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Looking Back At 2019 – A Year Of FTB

2019 has been a great year for me. A lot has happened, and the cherry on top was that I decided to go independent: I fired the boss and started my own business.

Finances

Since this is a financial blog, I will start with my finances first.

I managed to save 48.9% of my net income in 2019. Mind you, in my savings I included principal payments towards my mortgage, which increases the savings rate, but I also did not have a regular income in December due to quitting my job.

This number is derived from a net income of 38,700 euros, and expenses totalling 19,800 euros – again, this number is excluding my mortgage principal. This leaves me with 18,900 euros saved, or roughly 49%.

Unsurprisingly, my largest expense category was living expenses, with a total of 4,200 euros. This is the homeowners association fees and mortgage interest combined. On top of that, I paid roughly 1,000 euros in real estate taxes.

Blogging

In 2019, this blog got 95,000 pageviews from about 33,500 unique visits. Google and other search engines referred almost 15,000 people to my website.

Most of the 95,000 views came from The Netherlands, almost two thirds. The other top-5 countries are (in order) The United States, Belgium, The United Kingdom, and Germany.

It’s fun to see FTB readers coming from all over the world!

The blog made about 1,900 euros in revenue, mostly through affiliate income from DeGiro. One of my best-read post is about ETF Investing with DeGiro, which outlines how I use DeGiro to invest in VWRL and IUSN.

Use my link to sign up for DEGIRO. It’s at no extra cost to you, and it helps me run this website. Just click the link of your country and give it a go! NL / DE / AT / ES / IT / PL / SE / UK

Podcasting

The podcast that I co-host together with Arjan from Stoppen Voor Mijn Vijftigste was started in 2019. In the first year, we’ve hit over 100,000 downloads, which is great for a podcast in Dutch about personal finance.

If you speak Dutch, check out our website or search for Goed met Geld on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcasts!

Also, this is a nice episode to listen to, with regards to my personal backstory:

Starting My Own Business

In November and December I started my own business. For the last six years, I have been employed as a consultant in the data & analytics industry.

I had plenty of reasons to start my own business. Getting to pick my own projects was the most important. Because there’s enough work to do, I can pass on work that doesn’t interest me, and do the fun stuff.

I also wanted more flexibility to experiment. And that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I work (usually) only four days per week as a consultant. That’s enough billable hours to pay my bills and then some.

That fifth day of the week, I’ll be trying out new ideas. Why? Because it’s fun to experiment, and because I would like to diversify my business out of consulting, at least for some part of it, into something more scalable.

What to Expect in 2020 on Fire The Boss

The experimentation part also means that I will be posting less posts on FTB this year. I feel like I can easily keep up with thinking of topics for two posts per week, but I feel like the quality is not always what I want it to be. This is because I don’t always take the time to properly research and write an article.

I will keep posting here, I’m just saying it won’t be on a fixed schedule of two articles per week.

That’s all for now, enjoy the year people!

5 thoughts on “Looking Back At 2019 – A Year Of FTB”

  1. Well done on the savings rate. It seems like ~50% is something a lot of FIRE bloggers achieve when they put their mind to it and are living on their own. I ended up with 55% and another Belgian blogger was also around 50%.

    Best of luck with your entrepreneurship. It’s only natural that you don’t have as much time for blogging if you want to focus more on your independent activity. I’m certain you’ll be able to write solid stuff especially when it’s related to your entrepreneurial adventures as Radical FIRE said.

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