Is your FIRE number wrong?
Financial Independence

Why Your FIRE Number Is All Wrong

At first glance, it seems easy enough. Figure out your spending needs. Divide by the safe withdrawal rate (SWR). Done – your FIRE number is staring you in the face. But is it? Inspired by a couple of reader comments on this post, let’s […]

Greatest Hits
Financial Independence

Greatest Hits: Volume 3 (Home Stretch)

And just like that, we are two weeks into 2021. I think we can all agree that so far, it hasn’t really felt any different from 2020. New mutations popping up across the world – and spreading faster than anyone could expect. Cases (and […]

Greatest Hits
Financial Independence

Greatest Hits: Volume 2 (Hello 2021)

Well, here we are. 2020 firmly (and thankfully) behind us. The clock has now begun its relentless countdown on 2021. At the outset, a year seems like a very long time. Objectively speaking, it is indeed a chunky stretch. But days have this pesky […]

Best of 2020
Financial Independence

It’s A Wrap: The Best Of 2020

Well, here we go. By the time this post goes up, we’ll be just hours away from ushering in the new year. These days, there seems to be a certain rhyme and rhythm to the vast majority of the “year in review” posts. Following […]

Finding happiness
Financial Independence

Finding Happiness

As my workload finally eased up over the past few weeks, I have been able to spend a fair bit of time catching up with friends and family members. Many people in my social circle also have young kids and demanding jobs. Between all […]

Money identity
Financial Independence

The Money Identity

Nothing in life is easy. But it’s fair to say that building wealth has got to be one of the most challenging tasks you can set for yourself. A big underlying issue here is incentives. Think about losing weight or learning a new language. […]

Risk has big eyes...
Financial Independence

You Can’t Run Away From Risk

The other day, I got a frantic call from the commercial tenant at one of our rental properties. There was a pretty significant leak coming in from above which caused a mini-flood in the restaurant below. Luckily, the place was closed to customers at […]

Money Superpower
Financial Independence

What Is Your Money Superpower?

The absence of role models has long been one of the biggest obstacles to building wealth. After all, the easiest way to become successful is to find someone who is already successful – and replicate what they have done. However, money isn’t like fitness […]

Not about the money
Financial Independence

Not About The Money

Back in my 20s, when I was still working my somewhat boring corporate job, I had a few friends who managed to “break into” investment banking immediately post undergrad. The lead-up to Christmas was always an exciting time for them – not least because […]

A Million Is Not Enough
Financial Independence

When A Million Is Not Enough

On Saturday morning, I woke up to an email from a long-time reader of this blog. To preserve anonymity, let’s call him Carl. Carl sent me a link to this story from the Sunday Times and asked for my views. I was still in […]

Buy or rent?
Financial Independence

The Road To Riches – Buy or Rent?

Of the many conceptual arguments playing out in the personal finance space, buying versus renting has got to be one of the longest-running ones. Based on what I have seen over the past couple of years, the “buyers” represent a solid majority. After all, […]

Financial Independence

A Pre-Mortem On Your Life

One of the most enduring lessons I’ve taken away from my MBA degree is the concept of a “pre-mortem”. Applied in a managerial / finance context, the idea is quite simple. Let’s say you are about to kick off a big project. It can […]

Early retirement terrifies me
Financial Independence

Why Early Retirement Terrifies Me

Ahh, the sweet promise of early retirement. The date is January 31, 2020. The news outlets are slowly picking up coverage of the strange pandemic that’s shutting down Chinese cities and seems to be spreading beyond the country’s borders. I have zero time to […]

Financial Independence

What You Don’t See

A lifetime ago (i.e. back in my teenage days), I had a very short but highly memorable stint working for a moving company. The set-up was simple.  The owner of the company, who doubled up as the CEO, CFO, driver, and mover, had offered […]

Financial Independence

A Vicious Circle

It has begun – and it’s relentless. It happens at nursery drop-offs and pickups. At playdates and playgrounds. At birthday parties and barbeques. And anywhere else where you might be unlucky enough to bump into an acquaintance with a child who turns 5 next […]

Financial Independence

Five Questions For Your Next Net Worth Update

Updating your net worth spreadsheet can be an exciting affair. Nothing quite like getting a dopamine rush as you watch the numbers tick up, bringing financial independence firmly into focus. Another dollar, another step closer to leaving the cubicle behind. There is no doubt […]

Guaranteed way to get rich
Financial Independence

A Guaranteed Way To Get Rich

Back in my teenage days, the only real way to get some quality information was to shlep over to the library. Yes, we did have internet back then (I’m not THAT old), but it was still nascent, slow, and frankly, there wasn’t much quality […]