Broke and unemployed at age 27, Jason Fieber – a.k.a. Mr Free At 33 – moved to Florida, found a job at a car dealership, and began saving and investing like there were plenty of tomorrows.
By 33 years of age he had become financially independent, enabling him to quit his job, move to Thailand, and live comfortably off his dividend income.
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Revenue, Profit, Monetization
Jason told us via email:
I earn dividends from the shares I own in over 100 different world-class businesses. Most pay dividends quarterly. Some monthly or bi-annually.
I also earn money from various online businesses, but I don’t consider any of that income passive. Dividend income is truly passive because I get paid without any action on my part. And since I invest in companies that grow their profit and dividends, my passive dividend income continues to grow and compound fairly quickly.
As of March 2019, Jason’s portfolio was worth $386,263.
$0 → $1k/month
I first started investing in the spring of 2010. I hit $12,000 in dividend income annually in February 2018.
However, I quit my job in 2014, at 32 years old. And I stopped aggressively investing new money in the spring of 2016, once passive income started to exceed expenses. So the last three years have been mostly organic passive dividend income growth.
$1k/month could have been achieved much faster. But my life isn’t about accumulating ever-more money. I never aimed to be the richest guy in the cemetery. I wanted to quit my job, be financially independent, and live my life on my terms. I just wanted to be free and happy.
Time In Business
I first started investing in the spring of 2010. So I’m about nine years into it, although I stopped aggressively adding new capital to my portfolio three years ago.
My income continues to grow all by itself because of the nature of the businesses I invest in.
I started the portfolio with $5,000 in the spring of 2010. I then saved/invested 50% to 70% of my net income every month for about six years so that I could quit my job, retire, and live off of passive income at a very young age.
I don’t believe I spend more than an hour per week checking over the 100+ businesses I own a slice of. I don’t need to babysit the likes of Johnson & Johnson, Coca-Cola, and Apple.
I can collect and spend dividend income anywhere in the world.
- Control – 0.5/1
Jason has no influence over the performance of any of the stocks in his portfolio, but he’s so well diversified that he’s not at the mercy of any one company.
- Entry – 1/1
Jason notes that there are almost no barriers to entry as regards investing, but competition isn’t a factor here so full marks.
- Need – 0.5/1
Public companies need investors buying stocks, and Jason fills that role. However, none would likely miss him if he sold all his stocks tomorrow.
- Time – 1/1
Jason’s dividend income stream is almost entirely passive. He spends less than one hour per week checking his investments.
- Scalability – 1/1
What’s great about investing in high-quality companies is that there is theoretically no ceiling to your potential. Stocks have unlimited upside. It scales indefinitely. My portfolio will continue to compound, even with no input from me, and eventually turn me into a multi-millionaire.
These companies continue to sell products/services, produce profit, and pay me my growing dividend income no matter what I do. It requires no action on my part.
What kind of skills should you develop to emulate Jason’s success?
I would say the primary skill I have as an investor is the ability to reasonably judge a company’s potential and intrinsic value.
Also, I’m not an emotional person. Stock prices themselves can be quite volatile, even if growing dividends aren’t. Some people aren’t suited for that volatility due to the emotional toll it might take on them.
Want To Follow In Jason’s Footsteps?
- Mr. Free At 33 (Jason’s blog)
- Jason’s portfolio / FIRE Fund
- Jason’s recommended resources
- 5 Steps to Retire in 5 Years (Jason’s book)
Below is a December 2018 video interview with Jason about blogging, investing and retiring in Thailand.