The Yagna

Where are you and where are you going?
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Agni
Posts: 19
Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:00 am

The Yagna

Post by Agni » Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:07 am

Hi!

I stumbled upon Jacob's blog a few years back. I read the ERE book and have been following the blog, forum ever since.
While every journal is just great! I found akratic, c40, spoonman and m741 especially relevant for me.

My Background:
- Age, Gender: 28 Year, Male
- Location: Living in the Pacific-Northwest
- Job: Software Developer

Started work after finishing my graduate degree in CS last year. The goal is to be FI in 5 years.
The plan is to journal my monthly finances here, discuss my evolving plans, investments and get feedback.
The hope is that the journal will help me keep on track to financial independence.

I'll post my finances as a separate post.
Last edited by Agni on Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Agni
Posts: 19
Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:00 am

Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:04 am

Inspirations, Motivators to FIRE:
  • My novelty seeking, conformity avoiding, passion project oriented tendencies made me averse to doing a 9-5 till I die
  • ERE website, book, forum, YMOYL, MMM and The Happiness Hypothesis
Long Term Goals:
  • Achieve FI in 5 years. Ability to FIRE to ~India in 3 years. Ability to FIRE here in 5 years
  • Learn to invest intelligently
  • Diversify income generation, practical and post-FIRE adventure skills. E.g carpentry, mechanic, sailing, wilderness living
2018 Goals:
  • Save 100k by July 2018, i.e a year from starting work
  • Learn to properly swim :roll:, (find a way to) learn sailing on the cheap during the summers
Last edited by Agni on Sun Jan 21, 2018 8:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:11 am

This is a summary of my finances over the last 6 months.

Monthly Expenses:

Code: Select all

| Month          | Expenses |
|----------------+----------|
| July 2017      |     4450 |
| August 2017    |     2600 |
| September 2017 |     2200 |
| October 2017   |     2450 |
| November 2017  |     2050 |
| December 2017  |     1350 |
Expense Breakdown: July - December 2017

Code: Select all

| Category   | Cost |  %  |
|------------+------+-----|
| Housing    | 6000 | 40  |
| Food       | 2450 | 16  |
| Gifts      | 1650 | 11  |
| Travel     | 1300 |  9  |
| Transport  | 1000 |  6  |
| Supplies   |  800 |  5  |
| Insurance  |  550 |  4  |
| Experience |  450 |  3  |
| Sports     |  350 |  2  |
| Hardware   |  300 |  2  |
| Clothing   |  150 |  1  |
Financial Summary: July - December 2017
  • Total (After Tax) Expenses: 15150
  • Total (After Tax) Income: 74600
  • Total Assets: 61000
  • Average Savings Rate: 79.50%
  • Years to FIRE: 4.5 years
Some Pretty Graphs: July - December 2017
Monthly Expenses
Image

Expense Breakdown
Image

Projected Time to FIRE
Image

NOTES:
  • All number are 'rounded' to nearest 50.
  • December expenses are significantly lower due to going home for holidays and not due to any improvement in my financial diet.
  • EDIT: Figured how to add pictures to posts for showing graphs
  • Projected Years to FIRE is based on cumulative projected annual income(after tax), each months expense(after tax) and a SWR of 4%
Last edited by Agni on Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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singvestor
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Re: The Yagna

Post by singvestor » Sun Jan 21, 2018 8:11 am

80% saving rate, impressive. What is the plan for life after financial independence?

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Sun Jan 21, 2018 8:47 am

So some of the experience related ideas include sailing, slow traveling through Europe and/or retiring to the Himalayas. Work-wise a job in a different country, contracting or working to monetize my passion project(s) are some of the possibilities. Ideally after some time adventuring, home-base myself amongst friends(= community of like-minded folks) on a self-sustainable off-grid farm. At least that's how my daydreams go :mrgreen:

tommytebco
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Re: The Yagna

Post by tommytebco » Sun Jan 21, 2018 9:48 am

Someone has to ask
What is a "YAGNA"??

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RFS
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Joined: Sun Jan 14, 2018 8:25 pm

Re: The Yagna

Post by RFS » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:54 am

Awesome! Welcome, Agni. That's a very impressive savings rate. Congratulations on finishing your graduate degree as well.

Have you thought about trying to "hack" your housing and/or transportation? Craig Curelop from BiggerPockets makes an additional $1,500/mo by renting out his apartment on AirBnB (he sleeps in the living room with a divider) and his car on Turo. It could help reduce your costs.

Scott 2
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Scott 2 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:04 pm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yajna

Lots of software folks here, the profession is playing ERE on easy mode. I bet you have at least one co-worker with a boat.

Your compensation could grow a lot in 5 years. My experience is it makes walking away very difficult. I encourage you to pursue those experience ideas over the next 5 years, even while working.

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:13 pm

@tommytebco: Woops, I kind of forgot to say that in the intro! Agni is the sanskrit word for fire(=FIRE), Yagna is a sacrificial ritual to achieve objectives. These rituals usually involve fire, A sacrificial ritual(yagna) by fire(agni) to achieve FIRE..you get the drift :lol:. And no I'm not a religious fanatic, I just love archaic cultural references :roll:.

@RFS: Thanks! And yeah, as you noticed there is scope for improvement on the housing, car front. I've lived with extreme minimalism in the past, i.e In grad school I used to sleep in my sleeping bag and all my belongings could fit into the trunk of my civic, and personally I prefer it. But with work, the outward appearances of normalcy demand I have a bed, a room etc. I'm still trying to figure out how much of the "keeping up appearance of normalcy" I am comfortable with. On the AirBnB-ing front, I think I'll ask my flatmate if he's cool with it. Could be a useful secondary income stream to make the costs of keeping up appearances more palatable.

@Scott 2: Agree on the ERE easy-mode if software developer and the difficulty of walking away. I'm trying to preempt the trap in little ways here and there, this journal and proclamations of intent to social circles as weak futures contracts being some of them. By social circles I mean just family and close friends. And yes, I know/feel the issue with talking about ERE to non-believers :P but I couldn't help it and can live with it(for now).

Also yes, note to self: remember to do all the things that are possible while working now instead of waiting for some future utopia that may never come, at least in the form I was hoping.

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fiby41
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Re: The Yagna

Post by fiby41 » Mon Jan 22, 2018 1:10 am

@Agni, RFS: I think I'm on the other side of the spectrum in thinking Agni has got the housing/transport equation figured.

In the 21 day ERE makeover available on the homepage one of the first steps is to move closer to work in order to eliminate transport costs. It's an optimisation problem, as most jobs are in the city center and it gets expensive the closer you live to it, until the savings in travel cost are less than price rise.

I'd be concerned if housing was more than third of my total expenses, but housing+transport is still less than half, so to me, it is reasonable.

A question though.. how are travel and transport rows different? Is transport for work and travel what you do on your own time?

Through Agni, the worshipper obtains that affluence which increases day by day.

Agninā rayim aśhnavat posh-um-eva the-way the-way |

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RFS
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Re: The Yagna

Post by RFS » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:42 pm

@fiby41 - I agree, it's a good setup. But imagine if you could turn that already optimal housing situation into a cash-flowing asset. Especially if you're already bad-ass enough to store your belongings in a Honda Civic trunk/don't mind renting your bedroom to the ocassional AirBnB-er. Eliminating even 10% of housing costs would be the equivalent of hitting those yellow & red Mario Kart arrows on the road to FI. You speed up and fire comes out of the tailpipe for dramatic effect

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Fri Jan 26, 2018 10:59 pm

@fiby41: The transport row is for in-city travel expenses like car, gas, public transport etc. The travel row is for all costs associated with longer distance, personal travel including cost of flights, trains etc.

@fiby41,@RFS: Yeah, housing accounts for the largest percentage(40%) of expenses after taxes. Given that I'm already maxing out my 401k, HSA, optimizing housing will give me the greatest payoffs in terms of savings. I need to think what I can do about this some more though.

fiby41 wrote:
Mon Jan 22, 2018 1:10 am
Through Agni, the worshipper obtains that affluence which increases day by day.

Agninā rayim aśhnavat posh-um-eva the-way the-way |
Nice! Also TIL Agni is the first word in the Rigveda! :geek:

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SnailMeister4000
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Re: The Yagna

Post by SnailMeister4000 » Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:04 am

Agni wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:04 am
2018 Goals: (...) Learn to properly swim
For learning how to swim I can recommend Terry Laughlin’s “Total Immersion” method. It focuses on efficiency, balance and body alignment in the water.

I bought a used copy of his book years ago and by practicing most of the suggested drills (including the basic balance drills to build a foundation) I got from only being able to swim breast stroke properly to front crawl 4km/2,5miles swimmingly within a few months.

Apart from the book you don’t need to buy any gimmicks or training aids really, or videos or classes, imo. Goggles are recommendable though, swim shorts too, perhaps. Maybe silicone ear plugs*, like Zoggs Aqua Ear Plugs.

*I never needed ear plugs for swimming breast stroke, but rotating the body around the long axis with front crawl swimming always led to water running into my ears, potentially leading to inflammation, so I started using them.

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:07 am

January 2018 Finances

Expense Breakdown

Code: Select all

| Category   | Cost |  %   |
|------------+------+------|
| Housing    | 1000 | 71.4 |
| Food       | 350  | 25.0 |
| Insurance  | 50   | 3.6  |
Image

Financial Summary: January 2018
- Expenses: 1400
- Savings Rate: 93.9%
- Projected Years to FIRE: 3.1 years

A bonus at work made January finances (e.g savings rate) look much better than expected.

I'm thinking of doing a more detailed financial summary every quarter. This will have more detailed graphs like in my previous post.

Footnotes:
- All number are 'rounded' to nearest 50 or 0.1 for percentages
- Years to FIRE is based on that month's expenses, averaged income (at current paygrade), current assets and SWR of 4%
- All numbers are after tax

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Agni
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Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:00 am

Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:32 am

February 2018 Finances

Expense Breakdown

Code: Select all

| Category   | Cost |  %   |
|------------+------+------|
| Housing    | 1000 | 59.7 |
| Food       | 250  | 14.9 |
| Sports     | 250  | 14.9 |
| Transport  | 50   | 3.0  |
| Experience | 50   | 3.0  |
| Other      | 50   | 4.5  |
Image

Financial Summary: February 2018
- Expenses: 1675
- Savings Rate: 81.7%
- Projected Years to FIRE: 4.0 years

Footnotes:
- Most number are 'rounded' to nearest 50 or 0.1 for percentages
- Years to FIRE is based on that month's expenses, averaged income (at current paygrade), current assets and SWR of 4%
- All numbers are after tax

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Agni
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Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:00 am

Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:58 am

- @SnailMeister4000: Thanks a ton for that info! I'll try and avoid getting lessons and just read this guys book instead. I still need to enroll in a YMCA or similar to start on my swimming training. Plan to start on it in April.

- I still haven't done my taxes! Inspired by other threads on the forum, I wanted to manually fill out my tax forms. Being a non-resident alien :shock: my tax situation is a little more complicated. I mostly ended up procrastinating on filling up the form by enjoying reading up the 1040NR manual. It must be normal for aliens to enjoy reading manuals on taxes :P. Then again I save quite a bit on social security and medicare taxes so no complaints.

- I finally took some snowboarding classes! It'd been on my todo list for the last 2 years! It's been lots of fun till now. Graduated from bunny hill to green slopes last week and overcame my fear of dying on the ski lifts! I still have one class remaining.

- On a related note, I'm not sure how to deal with company reimbursed expenses for things like fitness. This is the Sports expense above.

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:20 am

March 2018 Finances

Expense Breakdown

Code: Select all

| Category   | Cost |  %   |
|------------+------+------|
| Housing    | 1000 | 44.4 |
| Transport  | 600  | 26.7 |
| Food       | 450  | 20.0 |
| Insurance  | 100  | 04.4 |
| Hobbies    | 50   | 02.2 |
| Other      | 50   | 02.2 |
Image

Financial Summary: March 2018
- Expenses: 2250
- Savings Rate: 78.5%
- Projected Years to FIRE: 6.0 years

Higher expenses last month due to car repair and too much of eating out.

Footnotes:
- Most number are 'rounded' to nearest 50 or 0.1 for percentages
- Years to FIRE is based on that month's expenses, averaged income (at current paygrade), current assets and SWR of 4%
- All numbers are after tax

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Agni
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Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:00 am

Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:00 am

At some point last month my car's catalytic converter lost it. Had to get it replaced for $600 (parts & labor). I'm unable to comprehend why anyone would voluntarily remove their car's silencer/muffler. It's a most unpleasant experience, driving the car with that noise.

Anyway the fallout of that incident was that I re-evaluated the benefit of owning a car vs renting something like zipcar vs buying something which dies on me a little less and decided the car was still came out better than the other two options for now. If I do be move to the city (more on that later) ditching the car would then become comparable or worse than the zipcar option.

Another fallout of the car being dysfunctional was that I got to test my bike + public transport combo for traveling which is supposed to be my fallback/redundant transportation option. It was doable but not very fun between the incessant rain and my inability to ever catch a bus on my first attempt. The door to door travel time went up 2-3 times compared to the car. This does not include time lost due to me missing the bus.

On the topic of moving to the city. My flatmate is moving out soon. So I'm thinking it's an opportune moment to try living in the city for a while. I haven't lived in a city for quite a while. I miss being able to attend random film festivals, art exhibitions and other cultural event. It doesn't make much sense with respect to finances and travel time to work though. Let's see what I end up doing.

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Agni
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Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Thu Aug 16, 2018 12:37 am

Q2 2018 Finances

Expense Breakdown

Code: Select all

| Category     | Cost |   %   |
|--------------+------+-------|
| Housing      | 2950 | 46.49 |
| Food         | 1600 | 25.21 |
| Travel       |  800 | 12.60 |
| Transport    |  450 |  7.09 |
| Insurance    |  200 |  3.15 |
| Experience   |  150 |  2.36 |
| Subscription |  100 |  1.57 |
| Other        |  100 |  1.57 |
Image

Financial Summary: Q2 2018
- Expenses: 6350
- Savings Rate: 79.6%
- Projected Years to FIRE: 5.29 years

Higher travel expenses due to trips to California and Alaska.
Not sure how to deal with tax refunds for previous year, they currently reduce my (effective) taxes for this period and are resulting in an better savings rate than what would have been without it.

Footnotes:
- Most number are 'rounded' to nearest 50 or 0.01 for percentages
- Years to FIRE is based on that month's expenses, averaged income (at current paygrade), current assets and SWR of 4%
- All numbers are after tax

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Agni
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Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:00 am

Re: The Yagna

Post by Agni » Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:23 am

FY 2018 Finances

Expense Breakdown

Code: Select all

| Category   | Cost  |   %   |
|------------+-------+-------|
| Housing    | 11900 | 45.77 |
| Food       |  5150 | 19.81 |
| Travel     |  2350 |  9.04 |
| Transport  |  2350 |  9.04 |
| Gifts      |  1300 |   5.0 |
| Supplies   |   800 |  3.08 |
| Experience |   700 |  2.69 |
| Insurance  |   650 |   2.5 |
| Clothing   |   200 |  0.77 |
| Hardware   |   200 |  0.77 |
| Other      |   400 |  1.54 |
Image

Financial Summary: FY 2018
- Expenses: 26000
- Savings Rate: 82.4%
- Projected Total Years to FIRE: 5.2 years

FY2018 is July, 2017 to June, 2018 for me as it's 1 year from starting work.
Achieved Objective of savings 100K+. On track to FIRE in 5 years based on previous years numbers. :D :D

Footnotes:
- Most number are 'rounded' to nearest 50 or 0.01%
- Years to FIRE is based on that month's expenses, averaged income (at current paygrade), current assets and SWR of 4%
- All numbers are after tax
Last edited by Agni on Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

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