The intersection of personal finance, financial independence, and Disney.

Month: December 2020 (Page 1 of 3)

COVID Birthday Paradox

covid birthday paradox risk model

The holidays are upon us which means a time of celebrations with friends and family. Well, it would mean that in any other year. Unfortunately there is still a pandemic spreading across the country despite how some of your friends and family are acting on social media. You need to stay home this year and I brought the math on why using the COVID Birthday Paradox.

The problem is that we are all notoriously bad at calculating the actual risk we take when participating in our lives. All of us are. We grossly underestimate the external risk, overestimate our ability to personally mitigate it, and otherwise assume “it won’t happen to me”. The COVID Birthday Paradox calculation helps show the real risk of being in the room with a COVID positive person.

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Step 12: Big Purchases

big purchase step 12 path to financial independence

You’ve come this far down the path to financial independence. You paid down all of your major debt and fully fund your retirement accounts. The amount you save each year might be north of 35-50% of your income. Even if you’ve been hardcore FIRE until now, you have at least one big purchase you want to make. A car, a house, a dream vacation, or something else you’ve held off on.

That is more than ok. Expected even. I have some very strong opinions on certain categories of purchases but everyone values things differently. Get that house, go on that trip, or remodel your kitchen. Just make sure you plan and save for the big purchase.

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Plaza Chili Recipe – Food Friday

plaza chili recipe quick easy 30 min

The Plaza Chili recipe is so easy that you’ll probably have the entire thing memorized after the first time you cook it. Honestly. There are far more elaborate and time consuming recipes out there to get a more authentic bowl of Texas Red. I don’t need that right now. What I need is something delicious I can make tonight without spending hours in the kitchen. The Plaza Chili Recipe is that solution.

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Speeding is a waste of time & money

reckless driving speeding is a waste of time and money

Speeding is a huge waste of time and money. Reckless driving in general is decidedly bad for people on the path to financial independence. Not only does it save very little time (if any), but it can be very expensive to you in the long run. We are all here to save money not waste it, right? Call me old but I’ve gladly shifted myself to the center lane on cruise control. Feel free to comment in support or to tell me how wrong I am.

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Step 11: Max IRA Contributions

max ira contributions Step 11 Path to FI

Two questions. First, are you contributing to an IRA account for retirement? Second, are you doing the max IRA contributions allowable amount each year? (assuming you are eligible to do either) If you can answer yes to these questions feel free to move onto the next step in the Path to Financial Independence. If not you need to keep reading on why they can be so important for your future.

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Step 10: Pay down moderate debt

pay down moderate debt

If you’ve made it this far that means you have a healthy emergency fund and have successfully paid off your high interest debt. Hopefully you have a plan in place to keep both of those victories in place and prevent sliding back into trouble. Now it is time to pay down moderate debt. A 4-8% interest rate may not seem like its high enough to worry about tackling right now. Some might argue that your money is better off in the stock market. I think it is critical to keeping up on the Path to Financial Independence.

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Plaza Biscuit Recipe – Food Friday

plaza biscuit recipe

I’m not entirely sure you are allowed to refer to yourself as a good southern cook if you can’t whip up some delicious biscuits to accompany your dishes. I don’t make the rules, I just make sure I can crush this Plaza biscuit recipe when I need to. Similar to how the baguette is sometimes seen as the mark of a good French baker, the biscuit is the benchmark food in the Southern culinary world. The ingredients are simple but it takes a good “biscuit hand” to pull them off.

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