How to win the endgame of financial independence - MoneySense

How to win the endgame of financial independence

Graeme Falco’s new book is a good primer for beginner and intermediate investors who are hoping to build a portfolio that will help them retire early


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Book: Building wealth and being happy: a practical guide to financial independence
Author: Graeme Falco
Publisher: Graeme Falco 2016
Price: $11.99, Kindle $3.99

WHO IT’S FOR: People who want to get rich slowly over many years and retire early

MORE SPECIFICALLY: Those who want to know how to achieve financial independent but also how to find happiness—apart from the dollar amount in our investment accounts.

DOES IT BUST ANY MYTHS?: Yes, that there are legitimate reasons to have a home country bias in your portfolio—favourable tax treatment for domestic stocks being one of them. And while there is no clear “right” answer to this asset allocation question, Canadian investors can reasonably defend an allocation made up of anywhere from 4% to 30% Canadian equity.

DOES IT TOUCH ON ANY OTHER INVESTMENT THEMES?: Of course, the book talks about ETFs, stocks, asset allocation as well as taxes for someone setting themselves the goal of generating passive income for early retirement. It also talks about real estate investing and bond investing, with an eye on how these products and strategies can help you reach early retirement. It’s good for primer beginner and intermediate investors.

SURELY YOU CAN’T REACH FINANCIAL INDEPENDENCE BEFORE RETIREMENT?: Yes you can, and with a little planning, many people do.

WHY WE LIKE IT: It clearly shows how even though you’re saving for financial independence, it doesn’t mean you have to be a miserable penny pincher during the accumulation years to become financially independent at a reasonable age.

WHAT’S SURPRISING?: That financial independence doesn’t have to coincide with retirement. Financial independence is achieved when income from passive sources (stocks, rental income, bank interest, etc.) exceeds one’s expenses—and that can be at any age.

ACTION ITEM: “The saving and waiting part of financial independence is long, so learn to enjoy it

KEY TAKEAWAY: “All too often people think that achieving financially independence will allow them to become the person they are really meant to be. But just as buying physical objects can’t make you happy in the long run, a big pile of investments can’t give you self-esteem or satisfaction from life.” So remember to live in the present.

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