“Welcome to the PlanEasy blog! We make personal finance easy.

Thanks for visiting.”

– Owen

Aiming For FIRE? Beware The Boring Middle

Aiming For FIRE? Beware The Boring Middle

Financial Independence Retire Early (aka FIRE) is one of those big personal finance goals that has gotten a lot of attention recently. The idea of being financially independent, choosing when and if to work, is attractive for many people, especially when there is so much uncertainty in the world.

To be financially independent means that your investments (whether that be stocks, bonds, GICs, real estate etc) can provide enough income to cover annual expenses indefinitely. FIRE enthusiasts typically use the 4% rule as a guideline for how much income they can generate from their portfolio each year. The idea being that a person can draw 4% of their initial portfolio balance, adjusted for inflation each year, and have reasonably high chance of not running out of money after 30-years.

By using the 4% rule we can generate a rough target for FIRE. The basic idea is that you can take your annual expenses and multiply by 25 and that is your “FIRE number“. This is the amount needed in investments to safely retire early (although with low interest rates and low bond returns at the moment this rule is often thought to be too risky).

But despite it being a simple concept, reaching FIRE is a difficult task. It requires a high savings rate, low expenses, and lots of time.

FIRE is made easier with an above average income, which allows for a higher savings rate, but it is still a difficult task. Reaching FIRE means living well below your means for an extended period of time.

This combination of low spending, high savings, and a long time frame can lead to what’s known as “the boring middle”.

In this post we’ll briefly explain what FIRE is, why it’s so easy in the beginning, and why “the boring middle” could be a sign that there is an imbalance in the plan, one where the means may not justify the end.

read more
How To Make A Great Debt Payoff Plan

How To Make A Great Debt Payoff Plan

In the world of personal finance, one of the best feelings is when you become debt free. Once you become debt free it’s like a weight has been lifted, you can breathe a sigh of relief, you’re free!

Creating a debt payoff plan is the fastest way to become debt free. It’s motivating. It’s provides a clear goal. It creates a clear payment plan to follow. But what makes a great debt payoff plan? There are a few important things that a great debt payoff plan should include.

Whether you’re paying off a bunch of credit card debt, or a big line of credit, or a student loan, or just want to see how long it will take to become mortgage free, a great debt payoff plan can make this happen.

What should be included in a great debt payoff plan? These six things are top of our list… (plus you’ll get a sneak peek at our new Debt Payoff Plan which is exclusively for clients to use when creating a financial plan with PlanEasy!)

read more
8 Ways To Feel Financially Secure

8 Ways To Feel Financially Secure

Feeling financially secure has nothing to do with how much money you have or how much money you earn. Feeling financially secure is all about how you feel about your finances, how you manage your finances, and your attitude towards money in general.

Financial insecurity is a very common feeling. It affects both low-income and high-income households, it affects both young and old. In fact, according to the most recent FP Canada survey, at least half of us are affected by financial stress in some way.

“Half (50%) of Canadians say that financial stress has impacted their life in at least one way, with health issues (18%), marriage/relationship problems (15%), distractions and reduced productivity at work (14%), and family disputes (13%) the most common ways stress affects them.” Source.

When talking about financial security, it’s important to differentiate between BEING financially secure and actually FEELING financially secure. It’s possible to BE financially secure but not FEEL that way. It’s possible to be in a great financial position but without the right knowledge, routines and plans, it may not actually feel that way.

In this post we’ve outlined eight things you can do to FEEL financially secure (even if you still have the exact same income, spending, and savings).

read more

Owen Winkelmolen

Fee-for-service financial planner and founder of PlanEasy.ca

“Welcome to the PlanEasy blog! We make personal finance easy.

Thanks for visiting.”

– Owen

New blog posts weekly!

Tax planning, benefit optimization, budgeting, family planning, retirement planning and more...

Aiming For FIRE? Beware The Boring Middle

Aiming For FIRE? Beware The Boring Middle

Financial Independence Retire Early (aka FIRE) is one of those big personal finance goals that has gotten a lot of attention recently. The idea of being financially independent, choosing when and if to work, is attractive for many people, especially when there is so much uncertainty in the world.

To be financially independent means that your investments (whether that be stocks, bonds, GICs, real estate etc) can provide enough income to cover annual expenses indefinitely. FIRE enthusiasts typically use the 4% rule as a guideline for how much income they can generate from their portfolio each year. The idea being that a person can draw 4% of their initial portfolio balance, adjusted for inflation each year, and have reasonably high chance of not running out of money after 30-years.

By using the 4% rule we can generate a rough target for FIRE. The basic idea is that you can take your annual expenses and multiply by 25 and that is your “FIRE number“. This is the amount needed in investments to safely retire early (although with low interest rates and low bond returns at the moment this rule is often thought to be too risky).

But despite it being a simple concept, reaching FIRE is a difficult task. It requires a high savings rate, low expenses, and lots of time.

FIRE is made easier with an above average income, which allows for a higher savings rate, but it is still a difficult task. Reaching FIRE means living well below your means for an extended period of time.

This combination of low spending, high savings, and a long time frame can lead to what’s known as “the boring middle”.

In this post we’ll briefly explain what FIRE is, why it’s so easy in the beginning, and why “the boring middle” could be a sign that there is an imbalance in the plan, one where the means may not justify the end.

read more
How To Make A Great Debt Payoff Plan

How To Make A Great Debt Payoff Plan

In the world of personal finance, one of the best feelings is when you become debt free. Once you become debt free it’s like a weight has been lifted, you can breathe a sigh of relief, you’re free!

Creating a debt payoff plan is the fastest way to become debt free. It’s motivating. It’s provides a clear goal. It creates a clear payment plan to follow. But what makes a great debt payoff plan? There are a few important things that a great debt payoff plan should include.

Whether you’re paying off a bunch of credit card debt, or a big line of credit, or a student loan, or just want to see how long it will take to become mortgage free, a great debt payoff plan can make this happen.

What should be included in a great debt payoff plan? These six things are top of our list… (plus you’ll get a sneak peek at our new Debt Payoff Plan which is exclusively for clients to use when creating a financial plan with PlanEasy!)

read more
8 Ways To Feel Financially Secure

8 Ways To Feel Financially Secure

Feeling financially secure has nothing to do with how much money you have or how much money you earn. Feeling financially secure is all about how you feel about your finances, how you manage your finances, and your attitude towards money in general.

Financial insecurity is a very common feeling. It affects both low-income and high-income households, it affects both young and old. In fact, according to the most recent FP Canada survey, at least half of us are affected by financial stress in some way.

“Half (50%) of Canadians say that financial stress has impacted their life in at least one way, with health issues (18%), marriage/relationship problems (15%), distractions and reduced productivity at work (14%), and family disputes (13%) the most common ways stress affects them.” Source.

When talking about financial security, it’s important to differentiate between BEING financially secure and actually FEELING financially secure. It’s possible to BE financially secure but not FEEL that way. It’s possible to be in a great financial position but without the right knowledge, routines and plans, it may not actually feel that way.

In this post we’ve outlined eight things you can do to FEEL financially secure (even if you still have the exact same income, spending, and savings).

read more

New blog posts weekly!

Tax planning, benefit optimization, budgeting, family planning, retirement planning and more...

New blog posts weekly!

Tax planning, benefit optimization, budgeting, family planning, retirement planning and more...

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This