Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence

Book Review: Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence

I don’t normally write book reviews on this blog, but I’m making an exception for the new Choose FI book.  I was expecting my opinion to sway one way with the book but my impression after reading it went in a completely different direction. Chris Mamula is the author of Choose FI: Your Blueprint to Financial Independence (along with coauthors Brad Barrett and Jonathan Mendonsa).  If you’re not familiar with Chris, he retired in 2017 at the young age of 41 (beat me by two years!).  He also spends a lot of time writing at the Can I Retire Yet? site. I met Chris at the FinCon conference in 2017 – such a nice guy!  We didn’t get a chance

After 20 Years on Quicken, I’m All-In on Personal Capital

After 20 Years on Quicken, I'm All-In on Personal Capital

I’ve been using the Personal Capital financial software now for the past few years.  However, I’ve only been dipping my toes in with it… until now. Quicken’s been my go-to software for just over 20 years.  I stumbled on it back in 1999 when I first started at the career I just retired from.  I was hired in as an engineer to fight the scary Y2K bug and Intuit was giving away their Quicken 98 software for free as a fix to anyone running older versions. I decided to install the software just to toy with it.  I entered in all my accounts and ended up being appalled at what I saw.  I owed about $30k in credit card debt and just

Total Wireless… Same Verizon Network, Less $$$

Total Wireless… Same Verizon Network, Less $$$

I debated quite a bit about writing this post.  What makes a post on Total Wireless as a cell phone provider any better than the cable-cutting posts that you see all over the place? The last thing I want to do to you as my readers is provide a disservice by focusing too much on the small side of savings. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that this is something that you need to be familiar with.  And the reason why is because this small change can save you a ton of dough without a difference in service. Interested?  You should be.  I switched over a year ago and I’m just speaking from experience.  I

The Move to Vanguard… Bye, Bye TD Ameritrade!

The Move to Vanguard

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

Get Paid to Get Laid Off – How to Engineer Your Layoff

Get Paid to Get Laid Off - How to Engineer Your Layoff

If you’ve been working long enough, you’ve probably been a part of or know of a company that has needed to layoff some of its employees at one point or another. It’s never a pretty situation for anyone – obviously, the employee doesn’t like ’em, but most managers and bosses hate having to go through this ordeal as well. In Sam Dogen’s book, “How to Engineer Your Layoff,” he talks about how to take a grim situation like a layoff and actually turn it into a positive… potentially a huge financial positive. Those of you who have been following my story know that I plan to quit my job by 2025.  With that said, this book definitely piqued my interest. Could I figure out