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Buckle Up and Enjoy the FIRE Journey
Old 06-25-2017, 07:24 PM   #1
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Buckle Up and Enjoy the FIRE Journey

=Hey guys!

Just discovered this forum a week ago, read through a bunch of threads and it seems there is great information on this site with some experienced members.

Going to post my situation and thoughts, if anyone has any advice or tips I'd love to hear them. Planning on updating NW and mindset change itt yearly and on any major milestones. Thinking it will be a cool way to document my journey on my road to FIRE.

Age: 27 - Turning 28 in October.
Single, no DW or kids.
Salary: $83,000/year with 10% target bonus.
Investing: Max out Traditional 401(k) @ $18,000/year Vanguard, bimonthly deposit and 4% employer match. Max out Roth IRA @ $5,500/year Vanguard, bimonthly deposit. Rest into Vanguard brokerage account, deposit when excess cash gets to $4,000-$5,000. HSA maxing out @ $3,400/year+$31.25x24 employer contribution. Employer also quarterly matches 2.5% of salary into employee retirement account.
NW: $156,000 - Including 2014 Subaru Impreza 45k miles bought cash @ 21k OTD, estimating 11k current value (probably low estimate but I'm planning on driving it for at least the next decade).
Cash: $21,000 - 13.5k in 'high' yield savings account at 1.05% APY as emergency fund. Equates to EF of 6ish months.
Total Investments: $123,500
Roth IRA: $36,400 in 100%VTSAX.
401(k): $53,000 in 27%CompanyStock / 73%TargetRetirement2055.
ERA: $8,100 in 100%TargetRetirement2055.
HSA: $3,600 will invest it once account reaches 10k.
Brokerage Account: $26,100 in 60%VFIAX (S&P500) / 40%VTSAX (total U.S. stock fund).
Debt: None.

*Did you know 'bimonthly' means twice a month AND every other month? Lol, ffs who let that slip through the cracks? My case means twice a month.

One question I have is what is the main difference between VTSAX and S&P500 funds? I know the fundamental difference as VTSAX is all tradable U.S. companies and S&P is top 500 companies in USA but which fund is best for my situation and why is what I'm getting at.

Monthly Nut - Burn Rate
~$2000-2400/mo
Rent: $830/mo including parking.

I live in Chicago and enjoy living here. It is a bit more pricey and higher taxes and cost of living than other areas but I'm fine with that. Do not want to buy a place in the city as I'm not wanting to live here forever and the city of Chicago is broke so I don't trust buying a place here.

I have always been frugal and LBMM. I'm not a cheap skate and I do splurge from time to time but on the big items I'm pretty financially smart. Owe most of that to my parents who are both engineers so we always had enough money growing up. My dad is more investment savvy as I've taught my mom more investment strategy in the past couple few months than she previously knew. She always saved but more w**ked for money than thinking it could w**k for her. They are almost 60, still w**king, 2.5 million in investment accounts, own house @~350k and condo @~300k, 0 debt. They do not rent the condo out, use it for vacation and let family use it whenever. They will be fine but just keep w**king as they like it. I owe SOOOOOO much to them, great childhood and they paid for my college which let me start investing right out of school.

Discovered the FIRE community around 4 months ago after a certain (arguably most famous?) blogger was interviewed on a self improvement podcast I love (am I allowed to say who it was? Want to share info but don't want to get banned on my first post for seeming like I'm trying to give free advertisement lol). After that I ran my own numbers, and realized I could reach an early exit fairly easily. Started reading a ton of the blogs, maybe 6 of them and all the good posts to absorb any info that could help me and then found this site. Always maxed out IRA and did minimum 10% 401k contribution since starting work but kinda just spent the rest as I knew I was doing better than most. I did buy a new car straight cash homie (my old Ford ZX2 died) so not like I was blowing my money on strippers and scratch offs. Kicked up to max 401k, max HSA, and opened brokerage account beginning of this year after discovering FIRE. Was simply lucky (or maybe my uncle told me) to invest with Vanguard and pick basic index funds starting out that I'd pick again if I had to do it again starting over. I realized the power of compound interest early and read some investing/financial books during college and at the beginning of my career. Upon realizing early retirement was a possibility, I started trying to cut back on things I don't need. Pretty easy to do as I already have all the toys I want right now, built my own computer, PS4, good home theater system with projector, and a Foosball table where most would put a dining room table are enough to satisfy my 'rich itch' for the time being. Other than the occasional video game and new pair of boxing gloves I only have 1 item on my shopping list so I should be able to keep expenses down and investments up. I do need a new mattress and bed setup, the one I have now I started sleeping on in middle school lol. Rocking a queen mattress as a 12 year old was great.

Investing Mindset
I'm fine with being super aggressive early on. Own mostly stocks as shown above. Have talked about starting a business with my brothers (they're 23 & 24) owning/renting real estate but not sure if we're going to start that, we're all in different locations so stock ownership may be my main investment bucket. Hoping the market drops earlier in my investing career (opposed to later, ideally it would never drop lol), if it happened I'd dump my emergency account plus whatever else I could into the market and rebuild the emergency fund as the market recovered.

I'm going to hold almost all stocks as long as I have a paycheck. When I'm close to FIREing I'm thinking I will either shift a % into a bond index or keep something like 3-5 years in cash in case the market drops, I can use the cash while the market recovers and then top back off after the correction to avoid burning the value off during a recession. Maybe a combo of the two above.
After FIREing I'm going to use cash and brokerage to fund living expenses while rolling over a portion of my Traditional IRA (rolled over from 401k) into my Roth every year to stay in a low tax bracket but still have access to retirement funds before 59.5 without paying the penalty. After my brokerage account runs out tap the deposits from Roth IRA as you can touch them after 5 years? Am I on the right track with this thought process?

I'm thinking we're due for a correction shortly, maybe this year maybe in 4, but the P/E ratio is the second highest it's ever been and household debt and consumer debt are rising. That coupled with the third longest stretch between recessions make me think one is on the horizon. Thoughts?

Another question I have is should I save up a bit of money that should go into brokerage account or continue to invest every $4k mark? I know no one can tell me where the market will be in 3 years but with 401k and IRA deposits on autopilot I'm wondering if I should 'save' for a market dip and dump money in then as it is at an all time high or just keep chugging along and investing on a set frequency?

Why I Want To Retire
I want to retire early to improve on things I enjoy. I like my job but don't want to w**k for megacorp forever. The company I w**k for is a good one but don't want to rely on a paycheck. I am an engineer and do interesting w**k and like the people I w**k with but being stuck in a cubicle is getting old after 4 years, can't imagine doing it to age 65. I also hate performance evaluations and office politics (admittedly they are low where I work). I do not enjoy waking up at 5:30am either.

A long way from hitting this retirement to -do list but it goes something like this, travel, poker (more on this below), piano lessons (took them for 10 years as a kid, I'm good but want to get even better. I've written 1 song and want to compose more), guitar lessons (I suck), MMA/jiu-jitsu, read more books. I think growing cannabis and/or homebrewing would be a cool hobby to pick up too pending it's legal and everything when I FIRE. If I have kids I'd be very thankful if I could show they are my #1 priority and stay at home to be with them and raise them in the best possible way. Getting to FIRE would be the best way to make that a reality.

I'm assuming most members of this site are not poker players and initial reaction of most is it's lumped in with slots and table games where you gamble against the house and are statistically going to lose. Poker you play against other people and is more like a game of chess than blackjack. While there is luck, over the long run if you make the correct decisions and have a large enough bankroll to ride out the variance you will make money, kinda like the stock market! I am a proven winner (height of my semi-pro career made 10k in a year) and could probably aim to at least make grocery money post retirement. I have 3 friends who are professional poker players - Yes, that's all they do for income. Gives me an outlet to early retirement income and could play part time so it's not a constant grind if I want to take a month off. I'm not planning on relying on it, thinking of it more like SS, if it's there when I retire, great, bonus income. I'm not playing as much poker right now as most of my efforts are going toward improving in MMA, 1 year in and really enjoying it. While I enjoy poker, playing/studying/watching training vids, I don't know where the game will be a decade from now and I have this path through megacorp to secure myself forever financially I just can't make the leap yet to go full on professional.

Not relying on SS or any inheritance although both are a possibility. If I get them, great. Will reassess and go from there if it happens.

Pros About Me Financially
- I live with 2 roommates, helps with rent. They are great guys and we get along well, hope to keep it going for a while, lived with one of them in college and we both ended up moving to Chicago.
- I walk to the grocery store and walk to the gym, benefits of city living
- Have a nice Trek bike that I need to repair (tires both flat) but love riding that instead of driving when possible.
- Family phone plan with parents and brothers.
- Freerolling Spotify membership, xmas present from mom.
- Buzz my own hair for haircuts.
- We don't pay for gas for the apartment, huge during Chicago winter.
- Freerolling a Costco membership from my old roommate 3 years ago, hope to keep that one going - thanks Kyle!
- Freerolling Amazon prime from roommate.
- My roommate owns a dog, mini beagle - all the perks for me with no financial drain.
- No DW or kids, want to have them in the future but obv need to find the right woman and have the stars align. Not worrying about this one, will cross that bridge when it appears.
- No debt.
- Credit score of 800-820.
- Make a bit of bonus money 1%-5% rewards from using CCs correctly. I don't churn them but might open another one shortly.

Cons About Me Financially
- Drive to work, 30min/15miles, pretty much have to as biking is a bit too long and I drive through a sketch neighborhood omw.
- Live in downtown Chicago, although more expensive it is a ton of fun, worth it to me, and I make it justifiable with the roommates.
- Lost my freeroll Netflix membership as my ex gf kicked me off and changed her password. Probably my fault as I made my own profile on her account after we broke up, I would probably still have access if I'd just used it without making the additional profile - worth every penny.
- Probably eat out and go out a bit too much but meh, this new keto diet I'm trying out might help that.
- I like collecting and listening to vinyl records. This is one thing I've cut back on this year. Nothing crazy, I have 30 or 40. I'll still buy one every now and then but I think for a while before pulling the trigger.

Financial Goals
- $100,000 NW. Achieved April 2016, age 26.
- $500,000 NW.
- $1,000,000 NW.
- $1,000,000 in cash+investments.
- NW > lifetime W2 earnings.
- Own a house.
- FIRE, don't have a target date yet but would be great if I could do it before 40.

I don't care about money for money's sake, while I do think 1mill would be a cool number to reach, not sure if I will stay with megacorp that long and hit it here. Long way away from making that decision so no need to think too hard on it at the moment.
Haven't thought too hard about what my FIRE number is as I'm a ways away from it. My breakaway target income is 25k-30k, I live now on 25k/year while renting in downtown Chicago, so I'm thinking 1million invested will secure me there. I could cut monthly expenses by about $500 if I needed to so I'm pretty sure I could hack it on 20k/year even without poker.
My situation will change if I ever get married or have kids so will have to look at that if it happens.
I want to move to Vegas and live there at least initially. Long way to go ldo but I'd probably buy a house/condo there if housing market isn't crazy around that time. Will have to figure out of it makes sense to buy while employed and if I will pay cash or leave that money in the market and pay off mortgage slower when that happens. I'm okay renting initially if it makes sense, just not sure how much harder it is to but when unemployed.
A lot of uncertainty as what I'll need for health care costs in retirement with what's happening in that field here in 2017 as Trump changes things up, won't have to worry about that for a while either so we'll see how it plays out and adjust accordingly. I am very healthy, eat great, am in good shape, and other than taking the occasional allergy pill I don't have any issues. Haven't had candy or a soda in years and water is my third favorite drink behind bourbon and beer. Uncle had prostate cancer tho so I do have that as a possibility to keep in mind.

If I lost my job I'd really have to look if I would take a shot at the poker thing full time or look for a new job in the city. Right now it'd probably be job but if my NW reaches 500k that may be the tipping point should my employer decide to end our relationship.

If everything goes as it is now and the market returns 8% for the next decade and I keep my job and get standard annual raises/bonuses, I will hit 1million NW around age 37. Lot of variables in there, could be sooner with promotions or if I get lucky and if I hit it later than that I won't be upset. I know I'm headed in the right direction so I am going to keep smiling and enjoy the journey.

Interesting Facts
- I have never paid for a haircut in my life.
- I have never had a negative net worth.
- While I have never cut dryer sheets in half, (good idea! Going to start) I always have cut sponges in half to get more use out of them haha They get moldy and gross before they wear out so I get twice the use out of them if I cut them in half. I do it more for an environmental standpoint but good to know it's a financially smart move too.
- My mom's dad came to America in his 20s during the war owing his boat ticket, no money, owned the clothes on his back, knew 4 words of English, two of which were 'pork chop', and knew carpentry. He went from that to happily retired and financially well off. He gave me (and 6 other grandchildren) $5,000 to invest as an early inheritance gift last year and I just had a couple few beers with him this weekend at the sharp old age of 88. He can still have a good time. Hope I make it that far


Thanks for reading this far! I'd like to hear any thoughts, insights, and opinions you have. Will give NW update at end of every year.
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Old 06-25-2017, 07:33 PM   #2
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S&P 500 is large capitalization companies and is about 65% of Total Market. Mid-caps and small caps are 27% and 8% respectively and are sometimes colectively referred to as the extended market. Thus, 65% S&P 500 + 35% Extended Market = Total Stock Market (VTSAX).
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Old 06-25-2017, 07:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pb4uski View Post
S&P 500 is large capitalization companies and is about 65% of Total Market. Mid-caps and small caps are 27% and 8% respectively and are sometimes colectively referred to as the extended market. Thus, 65% S&P 500 + 35% Extended Market = Total Stock Market (VTSAX).
Thank you. Very well explained. Do you have a preference between the two or a suggestion for which I should go with?
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Old 06-25-2017, 08:45 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by gl.hf View Post
Thank you. Very well explained. Do you have a preference between the two or a suggestion for which I should go with?
Welcome to the forum. You may not be asking the right questions. If you read quite a bit around here, the basic concept in most people's advice is to pick an asset allocation first. Then pick diversified, low cost investments to fill out your asset allocation. Both the two funds you mentioned are used by many here.

For general guidance, see Boggleheads guideance on picking an asset allocation here. And guidance on some well accepted, diversified, low cost portfolios here.

At your young age, an asset allocation high (70-90%) in equities would not be unusual if you were ok with the risk involved. In terms of what to buy, you might think about starting very simple like the Two Fund or Three Fund Lazy Portfolios mentioned in the above link. But there is no right answer, just need to find something you are comfortable with.
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Old 06-25-2017, 08:50 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whisper66 View Post
Welcome to the forum. You may not be asking the right questions. If you read quite a bit around here, the basic concept in most people's advice is to pick an asset allocation first. Then pick diversified, low cost investments to fill out your asset allocation. Both the two funds you mentioned are used by many here.

For general guidance, see Boggleheads guideance on picking an asset allocation here. And guidance on some well accepted, diversified, low cost portfolios here.

At your young age, an asset allocation high (70-90%) in equities would not be unusual if you were ok with the risk involved. In terms of what to buy, you might think about starting very simple like the Two Fund or Three Fund Lazy Portfolios mentioned in the above link. But there is no right answer, just need to find something you are comfortable with.
Awesome, thanks for the advice. I will check out those links this week.
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Old 06-26-2017, 09:59 PM   #6
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Sounds like you are off to a great start. At your age, apart from having an emergency fund in cash to cover 6 months of expenses, I'd go with 100% equities. I remember when I was still w*rking, my company's investment advisor did a long term analysis of S&P 500 vs Russell 3000. I can't recall specific details but his conclusion was there wasn't much upside to holding the broader market, and most of the market's return was captured in the S&P 500.

You also asked about saving up cash to invest when the market dips be just steadily investing. I'm a fan of steadily investing. Other threads have discussed this at length, but there is a lot of research supporting dollar cost averaging (i.e. Regular, systematic investing without trying to time the market) results in superior long-term returns.

Good luck and keep saving and investing!
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Old 06-26-2017, 11:14 PM   #7
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"- I like collecting and listening to vinyl records. This is one thing I've cut back on this year. Nothing crazy, I have 30 or 40. I'll still buy one every now and then but I think for a while before pulling the trigger."

Now, that is interesting. What kind of record player do you have?
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Old 06-27-2017, 06:32 AM   #8
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gl.hf

You are on a great path. Your parents should be, and I'm sure are, very proud. You seem to have good balance in life recognizing that saving every penny isn't the real goal while still saving for than 99% of your peers.

As for S&P500 vs VTSAX, probably doesn't much matter over the long term. I do think that as your NW climbs, your savings and future spending goals may increase. particularly when you meet that perfect lady.

Best of luck to you.

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Old 06-27-2017, 08:17 AM   #9
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Whisper66:
Great links, thanks. Had an idea about most of that but it cleared up some details and how I should be thinking about my portfolio.

Scuba:
Sounds like it's pretty close on the S&P vs Market, I'll do some more digging and see which I'll go with. I have the 6 months covered so I'll keep dumping money into my 401k and IRA on the bimonthly basis and my brokerage every time I get 5k surplus in cash.

Amethyst:
Nothing special, just a $50 or $100 off Amazon. It works great and you hook up whatever speakers you want. Very easy install and it sounds amazing, I'm not an audiophile tho. I think it's an Audio Technica brand. I can get the model number when I get home if you want.

woodguy00:
Yes, my parents are proud and we have a great relationship. Thanks for the kind words. Hoping I can get to FI and then increase spending/lifestyle, not the other way around. I really like the idea of not relying on a paycheck haha.

Thanks everyone, the feedback was very helpful. I appreciate the support.
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Old 06-29-2017, 01:49 PM   #10
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Even though bi-monthly is used for both, I typically try to use bi-monthly for something that occurs every 2 months (eg. bi-plane with 2 wings) and semi-monthly for something that occurs twice a month or once each half of the month (eg. semi-circle is half a circle).

While I'm FI, I'm still working towards my final desired number. Looking back on my experiences, successes, and regrets to pass onto you...
You're way ahead of me when I was 27.

I'm happy with my younger self that I at least did all the simple basics like maxing out my retirement accounts, took advantage of all my employment benefits like stock purchase plan, matching DC pension, etc. The fruits of these basic savings I'm seeing now about 20 years down the line are amazing.

However, I regret not saving and investing more earlier on and more regularly. Because I was happy with myself doing the simple basics I allowed myself to spend on dumb things like cd's, dvd's, magazine subscription, car part upgrades, etc. that typically didn't really give me bang for my buck in terms of enjoyment (well, the car was fun but also a headache) or life efficiency.

I don't regret spending money on certain toys like a big screen tv, home theatre, weber bbq, etc. But I've bought them once instead of constantly upgrading (laptops being a small exception) and enjoy using them regularly. For me there's a need for a bit of balance between spending to enjoy today while saving for the future.

I regret initially investing in high fee mutual funds. Unfortunately, my initial path into investing was through friends and friends of friends who were just sales grunts and didn't really know much about investing.

I follow a poker channel on Youtube by Andrew Neeme. He's a professional 5/10 NL Hold'em player in Las Vegas. I've attached his vlog discussing the math around making a living playing poker which I found pretty interesting. Most of the calc dicussions are near the 2/3 mark.
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Old 06-29-2017, 10:22 PM   #11
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YVRRocketSurgery:

Never thought of semi-monthly that way, great way to think about it.

I'm pretty sure I owe most of why I am ahead to my parents. No student loans is the ultimate kickstarter to investing.

The way you feel towards your investing history strongly mirrors how I feel toward mine. I am thankful I did as much as I did, I know most people do even less than I was doing before and that is the reason I'm off to such a good start at the age of 27 instead of a $0 NW. I do regret not investing more during the first 4 years of my w**king career. I look back on things I did a year ago and feel stupid because they were dumb/inefficient/etc. I find myself thinking that way about every year or two, not just about financials but all aspects of life. I guess that's just part of growing up, I think the right way to think about this is it just means I'm improving as a person so I'm happy I realized it at 27 instead of 37.

I also haven't regretted most of my big purchases, I tend to research them for a while so I know I'm going to use it, which version/model I want, and I get it for a good deal/discount. I just need to think for a bit longer before clicking 'add to cart' and work on consciously spending on the other stuff. Lucky for me my roommate bought our grill.

I was just lucky I started out with low fee funds. I started reading financial books in college so it just worked out right. I may not have been working toward FIRE at the start but I am thankful I got this part correct.

Yes! Andrew has a great channel. He is my second favorite poker YouTuber behind Doug Polk.
IMHO, it is dumb to talk about winrates in poker. Because there is so much variance, in order to get a sufficient sample size to reflect an accurate winrate you would need to play about 100,000 hands... that is a TON of hands. If you are a winning, improving poker player, you are a different person after those 100,000 hands and have hopefully gotten better, which means the winrate isn't even accurate of how good you are now.
I explain talking about winrates how Stephen Hawking answered when asked what his IQ was, "I don't know. People who boast about their IQ are losers."
With that much variance you should focus on making the correct decisions and not on the results. Kinda like people who talk about day to day gains in the stock market.

Thanks for the tips, hope you hit your target before April 2022!
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Old 06-30-2017, 01:07 AM   #12
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Welcome.
I agree, that you are off to a great start and are showing much financial maturity at this point of your life.

Are you planning to live in Chicago for 5 years or longer? If so, look into buying a home or condo. You have a nice income from roomate rents that is being wasted. Instead, buy a home, take the tax benefits, and build equity while "sharing" the monthly costs. Also consider "doubles" or "duplexes"- where you (and roomies) live on one side, and a renter lives on the other side. The existing renter income will help with the financing numbers.

Just a thought.......
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Old 06-30-2017, 08:17 AM   #13
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Yes, I plan on staying in Chicago the next 5 years, maybe the next 10. I do see the upside in owning and renting out a room/duplex, but am hesitant with the market where it is and I'm pretty sure Chicago is broke so I'm not sure what property taxes and such will be in the next decade.
My current lease is up in April 2018 iirc, at the end of this year I'll ask my roommates what they plan on doing and go from there.

Thanks for the reply.
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Old 06-30-2017, 08:25 AM   #14
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My son lives in a Chicago suburb (owns a home) and is also concerned, BUT....
Chicago is a world class city and most likely won't dry up and blow away because of a debt crisis. New York didn't. Detroit didn't. Orange Co. CA didn't.

Your idea of checking with roomates is wise. You might also talk to a Realtor to see what you can afford with your income/assets and what local properties fit the bill. Then double check with a loan officer on payment info. See how those numbers compare to renting.

Good luck.
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Old 06-30-2017, 08:32 AM   #15
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When you put it that way it alleviates most of my concerns haha.
And will do, I'll start looking into it at the end of the year.

Thanks again Bruce
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Old 06-30-2017, 02:08 PM   #16
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What a great start. Wish I had then (when I was 27) the knowledge we have now on passive investing, safe withdrawal rates, etc., not to mention the Internet. Like others here I'm sure, I got churned by full-service brokers convincing me to buy and sell investments I really didn't understand, at high commissions and high expense ratios. If only that money had been saved...

Counting your automobile or a house as part of one's net worth is OK, but that doesn't really enter into calculations of assets for retirement planning. You can't eat a car or a house, after all. I count them as expenses, not assets. One day I'll likely sell my house and use the proceeds for a nursing home, but I'm keeping that off the balance sheet for now.
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Old 06-30-2017, 03:31 PM   #17
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Welcome! I'm also an Engineer in Chicago, but have about 10 years on you, during which I've been planning for FIRE. Not yet 40, still planning on retiring prior to hitting that round number. Roughly 11 months away for me if the wind doesn't shift much.

Regarding asset allocation, you've been given some good links. You may also want to look at RSP rather than SPX - equal weight versus cap weight. There is a management fee, but it tends to be outweighed by the benefit of not biasing towards overpriced assets. Worth doing the reading yourself to understand before you take the word of someone like me online.

If you have some questions, feel free to reach out, but good luck, congrats on the progress so far, and it sounds like you're getting a good footing under you. Happy long weekend!
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Old 06-30-2017, 04:41 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gl.hf View Post
Yes! Andrew has a great channel. He is my second favorite poker YouTuber behind Doug Polk.
+1 to Doug Polk's channel too. Nice to see him win the One Drop event earlier this month.
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Old 06-30-2017, 06:21 PM   #19
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I was 29 when I bought my house in suburban Chicago. It greatly enhanced my standard of living (pride of ownership blah-blah-blah) and was also a good investment (definitely some luck here). IMO the biggest things you have going for you are your high saving rate and that you're paying attention to finances.

The biggest decision you have going forward is how strongly to pursue the conventional American dream of forming a nuclear family (I love that term - tick, tick, tick...) The approach you choose will definitely affect your FIRE dreams. There is no way that I could have left the corporate hamster wheel at age 43 if I had acquired dependents.

Good luck!
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Old 07-01-2017, 07:56 AM   #20
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GalaxyBoy:

I agree, growing up in the age of the internet and having access to unlimited knowledge is incredible. You can learn anything you want for free. I hope 30 years from now I'll look back and think the same thing about us now. I think we're in for some exciting times in the near future.

I agree that my car is not an asset, it costs me money to drive/maintain/own. I do think if I needed to I could sell it and the $$$ amount I would see is about $11,000 which is why I listed it. Not planning on retiring counting that as an asset, but simply listed it to show I own it and could convert it to cash value if needed. Owning a house would make my monthly living expenses drop as of not paying rent (yes, I realize there would be taxes/maintenance/housekeeping expenses) and that would impact my burn rate. Anything 'valued' over 10k I will count toward my NW but when planning on retirement numbers I'd look strictly at investments + cash vs burn rate.
"You can't eat a car or a house, after all." You can't eat money either lol.

Grats on the retirement date! What have you been up to these past 4 months? How's life on the other side?


seabourne:

Summer in Chicago is the best! Hoping the rain holds off for the 4th. Hoping the market holds off for your 11 months haha.

hmmmmm... hmmm..... hmmmm indeed.
I need to do some research before commenting one way or the other. I have mixed thoughts atm.
I will look into that.


YVRRocketSurgery:

Doug is the nuts. So happy he shipped the one drop. His videos are so funny and his thought process is the best, he explains concepts so well.

I missed the golden age of poker by about 5 years where I could have secured myself financially for life at a very young age. I didn't realize it was a thing until I was 21 and didn't realize online was as big as it was until after Black Friday. When I started out I was pretty good, read some good books and read some stuff on 2+2 but still made beginner mistakes ldo. Break even for the first couple few years. I'd grind a bankroll up and then shot take plo* (which I was also studying along with hold'em) which plays pretty big live and then have to drop back down which is why I was break even.
*plo is a different poker game from Texas Hold'em which most people think of as 'poker.'
But, that being said, there is still money to be made, especially live. Still so many bad players and people who just play for fun and the social aspect. Like I said in my op, if it's still profitable 10 years from now when I FIRE I'd like to get back into it seriously and start studying again, probably ask one of my pro friends to coach me if they're still grinding for a living.

If anyone wants to see how the best players in the world think about poker, check out this 9 minute video. Skip the first minute it's just him talking about not the hand.



socca:

I'm not too worried about the dependents or not dependents. Kinda like how I could have picked a job here in Chicago or down in Texas. I'll never know which decision was 'better,' I just have to make the most of the decision I am presently in. I would be a different person, had different friends, and probably never gotten into MMA if I picked the Texas job over here but that doesn't make one right and the other wrong.
The 'wrong' choice would have been choosing to be a ski bum and not going the engineering route to give myself a chance at FIRE.
If I have kids I'll be happy and if I don't have kids I'll be happy. I have an awesome life and whichever path I happen down will be a good one. Long way from crossing that bridge so not thinking about it too hard atm. Just have to formulate a different game plan depending on which situation I end up in.


Thanks for all the replies everyone.
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