How did I build the financial foundation to quit my full time job?

I get a lot of people asking me how I build my financial foundation to quit my full time job?

The answer is simple. Make more, and spend less.

It sounds easy than it’s done. I think it all starts from the personal spending habit.

I grew up in a family where money value is important and I was taught to always keep something in the bank in case of raining days. Most of time, it is your spending habit. It doesn’t matter how much money you make, if you don’t watch what you are spending, you will end up having nothing in your bank account.

My career goal is always about working less and gaining that maximum income.

I do follow some personal principle when it comes to spending and saving:

  1. Do not owe any credit card debt. Have you look up the interest for your Visa or Mastercard if you ever owe any balance? It is usually over 19%!  It doesn’t matter how much you are trying save couple dollar whenever you see a sale, if you owe debt, and you pay interest on it, it is never a good deal. I beat my credit card company by paying back every single cent each month plus I accumulate all the reward point for my future purchase. It is a win-win situation. Currently I own TD Aerolplan Infinite Visa (for collecting Aeroplan) and Capital One Aspire Travel Reward Card (for 2% back if I use the points towards any travel related expenses). As I mentioned above, I paid off my balance every single bill, so bonus points or 2% reward for me!
  2. Make a goal and automatic transfer a portion of your paycheque when you get paid.  The real difference between rich people and normal people is that rich people pay themselves FIRST, and whatever left would be the spending amount. I setup Tangerine online banking account, and have automatic bi-weekly withdrawal from my bank account where my paycheque goes to. Perhaps try 10% of your each paycheque first. You will be surprised how much you can save at the end.
  3. Spend less. Distinguish between “need” and “want”. In my teenage years and early 20s, I always “want” lots of stuff, perhaps I was influenced by friends, or TV or just social trends. Now I stick with my personal “need”, I get rid of stuff that I don’t need promptly, or if anything new comes in, I get rid of the old ones. Sentimental value does not work with me here, I take a picture of them and I just get rid of them. If I find those stuff I tried to get rid of might worth some value, then I will try to sell it first, if not, try to give it away, if not, I guess landfill can take it. Many places you can post your stuff for sell such as Craigslist, Kijiji, or even some Facebook group with Buy and Sell (do a group search on your Facebook). Even something you sell for $5 is still money. Take it and don’t keep the stuff that you no longer “need”.
  4. Watch this, really, it helps.

How can you gain more income?

  • Invest early. I invested in Real Estate in my early 20s, and it was a good move, it has made me more profit than I have ever tried to save through 10 years of working. I usually divide my investment portfolio into long-term and short-term. Long term portfolio I tend to buy something aggressive, and re-balance the portfolio depends on the market condition. Or simply just index ETF fund. Short-term portfolio I tend to keep it at least 50% cash and use the rest of the cash pick up few trades when I see opportunity arises and sell it when it reaches 5% to 10% return, and cut losses when my value lost 2%. It can be a stock, forex, futures or option assets. If you have no idea what I am talking about, then you can check out few websites to learn about the market and different assets.
  • While above is more of a long term return gig. How about short term gig that you can make quick cash?
    • Take part of “Sharing Economy”?
    • Renting out that spare room you have on Airbnb or Vrbo?
    • If you can be a uber driver, go ahead.
    • Create online store and sell stuff on Amazon? Ebay?
    • Taking people while you are driving somewhere further with Hitchplanet?
    • Rent out your outdoor gear with Shareshed?
    • Perhaps you want to sell your photos with
    • You got some talent skills then try make your own educational video and sell on
    • Make some handcraft and sell them on Etsy?
    • Make extra meal to sell on Mealsurfers? Or look for some Facebook group where you can sell your home made food product?

New sharing economy idea pops out all the time. So the links above are just some of the current available tools out there. The idea here is whatever can make you little cash, just go ahead and do it.

Otherwise, there’s other cash gigs options:

  • Look up Craigslist for some random “part-time” job. Perhaps you want to work as “Extra” in a movie set? Perhaps you can do some last minute cash gig? Become a pet sitter? Dog walker? This is more suitable for someone who does not have a 9-5 fixed schedule job. If you are a full time 9 to 5er, you would need to look for perhaps a 2nd job during the weekend, or simply take on some freelance work if your scope of work can be done on a contract basis.

Everything might sound daunting here, but to achieve that goal of yours to travel around the world, you need to be aggressive on making the extra income and be strict on the spending habit. No pain no gain.

Some people choose to work while travelling. That is an excellent idea, but for me I could never be able to focus, I rather work, save and then travel. I will write about a blog on what jobs you can work while travelling later. Cheers!



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