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"Mr. Free at 33" - Anyone familiar?
Old 10-31-2019, 05:19 PM   #1
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"Mr. Free at 33" - Anyone familiar?

Last night I stumbled across a blogger named "Mr. Free at 33". He FIREd at age 33 and lives off the income his investments generate.

He had at the time of the articles I read a little over $400K in a basket of 125 dividend-producing stocks he calls his "FIRE Fund", which he lists here:

http://https://www.mrfreeat33.com/portfolio/

Said that investment provides him enough to live on (he's an ex-pat, though; I think he lives in Thailand).

This is where I got the idea for another post I wrote today, about using my IRA to generate enough income to live on. I was excited to FINALLY see someone actually doing it, and especially to see exactly what their investments are.

It gave me hope that I might be okay after all, even though our investments haven't quite reached $1M yet.

Has anyone followed Mr. Free at 33 (Justin Fieber is his real name)? Any thoughts on his strategy?
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Old 10-31-2019, 05:39 PM   #2
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I don't follow him.

It would seem easier, simpler, and safer to just buy a well-diversified low-cost stock index mutual fund rather than try to manage 125 individual stock positions. But he does have a higher dividend yield this way (3.4% vs. about 1.8% for VTSAX).

I think the idea of geographic arbitrage is worthwhile to consider. Depending on how leanFIRE he is, he may be limited in coming back to the US, which is something to consider.

Plenty of people here retired and living off their IRAs. Not too many doing it on only $400K, but that's basically the geographic arbitrage and buying higher dividend stocks.

I don't like when people hawk Personal Capital, but that's just a personal preference. Also not a fan of Motley Fool, which he recommends for stock picks.

I did read and like some of his articles, especially one on fitness.
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Old 10-31-2019, 05:52 PM   #3
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I don't follow him, but he's not unique. He's in a category many here refer to as "FERBs": Fake Early Retired Blogger.

Now don't get me wrong, maintaining some sort of side hustle in ER is fine, and you're still ER, but most of those folks like this dude seem to be making their retirement a business. They have a site, they have ads, they sell books on ER, or offer "coaching", or some other products. They've been featured in magazines (that means they do a lot of self- PR and pitching).

This one? Looks like he's spending at least half his time working that pitch, hardly passive.

That's not retired, that's self-employed.
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Old 10-31-2019, 06:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoReadyToRetire View Post
....

Has anyone followed Mr. Free at 33 (Justin Fieber is his real name)? Any thoughts on his strategy?
"Justin Fieber"? Made me look. Jason Fieber... carry on.
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Old 10-31-2019, 07:56 PM   #5
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I took a look..he used to write under the name "Dividend Mantra" about 5 or 6 years ago. If anyone read FIRE blogs back then they may recall him.
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Old 10-31-2019, 08:08 PM   #6
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I think it’s brilliant. I love unconventional success stories!
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Old 10-31-2019, 08:16 PM   #7
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The U.S. dollar lost about 10% value against Thai baht in the past year, I bet that he is working harder to make his ends meet.
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Old 11-01-2019, 05:01 PM   #8
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I've been reading his blog for a few years. He's a good guy, had a bit of a tough life growing up and worked hard to get where he is now including having the guts to up stakes and move overseas.

He is pretty free and open about details of his life in Thailand and admits the
good and the bad aspects. He's also very open about his finances and investing.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerides View Post
I don't follow him, but he's not unique.....
This one? Looks like he's spending at least half his time working that pitch, hardly passive. That's not retired, that's self-employed.
That's a fairly gross mischaracterization of him. Perhaps if you actually read some more of his stuff before offering sweeping generalizations....
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Me not free at 33
Old 11-01-2019, 06:35 PM   #9
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Me not free at 33

I didn't finish the Grind 'til 59.
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