Skip to main content

How Long Does it Take to Reach FI?

To achieve Financial Independence, you will have to spend less than you earn, then save and invest the difference. Eventually, compounding returns will grow your wealth to a point where the continued growth outpaces your life's expenses. At its heart, a simple plan.

However, it's easier said than done. Compounding returns are such a powerful ally that even a little invested savings can eventually get you there, but compounding requires time and often we live in the now. The money you meant to save can all too easily become the money you spent without intention. It helps to have a plan, to know what you are working towards. To be able to see the road ahead so you know where you are going.

I created the FI Calculator for this purpose. The calculator uses a handful of inputs and simplifying assumptions to give you an idea of how long it will take to reach Financial Independence. You can also access the FI Calculator from the navigation bar at the top of the blog. Put your numbers in and see how your road looks. Let me know in the comments what you discover!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Thrifty Thursday - Save Thousands on Your Phone Plan

Recurring expenses are insidious.  Companies love signing you up for subscription services as it means a consistent revenue stream by default.  The burden is on the consumer to take action, but momentum and inaction usually win out and the payments keep getting made. Taking a hard look at these subscriptions and other recurring payments can be very effective in reducing annual expenses, thereby lowering your Target FI Number and leaving more money for saving and investing .   Some expenses that don’t bring enough value can be eliminated.   Others can be greatly reduced with a little intentionality (just get a month or two of that streaming service to binge your favorite show, no need to leave it renewing for the whole year!)   However, there are some that are necessary but we can work on reducing their impact. One of my favorite hacks is switching to a low-cost cell phone plan offered by a Mobile Virtual Network Operator.    MVNOs lease bandwidth on existing cell towers ins

Stocks: How to Pay Someone Else to Work for You

 When you work for a company, you work to build someone else’s wealth.  When you own a company, other people work to build your wealth. Fortunately, you don’t have to be Bill Gates or Elon Musk to own a profitable company.   Instead, as we touched on briefly in the article on assets vs. liabilities , you can buy stock in the company.   Buying a share of stock mean you actually own a small piece of a company. One of the most efficient ways to own stocks is by purchasing low-cost index funds.   These funds can either be in the form of mutual funds or Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs).   The key difference to a traditional actively managed fund is that the index fund simply tracks the relevant market.   For example, an S&P 500 index fund would hold shares of the largest 500 U.S. companies In the S&P 500’s case, the largest 500 with some consistent caveats: at least 10% must be publicly available for trade

Calculating your Portfolio Target with the 4% Rule

You are saving money and learning about the difference between assets and liabilities . As you invest your savings into assets, the real magic begins. Your investments start to grow, whether it be from appreciation, cash flow, dividends, or all of the above. Then the growth starts to growth. Then the growth on the growth on the growth starts to grow. It’s a runaway chain reaction, but it does take time. This is the magic of compounding returns and leads to exponential growth of your wealth, the namesake of this blog. However, the opposite effect is just as powerful. Anyone who has ever been in credit card debt with interest rates over 20%, or even worse situations with payday or title loans, understands how hard you have to swim against the current just to stay still. The interest keeps racking up and many people never escape the debt. If this describes your situation, check out Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover for steps to dig yourself out of debt before you start b