Paula Pant Kicked Me Where It Hurts

Paula Pant Kicked Me Where It Hurts

Ok, she didn’t physically kick me, but Paula Pant found a way to get into my head.  She worked me up into a real tizzy (do people still use that word?). It crushed me and took me days to think through and re-evaluate some things. First off, if you don’t know Paula Pant, she’s the host of the Afford Anything brand, which includes her blog and podcasts. She’s also one smart cookie and has a great sense of humor.  Intelligence + laughs = great podcasts. And, it’s those podcasts of hers that I enjoy listening to on a regular basis.  She even made my The 10 Best Financial Podcasts list. As an added bonus, I had the opportunity to meet

The Move to Vanguard… Bye, Bye TD Ameritrade!

The Move to Vanguard… Bye, Bye TD Ameritrade!

If you’ve delved into the FIRE community even slightly, you’re probably already familiar with the shrine that is Vanguard.  The Vanguard Group is an investment/brokerage firm out of Pennsylvania that manages over $4 trillion in assets. Eh, who cares?  All the big brokerages manage big dollar assets like that. True, but Vanguard’s different from the other firms out there in that Vanguard is structured as a mutual company. What that means is that it’s a private company where the owners are actually the clients themselves.  In other words, if you’re a Vanguard customer, you’re also a part owner of the company. That’s part of the reason people love this company.  This isn’t to say that the other big brokerages don’t have your interests

My 6 Favorite FinCon17 Moments

My 6 Favorite FinCon17 Moments

FinCon.  Holy @#$%.  Was not expecting it to be as awesome as it was. Believe it or not, I consider myself not to be a people person.  I would rather just be at home and hang out with my wife and daughter. However, once I’m out, I sort of flip that whole tendency upside-down.  I’m usually the guy that starts a conversation with the people in line at the grocery store, the guy next to me at the bar, or the gal next to me on an airplane. Regardless, I was slightly anxious about my first FinCon.  Sure, I’ve talked to a lot of the other bloggers already through comments and other emails, but it’s not the same.  Now I’d

My First 24 Hours with the J. Money Mohawk

My First 24 Hours with the J. Money Mohawk

It started as a joke… until it wasn’t.  This is the story of how I became a J. Money knockoff for the day.  It’s something a little different from my regular posts. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show… I was at the FinCon expo for the first time this year.  If you’re unfamiliar with the event, it’s an annual convention filled with financial content for bloggers and other money nerds! Philip Taylor (PT) started the event in 2011 and it’s been growing ever since.  Like-minded love to get together and this event is definitely no exception. I’ll be talking about my FinCon experience in a later post… just know that I loved every minute of that expo. I went to the conference

We’re All on the Same Journey

We’re All on the Same Journey

The journey to FIRE can be an arduous path. Sometimes I struggle with the content I want to put on this blog.  It’s not due to a lack of ideas, but rather a matter of wondering if the reader can relate. Some of you are just starting to get interested in the idea of financial independence.  Perhaps you’re saddled with debt, but know there’s got to be a way out. Others of you are in your wealth-building stage of your life and you’re working on banking whatever you can. And then there are some of you who have already reached retirement – whether it be early or not. Finally, there is a group of you who have not only reached

The Roth IRA Conversion Ladder Dilemma

The Roth IRA Conversion Ladder Dilemma

I’ve been a bit moody the past couple of weeks.  I’ve been focusing a lot on trying to pinpoint our exact retirement date and I’ve been struggling.  The problem all stems with the Roth IRA Conversion Ladder we plan to do. First off, if you’re on the path to FIRE (Financial Independence/Retire Early) and you’re not familiar with how a Roth IRA Conversion Ladder works, this could be important to you. It’s not the end-all-be-all solution, but the ladder is a method that many early retirees are able to use to make FIRE actually happen. You see, normally you don’t have access to your traditional 401(k) and other retirement accounts until 59½.  This is a problem for young whippersnappers trying