2019 savings later in the year. Overall the numbers were great, with Cat really hammering her savings…

  • The Sprint to FI

    What is Systemic Spending?

    Systemic Spending is a concept I’ve heard bandied around on some of the blogs and podcasts.  I wasn’t sure what systemic spending is, so I decided to dig into it and see how it relates to me. There is little about systemic spending as it relates to the FIRE community, so my understanding is mostly based on two sources: The SAFE plan and the ChooseFI podcast 033; Design your future with Dominick Quartuccio. In essence it seems to be that in order to be happy we need to live our lives with intention. In order to achieve that, our spending must also be with intention. This translates into happiness by…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Roth Conversions

    One of the good things that has happened to Cat and I over the years is we have almost always had good income; with the exception of the disaster. The downside, if you can call it a downside is that we do not qualify for certain financial tools because of our higher income. The Roth IRA is one of those things. However, we can still use the Roth IRA as an investment tool, even though we don’t qualify for pre-tax Roth contributions. This is achieved by performing a Roth IRA rollover from a traditional IRA. Why do I want a Roth IRA? Because the growth and withdrawal of money from…

  • The Sprint to FI

    We Always Were Good Savers

    Cat and I were discussing this a while back. We always did save well. Our problem was this; we could save for specific things but for some reason we never considered just saving. I think the idea of just saving for  … something was too nebulous for us. Retirement wasn’t a thing so it didn’t occur to us to save for it. I’m not sure why we had this blind spot but I realized a while ago, that if we had a target we could save. No target = no savings with us. Introducing me to FIRE got us to a point where we had targets and so our savings…

  • The Sprint to FI

    I Need A Hobby

    In a previous post I mentioned a focus on what happens post FI because it is important. This is a part of designing your life. There have been studies that show we deteriorate faster if we don’t have something that keeps us interested. This is a serious consideration when retiring early and why many FIRE bloggers out there recommend a side hustle that you can continue with once you retire. We also use the term retire loosely. The internet retirement police say that retirement means no more work for you. However the FIRE community fight back with; retirement is meaningful activity on your terms and your terms only. So if…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Avoiding Unhappy Things

    Avoiding unhappy things seems like an obvious thing but until I read this: https://www.madfientist.com/happiness-through-subtraction/ … I hadn’t really thought that much about it. This article was a huge revelation to me, and I have been thinking about it ever since. I’ve admitted that I have been unhappy for a while for a number of reasons. I started thinking a little more deeply about what is making me unhappy, and figured that I should make a list of what I think makes me unhappy, and then a list of the things I can change. My Job I work roughly 6am-3pm in my home office (these hours for a number of reasons).…

  • The Sprint to FI

    Another Milestone Reached

    Another goal reached today, only this one is not financial. What prompted my wife and I to start this journey was primarily our health. One of my goals was to get my weight down as it causes me issues with blood pressure and diabetes. Through taking control of my diet, cooking our own meals and taking care with the portion sizes, I have gone from my initial weight of 240lb when we first moved to CO back in April of 2018, to 199.8lbs as of today. I probably need to be down at about 180, but I haven’t been below 200lbs for about 25 years. Definitely a step in the…