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Author Topic: How to Retire in Your 30s With $1 Million in the Bank  (Read 1711 times)
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September 03, 2018, 11:47:42 AM
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Fed up with their high-pressure jobs, some millennials are quitting and embracing the FIRE movement. (It stands for financial independence, retire early).

Carl Jensen experienced what he calls “the awakening” sometime around 2012.

He was a software engineer in a suburb of Denver, writing code for a medical device. The job was high-pressure: He had to document every step for the Food and Drug Administration, and a coding error could lead to harm or death for patients.

Mr. Jensen was making about $110,000 a year and had benefits, but the stress hardly seemed worth it. He couldn’t unwind with his family after work; he spent days huddled over the toilet. He lost 10 pounds.

After one especially brutal workday, Mr. Jensen Googled “How do I retire early?” and his eyes were opened. He talked to his wife and came up with a plan: They saved a sizable portion of their income over the next five years and drastically reduced expenses, until their net worth was around $1.2 million.

On Tuesday, March 10, 2017, Mr. Jensen called his boss and gave notice after 15 years at the company. He wasn’t quitting, exactly. He had retired. He was 43.

Hacking Your Way to Retirement

Although Mr. Jensen’s story may seem exceptional, a more modest version of the stockbroker who makes a killing on Wall Street and sails off to the Caribbean, he is part of a growing movement of young professionals who are intently focused on quitting their jobs forever.

Millennials especially have embraced this so-called FIRE movement — the acronym stands for financial independence, retire early — seeing it as a way out of soul-sucking, time-stealing work and an economy fueled by consumerism.

Followers of FIRE tend to be male and work in the tech industry, left-brained engineer-types who geek out on calculating compound interest over 40 years, or the return on investment (R.O.I.) on low-fee index funds versus real estate rentals.

Indeed, much of the conversation around FIRE, on Reddit message boards or blogs like Mr. Money Mustache, revolves around hacking one’s finances: strategies for increasing your savings rate to the hallowed 70 percent, tips for cheap travel through airline rewards cards, ways to save nickels and dimes at the grocery store.

Some practice “lean FIRE” (extreme frugality), others “fat FIRE” (maintaining a more typical standard of living while saving and investing), and still others “barista FIRE” (working part-time at Starbucks after retiring, for the company’s health insurance). To be “firing” is to slash one’s expenses to maximize saving while amassing income-generating investments sufficient to support oneself. To have “fired” is to have achieved that goal.

“A lot of people think you’re a new-age hippie,” said Mr. Jensen, who sold his four-bedroom, four-bathroom house, downsized to a more modest home and maxed-out retirement accounts while firing. “They can’t even wrap their minds around it.”

In retirement, Mr. Jensen and his wife and two daughters plan to live on roughly $40,000 a year generated from investments. Because his wife currently works, they have yet to draw on those accounts. But already, it’s a life rich on time but short on luxuries: Groceries are bought at Costco, car and home repairs are done by him.

“People always assume there’s an external circumstance: ‘Oh, you must have received an inheritance,’” Mr. Jensen said. “We’ve just chosen to live far below our means. That itself is a radical idea.”

Equally radical is opting out of the work force in your 30s or early 40s, a time of life when men and women are normally leaning into their careers, or, less happily, enduring the daily grind to pay the bills until Social Security kicks in.

Jason Long, a pharmacist in rural Tennessee who retired last year at the ripe old age of 38, said his father had a hard time understanding why Mr. Long couldn’t continue to work and collect his $150,000 salary.

But Mr. Long said he was deeply unhappy in his job, where over his career he witnessed drug costs skyrocketing, sick people battling with health insurers and the over-prescription of opioids and the resulting addiction crisis. His customers, angry, confused, financially stretched, often lashed out at the person behind the counter.

“There were days when I had 12- or 14-hour shifts where I didn’t use the restroom, where I didn’t eat, because so much work was piled up on me,” Mr. Long said.

Like Mr. Jensen, he had been saving a sizable portion of his income over the past decade, and he and his wife had a paid-for house and an investment portfolio worth a little more than $1 million. Why stick around?

“The reality is the numbers are there for me,” Mr. Long said. “To go to a job that’s making you miserable every day, it doesn’t make sense to pad the bank account at that point.”

Why These Millennials Hate Work
Quitting the rat race isn’t a new concept. From the Shakers of the 1700s to the back-to-the-land hippies of the 1960s and ’70s, a strain of Americans has always embraced simple living. One of the bibles of the FIRE movement, “Your Money or Your Life,” which teaches readers to reduce their spending and value time (or “life energy”) over material gain, was published in 1992.

But Vicki Robin, who wrote that financial guide with Joe Dominguez, said the FIRE crowd is a different breed of dropout than those in the ’90s. “Our aim was not just to have a whole bunch of people quit their jobs,” Ms. Robin said. “Our aim was to lower consumption to save the planet. We attracted longtime simple-living people, religious people, environmentalists.”

The FIRE adherents are, by contrast, “very numbers oriented, fascinated by the minutiae of taxes and accounting,” Ms. Robin said.

They are also benefiting from an lengthy bull run in the stock market and, in some cases, the privilege of class, race, gender and background. It’s difficult to retire at 40 if you work a minimum-wage job, say, or have crushing student-loan debt, or did not have the same opportunities as others because you grew up poor in a crime-ridden neighborhood.

But if, as Ms. Robin said, FIRE adherents “don’t have the aspirational part” of earlier generations, why are they so determined to quit the work force? Many millennials haven’t been working longer than a decade, if that.

It’s about having agency, Ms. Robin said: “The worker in this economy has very little sense of control over their existence. People are expendable. You’re a young person and you look ahead and you say, ‘What’s there for me?’”

That accurately describes how Kristy Shen and Bryce Leung felt. The married couple from Toronto became minor celebrities (and the target of online haters) when they retired from their tech jobs in 2015 to travel the world full time. They were in their early 30s at the time.

Ms. Shen’s wake-up moment came when she watched a fellow I.T. colleague collapse at his desk after clocking 14-hour days and get hauled away in an ambulance. For several years before that, she and Mr. Leung, following the path laid out by their parents, had tried to buy a house in Toronto’s ever-escalating real estate market.

But, Ms. Shen said, “It didn’t matter how much you saved, it was a goal post that kept moving. And I was seeing people stressed out paying their mortgages.”

Though they had good educations and well-paying jobs in the booming tech sector, Ms. Shen and Mr. Leung faced the looming threats of outsourcing and artificial intelligence, and had no hope of a retirement pension, or even that their employers would exist in five years.

At the same time, their jobs were all-consuming, their work hours basically 24-7. Rather than chain themselves to a costly mortgage, and therefore to high-pressure jobs, the couple decided to pour their money into an investment portfolio and peace out.

“The rule books our parents have given us is advice that’s perfect for 1970,” Ms. Shen said. “We have to throw out that rule book and write a new one.”

Mr. Leung spoke of the challenges his generation faces more bluntly. “We don’t have jobs that will take care of us,” he said. “We have to take care of ourselves.”

Go Where It’s Cheap

By ditching a big city, Ms. Shen and Mr. Leung exemplify another underlying reason for the popularity of FIRE: the high price of urban life, especially in places like New York and Southern California. There’s the insane housing prices, the high cost of child care, the temptations of so-called lifestyle creep.

“We were spending nearly $3,000 a month on rent, and that was considered a good deal,” said Scott Rieckens, 35, who, along with his wife, Taylor, 33, and their infant daughter until recently lived in Coronado, Calif., a pricey beach town across the bay from San Diego. “We made something like $160,000 between the two of us, but we didn’t have a whole lot left over.”

After hearing a podcast interview with Mr. Money Mustache, a.k.a., Pete Adeney, who The New Yorker called “the Frugal Guru” (he retired at 30), Mr. Rieckens became fired up. He told his wife they should ditch their leased BMW and quit eating out several nights a week.

But even with those lifestyle cuts, the couple couldn’t increase their savings rate substantially unless they relocated to a cheaper community, a deleveraging tactic the FIRE crowd calls “arbitrage.”

The idea, Mr. Adeney said, is “to reap the high salary” of a place like Silicon Valley, “then take that nest egg out to any of the thousands of nice, affordable cities and towns we have in this country and begin a second stage of life on your own terms.”

Ms. Rieckens, who works in recruiting, was initially reluctant to give up her BMW and beachy life and the prestige that went with it, until she saw a retirement calculator that showed they could retire in 10 years if they adopted FIRE and moved, or when they are 90 if they continued their upscale lifestyle in Coronado.

“I never paid attention to the finances, I thought it will all work out,” Ms. Rieckens said. “After I had a baby, I had stress around how I could spend more time with her. I was almost a slave to my job because of the way we were living.”

Last year, the couple left Southern California in search of a community that would give them more financial freedom, a journey Mr. Rieckens, formerly a creative director for a creative agency, is chronicling in a documentary, “Playing With FIRE.”

They ended up in Bend, Ore., where there’s no state sales tax and they could afford to buy a house. Gas for their used Honda CRV with 186,000 miles (they got rid of the BMW and downsized to one vehicle) is a dollar-per-gallon cheaper than in San Diego, although Mr. Rieckens often rides his bike around town.

“The whole retire early thing is unimportant to me. It’s more about gaining control of your time,” Mr. Rieckens said. “If you dive into the definition of retirement, what you’re retiring from is mandatory labor. It’s not necessarily about piña coladas on the beach.”

When You Retire Before Your Parents
A retirement that starts well before you go gray and lasts 40, 50 even 60 years is an anomaly in modern life. How do you fill all those days, months, decades?

On a recent weekday afternoon, Mr. Jensen was taking his two daughters, ages 8 and 11, to the Boulder County Fair. “I told them, ‘O.K., we’re going to wait until Thursday for half-price day,’” he said. “And by the way, we’re walking there. It’s two miles from our house.”

Fearing boredom, Mr. Jensen at first took on way too much, and he found it strange to be at the local rec center exercising alongside senior citizens, or shopping at empty big-box stores on a Tuesday. He also beat his own mother to retirement, which made for awkward family get-togethers.

But one year in, he has settled into his life of leisure, enjoying time spent raising his daughters, making sure they never see him vegging in front of the TV. Mr. Jensen also practices an activity that for many FIRE achievers seems to be the new golf: writing a financial advice blog.

Other FIRE retirees turned bloggers include Early Retirement Dude; the husband and wife behind Our Next Life; the Frugalwoods, a young married couple with children, who wrote a book about their transformation from suburban Boston high earners to retired Vermont homesteaders; and Ms. Shen and Mr. Leung, who when not traveling the world are calling for a Millennial Revolution (“Stop working, start living”).

It’s hardly surprising that a tech-savvy generation would proselytize on the internet. Also, blogging can provide the holy grail of early retirement, an additional income stream.

Perhaps Mr. Long, the pharmacist in rural Tennessee, has given the most detailed, thoughtful account of someone who has fired. In a series of posts to Reddit’s financial independence message board, Mr. Long chronicled with dry wit and self-effacement his first year in retirement.

One month into FIRE, he wrote of the guilt he felt spending money (on video games), and his concern that he would be over his household budget. He spent his days with family, at the gym, doing housework, exercising. He had no regrets so far: “I made the right decision. This is life.”

In the second month, Mr. Long reported a 2.8 percent increase to his portfolio over the first two months, even after living expenses, and listed his accomplishments as more reading, more cooking, volunteering and “faster Rubik’s cube solves.” Stress levels were way down, he wrote: “A friend of mine said the sense of dread from my face was gone.”

In the months that followed, he rewatched the mini-series “Roots,” lost all interest in talk of FIRE now that he had achieved it, feared a looming stock market crash, had nightmares that “I’m back at work and arguing with morons,” finished a marathon in a personal best sub-three hours, felt moments of social isolation, took a two-week road trip across the heartland, and went twice to the beach in Florida with his wife and watched their net reach its highest point, despite not working, which he attributed to “the passage of the tax cut for wealthy job creators like myself.”

Oh, and he started a blog.

“My life is so much better than it was before,” Mr. Long wrote seven months in. “I hope everyone here finds this peace.”

Speaking by phone, Mr. Long acknowledged it was possible that he’d simply burned out, that all of this FIRE stuff was just a needed break until he found a more satisfying career. When he was recently offered a job back in the pharmaceutical field, it induced a mild panic attack.

That morning, he’d woken up on his own, “not when an alarm clock told me that I had a responsibility.” He’d read the news online for 30 minutes, went on a seven-mile run, took a nap and “watched the ceiling fan spin around for a little bit.”

He had been watching the movies from They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They? a website that ranks what it calls the 1,000 greatest films. He’d watched 600 or so. He had work to do.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/01/style/fire-financial-independence-retire-early.html

....

This is a long piece on financial freedom, retiring early, advice on how to save money and the so-called "FIRE" movement(Financial Independence Retirement Early) which I've never heard of before today.

I wonder if there is a similar movement revolving around bitcoin and crypto? I know there are many buying lamborghinis living beyond their expected means for their age group, due to being early adopters of crypto.

Perhaps in the future we'll see a crossover of sorts where FIRE adherants and crypto join forces. lol

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September 03, 2018, 01:03:42 PM
Last edit: September 04, 2018, 04:40:31 AM by odolvlobo
 #2

I have never heard of FIRE before, but I have been an extreme saver for most of my life. I generally saved and invested about 50% of my income (after taxes). It wasn't hard -- lifestyle is a choice.

I never earned a lot from working, but investing 50% of my income every year eventually built a portfolio with a return that exceeded my income. As a matter of fact, 100% of my income last year went to paying taxes on the gains from my investments. Obviously, I now have enough money to stop working.

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September 03, 2018, 02:08:38 PM
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This strategy for early retirement seems to revolve around being frugal, saving of a good portion of your income, and possibly investing as well. This is exactly the opposite to what most people do, being wasteful, buying things they don't need, and going into debt most of the time. Using fiat money also doesn't help, because fiat is being debased year after year.

This strategy makes sense if you can pull it off efectivelly, and crypto can certainly help.

Bitcoin has already helped a huge number of early bitcoiners. I'm sure, many of them has retired in their 20s and 30s.

All the rest can still use this system in combination with wise investing (in crypto of course). Also, given the deflationary nature of bitcoin, the FIRE movement followers could start to hold most of their savings in BTC. The only thing that can spoil this is the volatility of cryptocurrencies, but maybe the volatility won't be such a huge issue in the future.
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September 03, 2018, 02:20:25 PM
 #4

Its ridiculous when you say about the lambo things, the point is not for being more consumptive to save the planets, not the contrary. The millennial should concern about long time-simple living, being more spiritual, understand about their self and be more environmentalist, not those who party everyday and spend those money to buy shit product.
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September 03, 2018, 04:05:51 PM
Merited by pawel7777 (1)
 #5

I think we're entering into an age of "lifestyle optimization." People, in a general sense, are starting to focus more on happiness rather than pure profit. The internet and smart investing made this type of lifestyle possible in the first place, and will only evolve from here as the aspects of life that make people happy become less physical in nature. Free time is true wealth.
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September 03, 2018, 04:36:29 PM
 #6

Free time is true wealth.
I don't know about that.  I've known quite a few people who live in shelters and who have no job, and the lives they lead couldn't be considered "wealthy", and I'm not just talking about them not having money.

Living a life of ease is something we all want when we're working 40 hours or more a week, but many people end up doing nothing with their lives when they do have free time.  Having a job has quite a few benefits aside from the paycheck, especially if you like what you're doing.  I have no plans to retire right now, as I like working.  It gives me purpose and a sense that I'm doing something worthwhile.

I do like the extreme saving aspect of this.  Blowing your money on stuff you don't need is a recipe for disaster.  Feeling like you have to work just to pay for all the extras is not a path to happiness.

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September 03, 2018, 05:37:39 PM
 #7

This is my life's goal since I am 25.

First I bought a house, because my biggest expense was the rent.

Then I started accumulating.


I wonder if there is a similar movement revolving around bitcoin and crypto? I know there are many buying lamborghinis living beyond their expected means for their age group, due to being early adopters of crypto.

Perhaps in the future we'll see a crossover of sorts where FIRE adherants and crypto join forces. lol

Many people that were seeking to retire early discovered BTC soon enough and they could retire even earlier than planned.
I expect there is going to be a second wave for laters bitcoiners soon, I hope to get this one =D


Followers of FIRE tend to be male and work in the tech industry, left-brained engineer-types who geek out on calculating compound interest over 40 years, or the return on investment (R.O.I.) on low-fee index funds versus real estate rentals.

I see that low fee ETF are really the way to go on developed countries, however the situation is different in developing countries.
In developing countries ETFs are too risky, as our stock market is usually very volatile. Not suitable for early retirement.
 
In Brazil, for example, we have one of the highest interest rates in the world. This is a huge opportunity to invest in Brazilian treasure bonds. Treasure Bonds on Brazil pays ~6% plus inflation rates per year. (in the US they pay inflation + 2-3% a year)

There is also a specific bonds for early retirement, which pays you ~3% of all your investments twice a year. And the principal + inflation rates will be received at the maturation of the title.
If you invest $ 1,000,000 in Brazilian bonds, you would receive about ~70,000 every six months, what would be about ~5,800 per month.

I believe there are similar financial products worldwide...

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September 03, 2018, 06:43:21 PM
 #8

Smell the money at the age of 11 can be a way to make us millionaire,there are lot of people who are millionaire now are not from the wealthy family but they earned lot of money in very short term just by the investing that is the only way to make more money and pay less taxes.

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September 03, 2018, 06:56:11 PM
 #9

Financial independence is very important in this life. Every time, we need to make sure we have a residual source of income and we don't depend always on government or our employers for source of income. That is why people are always trying to find ways to invest their money and also to start businesses. It's better to make your own than to depend on some one which may not be sustainable.
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September 03, 2018, 07:51:10 PM
 #10

Reddit links:

https://www.reddit.com/r/financialindependence/comments/9choov/take_the_money_and_run/
UK: https://www.reddit.com/r/FIREUK/


Frugality-->accumulation-->early retirement sounds like sensible plan, but there are a lot of downsides to it, which need to be considered. Overdisciplining  yourself with extreme frugality over the best years of your youth will surely leave some psychological mark. When you're finally ready to retire, you could find yourself either incapable of 'having fun' or worse - you could go into full stupid, money splashing mode to compensate for the lost years.

Plus, frugality goes in line with increased (financial) risk aversion, which could lead to many wasted opportunities, ie. not starting own business, not investing in bitcoin etc.

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September 03, 2018, 09:53:02 PM
 #11


This is a long advice and a long situation for
I see that you have a link and notice that it is long. For me you do not did this just to show people what you want to spread or show. You should know that you can paraphrase this and summarize everything because  it is verybery long  

I say this is an lettle diverse talk. Time? Yes is good and it is having discipline body is a good thing while getting rich fir discipline is a better move for better future. Financial education on every way that we could use it.

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September 03, 2018, 11:07:42 PM
 #12

I'm currently on the side of having every bit of free income invested in Bitcoin, purely because of the fact that there is so much upwards potential, that I would be stupid to not fully go for it.

I know there are risks to it, but I'm well willing to expose myself to these risks. I can openly say that without Bitcoin I wouldn't be that interested in economics and having something to focus on to better my financial position.

I would probably remain an average joe just working from 9 to 5 without any variance in life. In other words, I have a lot to thank Bitcoin for, and that in more ways than one. There just isn't a viable alternative.

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September 03, 2018, 11:33:18 PM
 #13

Quote
Fed up with their high-pressure jobs, some millennials are quitting and embracing the FIRE movement. (It stands for financial independence, retire early).

Carl Jensen experienced what he calls “the awakening” sometime around 2012.

He was a software engineer in a suburb of Denver, writing code for a medical device. The job was high-pressure: He had to document every step for the Food and Drug Administration, and a coding error could lead to harm or death for patients.

Mr. Jensen was making about $110,000 a year and had benefits, but the stress hardly seemed worth it. He couldn’t unwind with his family after work; he spent days huddled over the toilet. He lost 10 pounds.

After one especially brutal workday, Mr. Jensen Googled “How do I retire early?” and his eyes were opened. He talked to his wife and came up with a plan: They saved a sizable portion of their income over the next five years and drastically reduced expenses, until their net worth was around $1.2 million.

On Tuesday, March 10, 2017, Mr. Jensen called his boss and gave notice after 15 years at the company. He wasn’t quitting, exactly. He had retired. He was 43.

Hacking Your Way to Retirement

Although Mr. Jensen’s story may seem exceptional, a more modest version of the stockbroker who makes a killing on Wall Street and sails off to the Caribbean, he is part of a growing movement of young professionals who are intently focused on quitting their jobs forever.

Millennials especially have embraced this so-called FIRE movement — the acronym stands for financial independence, retire early — seeing it as a way out of soul-sucking, time-stealing work and an economy fueled by consumerism.

Followers of FIRE tend to be male and work in the tech industry, left-brained engineer-types who geek out on calculating compound interest over 40 years, or the return on investment (R.O.I.) on low-fee index funds versus real estate rentals.

Indeed, much of the conversation around FIRE, on Reddit message boards or blogs like Mr. Money Mustache, revolves around hacking one’s finances: strategies for increasing your savings rate to the hallowed 70 percent, tips for cheap travel through airline rewards cards, ways to save nickels and dimes at the grocery store.

Some practice “lean FIRE” (extreme frugality), others “fat FIRE” (maintaining a more typical standard of living while saving and investing), and still others “barista FIRE” (working part-time at Starbucks after retiring, for the company’s health insurance). To be “firing” is to slash one’s expenses to maximize saving while amassing income-generating investments sufficient to support oneself. To have “fired” is to have achieved that goal.

“A lot of people think you’re a new-age hippie,” said Mr. Jensen, who sold his four-bedroom, four-bathroom house, downsized to a more modest home and maxed-out retirement accounts while firing. “They can’t even wrap their minds around it.”

In retirement, Mr. Jensen and his wife and two daughters plan to live on roughly $40,000 a year generated from investments. Because his wife currently works, they have yet to draw on those accounts. But already, it’s a life rich on time but short on luxuries: Groceries are bought at Costco, car and home repairs are done by him.

“People always assume there’s an external circumstance: ‘Oh, you must have received an inheritance,’” Mr. Jensen said. “We’ve just chosen to live far below our means. That itself is a radical idea.”

Equally radical is opting out of the work force in your 30s or early 40s, a time of life when men and women are normally leaning into their careers, or, less happily, enduring the daily grind to pay the bills until Social Security kicks in.

Jason Long, a pharmacist in rural Tennessee who retired last year at the ripe old age of 38, said his father had a hard time understanding why Mr. Long couldn’t continue to work and collect his $150,000 salary.

But Mr. Long said he was deeply unhappy in his job, where over his career he witnessed drug costs skyrocketing, sick people battling with health insurers and the over-prescription of opioids and the resulting addiction crisis. His customers, angry, confused, financially stretched, often lashed out at the person behind the counter.

“There were days when I had 12- or 14-hour shifts where I didn’t use the restroom, where I didn’t eat, because so much work was piled up on me,” Mr. Long said.

Like Mr. Jensen, he had been saving a sizable portion of his income over the past decade, and he and his wife had a paid-for house and an investment portfolio worth a little more than $1 million. Why stick around?

“The reality is the numbers are there for me,” Mr. Long said. “To go to a job that’s making you miserable every day, it doesn’t make sense to pad the bank account at that point.”

Why These Millennials Hate Work
Quitting the rat race isn’t a new concept. From the Shakers of the 1700s to the back-to-the-land hippies of the 1960s and ’70s, a strain of Americans has always embraced simple living. One of the bibles of the FIRE movement, “Your Money or Your Life,” which teaches readers to reduce their spending and value time (or “life energy”) over material gain, was published in 1992.

But Vicki Robin, who wrote that financial guide with Joe Dominguez, said the FIRE crowd is a different breed of dropout than those in the ’90s. “Our aim was not just to have a whole bunch of people quit their jobs,” Ms. Robin said. “Our aim was to lower consumption to save the planet. We attracted longtime simple-living people, religious people, environmentalists.”

The FIRE adherents are, by contrast, “very numbers oriented, fascinated by the minutiae of taxes and accounting,” Ms. Robin said.

They are also benefiting from an lengthy bull run in the stock market and, in some cases, the privilege of class, race, gender and background. It’s difficult to retire at 40 if you work a minimum-wage job, say, or have crushing student-loan debt, or did not have the same opportunities as others because you grew up poor in a crime-ridden neighborhood.

But if, as Ms. Robin said, FIRE adherents “don’t have the aspirational part” of earlier generations, why are they so determined to quit the work force? Many millennials haven’t been working longer than a decade, if that.

It’s about having agency, Ms. Robin said: “The worker in this economy has very little sense of control over their existence. People are expendable. You’re a young person and you look ahead and you say, ‘What’s there for me?’”

That accurately describes how Kristy Shen and Bryce Leung felt. The married couple from Toronto became minor celebrities (and the target of online haters) when they retired from their tech jobs in 2015 to travel the world full time. They were in their early 30s at the time.

Ms. Shen’s wake-up moment came when she watched a fellow I.T. colleague collapse at his desk after clocking 14-hour days and get hauled away in an ambulance. For several years before that, she and Mr. Leung, following the path laid out by their parents, had tried to buy a house in Toronto’s ever-escalating real estate market.

But, Ms. Shen said, “It didn’t matter how much you saved, it was a goal post that kept moving. And I was seeing people stressed out paying their mortgages.”

Though they had good educations and well-paying jobs in the booming tech sector, Ms. Shen and Mr. Leung faced the looming threats of outsourcing and artificial intelligence, and had no hope of a retirement pension, or even that their employers would exist in five years.

At the same time, their jobs were all-consuming, their work hours basically 24-7. Rather than chain themselves to a costly mortgage, and therefore to high-pressure jobs, the couple decided to pour their money into an investment portfolio and peace out.

“The rule books our parents have given us is advice that’s perfect for 1970,” Ms. Shen said. “We have to throw out that rule book and write a new one.”

Mr. Leung spoke of the challenges his generation faces more bluntly. “We don’t have jobs that will take care of us,” he said. “We have to take care of ourselves.”

Go Where It’s Cheap

By ditching a big city, Ms. Shen and Mr. Leung exemplify another underlying reason for the popularity of FIRE: the high price of urban life, especially in places like New York and Southern California. There’s the insane housing prices, the high cost of child care, the temptations of so-called lifestyle creep.

“We were spending nearly $3,000 a month on rent, and that was considered a good deal,” said Scott Rieckens, 35, who, along with his wife, Taylor, 33, and their infant daughter until recently lived in Coronado, Calif., a pricey beach town across the bay from San Diego. “We made something like $160,000 between the two of us, but we didn’t have a whole lot left over.”

After hearing a podcast interview with Mr. Money Mustache, a.k.a., Pete Adeney, who The New Yorker called “the Frugal Guru” (he retired at 30), Mr. Rieckens became fired up. He told his wife they should ditch their leased BMW and quit eating out several nights a week.

But even with those lifestyle cuts, the couple couldn’t increase their savings rate substantially unless they relocated to a cheaper community, a deleveraging tactic the FIRE crowd calls “arbitrage.”

The idea, Mr. Adeney said, is “to reap the high salary” of a place like Silicon Valley, “then take that nest egg out to any of the thousands of nice, affordable cities and towns we have in this country and begin a second stage of life on your own terms.”

Ms. Rieckens, who works in recruiting, was initially reluctant to give up her BMW and beachy life and the prestige that went with it, until she saw a retirement calculator that showed they could retire in 10 years if they adopted FIRE and moved, or when they are 90 if they continued their upscale lifestyle in Coronado.

“I never paid attention to the finances, I thought it will all work out,” Ms. Rieckens said. “After I had a baby, I had stress around how I could spend more time with her. I was almost a slave to my job because of the way we were living.”

Last year, the couple left Southern California in search of a community that would give them more financial freedom, a journey Mr. Rieckens, formerly a creative director for a creative agency, is chronicling in a documentary, “Playing With FIRE.”

They ended up in Bend, Ore., where there’s no state sales tax and they could afford to buy a house. Gas for their used Honda CRV with 186,000 miles (they got rid of the BMW and downsized to one vehicle) is a dollar-per-gallon cheaper than in San Diego, although Mr. Rieckens often rides his bike around town.

“The whole retire early thing is unimportant to me. It’s more about gaining control of your time,” Mr. Rieckens said. “If you dive into the definition of retirement, what you’re retiring from is mandatory labor. It’s not necessarily about piña coladas on the beach.”

When You Retire Before Your Parents
A retirement that starts well before you go gray and lasts 40, 50 even 60 years is an anomaly in modern life. How do you fill all those days, months, decades?

On a recent weekday afternoon, Mr. Jensen was taking his two daughters, ages 8 and 11, to the Boulder County Fair. “I told them, ‘O.K., we’re going to wait until Thursday for half-price day,’” he said. “And by the way, we’re walking there. It’s two miles from our house.”

Fearing boredom, Mr. Jensen at first took on way too much, and he found it strange to be at the local rec center exercising alongside senior citizens, or shopping at empty big-box stores on a Tuesday. He also beat his own mother to retirement, which made for awkward family get-togethers.

But one year in, he has settled into his life of leisure, enjoying time spent raising his daughters, making sure they never see him vegging in front of the TV. Mr. Jensen also practices an activity that for many FIRE achievers seems to be the new golf: writing a financial advice blog.

Other FIRE retirees turned bloggers include Early Retirement Dude; the husband and wife behind Our Next Life; the Frugalwoods, a young married couple with children, who wrote a book about their transformation from suburban Boston high earners to retired Vermont homesteaders; and Ms. Shen and Mr. Leung, who when not traveling the world are calling for a Millennial Revolution (“Stop working, start living”).

It’s hardly surprising that a tech-savvy generation would proselytize on the internet. Also, blogging can provide the holy grail of early retirement, an additional income stream.

Perhaps Mr. Long, the pharmacist in rural Tennessee, has given the most detailed, thoughtful account of someone who has fired. In a series of posts to Reddit’s financial independence message board, Mr. Long chronicled with dry wit and self-effacement his first year in retirement.

One month into FIRE, he wrote of the guilt he felt spending money (on video games), and his concern that he would be over his household budget. He spent his days with family, at the gym, doing housework, exercising. He had no regrets so far: “I made the right decision. This is life.”

In the second month, Mr. Long reported a 2.8 percent increase to his portfolio over the first two months, even after living expenses, and listed his accomplishments as more reading, more cooking, volunteering and “faster Rubik’s cube solves.” Stress levels were way down, he wrote: “A friend of mine said the sense of dread from my face was gone.”

In the months that followed, he rewatched the mini-series “Roots,” lost all interest in talk of FIRE now that he had achieved it, feared a looming stock market crash, had nightmares that “I’m back at work and arguing with morons,” finished a marathon in a personal best sub-three hours, felt moments of social isolation, took a two-week road trip across the heartland, and went twice to the beach in Florida with his wife and watched their net reach its highest point, despite not working, which he attributed to “the passage of the tax cut for wealthy job creators like myself.”

Oh, and he started a blog.

“My life is so much better than it was before,” Mr. Long wrote seven months in. “I hope everyone here finds this peace.”

Speaking by phone, Mr. Long acknowledged it was possible that he’d simply burned out, that all of this FIRE stuff was just a needed break until he found a more satisfying career. When he was recently offered a job back in the pharmaceutical field, it induced a mild panic attack.

That morning, he’d woken up on his own, “not when an alarm clock told me that I had a responsibility.” He’d read the news online for 30 minutes, went on a seven-mile run, took a nap and “watched the ceiling fan spin around for a little bit.”

He had been watching the movies from They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They? a website that ranks what it calls the 1,000 greatest films. He’d watched 600 or so. He had work to do.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/01/style/fire-financial-independence-retire-early.html

....

This is a long piece on financial freedom, retiring early, advice on how to save money and the so-called "FIRE" movement(Financial Independence Retirement Early) which I've never heard of before today.

I wonder if there is a similar movement revolving around bitcoin and crypto? I know there are many buying lamborghinis living beyond their expected means for their age group, due to being early adopters of crypto.

Perhaps in the future we'll see a crossover of sorts where FIRE adherants and crypto join forces. lol

Maybe when he was living in a environment not like this it can happen, but for know thing got a little difficult for us to do that but we should never give up and also try to do it for ourselves.
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September 04, 2018, 12:39:15 AM
 #14

You need to do a lot of hardwork for you to be able to do this.Have investment.Engage in crypto.Join bitcoin forum.Know about cryptocurrency.Be wise in investing.And most of all, save, earn and invest.
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September 04, 2018, 01:57:03 AM
 #15

How many regular people  can save up 1.2 million dollars or more in just ten years, most people don't even get that kind of money from work in a whole work life.
Good for him that he had a good job with a nice salary, and he know how to save up, but for most people this is just not possible.
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September 04, 2018, 04:22:37 AM
Last edit: September 04, 2018, 04:35:01 AM by odolvlobo
 #16

How many regular people  can save up 1.2 million dollars or more in just ten years, most people don't even get that kind of money from work in a whole work life.
Good for him that he had a good job with a nice salary, and he know how to save up, but for most people this is just not possible.

Maybe not, but you don't have to save 1.2 million dollars.


If you spend half of your income and save the rest at 5% interest, then the yearly interest on your savings will be enough to pay for your spending after 16 years. So, if you save half of your income and are comfortable with your standard of living, then you can retire in 16 years, no matter how much you make. Of course if you save less, it will take longer. If you save 30%, it will take 26 years.

For every $10,000 income ...
Yearly Spending: $5000
Yearly Savings: $5000
Interest: 5%

YearSpendingInterestTotal Savings
1$5,000.00    $0.00  $5,000.00
2$5,000.00  $250.00 $10,250.00
3$5,000.00  $512.50 $15,762.50
4$5,000.00  $788.13 $21,550.63
5$5,000.00$1,077.53 $27,628.16
6$5,000.00$1,381.41 $34,009.56
7$5,000.00$1,700.48 $40,710.04
8$5,000.00$2,035.50 $47,745.54
9$5,000.00$2,387.28 $55,132.82
10$5,000.00$2,756.64 $62,889.46
11$5,000.00$3,144.47 $71,033.94
12$5,000.00$3,551.70 $79,585.63
13$5,000.00$3,979.28 $88,564.91
14$5,000.00$4,428.25 $97,993.16
15$5,000.00$4,899.66$107,892.82
16$5,000.00$5,394.64$118,287.46

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September 04, 2018, 08:59:21 AM
 #17

For every $10,000 income ...
Yearly Spending: $5000
Yearly Savings: $5000
Interest: 5%
<snip>


This looks nice and all, but you ignored inflation, which is a very important factor here. Assuming inflation at 2.5%, your interest effectively goes down from 5% to 2.5%, resulting in this:

Year   Spending      Interest     Total Savings
1    $5,000.00     $0.00     $5,000.00
2    $5,000.00     $125.00     $10,125.00
3    $5,000.00     $253.13     $15,378.13
4    $5,000.00     $384.45     $20,762.58
5    $5,000.00     $519.06     $26,281.64
6    $5,000.00     $657.04     $31,938.68
7    $5,000.00     $798.47     $37,737.15
8    $5,000.00     $943.43     $43,680.58
9    $5,000.00     $1,092.01     $49,772.59
10   $5,000.00     $1,244.31     $56,016.91
11   $5,000.00     $1,400.42     $62,417.33
12   $5,000.00     $1,560.43     $68,977.76
13   $5,000.00     $1,724.44     $75,702.21
14   $5,000.00     $1,892.56     $82,594.76
15   $5,000.00     $2,064.87     $89,659.63
16   $5,000.00     $2,241.49     $96,901.12

With median income for US of ~$45k (quick google search), that gives $10,087 annual interest, so less than half of what you need to maintain the same, frugal (dis)comfort of life, unless you manage to get better yield for your savings.

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September 04, 2018, 02:34:11 PM
 #18

This looks nice and all, but you ignored inflation, which is a very important factor here. Assuming inflation at 2.5%, your interest effectively goes down from 5% to 2.5%, resulting in this:
With median income for US of ~$45k (quick google search), that gives $10,087 annual interest, so less than half of what you need to maintain the same, frugal (dis)comfort of life, unless you manage to get better yield for your savings.

I purposely ignored inflation because it would add complication. On the other hand, a 5% return is on the low side. If you get 7.5% return with 2.5% inflation, you would be back on track.

BTW, you have shown how destructive inflation can be on retirement savings -- even at 2%, which the Fed considers to be "healthy".

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September 04, 2018, 02:40:28 PM
 #19

Or one could just sell their classy car they own to justify the life presented in the article.  Buy 100 eth and be doing nothing. A million dollars isnt rocket science. Its eth at $29,000 for a 100 coins, or the price of a honda accord new, which many people seem to own, yet so few a millionaire in 10 yrs.
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September 04, 2018, 04:28:32 PM
 #20

I highly doubt that this can be done in the current era. I mean people are earning loads of money everyday with the crypto currency but lets just be practical and think about the current situation of market, real life expenses and personal expenses. They are huge and any kind of amount you earn will have 50-60% of share will have spent on these expense. So you will have to earn 2x more to keep loading your bank accounts with huge money savings. Also, people will have to start their earnings as early as their 17's or 20's max so that in the next 10 years they can have billion in their account. I am sure that would be the money which they will need for their next 60-70 years if they wanna get retired by 30's.  Wink


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