Thursday, 1 March 2018


The first of every month I calculate my net worth. I check all debt (none, rent is paid and the internal household accounts are squared). I log onto all three financial institutes where my money is handled (two banks and a pension account). The value of all accounts are noted down and assets that I have immediate access to are summarised into my net worth. I do not include the value of my small apartment as I will always have to live somewhere. I also do not include the current value of any pension or retirement funds as I do not have access to them at the moment. There is no possibility to assess their value on the day I need them, or my net value the day they start paying out. Maybe I will be in dire need of it, maybe it is only a bonus.

I estimate my net worth as the number of years it could sustain me, living with my current annual budget. Note, not the annual spending. The annual spending should be lower than the annual budget. With my current lifestyle, my current annual budget fits me well although I pay the upkeep of (contribute to) two humble abodes in two countries. It may sound as an unusual set up unless you have a summer house or similar, then it is exactly the same.

My current new worth will carry me for 36,25 years. I call it my FI-number: the Financial Independence number. I calculate it every month in the same way. There is no certainty that it will be enough for all those years but there is a hope that price increases will be carried by investment returns and interests. Hope. Anything else dramatic will need an adjustment in the budget.

With most financial estimates (4% SWR, a frugalist lifestyle, dividend pay outs, passive income etc) this should be enough for a safe early retirement. (Early-ish in my case as I am about to be 50.)
The conclusion has been reached that retirement is not for me. I like to work, not only because I like what I do, but also because I function very well with project-thinking, deadlines, progression and result. Much better than with total freedom, as it often leaves me feeling a little useless. That makes me make more project plans, so I could just as well have paid work. There is much progress here to be made still.
Since 2013 I only work four days a week. A pleasure I pay dearly for, and a pleasure I am happy to pay for. (Pay in terms of reduced income.)

I say that I like what I do for work, but there has been serious problems the last two years with who I do the work I do for. Not liking top management and their super structure, which isn't very super, at all. Middle management covers their mistakes as much as possible (poor sods) to keep the actual work going, but it needs to get much better before it gets good.
The FI-security makes the situation less stressful financially.
National health and social security systems are wonderful foundations for creativity and freedom.
I still feel good having income every month.
Maybe I should work on that mental financial independence some more.

Weight has increasing from the low of -5 kilos (five less than the weight I said I never would go above and still did, and worked hard the last year to get off more than 10 kilos). But it is still on -4 kilos so within the acceptable range. I really have to pinch me though to not become a slacker and an eater in the cold weeks ahead.


  1. Yes, I know many people who plan never to retire because they like the structure and sense of purpose that working gives them. I am not of their number. I regard retirement as my reward for surviving the workforce for decades.

    1. Good on you! Enjoy it!! (I save to not have to workforce unless it suits me.)

  2. I am running out of steam to stay in the workforce. I'll back way down in about 3 more years.

    1. Only 150 more weeks to go! Woohoo, make the most of it.