27 episodes

Real talk about Financial Independence and life after corporate jobs. Carl Jensen and Doug Cunnington talk about FI, lifestyle, side hustles, health, and anything on their minds. Plus, they interview experts and non-experts interested in the FI lifestyle. It's raw, candid, pretty much like you get to sit in on a private conversation.

Mile High FI Podcast Carl Jensen & Doug Cunnington

    • Business
    • 4.5 • 2 Ratings

Real talk about Financial Independence and life after corporate jobs. Carl Jensen and Doug Cunnington talk about FI, lifestyle, side hustles, health, and anything on their minds. Plus, they interview experts and non-experts interested in the FI lifestyle. It's raw, candid, pretty much like you get to sit in on a private conversation.

    How to Money | MHFi 026

    How to Money | MHFi 026

    In this episode, Doug and Carl talk to Joel Larsgaard from the How To Money Podcast. Here are a few highlights of our discussion:

    Frugal versus cheap! Joel discusses a time when he went cheap and it didn’t garner him any fans
    How Joel’s childhood (including a car repossession) shaped his money habits
    Real estate investing (6 rentals with more on the way!)
    Investing in stocks
    Working for money legend Clark Howard
    How To Money
    Joel’s perfect day

    Links
    Rich living on less money – How to Money
     
    The Clark Howard Show: Podcasts Archives




    Meet Joel Larsgaard
    Joel Larsgaard is a guy who’s living out his dream life and wants to help you live yours, too. He has been in the personal finance and media space for many years. Before starting his own podcast, he worked with Clark Howard on his syndicated radio show, The Clark Howard Show.
    Although Clark is now retired from radio, he still puts out a successful podcast, which talks about all things money-related and to empower consumers. And since parting ways with Clark, Joel now runs his own podcast, How to Money, with his best friend, Matt.
    Joel and Matt love helping people take control of their finances and, of course, getting to work with each other. Working on the podcast with a half-mile commute each day to his best friend’s house (which he does on bike, of course), is a dream come true for him and gives him the freedom to enjoy life and spend time with his wife and kids.

    Our Discussion
    We started out discussing the fine line between frugal and cheap. Joel told us a story about a time when he purchased some ceiling fans just because they were inexpensive. They were the wrong size and poor quality, and left Joel frustrated that he would spend more time and money in the long run – eventually having to replace them with ones that actually did the job. Frugal doesn’t always mean spending less money on things!
    We then delved into Joel’s backstory with money. Like Carl, Joel grew up with parents who were not great with money. They spent money they believed they’d have as soon as Joel’s dad was promoted. But that promotion never came through, and Joel watched as his parents struggled to afford the things they needed and

    • 1 hr 7 min
    Mailbag | MHFi 025

    Mailbag | MHFi 025

    In another listener mailbag show, Doug and Carl answer more questions.
    – Roxanne asks: If your financial independence (FI) journey was a movie, which one would it be? (check out Roxanne’s YouTube Channel)
    – David asks: What are your favorite travel rewards cards?
    The conversation then gets serious. Doug and Carl discuss questions from Twitter user Mindspeaks:

    How does one stop focusing on FI and start focusing on life?
    I came from a lower-middle-class household and had extended family who mocked our money situation. This scarred me.
    I could have started saving in 2009, but I spent recklessly instead. How do I forgive myself for these mistakes?
    I am stuck at my job because of a work visa. What do I do?
    Money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy freedom. What is your experience with money post-FI?

    Of course, there is a little asparagus talk too.
    Links:

    Rewards credit cards
    Trip Of A Lifestyle
    Rebel Entrepreneur Podcast
    California Asparagus Commission

    ____
    Join the Mile High FI Club – It’s our email list!
    ____
    ★ Let’s hang out at the EconoMe Conference! ★
    Carl is speaking at EconoMe and Doug is attending. You can save 10% by using this coupon code: 1500
    **Disclaimer: The podcast is for informational purposes. Maybe entertainment but we won’t even make such a claim. You shouldn’t take the info as financial, legal, or tax advice. We aren’t certified financial planners or advisors. We’re not qualified for much. So get advice from professionals.**

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Downshift Financial | MHFi 024

    Downshift Financial | MHFi 024

    Doug and Carl interview Eddie and Travis from Downshift Financial. Downshift is a fee-only financial planning firm. Here are some highlights of our discussion:

    Would you accept a free steak if you had to listen to horrible financial advice?
    The 10 questions you need to ask any financial planner
    The only guaranteed investment: annuities (and why they’re a bad choice for most)
    The 4% Rule and early retirees
    Why many planners don’t have your best interest in mind
    The challenges of financial planning for early retirees
    The drivers of economic growth
    VTSAX: Is it all it’s cracked up to be?
    Carl’s hatred of dividend investing
    Eddie and Travis’s FIREy lives
    Downshift Financial’s client engagement methodology

    Links:

    Bogleheads Investing Advice and Info
    Vanguard on International Investing
    Financial Advisors for Early Retirement – Downshift Financial


    Meet Eddie and Travis 
    Eddie Liang and Travis Hughes are friends and business partners who, though technically FI, are pursuing their passion to help others through their financial planning firm, Downshift Financial. Eddie and Travis know just how predatory many financial advisors can be. In fact, they got into this line of work because they wanted to help people who need financial advice get what they need while avoiding those kinds of predatory practices. Eddie and Travis’s fee model is completely transparent and above-board. They charge a flat fee for their services. Period! You won’t find them pitching you any individual stocks or annuities or other opaque, suspicious products that benefit the financial advisor far more than the client. They believe in index funds and simply try to help their clients find the best asset allocation that works for them. They’ll also help with other critical things like optimizing a client’s tax strategy, reviewing an estate plan, and making sure other financial items (like college savings, estimated tax payments, tax loss and gain harvesting, and many others) don’t fall through the cracks.

    Our Discussion 
    Right out of the gate, Eddie and Travis told us about some of the bad experiences they’ve had with financial advisors in the past. That includes the ever-popular “free” steak dinner that comes with an aggressive sales pitch. Eddie and Travis try to avoid exactly this kind of approach. They also talked to us about the critical difference between fee-based and fee-only advisors, and why fee-based advisors can be sketchy. Also – fun fact, financial advisors are free to be a little cagey about their commissions. They then walked us through what questions everyone should ask a financial advisor before signing on with them. Those include: (1) Are you fee-only? (2) Are you a fiduciary at all times or a broker, as well? (3) Does your firm engage in sales contests or awards programs?

    We then delved into some more FIRE-y topics. Eddie and Travis talked to

    • 1 hr 6 min
    Mr. Money Mustache, Alan Donegan, Carl Jensen LIVE Q&A Panel | MHFi023

    Mr. Money Mustache, Alan Donegan, Carl Jensen LIVE Q&A Panel | MHFi023

    Hold onto your hats, friends! Things are off the chain this week – not only is this a surprise bonus episode, we are also coming at you with the undisputed king of the FI movement: Mr. Money Mustache.
    This episode is a recording of a Q&A that took place at The Extraordinary Event  put on by our last guest – Alan Donegan! The Q&A covered a range of topics, but here are a few highlights:

    When Pete started Mr. Money Mustache, did he expect it would be the phenomenon that it is?
    Alan, Carl, and Pete discuss what’s next for them
    Morning routines (or lack thereof)
    Internal barriers to FI
    Is the prospect of making money still motivating?
    How to convince a partner to get on board with FI
    Surprises about FI life

    Mr. Money Mustache Headquarters
    Katie and Alan Donegan’s Many Enterprises:

    Rebel Finance School
    Rebel Business School
    Alan Donegan’s Podcast
    Alan Donegan’s Blog

    Join the Mile High FI Club – It’s our email list!
    ____
    ★ Let’s hang out at the EconoMe Conference! ★
    Carl is speaking at EconoMe and Doug is attending. You can save 10% by using this coupon code: 1500
    **Disclaimer: The podcast is for informational purposes. Maybe entertainment but we won’t even make such a claim. You shouldn’t take the info as financial, legal, or tax advice. We aren’t certified financial planners or advisors. We’re not qualified for much. So get advice from professionals.**

    • 51 min
    Rebel Finance with Katie and Alan | MHFi 022

    Rebel Finance with Katie and Alan | MHFi 022

    Carl met Alan and Katie Donegan in Ecuador at one of JL Collins’s Chautauquas in 2016. They’ve been friends ever since. In this interview, we discuss:

    Alan’s childhood struggles
    How to build confidence
    Family trauma
    Rebel Business School
    Discovering FIRE
    Real estate
    Becoming digital nomads
    The Donegans’ perfect day

    Meet Alan and Katie 
    Katie and Alan are an accomplished, fun-loving couple who have taken the world by storm with their radical approach to starting a business. Alan was someone who yearned to start his own business but was vehemently opposed to the idea of taking on debt to do it. Thus, The Rebel Business School was born.
    Through the courses taught at Rebel Business School, Alan began teaching people how to launch businesses without taking on any debt. To Alan, the phrase “you’ve got to spend money to make money” is sheer bunk.
    Both his own successful businesses and the many businesses started by students of The Rebel Business School are proof of it. Katie is a former consultant who left behind the corporate world after achieving Financial Independence. She and Alan now work on The Rebel Business School together.
    They also put out a podcast, write a blog, and run the Rebel Finance School, which helps teach people both the basics and the advanced aspects of attaining financial success.
    This couple is ambitious about teaching, helping others, and loving life. They are now full-time digital nomads – a feat they managed successfully even during COVID-19!
    Our Discussion 
    We kicked things off with something that felt pretty basic – we asked Alan and Katie to introduce themselves. But Alan reminded us that this can actually be quite tricky when you’re “retired” early and can’t simply rattle off your name and a one-word description of what you do all day.
    We then took a dive into the deep end and talked about overcoming bullies in childhood. Although Katie’s wit and penchant for sports kept her from being bullied, Alan faced some difficult hurdles in his youth – but the wisdom he now takes away from those early challenges is nothing short of inspiring.
    Alan told us about how he has learned to build confidence over the years and how helpful it is to go into any situation thinking about how things could go right, instead of getting stuck in a negative feedback loop of fearing how things could go wrong. Alan now thinks to himself: “What if I went into this room full of people and found an amazing friend or an exciting new opportunity”? We also went in depth about public speaking.
    Carl, Doug, and Alan have all had very positive experiences with Toastmasters and view it as an incredibly powerful confidence-building tool. Alan also highly recommends Presentation Zen by Garr Reynolds and Craig Valentine’s 52 Speaking Tips for fine-tuning your presentation and PowerPoint skills.
    We then talked in depth about the Rebel Business School. Alan is passionate about debunking the myth that starting a business requires debt, and that passion shines through.
    We discussed some of the success stories from his business and how the school got started. Alan also told us about th

    • 2 hrs 6 min
    Waffles on Wednesday | MHFi 021

    Waffles on Wednesday | MHFi 021

    Doug and Carl interview Sarah and Ray, also known as Waffles On Wednesday. They discuss:

    The $36,000 bar tab
    Sarah’s Why of FI: Travel
    Ray’s Why of FI: Options
    Taking a 6-month trip to see the world
    Going back to work

    Meet Ray and Sarah
    Sarah (an occupational therapist) and Ray (a tech worker) are a travel-loving, beer-loving, fun-loving couple who have visited more than thirty countries and leveraged the power of financial independence to take a six-month sabbatical traveling all over the globe. In addition to their jobs and running the blog Waffles on Wednesday, they are now parents to a baby girl and have chosen to continue working despite the strength of their financial position.
    Our Discussion with Ray and Sarah 
    Ray and Sarah started by telling us the story of the $36,000 bar tab. After discovering the concept of FI, Ray started taking a hard look at their spending trends over the last years. In reviewing a previous year’s credit card transactions, he did the math and realized they had spent a whopping $36,000 in a single year at bars. At the time, Ray and Sarah were living in Los Angeles, with a nice apartment that had a view of the beach. And they were going out to eat and drink virtually every night. But seeing the final tally for all that spending was a wake-up call. They moved to a more modest apartment, began learning how to cook better food at home, and cut back on their nights out. But for Sarah, it took some convincing to cut back on spending because she absolutely loves her job and always has. Sarah owns her own occupational therapy business and loves both her work with young children and the feeling of being an entrepreneur. So the concept of cutting back at first seemed like deprivation for no good reason. Ray, meanwhile, needed no convincing as he didn’t love his tech gig and was craving flexibility and more control over his day-to-day life.
    Instead of butting heads at an impasse, Ray and Sarah talked deeply about what they wanted out of life. Ray found a blog post he thought Sarah might like about how financial independence could lead to a life of full-time travel. And that caught Sarah’s attention. Sarah is a lifelong learner and has always loved getting to experience other cultures, other styles of work and food and dress and communication. So when she realized that saving money meant more travel, she was all in. In other words, Ray and Sarah thought carefully about their “why of FI” and found a common love that motivated them both to work towards a life full of frugality, but also travel and adventure. As a result of their hard work and dedication, Ray and Sarah were able to flex their financial muscles and take a six-month sabbatical to travel the world in 2019.
    We talked with Ray and Sarah about which countries they visited, heard some fun stories related to their mutual love of beer, and then finally told us about re-entering the world of work after returning home. Ray was offered a job at a prestigious company that he felt he couldn’t turn down. Sarah has continued her occupational therapy work. She has even discovered in a post-COVID world that she can do her therapy remotely, giving her even greater flexibility. We also talked about the COVID-induced dip in the stock market, and how much better off FI folks were in that situation than those who had never focused on saving or frugality. We wrapped things up by discussing Sarah’s business and the couple’s advice for people toying with the idea of working towards FI. Their advice? Do it. Even if you love your job! You might not love your work forever, and even if you do, the flexibility and freedom to be able to step away when or if you wa

    • 1 hr 18 min

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