Aussie Firebug

Financial Independence Retire Early

I publish these net worth updates to keep us accountable, have others critique our strategy and show that reaching financial independence in Australia is very doable without winning the lotto, having a high paying job or inheriting a wad of cash. The formula to be able to retire early is simple, the hard part is being consistent and sticking to a plan for many years. The table at the bottom details our entire journey from being $36K in debt all the way until we reach 🔥

And that’s a wrap for 2021!

It’s wild to think that we are already in 2022, just like that meme, I feel like I am still processing 2020 🤯

December was here and gone in a minute for the Firebug household. So many Christmas breakups, family gatherings on both sides, friends coming back to town for the festive season, birthdays, NYE events and so on.

We hosted the annual Christmas day breakfast at our new home this year too. I recently bought a new barbie (I’m obsessed) and really wanted to put it to work.

This is living 🙌😍

I basically have started to barbeque just about everything now. And when the weather is good, it’s damn hard not to crack open a beer. I’m usually pretty strict with alcohol on work nights but I don’t know what it is about barbequing that makes me break the rules. I might have to start buying some non-alcoholic beers to lessen the effect 😅

Mrs FB had a hectic finish for the school year (as is always the case), but is super pumped about dropping down to 4 days a week starting next year 🎉🥳.

2021 was such a whirlwind of a year and I’m stoked that we managed to tick off all the major items we had on our list like buying a house and tying the knot.

Thanks a lot to everyone who reads the blog/listens to the podcast. I’ve got some great ideas for AFB and the Aussie FIRE community in 2022 that I can’t wait to share with you all 👊

Net Worth Update

So we lumped summed ~$210K into the markets in late December/early January. This was surprisingly difficult for us to actually pull the trigger.

The general consensus in the FIRE community is to not get caught up in timing the market. This is easier said than done.

I’m human just like the rest of you and I also read a fair bit of finance mumbo jumbo content too. It’s fun to read opinion pieces and I’ll watch the occasional YouTube video of some doom and gloomer who has put together a pretty slick video with nice editing on why the next recession is about to drop.

The hardest part mentally was the markets being at an all-time high (or close to it). No matter how much I read that it doesn’t matter if you’re in it for the long term, it’s still bloody difficult not to wait for a dip.

So I waited right until the end of December before we invested our lump sum. And right on cue, the markets had a slight tumble afterwards 🙃🔫.

We would have been so much better off if I had just invested that money straight away but such is life. And the downturn right after we invested $210K is a major reason the net worth only grew by $2K in December. The other reason was a pretty expensive month.




The FIRE portfolio actually went down slightly in December due to the market dip after our big investment. December was really expensive for us too with Christmas/holidays.

*Expenses include everything we spend money on to maintain our lifestyle. We do not include paying down our PPoR loan as an expense, only the interest
*Investment income is simply 4% of our FIRE portfolio divided by 12


The above graph is created by Sharesight

We’re all in baby!

$769K all in shares which blows my mind!

Man… it wasn’t too long ago that I was in my mid 20’s and reading US FIRE blogs on a daily, dreaming about reaching financial independence someday in the future. I can’t remember whose blog I was reading but they had just hit $700K in shares and I remember being awestruck by the figure.

It just seemed like so much god damn money to have invested. I thought it was going to take me forever to get anywhere near that amount.

So to see $769K on the screen is a bit surreal to be honest.

But on the flip side, finally investing all that money felt like a weight off our shoulders. It’s in the market now so whatever happens, happens. If there’s a huge recession in 2022… well… that would suck but we’ve just accepted that and it’s back to business DCA’ing each month which is so much easier to do.

We made three huge (for us) purchases in December/early January.

  1. $53K into VTS
  2. $62K into VEU
  3. $95K into A200

This brings the portfolio into the following splits

60% Aussie 40% International


43% Betashares 57% Vanguard

Some of you hawkeye readers may have noticed that this is slightly different to our latest strategy explained article (2.5). I’m actually going to write another updated strategy explained article because our investing strategy is very fluid and changes based on our current circumstances and priorities.

There are no major reasons why we went with the splits above, it’s just what we feel comfortable with atm. We also like to spread the management risk around by having a decent chunk of our portfolio in Betashares and not just Vanguard. It also helps that A200 is cheaper than VAS atm too.

Looking forward to hitting the $800K mark in the not so distant future 😁



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Download my personal spreadsheet I use to calculate my net worth each month

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