PODCAST - Financially independent, retire early (FIRE)


Julia Newbould
Money magazine

Susan Hely
Money magazine

Serina Bird
The joyful frugalista

Dave Gow
Strong Money Australia

The financially independent retire early movement is gaining traction in Australia as people start opting out of 9-5 work and seek greater flexibility.

Working out what you need to retire comfortably is very personal - it depends on your lifestyle, your commitments and your goals and values. Mr Money Mustache in the US, has calculated the magic number for retirement - and with a growing band of followers and a host of Australian-based FIRE converts momentum is growing, which shows that there set age people are aiming to retire, the incomes they want to retire on, the jobs they are currently doing and the lifestyle they are aiming to achieve.

The key isn't the particular investments they make - they range from property to index funds, shares, ETFs and even Bitcoin (in one example). The key is consistently saving and the discipline this entails.

In this podcast we talk to journalist Susan Hely who has been following this community since 2018. She revisited her FIRE experts this year to see if COVID had any impact on their aims. We also talk to Dave, based in Perth, who effectively retired at 28 with his partner. He says saving is the key to an early retirement and worked hard on his budget to make the savings the couple needed to live their life of freedom.

We also talk to Serina Bird, the joyful frugalista, about her journey to financial freedom. Now in her late 40s, she no longer needs to work full-time but she is choosing to take on contracts when it suits her. She achieved her financial goal by living frugally and is currently continuing to save tax-effectively into her superannuation.