The Money Commandofesto

A better life is one with less stuff and more time. Time to pursue hobbies and interests. Time to spend with my wife, my kids, and my great group of friends. But, in order to enjoy this time, I need to have enough money to enjoy it. Having lots of time and no money is as pointless as having lots of money and no time.

I’m not interested in the version of financial independence that requires extreme frugality. I don’t want a fancy car, but I don’t want to take a bus everywhere either.  I want enough time and money to be able to travel, both because I enjoy travel and because I think it’s an educational experience like no other. I want to eat out occasionally, own a home, go to the movies, and share a nice bottle of wine with my wife on a Saturday evening at home. I am striving for a comfortable standard of living and I’m resisting any form of lifestyle inflation beyond that point.

Getting to that point requires building multiple streams of income beyond a day job. These income streams can include dividends, rents, interest payments, real estate, and a business. You need to take calculated risks in your personal life, your career, and in your finances. You have to invest where and when the odds are in your favor.

Everybody needs a different amount of passive income to feel financial free. My goal is to achieve $120,000/year in passive income by July 1, 2021. After that I will take a step back and decide what’s next for me and my family. Maybe that’s a career change, maybe it’s taking a few years off, and maybe it’s changing nothing at all.

6 thoughts on “The Money Commandofesto

  1. This is my very first time ever of commenting to something I’ve read on the internet, but you nailed it. Things tend to work best in balance and you’ve certainly outlined a balanced life. Thank you for putting this mindset out there and I wish you the best of luck, sounds like you are well on your way.

    1. Thanks for the kind words! I’ll be updating the Commandofesto (I think of it as my mission statement) over the course of the years, but I’m hoping that the core message will remain the same – work hard to achieve a comfortable standard of living through a variety of investments.

  2. I like the commandofesto. It resonates with me.

    My blog says happy Frugaler, but really I’m not as frugal as many others. Instead, I follow a similar path to you. Work hard, earn well, invest better. Whether it’s real estate, private equity, stocks, etc. there is always opportunity to invest well.

    Similarly, I’m targetting ~ 45 as a retirement age and am two years behind you.

    Love your idea of registering for your CFP as side learning, that could be a great retirement job when you achieve FI.

    1. I’ll be posting more about my CFP experience soon, but the short answer is that I have 2 more classes to go until I’m done with the program and it’s been exactly what I thought it would be – a way to learn about stuff I haven’t learned anything about so far. Trusts, pension programs, Social Security, some tax planning, etc.

      I certainly understand the appeal of frugality – it’s a way to get to financial independence ASAP. But since I don’t hate my job I don’t see a reason to stop working only to live a life that’s so spartan that I won’t enjoy it. Rather, I’d prefer to work a few more years and have a few more creature comforts (and more importantly, a larger margin of safety) before I cut the cord.

  3. We are definitely rooting for you. Albeit I could imagine how comfortable a retirement on $120.000 per year must feel, we would have to work until about the normal retirement age if we want to get there.
    For us, and primarily me Mr CF, the realization that with a frugal lifestyle I could become financially independent sooner is worth the lower level in luxury (and smaller financial buffer, to a degree). It remains personal finance for a reason, eh?
    Cheers and best of luck getting to the point you feel good about your situation.

    1. Thanks for the well wishes! I completely agree with you that once you hit your “number”, there’s much more value in retiring sooner rather than later at a higher number. They key is to figure out how much income you need to be happy, add a bit more to be safe, then be prepared to pull the plug when you hit the number. Of course, I imagine that’s much easier said than done.

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