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FI Weekly – November 2, 2021

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Travel Rewards

Families Fly Free | EP 353

In this week’s episode, Brad and Jonathan are joined by Lyn Mettler from “Families Fly Free” to discuss optimizing your travel rewards when traveling with

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Choose FI has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Choose FI and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. Disclosures.

A Tale of Action Over 9 Years

On occasion I get an email response to the FI Weekly that is so astounding I have to include it verbatim in the newsletter.  Jo wrote in:

“I have a couple of amazing things I wanted to share on the 1% better front! Officially, I have just one college class left to complete my bachelor’s degree, years ahead of schedule, thanks to taking and transferring 13 classes from Sophia.org!

(Brad note: We talked about this site and concept in-depth with the Millionaire Educator on Episode 238 of ChooseFI)

This alone saved me $12,480!! And the last class will be reimbursed in full by my employer, which will bring my total reimbursed tuition to $6,960! The sticker price for my online degree from SNHU would have been about $40,000 but in total out of pocket for me was only $18,065.

**Now, the ROI on the $18k investment**

I work in healthcare in Boston, MA and the job market here puts a huge premium on education; specifically, to make the jump to leadership you truly need a minimum of an undergrad degree. Knowing this, I enrolled in an online program through SNHU and have been slowly chipping away at classes over the last 9 years.

Because of my enrollment I was able to move from a technician (where I started at $29,000/yr) to supervisor ($50,000/yr) to manager ($83,000/yr), and then to program manager ($95,000/yr). With my degree being completed in the next 8 weeks, I was just promoted to a new Technical Director role yesterday (with a salary of $120,000/yr!)!!!

During the negotiations for this new role, I was able to have them make an exception and I will not be required to get a master’s degree because of my specialty knowledge and expertise with the work my department does (medical device reprocessing). That experience and knowledge is self-taught but vital to my ability to command the salary that I am now earning.

So…paying 18k over 9 years has allowed me to go from $50,000 to $120,000 annually! Definitely one of the best investments I’ve made!

Jo”

The Web3 Revolution

To put it mildly, I was extremely skeptical about the world of crypto for many years. I thought it was solely a game of speculation on “money” made out of thin air.

I completely misjudged the basic fundamental understanding of what I was looking at and now I’m trying desperately to catch up.

It’s actually not truly about “money,” but instead about a radical redefining of the entire internet from walled gardens owned by the likes of mega-corporations like Facebook and Google, to a new “Web3” that is nothing less than a decentralized internet of the future where individuals and communities have ownership instead of massive corporations.

If I’ve built up any credibility with you over the years, I hope you’ll humor me and try to approach this new world with an open mind even though I fully admit it is nearly impossible to grasp at first. 

I’ve spent hundreds of hours researching and my current anticipation is that this “Web3” revolution will be a 0 to 1 change that will reach nearly every aspect of our lives on a daily basis. 

That’s the level of certainty I have over how much change is coming our way.

But it doesn’t have to be scary! I see a world of “verifiable digital ownership of everything” (my term for what’s coming), and the possibilities are endless.

I implore you to listen to Episode 542 of the Tim Ferriss Show Podcast with Naval Ravikant and Chris Dixon as soon as possible.  This is the best explanation of the future coming our way, and you’ll see why people all across the world have a nearly absurd level of excitement about this technological revolution. 

For a succinct synopsis of the highlights of this podcast episode, here’s an amazing Twitter thread with 20 of the essential must-know sections from the episode (be sure to click on the picture accompanying each of the 20 Tweets for all the info).

ChooseFI Community Taking Action This Week

  • Kaye said, “My 1% better? I finally changed my insurance plan to a High Deductible Health Plan with an HSA during my open enrollment period. I’ve been thinking about it for three years and realized I have adequate reserves in my emergency fund to handle the deductible while I build up the HSA, AND my employee contributes $1200! It was scary to leave my comfortable PPO, but the tax advantages are compelling.”
  • Karl said, “Our 1% improvement feels like a little more than 1%. About 4 years ago, my wife and I over a glass of wine decided that there were many things we wanted to do with our time that we currently were struggling to fit into our schedules. This included things like volunteering at a local therapy riding barn, working with a local land trust and traveling with our children and parents more often. We agreed then and there that we would try to figure out how to “retire early”. Our search to discover how to accomplish that goal ultimately led us to many resources with Choose FI being on of my favorites. While enjoying a quiet cup of Saturday morning coffee this past weekend I curiously looked at the concept of Coast FI. When I ran our numbers, I realized that we had just passed it couple months ago!! It was very exciting to realize that we had gone from a net worth of about 50k four years ago all the way to Coast FI. We are excited knowing that every dollar we save going forward will shorten the time until we can fully live the life we dreamed about together over that glass of wine. We have moved past the concept of “traditional retirement” and are charting our own path. Choose FI along with many other resources within the FI community have been a tremendous source of inspiration, information and guidance for us. Thanks to everyone that has helped spread the fire.”
  • Bill said, “Our 1% better is yesterday we finally hit $80,000 in our investment/savings accounts! We have also decided next week when I get half of my bonus it goes into the 401k to max that out. The other half that comes at the end of the year will go into the HSA to max that out.”
  • Rachel said, “Brad, I read your newsletter last week about unclaimed property but didn’t bother looking because I was SURE I didn’t have any. However, after reading it again this week I decided why not? It will only take a minute. And lo and behold, I was owed an old security deposit! It wasn’t much but we’re saving to buy a house so every little bit helps. Thanks!”
  • Gail said, “My 1% is community related: My husband Paul and I recently moved to New Hampshire after living in Richmond for 26 years. It’s been a long-term goal of ours to move back to New England. Paul retired at age 55 last year, and my job allows me to work remotely, so we took the plunge and here we are! We have family and friends in the area, but we have also been trying to meet new people. I discovered the ChooseFI New Hampshire FB page after reading last week’s newsletter (link to all ChooseFI Local groups here) and organized a meet up. Only one other couple came today, but we really hit it off and had a great time! We have another meet up scheduled for next weekend, and the group seems to be energized. One member has even offered to host a potluck dinner at his business after hours! Thank you for providing a way for us to meet other similarly-minded people!”

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Choose FI has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Choose FI and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. Disclosures.

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