As many of you know, I am a marketer at a startup. That’s one of many reasons why I write about startups and equity compensation all the time. Like, maybe too much, but I digress. Although I love my job, someday I’d like to leave the startup world to be an entrepreneur. My problem is that I don’t have any genius ideas for a business. I am just into entrepreneurship, finance, and finding efficiencies. So where does that leave me? Enter the search fund.
Search funds are basically tiny private equity funds. A small group of people (1-4) will raise money to search for and find a business for sale, within a given price range, in an industry where they have some expertise. If they succeed in finding a target business, they do their due diligence and raise money to purchase it. Then they run it, and eventually sell it at a profit. Hopefully.
Earlier in the year, I wrote about search funds, and a couple of people tweeted me to tell me about a Search Fund Conference in Boston. I booked a ticket, and holy shit… I learned a LOT in a single day.
As the stock market has been wildly gyrating over the past several months, I’ve come to a realization. Everyone is way too obsessed, and spends way too much time worrying about investment gains and losses.
Happy Holidays! Now, a short break from our regularly scheduled programming. RFG is officially over 70 posts old! It’s time for me to thank my readers, and ask the most important question of all: where do I go now?
It seems like every day that passes, there’s a new variant of the acronym: fatFIRE, leanFIRE, seaFIRE… even baristaFIRE! Today, I am going to dissect each of the different variants of FIRE, starting with FIRE itself!
It’s easy to get discouraged by investing. With interest rates hovering at 3-5%, even modest retirement budgets require well over a million dollars in investments to work properly (e.g., $1,000,000 x 3% = $30,000). Many people get discouraged because they don’t have much saved now, but the truth is that the most important thing in any retirement plan is making repetitive, reliable recurring investments.
Time is the most precious commodity we have, but people waste it all the time because they don’t know its value. Use this interactive calculator to get a better idea of what your time is REALLY worth to you.
Although my eventual goal is #FI, I derive the largest part of my income from good old fashioned American work. Actually, it's new fashioned American techwork, complete with standing desks and kegerators. I've got it pretty good but I'll have to move on and choose between job offers someday.
With the current expansion nearing its tenth year, it's actually possible that someone could have already worked a third of their professional career knowing nothing but expansion. I figured it might be interesting to describe the experience of a recession for all of those that have never known one, and provide some tips to soften the blows.
At some point, I’d really like to stop working. I enjoy my job, but I am guessing if I had the opportunity to simply “manage my own affairs”, I’d jump at it. I guess I’d like the ability to choose not to work. It’s a nice dream. But, without a job I will definitely need to increase both the number and the volume of my passive income streams.
I’ve repeatedly seen two narratives told over and over again. First of all, debt is bad. Second, although debt is bad, having a mortgage is alright because it acts like a forced savings plan, slowly enabling borrowers to build wealth. But can't the “forced savings plan” idea can be extended beyond simply mortgage debt, if executed intelligently with low interest, short term debt?
Big gains get all of the glory. Lottery winners. Moonshot bets on bitcoin. One-in-a-million penny stock wins. Unfortunately, obsessing over big bets and big gains takes all of the joy out of the incremental gains that actually build wealth on a predictable basis. This post is all about the little gains I never celebrated, and my plans to improve them even more in the future. These tiny incremental improvements collectively add up to big, big wins.
Life is expensive, and that can make it really hard to save. With rent, cell phones, cars, healthcare, food, childcare, vacations and thousands of other little costs, it’s not unusual for someone to have 80-90% of their income disappear into the ether. Lately, I’ve been thinking about ways I can try to turn at least some of those recurring payments into recurring investments, or at least mitigate them so I don’t lose so much of my income to recurring expenses each month.
Forgive the alliteration. There's been an awful lot of hyperbole written about the markets over the past week. I thought it might be nice to take a deep breath and look at some raw figures that might help to put things into context. I don't have any real point here... take from it what you will.
Without an investment adviser, I've had to go and create my own portfolio. It's a little scary, for sure, but here's the thing: all it takes is effort. With enough research, patience, self-control and fortitude... I feel I can be just as successful as if I worked with an adviser. What's more, after seeing "how the sausage is made" working at a large wealth management firm, I would say the benefits outweigh the risks.
Because investing is so vital and so confusing, most people decide to hire an investment advisor instead of doing the work themselves. I firmly believe that most people will be better off avoiding the fees and cookie cutter advice.
If you work in technology you know that there's a deep seated rivalry between San Francisco and Seattle. Which has the most startups? Which has the most successful technology companies? Which is the best city for innovation? Which is the most pleasant city to live in? Here it is: the final showdown in Seattle vs San Francisco.
I've been learning a lot about my own financial "standpoint" as I've been writing over the past couple months, and it's been an interesting process. One of the things that I have been thinking about over and over is the amount of money that I'm saving in comparison to my total earnings. How much is enough for me to retire in my early 50's?
The best part about personal financial is that everyone has a personal take on it. As I've been writing over the past three months, I've also been reading a considerable amount of material from other personal finance blogs. One of the things that's interested me the most is the #FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) movement. Since this is my personal, personal finance blog, I'll come right out and say that I'm not #FIRE-ing. Here's why:
One of the main reasons real estate is so attractive as an asset class is its privileged tax treatment. Understanding the full implications of real estate taxes for both primary residences and income properties is a vital part of being a real estate investor.
Portfolio Visualizer is a comprehensive suite of investment analysis tools that you used to have to pay thousands of dollars for, but thanks to the interwebs, is now free. Here’s what you can do with it.