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Old 05-29-2016, 06:01 PM   #41
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If you are a high earning engineer couple in the USA, it happens every day. Or an investment banker, or management consulting. That's what, 1% of the workforce? I did it in a much higher tax environment, as a single not-so-frugal person. A few others here did it as well.
Ahem. That's called statistically insignificant. Everybody here arguing against purplesky's position is only making his point for him. Or her.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:03 PM   #42
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purplesky - I wonder why their choices bother you so much. They don't sugar coat the challenges (having to live SUPER frugally - not buy into commercialism, etc.) But they point out there ARE choices. Not everyone needs 2 cars, a cuisinart, a juicer, jetski's, etc... You can *choose* to spend less and gain more free time.

I have no problem with the message. I wonder why you do? That's not snark - that's true curiousity - why does their discussion of the choices they made upset you so much?
I don't really care about this millennial couple specifically.

But I am annoyed that people are somehow buying into this perception or trend that you can work 10 years and just live off the savings.

As others have stated a very high income earner could do it but I think the media is doing great harm to the millennial generation by selling this lie to get web traffic.

Building wealth takes decades. Even at a 100k income level.

Its a marathon.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:10 PM   #43
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If you spend any time on the FinancialIndepedence sub-reddit, there ARE an awful lot of millennials who seem to have wildly unrealistic FI plans (e.g. amassing 400k and expecting that to carry them from 30-67 isn't uncommon). Pointing out that they may not be so fit and healthy at 50 as they are at 25, and living on $16K per year may get tiresome as they age isn't well-received.

That said, this couple doesn't strike as me that type. They've got a reasonable nest egg, with plans for additional income streams. Smart kids, with options to return to gainful employment if necessary. If anything, I'm a little envious at how unencumbered they are.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:31 PM   #44
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I don't really care about this millennial couple specifically.

But I am annoyed that people are somehow buying into this perception or trend that you can work 10 years and just live off the savings.

As others have stated a very high income earner could do it but I think the media is doing great harm to the millennial generation by selling this lie to get web traffic.

Building wealth takes decades. Even at a 100k income level.

Its a marathon.
Try $300k-400k. If you make that much, most likely you live in a high COL. Some of my renters make that much, plus stock options, some from FANG companies. They are still renting, granted they own a small home, in not so nice area with good school district. But they are in their 40s, Berkeley grads for Haas and engineering. Not easy.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:38 PM   #45
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If you spend any time on the FinancialIndepedence sub-reddit, there ARE an awful lot of millennials who seem to have wildly unrealistic FI plans (e.g. amassing 400k and expecting that to carry them from 30-67 isn't uncommon). Pointing out that they may not be so fit and healthy at 50 as they are at 25, and living on $16K per year may get tiresome as they age isn't well-received.

That said, this couple doesn't strike as me that type. They've got a reasonable nest egg, with plans for additional income streams. Smart kids, with options to return to gainful employment if necessary. If anything, I'm a little envious at how unencumbered they are.
If I had to guess, I would say for some with the $400K life will indeed probably work out as planned and they will be fine anyway, and some will get divorced during a down market, assets cut in half from the market and half from the divorce, be on disability for some reason or another, not much SS because of a lack of work years and end up in a panic in their old age. I know real people the panic part has happened to, or something very similar. It is not always a choice to go back to a high paying career exactly when one needs the money either because of health, age, rusty job skills or some combination. So as the saying goes, make hay while the sun shines.

I can see the other side as well, though. I would just go for more of a balance. I'm a big fan of consuming less and downshifting. I wish we'd done that years sooner ourselves. Personally, I would just put more pad in my plan than many of these bloggers seem to do.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:45 PM   #46
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I get that there's a fantastical element to ER at 30 that is marketed... but it's TINY compared to the fantastical element that buying big houses, big cars and new stuff will make you happier, sexier and better. So let's be intellectually honest about where the loudest message is coming from.

A big part of ER at 30-40 is luck. Luck you are born in a safe country with good infrastructure. Luck that you don't have terrible things happen to you early. Luck in the market. Etc
But.. there are many well documented example of people who went from 0 to retirement in 10 years with fairly normal incomes. Yes... they got lucky and yes they made hard choices but it's not a fantasy... it's math.

If you save 50% of your post tax income for 10-15 years and you get an average market performance then assuming the next 80 years support a 3-4% withdrawal rate, you can retire fairly safely. People can argue whether or not it's possible in practical terms but the math is fact based. Mathematically it's totally possible. Period.

People can also argue that no one can actually do it and anyone who claims it is lying. That's fine, we can't know what people do behind the scenes but it's interesting that there's a general assumption of deceit while there's easy acceptance the other way.

People will also debate how much people need a year to live on but that is also a HUGE range. There are people who can barely get by on 150k and there are people who live decently on 40k. I think there is a minimum but it's VERY diverse.

My goal in sharing the article was to show that there's a huge education gap in what actions are needed to retire early beyond luck. Mostly they deal with not scaling your cost of living prioritizing saving, simplifying investments and managing taxes and fees. I would replace my 4 year degree with that information at the age of 22 all day long and I am confident if people generally behaved that way the % of early financially independent people would be much higher.

I'd WAY rather have young people living frugally and saving more chasing an early retirement goal than spending every penny and buying lots of useless stuff chasing a happiness goal... the second seems WAY less real to me...

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Old 05-29-2016, 07:09 PM   #47
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I get that there's a fantastical element to ER at 30 that is marketed... but it's

My goal in sharing the article was to show that there's a huge education gap in what actions are needed to retire early beyond luck. Mostly they deal with not scaling your cost of living prioritizing saving, simplifying investments and managing taxes and fees. I would replace my 4 year degree with that information at the age of 22 all day long and I am confident if people generally behaved that way the % of early financially independent people would be much higher.

I'd WAY rather have young people living frugally and saving more chasing an early retirement goal than spending every penny and buying lots of useless stuff chasing a happiness goal... the second seems WAY less real to me...

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Can I ask you some thing though? at 22 you would have done it?? when I was in my 20's people had pensions, I remember hearing about IRA's in the early 80's but my parents definitely did not have one and my first job out of college, teaching for the city on NY there were no 401K's

Sorry, while I don't think I need "stuff", no way was I going to be happy ever living in my car just to save money.



So for me I want my son's to be middle of the road, yes I want them to live below their means but i also don't want my daughter in law schleping a baby down 2 flights of steps to do laundry because they don't want to burn electricity to dry clothes.

I enjoyed my young adult years. I'm glad my sister and I splurged for orchestra seats to see my favorite Broadway play for my 30th birthday. My mother in law is a huge Barbra Streisand fan so we'll splurge and get 3 ( my sister in law and I are splitting the bill) tickets at 500 bucks a pop when she comes to Philly in August


I really just don't understand the objective behind these articles, are they suppose to be "motivational"
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Old 05-29-2016, 07:18 PM   #48
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People are into "extremes" now, the more extreme the better.

Man retires at 50 - so what?

Man retires at 30 - Fantastic!
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Old 05-29-2016, 07:22 PM   #49
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I'm not sure if I would have or not. Probably not. But then I forgot most stuff I learned in college too

I also would not live how they live. But that's separate from whether it's objectively OK or not (I think people should live how they feel satisfied... even my own kids) or if it's possible.

I think what one person loves and needs another hates and avoids.

As for why the article is written... obviously to drive readership to the paper... that's why all articles are written . So if the bar for an article being written is non commercial information there isn't much worth reading .

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Old 05-30-2016, 04:59 AM   #50
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How this couple saved $1 million and retired in their 30s Summary: It's the story of freedomwithbruno.com (if you follow that blog at all) who are an early 30s couple that went from debt to ER. The article is decent... nothing amazing... the COMMENTS are gold. It reminds me that most of America (and probably the world) believes that it's impossible to save money unless you are living in misery and that someone actually not upgrading their life and spending every penny is somehow nuts. I tend to frequent ER sites and talk to many ER people so I forget what the "normal" world looks like.
This couple is just taking a break from their careers. They probably hated SF and its HCOL. I notice they've picked a tech hub with a relatively LCOL for their next gig. I'll bet they next announce a pregnancy and one parent stays home (and maintains their blog) while the other takes on a new job. Perhaps they'll swap off.
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Old 05-30-2016, 05:12 AM   #51
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I don't know why people make the assumption that they are about to get jobs again or that they're being disingenuous. As for getting traffic to your site... that seems like smart business move to me. Companies do it all the time and I don't see why people are quick to judge that they're kinda faking it.

Their last update was may 15th and they talk in detail about how they ended up paying cash because getting a moetgage without a normal job is tough, etc.

If they planned on getting work why would they do that? Seems like a pretty expensive ruse to get a few thousand clicks?

I just see them as a couple of people that are trying to make early retirement work and they are sharing their journey.

They aren't preaching to anyone, selling anything or give me a sense that it's a big trick or scam or advertisement.

Don't really understand the negativity. Why is what they are doing and writing so bad? Why do people assume they are either lying or will fail?

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Old 05-30-2016, 06:31 AM   #52
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Cool FIRE article in MSN Money

Purplesky does a good job of turning up the contrast. Not to say that it can't be done, there are always 6 sigma occurrences that we can point to ... These articles generally mislead an entire generation.

Perhaps they are meant to make people feel bad.. Or somehow inspire them by shame.

But generally the portrayal of the full situation and reality of it is incorrect.

for those in the mainstream ( let alone those money savvy people on this early retire forum) who actually did FIRE in 30s and 40s, we know what it takes and this article is sensationalizing the path, the likelihood and lifestyle -- shame on media for that.

no way do I believe that they are "done" working.

long term success without a return to work ( or juicy blog income) is highly improbable on 1M at their young age to finance a 50 or 60 year retirement.
Hell, They weren't even born in the 1970s to know inflation.

If they were to post in young dreamers with a "I have a 15 year old Toyota and 1 million, can I retire at age 32" question, the response would be that it's maybe possible but generally not high probability of success . It will require extreme low cost of living and no inflation and no major life hiccups for 60 years. Not likely.

Now, even right here on ER , We have a few well respected frequent posters on here who do it. Similar age. Similar nest egg. Similar low cost of living. They even have kids.

But in fairness, they do work - they write a blog for extra income. It covers a large part of their needed spend. Portfolio drawdown is minimal.

The blog and side hustle income can be 35-45k per year, damn near the average HH income of the USA.

They also rely on large ACA subsidies and Medicaid for their kids. Those handouts are lets just say "fragile".

Some choose a "strategic" default on their debt obligations.

Maybe the definition of retired is just that they can do what we want - downshift significantly, live in their car in Costa Rica, write a blog for income, not have kids (for a few more years), use Taiwan healthcare, etc etc.

I think it's gonna just be a sabbatical unless the blog really takes off.
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Old 05-30-2016, 06:40 AM   #53
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I understand the annoyance with clickbait articles, but the negativity towards these folks on a board dedicated to early retirement is disheartening to me. So, retiring at 50 is OK, but 30 is too young. What is the "acceptable" number? How is criticizing the 35yo ER OK, but the 50yo is not?

I spend a lot of time over on the MMM boards, and there's a lot of people that align with this young couple. Some of them are obviously too naive about their expenses and their goals are pie-in-the-sky, but most of them have a very good grasp on what their living expenses are, what they will willingly give up, and what they value. The drive and attention to detail that propels someone to retire in their 30s doesn't just stop when they quit their jobs - they keep tracking expenses and portfolio, and willingly adjust as needed to mitigate the sequence-of-returns risk. They're not stupid, for god's sake.

Articles like this may present a false impression of it being "easy" to retire in your 30s, but I'd rather have them inspire a 20-something to start saving and investing than have yet another fluff piece on the latest trend in cars/clothes/stuff.

And the foolish will always be foolish, regardless of what windmill they choose to tilt at.
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Old 05-30-2016, 06:43 AM   #54
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I don't know why people make the assumption that they are about to get jobs again or that they're being disingenuous."

Because MOST people love to look for the worm in the apple....


And it seems to me that EVERYONE is suspicious today....always an ulterior motive, a scheme, a gimmick, a get-rich-quick scam, or a pervert hiding in the weeds.....

Give it one more generation.....everyone will be behind a screen and human face to face interaction will be completely dead.

I've noticed that I too have become way more suspicious and reclusive in my old(er) age(60).......but I still try to live and let live.....
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Old 05-30-2016, 06:58 AM   #55
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Additional funds will be needed because its just another early retirement millennial fantasy.
Haven't looked . . . but I'll guess that if I can pimp my blog traffic I won't be needing additional funds. I'm kind of retired . . . I just have to tell people about it and sell my story.
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Old 05-30-2016, 07:00 AM   #56
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I understand the annoyance with clickbait articles, but the negativity towards these folks on a board dedicated to early retirement is disheartening to me. So, retiring at 50 is OK, but 30 is too young. What is the "acceptable" number? How is criticizing the 35yo ER OK, but the 50yo is not?



.

Yep. The difference is people here are actually fired and know what it takes. MMM tends to be dreamers and aspirationals, many of whom are not there yet.

As the saying goes: Once you've walked the path, the capability to critique others plans based on life knowledge grows exponentially. So too With age comes wisdom.

Good news is there are lots of millennials now who will read fortune magazine and believe this stuff.
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Old 05-30-2016, 07:14 AM   #57
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I have no problem with the message. I wonder why you do? That's not snark - that's true curiousity - why does their discussion of the choices they made upset you so much?
I can't respond for purplesky, but I have a problem with it because I believe it's deceitful.

Retirement in most people's mind has a meaning -- that meaning normally doesn't include having to curate your life online and sell advertising and affiliate links to support your "retirement."

Essentially it's about honesty. I would have no problem if it was promoted as we've become professional bloggers and travel the world. But they sell a story called "retirement" not "save your money for 15 years and semi-retire while you supplement your income through a blog and live frugally."

Those really are two different things.
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Old 05-30-2016, 07:15 AM   #58
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Because at 30 you have not contribute to SS, at 50, you have contributed to SS. It's not just for your sake but for everybody's sake. I think if you retire young, you might need a lot more in asset. I'm not sure $1M is enough at 30. It maybe enough at 50. It's ok to retire if you are burnt out, but it's not a goal, I hope it's not for lots of people. Otherwise we're doomed. People need to contribute to shore up SS.
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Old 05-30-2016, 07:27 AM   #59
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If I read the article correctly, they started working in the US in 2008 and retired last year, so they likely lack enough quarters to qualify for SS. If that matters to them and they really are retired now, that is one reason to return to work for a few years, but it sounds like they likely have enough earned income in their "retirement" to pay into SS. Sure, why not, call it retired if they want to.
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Old 05-30-2016, 08:22 AM   #60
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If I read the article correctly, they started working in the US in 2008 and retired last year, so they likely lack enough quarters to qualify for SS.
There's a special treaty with Canada to allow Canadian work history count for US SS (and vice versa I think).

Quote:
When a U.S. benefit becomes payable as a result of counting both U.S. and Canadian Social Security credits, an initial benefit is determined based on your U.S. earnings as if your entire career had been completed under the U.S. system. This initial benefit is then reduced to reflect the fact that Canadian credits helped to make the benefit payable.
from https://www.ssa.gov/international/Ag...ts/canada.html
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