What Does F.I.R.E. Really Stand For?

F.I.R.E. stands for Financial Independence, Retire Early – or does it? Sure, the basic premise behind the FIRE movement is pretty simple: Spend less than you earn (or earn more than you spend) and invest the difference. Eventually, you’ll reach Financial Independence, which will enable you to Retire Early. However – and I’ve written about … Read more

Yearly Review and Goal Setting: 5 Questions to Help You Create Your Ideal Life

In this article, I’ll share five simple questions and some ideas to help you to move towards your ideal life (and not just towards your financial goals). Most Financial Independence enthusiasts have an annual review and goal-setting routine. We check how our investments performed over the last year, calculate our savings rate, review our spending … Read more

26 Alternatives to Early Retirement (that don’t require full FI!)

No matter where you are on the path to financial independence, there are many lifestyle design options you can use to create a better life for yourself and your family. They allow you to improve your life along the path to FI but are also great alternatives to early retirement once you reach your financial … Read more

The Retirement Lie and Its Unintended Consequences

Here is the standard FIRE blueprint: Step 1: Work hard, save, invest and … wait.Step 2: Reach FI, retire and sail into the sunset. We all know that’s not what usually happens (bear with me). Almost everyone (as in 99%+) of people who hit FI in their 20s, 30s, 40s and even early 50s will … Read more

The Shockingly Simple Math Behind Flamingo FI

One piece of feedback from the recent Money Flamingo reader survey surprised me. Many of you commented that I don’t write enough about our signature “type” of Financial Independence – Flamingo FI. The reason why I don’t write about the math and mechanics behind Flamingo FI that often is that it is a really simple … Read more

How Much Does a Toddler Cost? – FIRE Edition

Our youngest turned two recently. With two young kids in the house (a toddler and a pre-schooler who often behaves like a toddler…), I thought this is a great time to write a follow-up on our popular article about the cost of having a baby. The cost of raising a child is a heavily debated topic … Read more

Flexibility – the Key to an Earlier Semi-Retirement?

Flexibility is an important factor in making our financial independence plans a success. Semi-Retirees are, by default, a flexible bunch. We are able to scale our active income up or down as needed because we are not fully retired. So far, it has been difficult to put numbers around the impact of flexibility and active … Read more

How to Prepare Financially for a Mini-Retirement or Sabbatical

One of the most common questions people ask me about mini-retirements and sabbaticals is how much to save. Financial planning is an important part of the mini-retirement preparation process. In this article, I’ll walk you through the three steps you should take to ensure your finances are ready for your time away from work. We’ll … Read more

How to Take a Life-Changing Mini-Retirement

Have you considered taking a mini-retirement? Whether you feel burnt out and need some time away from your full-time career, want to travel, start a business, or refocus and plan out your future – a mini-retirement or sabbatical might be an ideal break for you. Mr. Flamingo and I have taken several mini-retirements (some of … Read more

The FIRE Community’s Greatest Flaw

Have you watched your investment portfolio tank recently? There are dark clouds on the Financial Independence horizon at the moment – high inflation, food shortages, the energy crisis, supply chain issues, rising interest rates… I find that times like these expose one of the FIRE community’s greatest flaws: our all-or-nothing attitude. Let me explain.  How … Read more