Young FI Guy – Super Saver retired before 30 – #ukpersonalfinance
I am so happy to introduce to you a new series here on Ms ZiYou, Let’s meet UK Personal Finance Bloggers. This week please welcome Young FI Guy.
He blogs about reaching FI before the age of 30, and share knowledge from his previous accounting profession. He has a passion for technical articles and in-depth analysis.
Handing over to Young FI Guy – About You & Your Blog
Please introduce yourself and your blog
I’m Mr Young FI Guy, Mr YFG for short. I’m in my late 20s, financially independent and semi-retired. I worked in London as a Chartered Accountant valuing companies, I’m also a qualified Financial Planner. I’m married to Mrs YFG. My blog is https://youngfiguy.com/ where both Mrs YFG and I write.
What sort of finance blog do you write?
My blog is a mix of ‘life’ and ‘technical’ posts. Mrs YFG and I write about financial independence and about our respective FI journeys. I also write about finance, investing and financial planning from the point of view of a chartered accountant and qualified financial planner/adviser (i.e. not like a lot of the wishy-washy stuff you often find about money).
How would you describe your current stage of life?
I’m trying to find my way in helping others.
What are your personal values?
Our society is only as strong as the collective communities we build. I believe we should all help the communities we are in, starting from as simple as being polite and considerate to others.
Tell us about the challenges you have overcome
I’m from one of the poorest towns in the UK and grew up on a council estate. When I was 16 and weeks before my school exams, my father suddenly passed away in his early 50s. I grew up caring for my disabled mother and my younger sister. My financial independence journey is inspired from that tragedy.
What are your dreams and plans for the future?
I hope to live in a society where we treat money and finances in a positive way. Rather than letting money dictate what you can and can’t do in life, let life dictate what you can do with your money.
How do you keep fit?
I didn’t use to, I let work prevent me from keeping fit. I now go to the gym three times a week where I mainly lift weights.
Tell us your favourite drink?
A glass of cold milk! But if we’re talking alcoholic drinks (which I suspect is what you mean Ms Zi You), a pint of Aspall Cider.
UK Society & Media
How do you get your news?
I limit my news consumption to low-volume, high-quality. I have subscriptions to the Financial Times and The Week (the later is excellent for a weekly current affairs summary). Any other news comes incidentally from writers I follow or people telling me stuff I need to know.
What do you think about education and university nowadays?
I think the value of a university education has massively decreased over the past ten years. Combined with the huge cost increase it’s not something that young people choose to do lightly. Many professions, including my own (Chartered Accountancy), no longer require university degrees with there being clearly defined school leaver paths. Getting a profession is the easiest and simplest way to earn a good living for life. I’d recommend schoolchildren to think about what’s important to them, and what profession speaks out to them. Then see what route (school leaver/apprenticeship/study-work or university) is the best path for them.
And the UK housing market – what are your thoughts?
It’s very political, and I tend to avoid politics. Nothing I say about housing will change the strong political views out there.
Please share your top 10 blogs you follow with us.
Just to be different I’ll share some of the non-FI blogs I follow (you can find the FI-blogs I follow here):
- Monevator.com – UK investing blog
- Morgan Housel at the Collaborative Fund – US financial journalist
- Matt Levine’s Money Stuff at Bloomberg View – US financial journalist ex-investment banker and lawyer
- Full Fact – UK fact-checking organisation
- The Secret Barrister – Barrister challenging our crumbling legal system and shoddy media reporting
- Tim Harford at the Financial Times – the Undercover Economist
- Stratechery by Ben Thompson – Technology expert based in Taiwan
- Musings on Markets by Prof Aswath Damodaran – Professor of Corporate Finance and Valuation and NYU Stern (and who I call Mr Valuation, he’s kinda my professional idol…)
- Farnam Street by Shane Parrish – Canadian former-consultant, a really smart guy who writes really smart things
- Pragmatic Capitalism by Cullen Roche – US Asset Manager
On reflection having a look at the list above, do you have any thoughts?
It’s difficult to say whether someone is like you or not. I tend to avoid thinking about who/what is writing something. Personally, I think it’s better to judge writing on its merits. I don’t judge whether it’s a woman or a man who writes (or super-secret legal bunny). I’d like to think the defining characteristic of those writers is high- quality writing. A commonality of all these blogs is a focus on truth, fact and learning.
Ms ZiYou Note: The Secret Barrister is a man.
How do you feel about privilege in the UK?
I really don’t like the term ‘privilege’. I mean, who does it apply to? How do you apply it? Am I privileged or not? Life isn’t binary, there are all sorts of twists and turns. Generally, I think labels of any kind are not a good thing. Labels lead to an ‘us and them’ view. That leads to people being dicks to one another. I think a better way to frame it is to reflect on what you are grateful for in life. Appreciate those blessings, and understand many other people don’t have them. I think when you do that, you become much more considerate of others.
What questions would you ask people to understand their priorities?
What do you want to get out of life? Why? How do you get there?
Do you have a financial tip for someone interested in learning about money?
Start. Just start saving money (even as little as £10 a month is a start). Start investing in a pension or an ISA. Start taking control of your money, lest your money control you.
How much do you talk about money in real life?
A lot. Probably too much. I think life is more important: “get busy living or get busy dying”.
What advice would you give to people about investing?
What is one awesome thing in your life now?
My wife. She’s a super lady
Anything else you’d like to say?
Thank you for the opportunity Ms ZiYou. Thank you for reading.
How can people connect with you?
Ms ZiYou Back Here
Thanks for sharing Young FI Guy – it’s always interesting to hear others perspectives and where they are coming from.
If you blog about money in the UK and would like to be featured on Let’s meet UK Personal Finance Bloggers – please get in contact.
And as always, it’s over to you – what are your thoughts after hearing from Young FI Guy?