3, 2, 1…Go!

Hello! Welcome to our blog, Bona FIde Money. The name is inspired by Holly Hunter’s character in “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?”. She tells Ulysses that she won’t be with him because she’s got a new suitor and he’s “bona fide”. (Financially responsible) Then my husband noticed that there is an F.I. in bona fide so there you go. Also, it’s fun to say.

We are a married couple living in Portland, Oregon. Mr. Bona fide Money just turned 4o years old last month and I will do the same this month. We are planning to both quit working full time and be established as “Financially Independent” at 50 years old. That’s a nice even 10 year count down. This blog is our accountability journal as we work towards this goal, as well as a way to share helpful life hacks and connect with this super resourceful, fun community.

We have 2 children- a 15 year old girl and a 10 year old boy. Retiring in 10 years means the boy child will be well on his way to adulthood and our lifestyle options will likely be very open. Of course, we are well aware that you never really know what to expect from the future, but that is part of the point of F.I. right? Financial agility!

We first heard about the concept 6 or 7 years ago after reading “The 4 Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferriss. The time management and passive income¬†concepts were very exciting to us but we never really figured out the “muse” necessary for that all important income stream. Fast forward a couple years to 2015. We were on vacation in Mexico and I came across the New Yorker article about Mr. Money Mustache.

I was instantly hooked. So was my husband. We read every one of those posts from start to finish. Full immersion. It was helpful that we were on a leisure vacation and had lots of time to kill.

Full disclosure- We are not hardcore Mustachians. I am not riding my bike everywhere. Or anywhere. I totally get why he advocates it, but I just don’t wanna. I do, however, drive a 2010 base model Prius. And I work from home. So there.

What we loved so much about MMM it is the clearly outlined goal. What is possible and a way to accomplish it. We have always been frugal and ambitious by nature but without clear direction. This completely validated our natural tendencies and inspired us to really take a hard look at our spending and to define our lifestyle goals. It’s way too late for us to retire at 30, and 50 isn’t super early, but we have spent the last couple years getting the hang of how we want to spend and enjoy our time in the present and how to also plan for the future. We’ve designed a pretty sweet life for right now but we definitely work a lot. Too much. We want to make more things and learn another language and learn to play a musical instrument and to experience slow travel and… and… and.

Mr. Bona fide Money is a software engineer with a BIG company. Data architect, I think. I honestly have no idea what he does. But he does a lot of it. Whew! First requirement for F.I. is “be a software engineer”, right? Good thing we’ve got that going for us. Otherwise, I’d be screwed. Just kidding! It’s totally not necessary. It’s just common and compatible with the types of peoples that pursue this sort of thing. I am not a software engineer. I am a hairstylist, a realtor and a real estate investor. 3 side hustles that equal full time employment and income.

We hope to achieve our financial goals primarily through buy and hold rental properties. We do all the other stuff we are supposed to-contribute heavily to our tax deferred retirement accounts, spend very intentionally, live in a house with a reasonable mortgage, and drive paid off, basic cars. In the next couple posts, I will share our real estate history, portfolio and strategy.