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Peer Street Review

Building wealth is simple when you understand the rules. Spending less than you earn provides seed capital for investments. Index funds provide the opportunity for superior growth with reduced risk due to diversification across the broad economic spectrum.

Once you have the basics it becomes clear you need additional cash management tools to serve your financial needs. Short-term cash for emergencies or living expenses are best held as bank deposits or in high-yield accounts like Capital One 360 or Discover Savings.

With long-term investments set in index funds and short-term needs covered by liquid money market type products it’s time to fill in the remaining gap. And there are some reasonable alternatives paying a respectable rate of return.

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Why I’m Retiring the Day I Graduate from High School

I’m different. I’ve always been different. I was born with a big disadvantage. Before I was a year old I had more surgeries than most people in a lifetime. At twelve I started taking over a dozen medications. Pill after pill is cut and placed in a dispenser like that of a 90 year old man.

Dad picks on me that all the pills I take are a meal in itself. My parents are supportive, but they have no idea how much of a pain it is to be sick all the time.

I’m also different from my family in other ways. My sister wants to travel the world and teach English (more on that later). My dad hates traveling past the mailbox at the end of the driveway. He says he wants to build a wall around the farm. When Trump came out with his wall on the Mexican border dad said he needs to talk to Trump and see if he could get a section built around the farm.

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Church of FI

Back in the old days the FI (financial independence) community was a different place. Advice was simple and straight forward. King Solomon reminded us to avoid lending or borrowing. Nearly half the parables of Jesus have to do with money and wealth.

The simple message sold well. So well in fact it became ingrained in religious dogma. The goal was honest. Work hard, save and you will enjoy your old age.

The old school in the Church of FI made the most of a basic message. The advice and values were handed down generation to generation. It lasted for one simple reason; it worked!

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How Recent Tax Law Changes Will Destroy Your Wealth (Unless You’re Already Rich)

It started with a simple request for an update to my personal net worth.

Over the years I’ve been mum about the subject, only exposing myself due to the Rockstar Finance Net Worth Tracker. I’m still undecided about discussing my *exact* net worth publically. It’s really nobody’s business and is only public because I write a personal finance blog.

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If You Don’t Like What You See in the Mirror . . .

Back in 1982 Wisconsin a young man could legally belly up to the bar on his 18th birthday. That didn’t stop me from getting a jump start on adulthood.

In my later years of high school there were several rural bars where the owners could care less how old I was. The police rarely showed up (they never showed up when I was there, but I heard stories) and the penalties were light if caught selling to minors.

So I unwound after a long week of farm labor and sloughing off at school with a cold one in Brothertown. I drove the distance to tip a brew with my buddy, Ken.

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Respite

I’m proud of what I’ve done to the FIRE (financial independence, retire early) community. Once upon a time Mr. Money Mustache and Early Retirement Extreme dominated the demographic; MMM still does. The shtick of the community focused on the ER part of the equation. FI was a tool to live ER.

Guys like Pete at Money Mustache retired early and enjoyed their life of freedom. Time with the wife and kid/s was paramount. Then the community was infiltrated by the travel guys. ER was no longer enough! Now you had to travel the world before your fourth birthday to be average. (Okay, folks around here were older than four, but you get the drift.)

The FIRE community continued growing new arms. Some focused on ER; some focused on FI; some traveled; some became home bodies. With all day on their hands it is no surprise many took up hobbies and side gigs.

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If You Haven’t Retired by 30 You’re a F—— Failure

When I first discovered the FIRE (financial independence, retire early) community I didn’t even know it was a community. Always eager for a good read, I mentally grazed on the offerings of blogs around the internet.

Intrigued by frugality I was naturally drawn to these blogs and news articles. Poverty was well in my past, yet habits die hard. My reasons were many. I wanted to leave as light a footprint on the planet as possible as good steward of the world I inherited. My natural competitive nature also drove me to compete against myself in lowering my consumption and needs.

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How to Lose a Million Dollars in a Day

There is an insidious side to the FIRE (financial independence, retire early) community nobody wants to talk about. I was aware of this issue for some time as the owner of an accounting practice. What I found most disturbing is how blatantly bloggers and talking heads in the demographic keep giving advice that will lead to tears.

It is not if, it is when it will happen. If you follow the advice of this blog and others in the genre you will eventually suffer a million dollar loss day.

I have broken bread with these people and tipped a beer or three as this issue has been discussed and to date I never found anyone to give a damn.

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