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Why Financial Independence is a Better Goal than Retirement

Wednesday, August 7th, 2013   10:20 am |  Category:   Finance   |   4 Comments  
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In addition to coining the term “Findependence,” I have termed the phrase “Findependence Day” to denote the day in the future when you believe income from all such diverse sources of income would exceed the income you might derive by being fully employed by any one employer. Henceforth, you may choose to continue working under that arrangement but you’ll know that you’re doing so because of personal choice or preference, not because you’re under the gun financially just to make ends meet.


If you’re in the financial services industry, perhaps as a financial advisor, I believe that shifting your clients’ focus from Retirement to Financial Independence will be a refreshing way of revisiting the whole traditional approach to retirement planning, saving and investing. Similarly, if you’re a purveyor of financial products, by adopting Findependence in your marketing message, you’ll differentiate yourself from the crowd, nearly all of whom still cleave to “Retirement” as the point of all this saving and investing effort.


But best of all, if you’re an ordinary person stressed out about the seeming impossibility of saving enough for retirement, shifting the conversation to Financial Independence should go a long way to reducing that stress. Findependence is eminently more achievable and much closer on your timeline than the impossible dream of a luxury retirement in old age.

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  1. James Molet Aug 7th 2013  9:12 pm

    An excellent article. I love the contraction of financial and independence to give you findependence! Good stuff.

  2. FI Pilgrim Aug 8th 2013  12:44 am

    Amen to this. My desire is to focus on the long AND short term goals of my family. A massive nest egg as a senior citizen just doesn’t motivate me.

  3. krist Aug 22nd 2013  5:28 am

    I have had retirement on my mind for ten years but only had my eyes opened to independence a few months ago. I was constantly looking at how much I need to retire and the number was huge. I never paid attention to getting my budget to a manageable level and trying to get enough passive income to cover it. This new way of thinking has changed everything and moved my target retirement date up by about 15 years.

  4. Steve Nov 21st 2013  7:44 pm

    The thing that distinguishes retirement from financial independence is, to my way of thinking, this key fact. You don’t need to be 59-1/2 years old to be findependent. Due to the handcuffs of penalties in the US, you need to be that age or older to make withdrawals from traditional retirement vehicles. So, to become findependent, save outside of these vehicles, too.

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