Hello from North West England

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BookLoverL
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Hello from North West England

Post by BookLoverL » Tue Apr 09, 2019 5:08 pm

Hi everyone!

I've been lurking here for a while now (a couple of years, I'd say), but only just decided to make an account.

About me! I live in the north west of England, I'm 25, I'm a woman, and I'm an INFP according to all recent tests (though I did test as INTP a couple of times when I was a teenager). My original plan when I found FIRE shortly after my 22nd birthday was to go full throttle for 5-10 years at something full time and then retire completely, but unfortunately it turned out I'm allergic to full time work, so I revised my plan to involve working part time for longer.

Last year I earned around £10,000 and saved around £5,000 (for context, the UK minimum wage for someone doing a 40 hour full time work week all year round is a bit more than £15,000). Right now, I have three main income sources on a self-employed basis. I work two 6-hour days a week doing admin in an office, I do some work most weeks on the website for my dad's business (pretty basic, it looks like something out of the 90s, but also I'm charging him way less than it would cost for an experienced web designer to maintain it), and I also do some maths tuition. The maths tuition is a pretty new income source, and I'm hoping to increase the number of clients I have for that, because I'm charging twice as much for that as I am for the office work, so it's my main chance at the moment to earn enough money to get an actually high savings rate instead of just barely making 50%.

I live with my parents, because it's significantly cheaper than paying rent, and due to my low income I haven't saved to buy my own house yet. (If I could do that, I'd consider doing that and getting a lodger or two, or asking a friend to move in, but I don't want a big mortgage so I need significantly more of a deposit than the roughly £15,000 in savings I had at the start of the year, especially since I'm emotionally attached to a village location, which around here is more expensive than the towns.) It generally works pretty well for me, since we have a fairly good family relationship, though we do have our disagreements occasionally. Unfortunately I have to have a car at the moment because the local public transport is poor and the office I'm working at is further than my current reasonable cycling commute distance, so I have a fuel-efficient 2011 plate car in the cheapest tax band that was paid for in cash.

My dream lifestyle would be living in a relatively eco-friendly house, in beautiful rural surroundings, in a place where I could walk into a town if I wanted to but could easily retreat to solitude also, and the house would be full of bookshelves, and basically I would spend all day pursuing my various whims, which usually go something like, "Oh, now I should learn [language not spoken anywhere I plan to visit]! Now I'll go on a long walk and lie on the grass and watch the birds in the sky! Now I'll write a poem! Now I'll get distracted by this fantasy novel for a week! Now I'll learn about this non-fiction topic!", repeated in an endless distracted cycle. And I'd invite friends over for a weekend maybe every 2 months, or for a day every month. The thing is, if I was already FI, the distractability wouldn't matter, and it'd make me happy - plus, I'm getting better at making sure I cycle through the SAME set of distracting things, so I can start making progress on some of them.

I believe pretty strongly that the future will be going slowly downhill - I'm a fan of John Michael Greer's theory of catabolic collapse/the Long Descent. For this reason, I haven't yet invested any of my savings, because I don't believe index funds will always go up, and I'm not knowledgeable enough about value investing or anything to feel confident trying that, so it might be good for me to learn a bit more about different investment styles, or I could just continue saving and trying to build more practical skills (I'm currently learning to spin using a drop spindle, and also I tried whittling some wood and made myself a doorstop, for example. Also I made pirate biscuits like they used to take on sailing ships!)

I have an account on the MMM forums with the same username, but I don't really like those forums any more, because they're mainly full of a mix of high income people congratulating themselves on saving 70% of their high five-figure/low six-figure salary, and people who are newer to the FIRE concept and have lower ERE Wheaton levels that make them ask questions that I find completely useless. I barely ever find interesting threads that teach me new things over there any more.

Anyway, based on my lurking, you all seem like a pretty cool bunch of people over here. I can't promise I'll post that much - as I said, I'm easily distracted - but I'd definitely like to post more. Thanks for having me, and I'm looking forward to joining in.

prognastat
Posts: 971
Joined: Fri May 04, 2018 8:30 pm
Location: Texas
Contact:

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by prognastat » Tue Apr 09, 2019 5:21 pm

Hi, welcome to the forums.

50% Savings Rate on £10k is really good, but it does mean there isn't much that can be gained by cutting cost much more and any measurable increase in SWR would have to come from increased income. It sounds like you are already looking at ways to improve this side of the equation. Without this it would also be very hard to increase your standard of living which is sounds you are wanting to do such as at least upgrading to shared housing with non family members or possibly your own place which are probably going to raise cost quite significantly.

Have you or are you completing a degree? If you have are you doing anything related to this degree?

BookLoverL
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by BookLoverL » Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:48 am

Hi prognastat, thanks for the welcome!

I have a maths degree from a good uni, so the maths tuition that I just started is kind of related to that. The problem with most of the really high paying career paths that I could do with maths that I can think of is they either require me to a) for the salary work route, work full time for at least the length of the training, which I've found causes me to be incredibly stressed, resentful, and on my way to burnout after around 3 months, or b) for the entrepreneurial root, develop a whole bunch of sales and marketing skills which I don't currently have, being a somewhat dorky introvert. Still, I am trying to gradually increase my income, since my only other chance of moving out without renting is probably something like "wait for my parents to die and sell their big house so me and my brother can each buy a smaller house", and they're in their late 50s/early 60s, so they're (touch wood) not particularly likely to die very soon, and I wouldn't want them to anyway.

My other outside shot at getting a high savings rate is becoming a successful author, but for that then I have to actually finish writing one of my half finished books, so we'll see how that goes. ;)

Earlybath
Posts: 36
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2016 8:43 am

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by Earlybath » Wed Apr 10, 2019 5:14 am

Hey BookLover, welcome.
Maths tuition sounds like its got legs, if you don't fancy the salaryman experience and the book writing is a bit 'slow'. Are you charging the going rate? Have you considered leafleting a small 'posh' area ?

BookLoverL
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by BookLoverL » Wed Apr 10, 2019 5:58 am

Hi Earlybath!

I'm charging £20 per hour for the tuition at the moment (with a bit more if I have to travel outside what I consider a "reasonable" range), which is the lower end of the typical going rate, and plan to increase it once I have more experience. The village where my parents live is a relatively posh area in general, and I have adverts up in the local butcher's, convenience store, and village hall. I also have a Facebook page, and I set up a tuition-specific email account. I'm not sure if it would be a good idea to do door-to-door leaflets or not, because I think some of the roads have a lot of "no cold callers" notices up in the houses. Right now, the typical school exams are coming up in a month or two, and I plan to redouble my advertising efforts when the next school year starts in September in order to try and get some more regular clients.

wolf
Posts: 831
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:09 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by wolf » Wed Apr 10, 2019 7:30 am

Welcome!

BookLoverL
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by BookLoverL » Wed Apr 10, 2019 8:40 am

Thanks, wolf!

Nomad
Posts: 115
Joined: Wed May 16, 2018 5:23 pm
Location: UK

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by Nomad » Wed Apr 17, 2019 7:58 am

Greetings!

chenda
Posts: 1080
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:17 pm

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by chenda » Wed Apr 17, 2019 8:27 am

Welcome :)

Just an idea but I was thinking yesterday that if I was your age again I would probably become an arboriculturist. It's relatively well paid (£20 000 - £40 000) and it's one of the few professions left with low barriers to entry, you can train vocationally through NVQs. It's also very flexible, public or private sector, part time, contract, freelance. You're not stuck in an office all day and the work has some social value.

You don't have to climb trees now of course, there's lots of desk based work :)

BookLoverL
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by BookLoverL » Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:20 am

Thanks, Nomad and chenda! :)

I hadn't considered arboriculturist for some reason. I would probably be quite happy to climb trees - I'm in shape and I love trees anyway. ;) But the problem might be if I was required to chop them down for stupid reasons all the time, since I think we need more trees. Anyway, it's worth looking into as an option. :)

chenda
Posts: 1080
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:17 pm

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by chenda » Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:31 am

Don't worry, tree officers spend time annoying householders by preventing them building their extension because of their neighbours tree roots ;)

Feel free to PM me anytime if you need more info as I work quite closely with arboriculturists.

super-moolah
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:33 am

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by super-moolah » Sun Apr 21, 2019 7:13 am

Welcome :)

BookLoverL
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:17 pm
Location: England

Re: Hello from North West England

Post by BookLoverL » Mon Apr 22, 2019 1:51 am

Thanks, super-moolah! :)

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