• city-lights-boston

    Cost Effective Investing With Motif

    It’s hard to get excited about a brokerage firm. In fact, I like boring brokerage firms. Other than low costs and fees, an excellent web interface, and great customer service, there’s not a lot I want from my broker. Check out my recommendations page, and you’ll see Vanguard and Fidelity as my top choices.

    But there’s another brokerage firm that piqued my interest recently: Motif Investing. They offer something that I haven’t seen at any other brokerage firm. The ability to trade a basket of stocks with one click and for only one low $9.95 brokerage commission. And they are offering $150 to entice you to give them a try (read on for more details).

    Read more »
  • life-in-a-cubicle

    From Paper Boy to Engineering Manager to Early Retiree

    Imagine early retirement as a well cooked meal. The recipe calls for healthy doses of earned income and a liberal application of spending less than you make. Place those savings into a good asset allocation. Mix ingredients well and let simmer for a decade or two. Voila! Early retirement on a platter. If only you could find that dish in the frozen section of the grocery store or at a drive thru window near you!

    You can’t retire early without a decent working history. Throughout the last two decades, I’ve had almost twenty different jobs. The earliest ones didn’t pay particularly well, but my compensation generally increased as I gained more experience. Join me on this autobiographical odyssey through my working years.

    Read more »
  • money-january-2014

    10 Largest Purchases of 2014

    Out of curiosity, I took a look at our ten largest purchases of 2014. I knew what the the top few expenses would be (vacations and a major home renovation), but the rest of the expenses escaped my memory after the money left my hand.

    Looking at the top ten expenses is a good exercise to conduct each year. Our top ten add up to about half of our annual spending. I’m a big believer in making sure our expenditures bring a lot of value, and by looking at these top ten expenses, we can see whether we got good value in 2014.

    Read more »
  • half-moon-cay-bahamas

    January 2015 Financial Update

    How did we kick off 2015? With a month of average spending of course! January’s expenses of $2,548 were very average in spite of some lumpy expenses like the annual property tax bill. When it comes to spending money, average is good. Our income of $2,068 was on the smaller side and much lower than last month’s income.

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  • school-lockers

    Why We Chose The Worst School In The District

    In my last article asking whether we should conceal our wealth, I mentioned the high poverty school that our children attend. We had a choice of many different elementary schools, and decided to go with the objectively worst school available based on traditional measures like test scores, percent of students in poverty, percent of students with limited English proficiency, and other demographics that most would say indicate a failing school. What persuaded us to choose this “failing school” was the direction it was headed and the fact that it was in our neighborhood only a few blocks away.

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  • How I felt at the end of the day.

    Should We Conceal Our Wealth?

    “Today my teacher asked me how we are able to go on another cruise so soon after the last one. I told my teacher that my daddy is retired and my mommy is about to retire, too. Then a kid in my class asked to borrow a few thousand dollars from me.”

    That’s what my nine year old told me at dinner a few days ago. Some parents might freak out about how honest their kid was with their teachers and fellow classmates. Not me. But should I be more concerned?

    Read more »

Financial Independence

life-in-a-cubicle

From Paper Boy to Engineering Manager to Early Retiree

Imagine early retirement as a well cooked meal. The recipe calls for healthy doses of earned income and a liberal application of spending less than you make. Place those savings into a good asset allocation. Mix ingredients well and let simmer for a decade or two. Voila! Early retirement on a platter. If only you could find that dish in the frozen section of the grocery store or at a drive thru window near you!

You can’t retire early without a decent working history. Throughout the last two decades, I’ve had almost twenty different jobs. The earliest ones didn’t pay particularly well, but my compensation generally increased as I gained more experience. Join me on this autobiographical odyssey through my working years.

How I felt at the end of the day.

Should We Conceal Our Wealth?

“Today my teacher asked me how we are able to go on another cruise so soon after the last one. I told my teacher that my daddy is retired and my mommy is about to retire, too. Then a kid in my class asked to borrow a few thousand dollars from me.”

That’s what my nine year old told me at dinner a few days ago. Some parents might freak out about how honest their kid was with their teachers and fellow classmates. Not me. But should I be more concerned?

Latest in Personal Finance

life-in-a-cubicle

From Paper Boy to Engineering Manager to Early Retiree

Imagine early retirement as a well cooked meal. The recipe calls for healthy doses of earned income and a liberal application of spending less than you make. Place those savings into a good asset allocation. Mix ingredients well and let simmer for a decade or two. Voila! Early retirement on a platter. If only you could find that dish in the frozen section of the grocery store or at a drive thru window near you!

You can’t retire early without a decent working history. Throughout the last two decades, I’ve had almost twenty different jobs. The earliest ones didn’t pay particularly well, but my compensation generally increased as I gained more experience. Join me on this autobiographical odyssey through my working years.

Cost Effective Investing With Motif

city-lights-boston

It’s hard to get excited about a brokerage firm. In fact, I like boring brokerage firms. Other than low costs and fees, an excellent web interface, and great customer service, there’s not a lot I want from my broker. Check out my recommendations page, and you’ll see Vanguard and Fidelity as my top choices.

But there’s another brokerage firm that piqued my interest recently: Motif Investing. They offer something that I haven’t seen at any other brokerage firm. The ability to trade a basket of stocks with one click and for only one low $9.95 brokerage commission. And they are offering $150 to entice you to give them a try (read on for more details).

Read more

From Paper Boy to Engineering Manager to Early Retiree

life-in-a-cubicle

Imagine early retirement as a well cooked meal. The recipe calls for healthy doses of earned income and a liberal application of spending less than you make. Place those savings into a good asset allocation. Mix ingredients well and let simmer for a decade or two. Voila! Early retirement on a platter. If only you could find that dish in the frozen section of the grocery store or at a drive thru window near you!

You can’t retire early without a decent working history. Throughout the last two decades, I’ve had almost twenty different jobs. The earliest ones didn’t pay particularly well, but my compensation generally increased as I gained more experience. Join me on this autobiographical odyssey through my working years.

Read more

10 Largest Purchases of 2014

money-january-2014

Out of curiosity, I took a look at our ten largest purchases of 2014. I knew what the the top few expenses would be (vacations and a major home renovation), but the rest of the expenses escaped my memory after the money left my hand.

Looking at the top ten expenses is a good exercise to conduct each year. Our top ten add up to about half of our annual spending. I’m a big believer in making sure our expenditures bring a lot of value, and by looking at these top ten expenses, we can see whether we got good value in 2014.

Read more