About Fervent Finance

Let the fun begin! I am a 26 year old accountant* by trade, currently living in Manhattan. I moved here from not far away New England at the beginning of 2014 to take on a new role at my current employer. In my earlier posts, such as Starting the Path to FI/RE and Rich Uncle Pennybags, I explain how I have always been interested in personal finance and investing since a very young age, but I did not think financial independence was attainable for me until I found this great online community.

Growing up I always wanted to be a stockbroker which started in 5th grade where we participated in a stock market project and visited the NYSE on a field trip. The following year my 6th grade teacher told us a story of his friend who lived in Manhattan, would get picked up every morning in a limousine and get driven down to his highfalutin job on Wall Street. From then on I was mesmerized by anything involving the stock market.

I had always been a fan of making money as well, as I knew I needed income to build my nest egg. It started with helping the grandparents with chores and projects, then babysitting, then manual labor jobs during high school and college, and side projects for a local electrician and contractor in town.

I opened up an online brokerage account shortly after my 18th birthday with my own earnings from work during high school. During that time the U.S. was experiencing a strong bull market and I could not lose a trade which added fuel to the fire. It took a couple of bad investments during college to right the stock trading ship. I knew that the path to long term gains and building my nest egg was stock trading, but then again I was young and naive and wanted money faster.

I majored in accounting because I wanted a career with a secure job market, while still somewhat appeasing to my financial interests. After graduation I lived at home for a year, paid down some student loans, bought a used car (with a loan), began contributing to retirement, and built up an emergency fund. According to all the “experts” I was reading about online, I was doing everything right. But it didn’t feel right. This was not getting me ahead. I would still have to work until at least 60 years old in a career I didn’t really find fulfilling before I could retire. The last thing I wanted to be was one of my miserable superiors 20 to 30 years down road. There had to be a better way!

That is when I stumbled upon Financial Samurai and from there my eyes were opened to Mr. MMM, 1500 Days to Freedom, madFIentist, Lacking Ambition, Root of Good, Frugalwoods, LivingaFIjlcollinsnh, and many more. My income was higher than some of the bloggers I was reading about, and they were well on their way to financial freedom. That alone kicked my financial independence butt into overdrive. I reevaluated my spending, savings, and lifestyle overall. What I think also helps is that I was already transitioning to the mindset where I wanted to do things that made me happy instead of conforming to what others were doing around me.

Therefore I decided to start to put pen to paper and document my journey for three main reasons:

  1. To hold myself accountable. The first reasons is quite selfish and I’m not afraid to admit it. It’s real easy to say I’m going to spend less, save more, invest in index funds, max out my retirement accounts, etc., but if I don’t put these goals out in the open, the harder they are to follow.
  2. Share my story. While I am only 26, I believe I have experiences that are different from many telling their personal finance stories. For one I do not have a career in the tech industry (you know who you are), I was the first in my immediate family to graduate from college, and I currently live in one of the highest cost of living areas in all of the U.S. – Manhattan.
  3. Learn from and be among other like-minded individuals. Working in business and living in Manhattan does not lend itself to meeting people with like-minded personal finance goals. It seems like everyone is trying to cram in as many boozy brunches as physically possible (my fellow New Yorkers will understand this), while breaking records on how many Uber rides they can go on.

I will do my best to share interesting stories, be open-minded, and hopefully teach and learn something along the way. I hope you enjoy the journey!

Thanks for stopping by,

-FF

* Although I am an accountant by trade, this site is for entertainment purposes only. Ideas and comments are my own and are not intended for others’ situations. Please do your own research and/or consult a professional before making your own personal finance decisions.

16 thoughts on “About Fervent Finance

    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      I agree that those are some great blogs. The scientific approach many have taken to chart a path for themselves and others to financial independence has really been a great help and motivator. I don’t plan on making this Manhattan thing permanent, but it will definitely be a part of my near future with its own hurdles to leap. Thanks for stopping by GCC!

      Reply
  1. Andrew@LivingRichCheaply

    Glad to have a fellow New Yorker around. Good for you for learning about FI so young. I’m glad that I started saving and continued living frugally right out of college…but like you…I was just doing what the media says…save/invest some and retire by 65 (55 for me since I have a government pension). And while 55 is awesome for many…a lot of us reading about early retirement and FI know that it can be done even earlier! I’ve always thought that living in the NYC area is an obstacle that others don’t face because of the high costs…especially housing…so it’s great to see other New Yorkers on the FI journey.
    Andrew@LivingRichCheaply recently posted…Ode to My Frugal WifeMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      Hindsight is 20/20 and I wished I saw this light in college, but I won’t complain about figuring it out at 26. I haven’t set any concrete goals but I think my first goal will be financial independence by 40 years old, and hopefully I can bring that in closer with time. I definitely have plans to write about how living in NYC can hinder financial freedom goals and how it can help. Look forward to learning more about your journey!

      Reply
    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      Hopefully no minis for me for a long while 🙂 I bet yours will appreciate the great personal finance lessons they are taught along the way, as they’ll have a step up on their peers.
      Cheers,
      -FF

      Reply
  2. Tawcan

    That’s awesome that you’re already working toward FI at 26. Those blogs that you listed are great, certainly on my daily read list. With your higher income as long as you can put aside a good chunk of money you should be able to retire early no problem. Will be checking back regularly to see what you’re up to. Thanks for sharing.
    Tawcan recently posted…How to survive a shopping trip to CostcoMy Profile

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    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      Thanks for stopping by Tawcan. What has benefited me so far is I don’t really live any differently than I did when I was making over 1/3 less than I do now. So every raise and bonus goes into the coffers and brings me a step closer to FI.

      Reply
  3. Brian @ Debtless in Texas

    Hey FF,

    26 is the perfect age to start, you are still have plenty of time to compound that interest. I wish I knew what I was doing at 26…I would be so much further ahead.

    I am fascinated to read about how you NY’ers make the FIRE journey work in SUCH AN EXPENSIVE city. Now that your goals are out there in black and white we (the community) can hold you accountable. Get ‘er done!
    Brian @ Debtless in Texas recently posted…HSA Custodian WoesMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      You’re correct, 26 is still young. I get mad at myself that I couldn’t figure this out right out of college, but dwelling on the past doesn’t get you anywhere.

      I plan to describe some of the pros and cons of living in NYC while making the journey to FI, so stay tuned!

      Reply
    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      $1 mil isn’t anything to shake a stick at! But thanks for being part of the motivation to kick my FI butt into gear!

      Reply
  4. DivHut

    I admire you for opening up a brokerage account at such a young age and taking the leap into stock investing. Your story sounds very similar to mine as I opened up a brokerage account while still in high school. I also agree that the online FI community is pretty awesome and very supportive as well as transparent. I’m happy to be a part of it with you.
    DivHut recently posted…Dumpster Diving For DividendsMy Profile

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    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      Thanks DivHut. I have to agree that the support and transparency is great. I also love the knowledge people share as well!
      -FF

      Reply
  5. Felix Money

    The three main reasons you mention for starting your blog are the same as mine. It was hard for me to find like-minded individuals, and I’ve found such an awesome community in the blogosphere. Also, documenting my journey through my blog keeps me accountable and focused on my goals. And each of our journeys is so different from the rest, which is why I enjoy reading so many different blogs.
    I will definitely follow your journey and I know I will have lots to learn.
    Felix Money recently posted…I’m officially a business owner. First impressions.My Profile

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    1. Fervent Finance Post author

      FM – I definitely enjoy reading all the different perspectives. You can take what you like best from each person’s accounts of their personal financial history and plans, and apply them to yourself. Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply

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