My Introduction: Male, mid-twenties, residing in Metro Vancouver, Canada. Planning to become a millionaire one day through smart investing. In the last five years that I’ve lived on my own I’ve managed to pay off $15,000 of student loans, quadruple my home equity, build up a stock portfolio worth over $150,000, and acquire over $300,000 worth of additional investments like farmland and precious metals, all using my own savings, plus some bank loans. I’ve shared my tax statements from previous years to demonstrate that even an average salary can be used to create great wealth with the proper strategy and leverage So far my net worth has increased exponentially every year because I’ve learned how to make my money work hard for me. I’m Liquid Independence, and welcome to my freedom 35 blog (^_^)
My Background: I don’t have a dramatic rags to riches story. I grew up in a typical middle class household. My parents never had a lot of money, but they’ve never lived in poverty either. When I was going through college they were generous enough to contribute $10,000 towards my tuition I’ve received no other financial aid from them since then and I plan to pay them back the $10K when they retire some day.
My financial journey really began in 2008, when I graduated and began my humble career at a medium sized design firm with a $35,000 starting salary. Still living with my folks at the time I was easily able to save $13,000 by early 2009, which I used to buy a $230,000 apartment, and moved in right away. I chose to buy a home with a relatively small downpayment instead of pay down my student loan debt first. Most of my friends thought I was crazy, but that’s just how I like to roll Despite everything I believe I made the right choice as the real estate market performed very well in the following years. I started investing in stocks after buying my home. I continued to invest heavily into 2010 and 2011, and tried to learn as much as I could about money management and the business cycle. By 2012 I had ventured into more exotic investments like farmland. By 2013 I was investing in silver coins, bonds etfs, gold bullion, and global stock markets. By the beginning of 2014 I had broken the $200,000 net worth mark. Whenever I make new investments I often explain on this blog my decision process, and often demonstrate exactly how I did it with documentation. This keeps me accountable as I can’t make up random numbers, and it gives other people a chance to follow my strategies, if they so choose, at their own risk and discretion of course There are many other generation Y bloggers like myself who also have a relatively high net worth for their age. But most of them either have a really high income, or received a large inheritance, which many readers may not be able to relate to. I suppose what’s unique about my particular situation is that I’m more like the average person. I had average grades in school. I’ve never aspired to be a doctor or engineer. I flunked first year math in university lol. I worked part-time at Safeway and had to go into debt to complete my education. I don’t consider myself the frugal type because I currently spend over $3,000 a month. My salary from my full time job in 2014 on an hourly bases is still below $26/hr which is the average Canadian wage for my age group. But combined with my part time job, rent, and all other incomes I now gross over 80% more than I did back in 2008. Unlike a 9 to 5 job, there is literally no limit to how much income can be made through investing! My gross income would not have climbed so quickly if I had focused primarily on climbing the corporate ladder. I had to make some minor sacrifices like working 2 jobs and taking on more investment risk than most people in order to get the higher returns that I need to attain financial freedom by 35 years of age. It’s why I have to use so much leverage on my balance sheet. In 2013 my assets grew to over $700,000 in value, and my investment gains alone for that year was over $40,000, which was more than my after tax salary from my primary job. Many people equate income to wealth, and they mistakenly believe that it’s not possible to become a multi-millionaire unless someone makes a six figure salary or become an entrepreneur. Although there is a correlation between income and net worth what’s more important is understanding capital management and general financial literacy.
My Goals: These are my life long goals
-Become financially free
-Donate at least a million dollars to charity
-Become part of the 1% wealthiest people in the country
-Start a company and create jobs for my community
-Qualify and become an accredited investor
-Fly into space
My Philosophy: Life is about balance and moderation. I try to balance my spending to make my life just as comfortable today as I plan to be in the future. I don’t want to save money so aggressively that I’d miss out on life right now. But not saving enough would leave me with financial difficulties when I start a family, or eventually retire. So currently I save around 1/3rd of my total gross income, which I find is the right balance for me. I have a similar mindset when it comes to investing. Penny stocks are too risky, but the safest investments like US treasuries do not provide a good enough return. So I balance my portfolio mostly with investments like real estate, commodities, and blue chip stocks, as well as a small handful of more volatile and higher risk equities.