Optimizing Advance Pay during Military Transfer Season


Advance Pay is one of the awesome things about moving every 2-4 years in the military. The government will give you an interest-free advance on your pay with 12 months to pay it back! It’s a huge opportunity to take advantage of. In this post, we will talk about what to use Advance Pay for, how to optimize it for…

Our Passive Income Goal: $2,400/yr by 2020


It is February 2017 and our family has almost no passive income! What is passive income? It is an income source that requires little to no work to sustain itself. Some examples might be royalties from a book, rental income, or profit sharing from a business you part-own.  Looking around the FIRE community, many people rave about owning rental real…

7 Lesson Learned by Debunking Retirement Plan Scammers, Gamers and Detractors


Retirement Plans, especially those sponsored by an employer (the 401K, 403b, and the TSP) are probably the most powerful and simple tool you have on your path to wealth. The TSP in particular automatically leverages the power of index investing for incredibly low fees. It has Roth and Traditional options, Targeted Retirement Funds, and starting in 2018 will come with…

The Simple Path to Wealth: Book Review


I’ve been following Jim Collins, who blogs at www.jlcollinsnh.com, for about two years now. His simple, direct, and low impact investing style has changed how I invest. Investing before was exciting and time-consuming- watching the news, reading stock charts and pouring over technical analysis. Now, investing is boring. But I’m finally seeing returns. Mr. Collins turned the advice in his…

Guest Post on The Military Guide: Blended Retirement System


Hello everyone, I'm proud to announce the publication of my guest post over at The Military Guide. Doug Nordman was kind enough to feature my thoughts on the new military Blended Retirement System. In my guest post I also provide a spreadsheet which you can use to calculate what you stand to gain - or lose - if you chose…

3 Ways to Plan Next Year’s Taxes: less pain, more gain!


A major goal of my family is tax efficiency. While this post won't be outlining any fishy tax schemes, it should help you save on your taxes. Paying less taxes has also helped us direct more money to paying down our loans while simultaneously investing. Taxes are a necessary evil. They pay our salary and provide services. However, the government…

Pay Down Debt or Invest for Retirement?


Should you pay down debt or save for retirement? Like many finance questions, I think the answer to this question is: it depends. In the following post, I designed an experiment to test my guess that it is better pay down high interest debt fast, but it might be better to invest if you only have low interest debt. (Spoiler-…

Utilize the TSP’s low fees to supercharge your retirement


What if I said YOU could make 1% more in your retirement account, every year, for life? As far as things go, a 1% advantage is pretty good these days. The market isn’t returning twenty-odd percent like it did in the lead up to the '08 crash. I’m talking about the fee’s you pay to invest. Vanguard, which has some…

Why FIRE?


Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE) As part of our pre-marriage financial summit, my wife and I took a long look at our retirement goals. At the time I hadn’t discovered Mr. Money Mustache or any of the FIRE crowd. What we found was pretty dismal. I had graduated from a top university with no debt, had worked with a generous salary for…

Budgeting is an Excuse to Spend


I am a budgeting failure. Once, in a calorie counting phase, I found myself viewing the calorie budget as a challenge. If I had 100 calories left over at the end of the day, I would allow myself a donut, or a beer, up to my maximum, rather than banking my lower count for the win. This is exactly what…
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