9 Steps to Buying a Used Car (Our 1st in 17 Years)

Buying a used car can be exciting but also a bit daunting.  We just went through the process of purchasing a new (to us) vehicle for the first time in 17 years. Having driven the same car for so long, … Read More

Retire By 45, Hip Replacement By 48: 8 Life & Money Lessons

*record scratch* *freeze frame* Yup, that’s me.  You’re probably wondering how I ended up in this situation… This was just over one month ago, right before getting wheeled into the operating room for a total hip replacement surgery.  Most people … Read More

10 Cool Things We’ve Done Since Achieving FIRE (& 5 We’re Planning)

This month Allison and I are celebrating our 4-year anniversary of achieving FIRE (Financial Independence / Retiring Early).  We each got laid off from our startup jobs (within a month of each other) at the beginning of 2015, and since … Read More

How a Near Death Experience Inspired Us to FIRE

posted in: FIRE, Inspiration, Life Wisdom 4

My wife, Allison, and I were fortunate to be able to retire in our mid-40s.  It wasn’t easy. We worked hard for many years, saved and invested diligently, created extra income with side businesses, and lived a frugal lifestyle. You … Read More

7 Arguments Against FIRE (& 7 Reasons We Did It Anyway)

If you are early in your financial journey, you may have questions and concerns about the whole “FIRE” concept (Financial Independence / Retire Early).  Should you dive in and work your tail off to retire early, or should you take … Read More

3 Reasons More People Don’t Try to Achieve FIRE

For our ancient ancestors fire meant life, but it was difficult to create and even harder to maintain. In today’s world, FIRE can be equally as elusive, but we are not talking about building a literal fire for food and … Read More

Survive a Market Crash! How We Thrived After 2 Financial Meltdowns

For many young investors, and those new to the FIRE movement, the stock market may seem like an easy way to significantly grow your money.  If you started investing after 2009, then you only know about bull markets (or increasing … Read More

It’s HOT! What We Learned about the FIRE Community at FinCon18

posted in: FIRE, Inspiration, Retired Life 5

When Allison and I got laid off from our tech jobs at the beginning of 2015, we thought we would take a little break to travel and recharge our batteries, and then head back to the workforce.   Our “little … Read More

Ready to Jump? A 10-Point Checklist for Early Retirement

If you’re like many people in the workforce, you’ve probably fantasized about retiring early.  But how do you know when it’s the right time? Do you know how much money you need to cover your expenses throughout retirement?  Where will … Read More

How We Slacked Off in Our 20s & Still Retired in Our Early 40s

What type of person were you when you graduated from college and became a young adult?  Were you a “Go-Getter” or a “Slacker?” Go-Getters know what they want in life, and they don’t waste any time going for it.  They … Read More

Save the Planet & Your Wallet: 20 Ways We Reduce, Reuse, & Recycle

The nice thing about reducing your carbon footprint is that you can help the world while also saving yourself money.  My wife, Allison, and I have always been conscientious about conserving resources — both for the environment and for our … Read More

From Joy to Confusion, 8 Priceless Reactions to Retiring Early

One of the most common questions to ask someone when you first meet is “So, what do you for a living?”  In some cultures, this might seem too forward or a bit awkward.  But in America, “what you do for … Read More

How We Used Geographic Arbitrage to Retire 9 Years Ahead of Schedule

If you are one of the many people trying to achieve FIRE (Financial Independence / Retiring Early), then you’re probably using a number of strategies to make this happen.   You may be trying to reduce your expenses by eating … Read More

Where Are You on the Path to FI? The Ultimate Roadmap to Financial Independence

The path to FI, or Financial Independence, can be long and windy with lots of pitfalls and detours along the way.  Unless you inherit a bunch of money, win the lottery, or cash in big with an IPO, you’re going … Read More

So, You Wanna Be a Blogger? How To Start a Blog from A to Z

Have you ever thought, while reading one of your favorite blogs, “I bet I could write something like that” or “How did this blogger get started and become so big?” It’s actually not that hard to start a blog.  You … Read More

6 Keys to Ensure You Have a Fun, Rewarding & Happy Early Retirement

You may think retiring early is a magic pill that will automatically solve all your problems and make your life amazing and wonderful.  Perhaps you envision a happy-go-lucky life filled with sunshine, white sand beaches, rainbows, and butterflies. On the … Read More

6 Reasons to Travel as Far & Wide as You Can

My wife, Allison, and I just returned from a two week adventure in China (and I’m still getting over the jet lag). When we weren’t flying, driving, floating down a river, or careening along the countryside on a high-speed train, … Read More

How & Why I’m Repaying My Student Loans Faster Than the Standard 10-Year Repayment Plan

Editor’s Note:  This is a Guest Post!  We don’t typically publish guest articles, but I liked Tom’s writing style and thought this was a great topic for our readers.  You can read his bio at the end.  Enjoy!… When it comes … Read More

4 Big Financial Mistakes We Made on Our Road to FIRE (& 4 Things We Got Right)

Sure, my wife, Allison, and I were able to retire in our early 40s.  And yes, that was a pretty big accomplishment for us (and anyone, really).  We were working toward retirement by our mid-50s, so we were pleasantly surprised … Read More

Forget Everything You’ve Learned – 10 Financial Rules We’re Totally Breaking!

In the world of personal finance, you’ll find a number of written and unwritten “rules” about saving, investing, debt, retirement, etc.  While much of the conventional wisdom can be very helpful (i.e. “don’t take on too much high interest debt”), … Read More

4 Very Different Strategies We’ll Be Using To Hedge the Stock Market Bubble

posted in: Inspiration, Investing, Wealth 6

Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past couple years, you know all about the stock market soaring into the stratosphere.  Hopefully you’re invested in the market and have enjoyed the wild run-up in values. As I write … Read More

4 Money Lessons I Learned From My Super Frugal Wife

I had a very modest upbringing as a kid.  I grew up in a suburb of Columbus, OH, where we lived in a rented townhouse apartment.  It was nothing fancy, but it was comfortable and located in a good school … Read More

How NOT to have a Boring Life (or Retirement)

posted in: Life Wisdom, Retired Life 0

Do you worry that your life will become boring when you retire?  Perhaps you already feel like your life is boring. Let me guess, your life goes something like this (give or take): Get up in the morning, eat breakfast, … Read More

Our #1 Retirement Question: How Much Money Do I Need to Retire Early?

I’m in the business of helping people successfully retire early, so I get a lot of questions about personal finance.  People ask me how to get out of debt, how to invest their money, how to reduce their expenses, and … Read More

4 Keys to Living an Accomplished Life

What is an “accomplished life,” and how do you create such a life for yourself?   In short, it’s a life that makes you feel proud, fulfilled, content, and inspired.  When you’re on your deathbed, you’ll be able to look … Read More

5 Life Skills for Retirement I Wish I’d Learned Earlier

posted in: Life Wisdom, Retired Life 1

I retired at 43 so that I could enjoy life as much as possible while I’m still alive and kicking on this planet.  Fortunately, in my first 43 years I picked up a few life skills to help make retirement … Read More

The Most Important Ability to Have in Life

posted in: Inspiration, Life Wisdom 0

If I had to come up with just one ability as the most important in life I would say Adaptability. The definition is “the quality of being able to adjust to new conditions.” As Bob Dylan wrote back in 1964, … Read More

5 Things That Are More Important than Money

posted in: Inspiration, Retired Life 2

If you had to boil down the most important things that matter in life, what would they be? Would you include material wealth, like money, a nice house, or a high-paying job?  Would you opt for traits like power, influence, … Read More

The Top 5 Strategies We Used to Retire in our 40s

posted in: How To Retire Early 1

I like to say that retiring early isn’t rocket science.  It’s not that it’s easy by any means.  Retiring in your 40s takes a certain level of determination and persistence.   But the tactics and strategies to successfully retire early … Read More

6 Pros of Retiring Early (& 3 Cons)

posted in: Retired Life 0

I totally get that retiring early isn’t for everyone.  Some people really do love their jobs, or at least key aspects of their jobs. Perhaps you’re working on something ground-breaking like curing a disease, or you’re a founding member of … Read More

8 Lessons I Learned from Starting 4 Very Different Side Businesses

posted in: Making Money 2

I’ve always had a passion for entrepreneurship.  There’s just something awesome about building your own product, finding a market for it, persuading people to buy it, and making a living off your own ideas and hard work. Being an entrepreneur … Read More

5 Ways We Spend Our Time After Retiring in our 40s

posted in: Retired Life 7

If you’ve ever thought about retiring, it probably goes something like this:   “Retirement sounds wonderful, but what would I do with myself?  Won’t I get bored sitting around all day?” Well, I’m here to tell you that you will … Read More

How We Live Comfortably For Under $3k per Month in the Bay Area

Have you heard about the couple that makes $500,000 a year and still feels average? The story originally appeared on Financial Samurai, and discussed further on sites like CNBC and LATimes. It details the expenses of a couple living in Brooklyn, … Read More

How We Turned a $20k Down Payment into a $1 Million Paid Off Home

posted in: Real Estate 11

We bought our first home back in 1999, a little one-bedroom condo in the Oakland Hills for a modest $190k. My wife, Allison, and I were still in our late 20s and not married yet, so this was a big … Read More

5 Ways to Improve Your Life with Minimalism

Let’s try a little experiment. Close your eyes and try to picture yourself in a small room that’s crammed full of tech devices, clothes, furniture, decorations, curtains, books, and instruments. Seems cramped and cluttered, doesn’t it? Would you feel trapped being … Read More

Find & Create Your Moonshot in Life

posted in: Inspiration 0

The term “moonshot” originated with the Apollo program and the United States’ extremely ambitious plan to put a man on the moon before the end of the 1960’s. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy put forth a daunting challenge to … Read More

What To Do In Your 20s So You Can Retire By Your 40s

If you’re in your 20s and you want to retire by your 40s, I have some good news for you, and I have some bad news. Let’s start with the bad news first — you probably were never taught much … Read More

20 Inspirational Quotes on Wealth, Finance & Life

posted in: Inspiration, Wealth 1

Looking for a little inspiration?  Sometimes it’s helpful to read (or re-read) words of wisdom from those who have had meaningful and amazing lives. People like Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Benjamin Franklin, and even Chris Rock. We’ve dug up some … Read More

8 Simple Tips to Eat Healthy on a Budget

posted in: Frugal Living 1

It’s a dilemma. We want to eat healthy, but it seems easier and less expensive to eat prepared meals like fast food. The good news is we CAN eat healthy while still keeping it convenient and budget-friendly. With some planning, you can … Read More

45 Tips so You Can Live to 100 & Enjoy a Looong Retirement

posted in: Retired Life 1

Wouldn’t it be awesome to live to 100? Just imagine all the amazing experiences you could have over the course of an entire century! Especially if you retire early. I’m 45 now and would love to have 55 years of retirement. … Read More

How To Travel the World as a Digital Nomad

posted in: Digital Nomad, Inspiration 1

Imagine spending winter in Thailand, spring in Spain, summer in Croatia, and autumn in Peru. All while working and enjoying a comfortable and adventurous lifestyle. That is the life of a “digital nomad.” What is a “digital nomad” you ask? The … Read More

How You Can Retire at 43 Like I Did

Are you looking forward to the day when you can finally pack it in and leave behind the drudgery of the workplace? When you can spend the rest of your time doing what you love and enjoying the life you want … Read More