In the LearnVest Personal Stories series, everyday people share the details of their money lives, discussing the individual choices they’ve made and how it’s impacted their financial journey.
We first wrote about Brandon’s investing strategy in our story “Investing for Two: How Real Couples Save for Their Futures.” Today, he explains why, weary of the rat race, he’s decided to sock away enough savings so that he can stop working for good … in his early thirties.
Later this year, at the age of 32, I plan to quit my full-time job as a software developer and don’t intend to look for another one.
By then, I expect my portfolio will be large enough to fund my essential expenses for at least the next 30 years, if not indefinitely, so that getting another 9-to-5 job becomes an option rather than a necessity.
You may wonder if I have some magic ability for picking Powerball numbers, or if I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth. Neither is the case. I’ve built my nest egg simply by watching my spending, and investing as much of my paycheck as I can. I am currently investing over 70%—and no, that’s not a typo—of my after-tax income into my retirement and taxable investment accounts.
All this super saving is so I can leave the rat race at an age when many people are just starting to ramp up their careers. Although this has been my primary financial focus over the past few years, it wasn’t always my goal.
TPS Reports? I’d Rather Travel the World
When I graduated from college with a degree in computer science, I was excited to work hard and build a successful programming career in Newbury, Vermont, where I live with my wife, Jill. I thought maybe I’d even become wealthy along the way.
But then reality kicked in, and my life seemed to become one endless scene from “Office Space” after another. After a few years of pointless meetings, inept managers, and one too many TPS reports, the enthusiasm I once had was gone, and the thought of spending the next 30-plus years doing the same thing was depressing to me.