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Old 09-20-2010, 07:02 PM   #41
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I agree with Seabourne's point #3 below. Living frugally has made it possible for me to save $100k+/year in (very) good years.

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3. living well below my means (~50% gross or less)
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:16 PM   #42
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We aren't FI yet, but I don't think that having a kid necessarily endangers FIRE. By the time we had our son, we had already saved a decent amount and had a lot of equity built up in our home. I started saving with my first 'real' job @ age 20. Our savings rate increased at age 28 when I got married and we had our kid when I turned 33, so that is 13 years of savings.

Now, we save only marginally less than before we had our son. Food is only a small added expense. Day care is expensive, about $800/month for us, but that should be a temporary expensive once he's only enough for [public] school. True we will be spending more on activities and on travel as he gets older, but we won't have daycare expense either. As with everything, there are more frugal ways to do things that don't break the bank. We didn't go crazy buying the $1000 stroller for him. So far the biggest expense was the loss in pay when DW stayed home, but even that was somewhat mitigated by the huge amount of sick days she saved up for maternity leave.

By the time he's close to college, we expect to have more than enough to fund that huge expense (with appropriate safeguards so he doesn't blow it!) We are going to start trying for our 2nd kid.
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:38 PM   #43
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All the math and advice to LBYM is great. I did some of this myself. But why do you want to retire early? Do you hate work? It would be a shame if you spent the next decade hating your job and living frugally just to reach the NUMBER. Find something you like to do and hopefully pays well. Make sensible economic choices. Spend some now and save some. I worked at a job I loved and payed reasonably well. I am retiring at 55 but this whole retirement thing just snuck up on me recently. I feel grateful that I had a satisfying work life and that now I can enjoy ER.
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:48 PM   #44
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I didn't even start to calculate NW till I was over 40. I estimate I was between 200 and 300 K in my late 30s. It helped being a physician and starting my career free of debt. I come from what was then a less materialistic country than the US. I had many years of postgraduate training, ending at age 37. During all that time I was not earning a lot and didn't have the time or inclination to spend the excess. By the time I started earning the big(ger) bucks, I was a diehard LBYMer.
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Old 09-20-2010, 08:03 PM   #45
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At 33 I was a single Mom with two kids to raise . That is when I realized I had better get my act togther . I started having money going right from my paycheck to savings so I never realy missed it and with each raise I upped the amount . I made $60,000 in my highest earning years but the saving combined with living way below my means paid off . It also helped that my second husband was also a saver .My advice would be start saving early and avoid divorce.
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Old 09-20-2010, 08:42 PM   #46
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We're both 33 and just reached the $200,000 mark a few months back.

Same story as others. We save about 50% of take-home, have very few wants, decent paying jobs. Husband as a truck driver. He made most of his money before we were married (2 years ago), doing full-time long-haul. High pay, minimal expenses then.
I made most of my money prior to marriage by buying and selling two houses at the right times. I didn't have that much cash in the bank, but we switched to renting when we married so that equity translated to savings.

We were always both frugal.
After marriage, the combined income and only slightly higher expenses = financial win. We're also DINKs.

We are actually putting FIRE on hold for now since we've both returned to school full time for complete career changes. Money in the bank sure makes that easier.
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:01 PM   #47
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But why do you want to retire early? Do you hate work?
Honestly yes. I'd say its part apathy part boredom. I know I don't want kids. I live with my girlfriend that has a 4 yo from another guy and her behavior has confirmed my theory that 1.humans are bascially...well lets just say difficult to deal with (no offense to anyone here and since I'm new I'll bite my tongue) and 2.we don't need anymore things that consume other things on this planet. To me its too much waste.
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:10 PM   #48
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Honestly yes. I'd say its part apathy part boredom. I know I don't want kids. I live with my girlfriend that has a 4 yo from another guy and her behavior has confirmed my theory that 1.humans are bascially...well lets just say difficult to deal with (no offense to anyone here and since I'm new I'll bite my tongue) and 2.we don't need anymore things that consume other things on this planet. To me its too much waste.
Oh boy. Another shot fired in the kids/no kids war. Skirmish to follow...
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:43 PM   #49
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Honestly yes. I'd say its part apathy part boredom. I know I don't want kids. I live with my girlfriend that has a 4 yo from another guy and her behavior has confirmed my theory that 1.humans are bascially...well lets just say difficult to deal with (no offense to anyone here and since I'm new I'll bite my tongue) and 2.we don't need anymore things that consume other things on this planet. To me its too much waste.
I guess my point is that whether you are working or not working/retired (I think) you should focus on leading a fulling life. If you can't do that in the working world then it puts in doubt that you will be able to do it when you retire. Isn't there some saying like - "Do what you love . . . the money will follow"?
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:04 PM   #50
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+1 Don't think you will make it being miserable/bored/unhappy with your job & life for 10 years or possibly more. It is not a race to the finish line, but how well you run it as well....

I think your NW is quite impressive at your age, but no matter how hard one tries, the future is hard to predict and even more than one can begin to guess. Setting goals is good but try not to let it get in the way of your present happiness either.

My personal NW at your age was probably only about 20K, if that, far less than your own position. But Like MartyP - I did enjoy my work and kept open minded about opportunities, following my heart. I could never have planned or guessed the eventual outcomes of the path I followed, but somehow by accident on purpose, it provided more than enough $$ to retire on.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:42 PM   #51
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All the math and advice to LBYM is great. I did some of this myself. But why do you want to retire early? Do you hate work? It would be a shame if you spent the next decade hating your job and living frugally just to reach the NUMBER. Find something you like to do and hopefully pays well. Make sensible economic choices. Spend some now and save some. I worked at a job I loved and payed reasonably well. I am retiring at 55 but this whole retirement thing just snuck up on me recently. I feel grateful that I had a satisfying work life and that now I can enjoy ER.
For me, I wanted to retire early because I hated the commute. I mean HATED. The whole process of getting up, scrambling around, racing for a train, being nauseous and tired and depressed, even only 2 or 3 days a week (I worked P/T in my last 7 years), was too much for me.

Also, I had recaptured my personal life with stuff I was doing when I was working P/T, and working was becoming a nuisance to trying to schedule my midweek, midday activities.

Once I saw that I could cash in my company stock and find a way to live off its dividends while keeping my ER expenses under control, I planned to retire once those things converged - and they did in late 2008.
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Old 09-21-2010, 06:26 AM   #52
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+1 Don't think you will make it being miserable/bored/unhappy with your job & life for 10 years or possibly more. It is not a race to the finish line, but how well you run it as well....

I think your NW is quite impressive at your age, but no matter how hard one tries, the future is hard to predict and even more than one can begin to guess. Setting goals is good but try not to let it get in the way of your present happiness either.

My personal NW at your age was probably only about 20K, if that, far less than your own position. But Like MartyP - I did enjoy my work and kept open minded about opportunities, following my heart. I could never have planned or guessed the eventual outcomes of the path I followed, but somehow by accident on purpose, it provided more than enough $$ to retire on.
Again, like I said that is not my net worth. The point of thread was to see how others accumulated such massive wealth is their 20's and 30's. I agree with you about work/life/happiness, but sometimes you are in a situation that is hard to get out of.
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Old 09-21-2010, 06:28 AM   #53
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I guess my point is that whether you are working or not working/retired (I think) you should focus on leading a fulling life. If you can't do that in the working world then it puts in doubt that you will be able to do it when you retire. Isn't there some saying like - "Do what you love . . . the money will follow"?
Yeah, I've heard it and its a BROAD saying-all things to all people, is just doesn't work. There are things in this world that I would love to do, but unfortunately making a living off of them is the biggest issue.
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Old 09-21-2010, 08:37 AM   #54
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We crossed $100K in the year 2000 - when I was 32 and DH was 36. This was all due to DH investing in his 401K from the time he got out of college. We also started investing in Roth's in 2000.

We continued that strategy and aggessively paid off our student loans over the next 4 years (not prudent financially but emotionally we just wanted them GONE). By 2004 our networth had grown to just under $300K.

In 2005 we downsized from a big house to a townhouse. Realized between no student loans and a smaller mortgage that we had a bunch of extra cash...so we opened our taxable account in 2006 (continuing Roth's and 401K).

We completely invest my salary, much of DH's, and live off what we need from DH's salary. Savings have continued to grow over the years (and wane with the market losses, but that's part of the game.)

So keys are investing from an early age, using Roth's and taxable accounts in addition to 401K's, and most importantly, live WAY below your means. You need a lot less than you think. Plus, it's fun to be a bit unconventional compared to your peers.
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:18 PM   #55
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All the math and advice to LBYM is great. I did some of this myself. But why do you want to retire early? Do you hate work? It would be a shame if you spent the next decade hating your job and living frugally just to reach the NUMBER. Find something you like to do and hopefully pays well. Make sensible economic choices. Spend some now and save some. I worked at a job I loved and payed reasonably well. I am retiring at 55 but this whole retirement thing just snuck up on me recently. I feel grateful that I had a satisfying work life and that now I can enjoy ER.
I'm 38 YO and hope to be FI in my early 40's. I'm not sure if I want to RE. Who can predict how they will feel 5 years in the future?

My motivations are CHOICE and SECURITY.

CHOICE

I'd like the ability to pursue a different line of work or industry. This might mean accepting a big drop in compensation. Part time in any case would be a very nice balance between work/play.

SECURITY

I don't want to be reliant on Mega Corp. I've seen too many people laid off. The high pay is nice but the j*b security stinks these days.
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:37 PM   #56
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Again, like I said that is not my net worth. The point of thread was to see how others accumulated such massive wealth is their 20's and 30's. I agree with you about work/life/happiness, but sometimes you are in a situation that is hard to get out of.
Looks like your net worth is up there above a half million?? Assets that you have stated are around $650,000, so unless you have a ton of debt, that means that you have accumulated a good bit of wealth somehow.

My story is pretty simple I think. I'm 30 now, DW may be a little older (she's 29 again). DW and I bought a modest house at 23 while we were still in school. Had a couple kids since then. We save roughly 60% of our incomes. We pay almost nothing in income taxes. We live below our means pretty well (our basic expenses for our family are in the 20-24k range, maybe another 5-10k for vacations, luxuries, car replacement, etc).

We are very value conscious consumers, which has led to our savings rate being high. I scrimp and save in areas that we don't really care that much about. The focus has always been on growing the net worth and making decisions that would lead to net worth growth over the long term.

Our net worth is somewhere in the half million dollar area.
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:01 PM   #57
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Looks like your net worth is up there above a half million?? Assets that you have stated are around $650,000, so unless you have a ton of debt, that means that you have accumulated a good bit of wealth somehow.
ARGHH
Guys like I said (3rd time now) that IS NOT MY NW. That was an example from another poster, NOT ME.
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:02 PM   #58
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I'm 38 YO and hope to be FI in my early 40's. I'm not sure if I want to RE. Who can predict how they will feel 5 years in the future?

My motivations are CHOICE and SECURITY.

CHOICE

I'd like the ability to pursue a different line of work or industry. This might mean accepting a big drop in compensation. Part time in any case would be a very nice balance between work/play.

SECURITY

I don't want to be reliant on Mega Corp. I've seen too many people laid off. The high pay is nice but the j*b security stinks these days.
I Agree 100%
Well put FreqFlyer
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:26 PM   #59
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ARGHH
Guys like I said (3rd time now) that IS NOT MY NW. That was an example from another poster, NOT ME.
Oh, ok, I got it now! I thought when you were saying you had not posted your NW, you were just saying you had not posted your liabilities, but that the other facts you had laid out did pertain to your own situation.

You said "My question was how this happened:" in post #13. You were just quoting someone else's post and not recounting your own financial status. That makes sense now. I was curious why you would need explanation of how one can acquire 200-300k NW by their 30's if you had done it yourself.

Just for clarity's sake, you may want to put quoted text in quotes, or italicize it, or use the [ quote ] blah blah blah [ / quote ] tags to make it clear you are quoting someone.
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:29 PM   #60
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ARGHH
Guys like I said (3rd time now) that IS NOT MY NW. That was an example from another poster, NOT ME.
Perhaps one of the mods can correct the post?
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