It has taken me 12 months to get a new time high in my networth.
And that has happened without a job. I have been on welfare (A-kasse) since I got back home from the Philippines.
542.000 DKK is the new record.
Mini Retirement is Over
My mini-retirement has been 20 months rollercoaster ride. It has been the most awesome and most frustrating period of my life.
The highest highs and lowest lows.
Sailing and living in South East Asia was the bomb, but I missed people from back home.
The coronavirus made me go home way too early, and it has been the most boring period of my life. Waiting here in Denmark to see if everything would go back to normal so I could leave again has not been a pleasure.
But I have decided to move on, and that is why I’m fortunate to find myself a new job, so I can continue where I left with my FIRE journey.
Even though I’m nearing a new high in my networth, my Coast FIRE number is dropping. In June 2019 my Coast FIRE number is higher than it is today. Even though my net worth is higher.
Can you guess why? I’m getting older.
In October I turned 30 years old. Which means that I have one year less to let my portfolio compound. I calculate my Coast FIRE number of what my net worth will be when I’m 65 years old, with an annual return of 7 %.
This is a real-life example of why it is super important to start early.
Back to Work
Since I got home from my Mini Retirement in Asia in March 2019. I have been living on my boat, and couch surfing.
But I have concluded that I won’t be going back to Asia to finished what I have started.
There will be a couple of months more with couch surfing, but from January 2021 I’m going back to the office as a building constructor, which I look forward to. It is tough to be in a waiting position.
Mini Meet-Up in Copenhagen
I have been waiting for this pandemic to stop. So I could invite you to a big FIRE meetup. But it looks like that too will last a bit longer than what we like.
That is why I have decided to make a Mini Meetup the 11/12 at 19:00.
We will be grabbing a pizza somewhere in Copenhagen, and maybe drinking a beer afterward.
Write or text me at Loui@wannabewalden.com or at +4571792322 if you want to participate. Looking forward to meeting you!
I hate the word blogging. I don’t see myself as a “blogger”. It has become a negative word of people who are hungry for attention. I think it’s sad.
I think that way more people should start to produce their own content. I don’t care if it is video, recordings, or writing. Just producing stuff is super nice. You get to meet/start a new community of people.
This time it will be for four weeks. And we will be doing nothing but brewing. The last couple of days we brewed 800 L of and IPA ish beer, and 800 L of what they call a “New Year Nectar”.
The feeling of starting here is just like being a mason apprentice again. And I enjoy the feeling of being with somebody who is super good at what they are doing. But it is hard to learn and listen for 10+ hours. Meanwhile, you are working your ass off with 800 L of boiling water. But it is fun!
My New Workshop
After a long time thinking and hesitating to do a workshop. I have finally made it.
The workshop is for you, if you are into the whole FIRE philosophy, but is intimidated or confused about the investing.
Here is the update. Better late than never. It is late because I’m working hard on a presentation for 7 speaking jobs in the next couple of months.
The majority of the speaking will be on schools. Which I look forward to. I would have loved as a young adult to get all of the FIRE knowledge as soon as possible. I know it would have been a game changer for my FIRE journey if someone has taught it to me as a teenager.
I got all this information as a 25 year old. And I’m super glad I didn’t get to know it as a 60 year old.
So that is why I have made a mission to teach young kids the philosophy and math lesson that every kid should have in school about finances, investing and environmental consuming.
For the next two weeks I will be sailing around in Denmark to the different speeches.
You can write me at Loui@wannabewalden.com, if you would like me to come and speak at your place too.
Looking Into Buying a Vacation House
Without going too much in details about my researching. I’m about to buy a vacation house. Not for pleasure, but business.
This vacation house is a hidden gem. The owner has not used it for 15+ years and it looks miserable. But it is the perfect buy for a guy like me, with a background in the construction business.
The owner is willing to sell for around 100.000 DKK (15.000$), and the neighbor house has just been sold for 800.000 DKK (126.000 $). So with a bit of renovation I might be able to sell a brand new vacation house for +900.000 DKK (140.000$).
Ready for the WWW?
Slowly I have started to make some progress on the:
Wannabe Walden Workshop.
It will be for you who would like to get started with investing and simplifying your life. But has a hard time to start doing so.
And! The first couple of workshops will come at a starting price of 100 DKK (15 $).
It will include:
Insights in my portfolio and investment Philosophy
A private Facebook group
Invitations for yearly meet-ups
A forum where there is room for “stupid” questions
I have made a little change to the graphics of my monthly updates. I want to emphasize the power of Coast FIRE, and that is why I have removed everything except for the blue line which is my current net worth in stocks.
The red line is my current net worth but with a 7 % ROI till the day I’m 65 years old. Most of the people I know who have “reached” FIRE don’t spend any of their money from the portfolio. If that is the trend. Why should we spend years and years to save up for the magical 25 times your annual spending, if you are not even using them?
Let the money do the heavy lifting instead.
Traveling Around in Denmark
I’m still on welfare (Dagpenge) and is just going around in Denmark. Either by train or by boat.
I have just bought a spot for my boat on Ærø – Ærøskøbing. So that is my base at the moment. But you can find me all over the country at the moment. The island community is something I love. Visiting all of the fine islands we by boat is something that I enjoy.
Data You Miss?
Let me know if there is some data in the monthly updates you think I can add. It could be my expenses, savings rate, or something third.
Thanks To My Sponsor
Thanks to my sponsor Vilebo.dk for sponsoring again!
Just because I have been sent home from South East Asia due to the coronavirus, doesn’t mean that I don’t want to sail.
The weather looked good, and my dad and his friend shouldn’t use their boat for 14 days. So I grabbed the phone and called two of my old folk school friends, and asked them if they wanted to go on a trip with me for 14 days.
Without hesitation, they both answered yes.
The 14 days cost us about 3.000 DKK (450 $) each, which I think is a small amount for a trip that seemed like the most awesome holiday. We could easily have done it for half of that amount.
A picture says more than 1000 words, so here is an 11:46 min long video of the whole trip. It is my Instagram stories on @LouiLam compiled into one video.
(Don’t judge me on the editing, it took me less than two minutes)
I Bought a Boat!
The slight dip in my networth is because I have just bought a freaking boat! I have always wanted to live on a boat but have been terrified about how many expenses there are in having a boat.
My dad bought a book called “Pocket Cruising og Mikroeventyr”, where he suggests to buy a small boat because they are super cheap to buy and maintain. And I was sold instantly.
Looking at small boats I quickly fell in love with a boat called L23, which is an old danish glass fiber boat from the late ’70s.
I think it might be one of the smallest boats that feels like a boat. And not a dinghy.
On one of our last days on the sailing trip, one of my friends found an L23 for sale for 29.000 DKK (4.380 $). The sale ad was less than 2 hours old when I wrote to the seller that I was interested in the boat, and I would like to have a look at it. Our sailing trip ended on a Friday, and on the following day, I bought this beauty.
I’m super inspired by Henry David Thoreau who builds a little shack in the woods and lived in. And I was super inspired by the book my dad bought.
This is going to be my Walden experiment on water. This boat will be my home for the next 3-15 months, at least. Trying to live as simple as possible while enjoying the best of Denmark’s nature.
There will without a doubt be a lot of articles about the boat.
Intern as a Brewer
As I’m writing this I’m on my way to Vejle where I’m going to be an intern as a brewer at Bøgedal Brewery.
I love beer, and I have been wondering how I could stop paying a ton of money for fancy beers I love, and start to drink even fancier beer for less than what a normal beer is costing.
Proclaiming that I’m a minimalist, and still own three funds for no reason was hypocritical, so I have decided to give my portfolio a brush-up. Yesterday I sold all of my shares in Global Min. Risk and Emerging Markets. And in the future, I will only be buying the DJSI fund.
The DJSI fund “should” be a more environmentally one, so I prefer to stick with that fund. Even though index funds and environmental investing is not nearly as environmental as I would like it to be, I still think it is a step in the right direction.
There are some “pitfalls” in that fund compared to the Global Min. Risk:
It contains Emerging Markets. Which will make it a bit more volatile.
Their biggest stock position is Microsoft on about 12 % which is quite high for an Index fund.
It “only” contains 194 stocks vs 314 in Global Min. Risk, which makes it less diversified.
It is some “pitfalls” that doesn’t keep me awake at night. So I’m willing to have all of my money in that single fund.
74 % Savings rate on Welfare
Besides being away sailing where I don’t earn any money. This is the worst financial situation I can be in.
Luckily I have been responsible and having income insurance (A-kasse), which will give me an income of 13.500 DKK (2000 $) after taxes.
And thanks to my Kakeibo Experiment I have managed to only spend around 3.500 DKK (500 $) the last month. The major reason why I can keep my spending that low, is that my sister lives in my apartment. So I don’t have any spending on rent. I either live on my dad’s farm on Møn or my girlfriend’s family farm on Langeland. Both places I pay my dues by doing some grocery shopping and cooking.
Why I managed to bunk my savings rate up to 90 % is because I have paid for some airplane tickets back from the Philippines, which got canceled so I got the money back. And why not just invest them? That’s what I did.
New Parameter In My Monthly Updates
As you probably can spot, I have given the “Monthly updates” a little brush-up. I didn’t like the “Passive Income” line on the chart, so I deleted it.
The new parameter is my Coast FIRE Nr, which is a quite powerful number. I have been doing a lot of thinking on that everyone I know who has “achieved” FIRE still do some money-earning activity. Not because they have to, but it is because it is nice to do something.
I can see myself as part-time something, working 15 hours/week, just because it is nice to do so. In general, I don’t believe that work is horrible, but it shouldn’t be the majority of our week.
But I do know that I might not be able to build and renovate houses till I’m 80 years old. And that is where the Coast FIRE number comes in.
If I never touched my portfolio I would have 50 years of spending when I turn 65 years old, if my portfolio grows with 7 %/year.
Which is way more than enough.
I could have as little as 100.000 DKK (15.000$) in my portfolio and would probably still be fine when I’m 65 years old.
People often see Coast FIRE and Barista FIRE as a failed form of normal FIRE. But I don’t think that.
If I had about 1.000.000 DKK (150.000$) in my portfolio today, I would become a part of the 1 % wealthiest in Denmark when I’m 65, with a portfolio of +13.000.000 DKK (1.900.000$). Which is the equivalent of +130 years of my annual spending.
Why on earth would I need that kind of money?!
FIRE for me is that I know I can be happy without materialistic things and money. And if I know that my small portfolio got my back till the day I can’t lift my arms anymore, then I’m good.
Yearly Passive Income (5 % withdrawal with taxes): 14.300 DKK (1900 $)
% change since last month: – 15 %
Back In Denmark (On Welfare)
Mini retirements in South East Asia and a pandemic doesn’t go hand in hand.
We were working on the boat, doing some repairs on it in Carmen – Philippines. There were supposed to come 8 new guests on board, and everybody did arrive in the Philippines. But 6 of them decided to go home immediately.
So we were me and my first maid, and two guests. We told them that we couldn’t promise them anything. Because we didn’t know how the situation would unfold.
We were optimistic in the beginning, but as days went by. Everything started slowly to close down. It got harder and harder to get a lift into town. And one day they have decided that no one with white skin could leave the harbor. All of the marine traffic was banned as well, so we couldn’t even leave the harbor by boat if we wanted to.
So we were stuck in there. The bar was still open, so I didn’t miss anything. We could still order nice affordable food, and whatever we had a desire to drink was there. So no panic.
About 10 days in this pandemic we decided that it might be smart to go home. We had no idea if the whole country we shut down, and what would that mean to our situation.
We booked not one, but two flights that got canceled.
I wasn’t until the ministry of foreign affairs sent a flight to the Philippines that we could come home.
So right now I have spent more than 2000 $ on flights that got canceled, which I’m going to try to get refunded.
When Shit Hits the Fan
This situation is probably as bad as it can get from my point of view. Which is not even so bad.
I’m back here in Denmark. My flat is still rented out. So I don’t have any spending on an apartment. I will receive about 18.000 DKK/month (2650 $) on welfare (Dagpenge) before taxes, which will net in about 12.000 DKK/month (1800 $).
I can save and invest 50 % of that since my spending only will be determined by my eating and transport.
Even in the shittiest situation, I can be, I’m still able to continue my FIRE journey.
Second Month With Double Digit Drop
This is the second month with a double-digit drop.
I have kind of looked forward to a bear market to see how I would react to one. Because I have always thought that I didn’t really care. Actually, I think I would enjoy a bear market, so I could buy more stocks on sale.
Which is right.
I couldn’t care less that the market is down. The only thing that frustrates me, is that I don’t have more cash laying around to buy a good chunk of cheap shares.
But with the welfare, I should be able to buy some.
Yearly Passive Income (5 % withdrawal with taxes): 14.300 DKK (2100 $)
% change since last month: – 10 %
Where Did My Cash Go?!
The stock market is down.
It is the biggest monthly drop in my portfolio EVER!
When that being said. I have sold shares and spent 8400 $ (54.000 DKK) since I started my mini-retirement in April 2019. (I have spent more money than that, but that “Income” is from my portfolio)
Which is an awesome thing for you guys who are still buying up shares. But not for me who is in a mini-retirement, and sort of dependent on cashing out some shares to get by.
I enjoy selling shares that were almost 40 % more expensive than I bought it.
It meant I got 40 cents for every dollar I invested. Not bad. But now it is more like I get 28 cents for every dollar. Which is still not bad, but it does hurt a bit more to sell a share now.
I still have a good amount of cash, but they might not be sufficient for the next 6 months.
Back In The Philippines
Two days ago arrived back in the Philippines.
What should have been a week in France, ended up being 14 days instead. The boat that I’m going to sail with. Has kept postponing when they are going to leave Indonesia because of bad weather.
That meant I could spend some more days in France. I’m looking forward to the next six months of adventure. But being away from the girl I visited in France is tough. We are not going to see each other for the next six months. It is far from ideal to miss a person that much when I was supposed to have the time of my life.
I’m trying to tell my self that it is possible to miss a person back in Europe, and still have the time of my life here in Asia. But I would lie if I say it doesn’t take a good amount of internal convincing.
I just guess it is a sailor’s life.
Making a FREE Online Course
I have decided to make a free online course on how to reach Coast FIRE in three years or less.
I decided to make it because I think many people will benefit from getting educated on how “little money” can secure your future.
Special young people, who going to choose which education they should do. And maybe go down a route because of the money and “prestige”.
You can reach Coast FIRE in three years or less, with any formal education here in Denmark. And this course will prove it.
It will be short. It will be basic. But it will be efficient as f### !
Passive Yearly Income (5 % withdrawal with taxes): 16.900 DKK (2500 $)
% change since last month: + 0,4 %
So What The F#ck Happen This Month?
Stock Market went up, networth went down
Going to France
Train, eat, sleep and repeat
Spending, spending and more spending
We all know the this simple equation for wealth building:
Spending < Earnings
It is simpelt. But very effective.
I’m doing the direct opposite at the moment. Having no income at all, and spending a ton of money. In many years I have known where my money went. But the last month. I feel like I have spent about a 1000 $, when I have spend closer to 3000 $.
And because of that. I’m going to track my spending. I know many people who has tracked their spending. I have done that myself. But it has been done automatically with apps that uses your bank transactions.
But I don’t feel like you get emotionally attached to that transaction, the same way as if you do it manually.
So that’s where I found the Kakeibo method (pronounced Kah-Keh-Boh). Long story short. Is a simple money management where you write spending and earnings in hand.
I will make a complete blogpost about it someday. So I won’t cover the topic to much now.
“Je Vais A Paris!!!”
In best google translate style.
I’m going to France! And it is not completely random that I have chosen France. The thing that shouldn’t happen, did happen.
When I was back in Denmark, and preparing myself for my mini retirement. One of the biggest bullet points on my “Not-To-Do-List”. Was NOT to fell in love with a girl. And that went perfect back in Denmark.
But then I went away for the first part of my mini retirement. Which was two months in Indonesia on the boat (Orbit) as a skipper trainee. These two months was super awesome.
I got to:
To know the boat quiet good (Thanks to Mathias, the current skipper).
Get four new diving licenses and become a PADI Divemaster.
Get the experience of being on a yacht for two months.
But another thing happen as well.
There was this girl. And without going into to much details. Let’s just say I can’t stop thinking about her. Guess what?! She is currently doing an exchange period with her studies in medicin in……… (Drum roll please)
So I have decided to spent 1500+ $ on a ten day trip to Paris and Lyon.
I think the money is going to be well spent.
Cebu Is Gooooood
My days are looking pretty much the same everyday.
They look something like this:
Sleep as long as I can. Do some writing/reading/meditating or anything else productive. I might watch too much YouTube though.