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Products and Services
We manage five different portfolios (joint, individual and kids). So we are on the Sharesight Expert Plan that allows us to manage all of them in the same account and get a consolidated view of our investments, which we have found extremely useful (especially at tax time!).
YNAB – You Need A Budget – Budgeting and Expense Tracking
We have used YNAB religiously since 2015. It has changed our (financial) life and I can’t recommend it enough. When we first started out on our way to FI, YNAB helped us to get a clear understanding of where our money is going. We created a budget (which we use to this day), built a solid financial buffer and started allocating budget funds to our investing category. The rest is history. I really believe that YNAB is a big part of the reason we are where we are today financially. It is a great tool, no matter if you are close to FI or only just starting out and living paycheck to paycheck.
Scribd – Ebooks and Audiobooks
Scribd offers a massive selection of ebooks and audiobooks (often titles are available as both ebook and audiobook versions). You can get a free 2-month trial with my referral link!
Scribd costs US$8.99 per month (after the free trial ends). I have been a member for years and find the selection of books perfectly complements my local library’s catalogue.
Useful tools, calculators and websites
ASFA Standard [for Australians]
The ASFA Retirement Standard benchmarks the annual budget needed by Australians to fund either a comfortable or modest standard of living in the post-work years. This is a great resource for anyone on the way to FI who is unsure about their future spending needs. I have written about this in-depth here: Destination Unknown: How to calculate your FIRE number if you have no idea what your future expenses will be
Passive Investing Australia [for Australians]
This is probably the most comprehensive and useful resource for anyone who wants to invest in ETFs in Australia. I direct everyone who emails me with investing questions to this website. I highly recommend reading through the entire blog (which reads a bit like a book) before you get started.
The Money Flamingo Semi-Retirement Calculator
Check out our free calculator to find out how soon you could semi-retire. It calculates your FIRE, Coast FI and Flamingo FI numbers and ages.
Can I retire yet?
An awesome early retirement calculator that I keep coming back to. Fun fact: This is the calculator Mr. Money Mustache used for The Shockingly Simple Math Behind Early Retirement.
Before you buy any of the book recommendations, make sure to check out this article: How to Read Your Favourite Personal Finance Books for FREE
Get a Financial Grip – A Simple Plan for Financial Freedom
A great Australian book about financial independence. Pete became a millionaire at age 33 through index and property investing. In this book, he describes how to develop a sound, holistic financial plan. He covers different investment options and also focuses on the right mindset. A must-read!
Learn how to become “time rich” with this fantastic FIRE manual by Australian money coach Lacey Filipich. It is very comprehensive and easy to read once you get used to the new acronyms Lacey introduces in the book. I also really like how Lacey includes a lot of personal anecdotes in the book.
Early Retirement Extreme: A philosophical and practical guide to financial independence
The ultimate FIRE classic. Jacob’s book is not the easiest read, it is written like a scientific paper. BUT it is so worth it. I have actually re-read it twice and keep coming back to my favourite chapters. Jacob’s lifestyle is way too extreme for us but his overall philosophy really resonates with me.
The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciplines into Massive Success & Happiness
The Slight Edge is not a book about money. It is a book about the power of small positive actions over time. Possibly the most motivational book I’ve ever read. Olsen describes how little decisions that seem insignificant in the moment add up over time and lead you either to success or failure. The principles in this book are applicable in all areas of life – money, health, relationships, you name it. Read this book!
Motivated Money – Peter Thornhill
This book has become very popular in the Australian FI community. I love Peter Thornhill’s witty writing style. Great info for anyone who is considering investing in LICs and following a dividend-oriented investment approach. Peter also describes how debt recycling works and who should consider it.
The Armchair Guide to Property Investing: How to Retire on $2,000 a Week
I am a big fan of the Property Couch podcast and have been listening to Bryce and Ben for years. I was really excited when they published this book and have to say I was not disappointed when I read it just before we bought our IP in 2018. It is a great summary of the key points discussed on the podcast and a must-read for anyone interested in property investing.
Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence
I can definitely recommend this book as an introduction to FIRE. It covers all key elements, the math and the mindset required to reach FI. Although I have read dozens of books on the topic I picked up a few tips and concepts I had not thought about before.
The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy
One of the most important books you can read. You will never look at someone driving past you in a brand new Audi the same way ever again. Really shows that “Keeping up with the Joneses” is for losers.
Set for Life: Dominate Life, Money, and the American Dream
A fantastic book for people in their 20s who are just starting out. Scott Trench made house hacking popular and explains how it works in great detail. The book is aimed at American readers but the concepts are also applicable here in Australia (although the outrageously cheap house prices in the US might make you cry a little!).
How To Retire Early: Your Guide to Getting Rich Slowly and Retiring on Less
One of my favourite FIRE books. Robert and Robin Charlton reached FIRE and retired over a decade ago and they have been travelling the world ever since. A very genuine book written by two normal people who achieved FIRE on very average incomes.
The Art of Frugal Hedonism: A Guide to Spending Less While Enjoying Everything More
This book is all about enjoying life! The title does not do it justice – it is not a book about penny-pinching at all. Lots of great ideas about living frugally while enjoying the best things life has to offer.