The dirty little secret about early retirement

Intro: Here’s the dirty little secret you won’t hear too often in the early retirement community: income matters, A LOT.  A typical handling of the income conundrum goes something like this: “Yeah, it can be hard to retire early / save a lot with lower incomes, but it is still possible if you are determined.”  The sad reality […]

How long until retirement: an interactive tool

Intro: How many more years will you have to work before you can retire / achieve financial independence?  With it being the start of a new year, I wanted to get a handle on this question myself. I’ve already written a few articles on this subject (pretirement, financial independence, power of a high savings rate, […]

A visualized future

Intro: I remember hearing a motivational speaker talk at a college leadership conference back in the day.  He was talking about the power of visualization and had us do a silly exercise where we keep our feet in place and twist as far around as possible from our torso, marking the farthest spot with our eyes. […]

The power of a high savings rate

Intro: A strong savings rate is the cornerstone of early retirement and financial independence.  A low savings rate means you’ll have to work longer to retire, while a high savings rate will allow you to retire earlier. The idea of saving, specifically, spending less money than you earn and, say, stuffing the extra money under […]

Retire using only 401k and IRA

Introduction: How long would it take you to become a millionaire if you were maxing out your tax-advantaged retirement accounts and nothing else?  What about if both you and your spouse were doing that together?  And when would you be able to retire? Maxing out retirement accounts is not easy by any means, but it is […]

Less is more: spending less vs. earning more

Background: A good friend of mine loves to admonish people that “less is always more,” which is sort of funny coming from a guy who lives very large.  I mean, this is a guy that used to smoke a half pack of cigarettes every day and still managed to walk on to the top college […]

Retire in 18 years by matching your annual spending with investments

A lot of personal finance bloggers advocate an extremely short path to early retirement, something like 7-10 years through extreme savings.  I am not against this kind of saving, and, frankly, wish I was more up to the task myself.  However, that kind of saving is not easy and not for everyone. A lot of […]