<span class="entry-title-primary">L2F 015 FI After 40 with Ben Reeder</span> <span class="entry-subtitle">Ben's Pursuit of FI Began After 40</span>

L2F 015 FI After 40 with Ben Reeder Ben's Pursuit of FI Began After 40

PODCAST

Show Notes for FI After 40 with Ben Reeder

  • Ben’s background
    • From NH, still lives there, about an hour north of Boston
    • Studied communications in college where he worked on the school paper and radio station
    • Works for an online college helping with admissions and financial aid
    • Has also lived and worked in NYC and LA
    • Single parent sharing responsibility for raising two young kids
    • Founder of a blog and podcast Financial Independence After 40
    • A recent convert to the FIRE movement
  • Ben, like most, followed the American dream which entailed rising income and debt.
  • He just accepted that was the way that you were supposed to live. So he never had financial goals.
  • He didn’t understand the concept of net worth until his late thirties.
  • His ah-ha moment occurred when he went through divorce. He reflected that he should be peaking but instead things were falling apart. He knew he needed to change.
  • His debt included a mortgage, credit card debt for home improvements, personal loan and a car loan. The amount totaled $46,000.
  • When they sold their home he was able to use his portion of the equity to reduce his debt. He continues to chip away at it.
  • He next got more involved with learning about personal finance. Ben read Rich Dad Poor Dad.
  • He got his mindset right about having your money work for you. Then he started tracking his expenses to look for areas to cut back. One of his biggest reductions was in the food category. Now he has a firm food budget and actually has a separate checking account.
  • He heard about FIRE from looking into real estate investing. Bigger Pockets, ChooseFI and Mr. Money Mustache. He also read The Simple Path to Wealth.
  • One of the benefits of the FIRE community is having a place to talk about money.
  • A lot of people don’t talk about money because they don’t have enough knowledge. FIRE provides a relatively simple framework that simplifies how to talk about money.
  • Ben’s goal is to own a rental property. He wants to live in part of a duplex or triplex and have his tenants pay down his mortgage.
    • This type of investment requires a lower down payment than buying a single family house.
  • Ben has considered other ways to invest in real estate such as REITs. However, the advantage of his strategy is that his rental income lowers his monthly expenses.
  • Getting rid of credit card payments is allowing Ben to increase saving for retirement.
  • His “why of FI” includes setting up his kid’s financial future, setting a good example and travel more.
  • Ben hasn’t set an early retirement goal. He wants to be FI so he has options.
  • Since Ben is playing catch up, he is taking more risk by investing more in equities than fixed income.
  • At this point, being later to FIRE (aka FI After 40), offers some advantages: confidence, not as concerned with having an expensive lifestyle.
  • Ben launched his blog and podcast during the pandemic.
  • He bought some kayaks because it’s not about saving every penny. It’s important to enjoy life.
  • It’s important in any relationship to talk about money and to hold each other accountable.
  • Ben used to avoid talking about money with his kids. But now he’s looking for teachable moments.
  • Ben’s advice to others who are late to FIRE is it’s not too late. Any changes you make will have a positive impact down the road. And don’t be afraid to make hard decisions. Belonging to the FIRE community is very helpful.

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