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In today’s episode, Cody and Justin bring you the dynamic duo of Mike and Lauren. You may know them from their fantastic DIY YouTube videos or hearing about their huge European travels.
These two have had some interesting jobs: experimental marketing, gemologist, commercial real estate, and YouTube guru to name a few. They’ve never had a typical desk-job but that hasn’t stopped them from being retired by age 30!
Oh, and did I forget to mention they have two kids which they gave birth to in Costa Rica? Trust me there’s a lot to unfold her so you’ll want to listen for sure.
- Met when 12
- Dated at 15
- Married at 19 and 21
- Never had a desk job but have been employed a couple times
- Started a commercial cleaning company in college in 2007
- Got successful so he dropped out of college
- She moved to New York City and became a gemologist
- They lived with family while she was getting her gemologist certification
- She now stays home with her two kids
- She started making $50k after her 6 months of schooling
- He then got into this experiential marketing gig where one of his jobs was to create a mobile quicksand booth
- He talks about the hardest part of starting his cleaning his business was going door to door and getting told no so many times as he tried to get the word out
- They got their first big contract was through word of mouth but they underbid by a large margin
- They initially bid $10k per month and then quickly realized they needed to increase to $24k per month and their client was totally cool with it
- She worked at Saks 5th Avenue and Tiffany’s
- They loved NYC but it was just too cold for them after 3 years there
- He did some lighting and production for a church and she worked at a friends Jewelry store when they moved back to Florida
- They both worked at those for 4 years and quit
- She quit to have their first son and he quit to go full time on YouTube in 2016
- His first year on YouTube he made $20k
- His second year that jumped to $68k
- They did a 10 week trip for two across Europe for $10k which spurred the idea of doing YouTube travel videos
- They jump into how they still continue to travel even with kids including a 7-week backpacking trip to Europe
- They recommend traveling a little slower with kids and not bouncing from city to city every couple days but maybe every week
- After seeing some success from their YouTube channel they started making online courses
- They gave birth to both kids in Costa Rica
- They did so to get dual citizenship and avoid a lot of health care costs
- U.S. healthcare wouldn’t give them exact quotes while Costa Rica gave them a specific menu
- They gained full citizenship and their children gained dual citizenship to Costa Rica
- They had the affordable care act plans which allowed them to have really low cost of insurance due to their low income when covered
- They pay $50 per month to be a part of Costa Rica’s universal health care system as a fall back plan
- They retired when he was 30 and now just blog, YouTube and travel
- They’re cash flow FI vs the traditional large nest egg FI
- They completed the purchase of a warehouse were the cash-flow comes from through owner financing
- The warehouse needed a good bit of work that Mike was able to do mostly himself outside of some plumbing and electrical
- Stability isn’t necessary: We often stay focused on building careers and working our way up ladders. They showed that we can keep things fresh and do a wide variety of jobs and still make perfect progress towards early retirement.
- Don’t assume America is the answer: They chose to go outside of the U.S. for healthcare and it was only partly to save money. They also appreciated the transparency and stated that the level of care was beyond what they would have gotten at a local hospital anyways. Challenge assumptions such as the U.S. being your option for healthcare.
- Passion meets proficiency: They discovered something they were good at. Skills that they could pass on to others and that they were passionate about. This is the perfect recipe for success when brainstorming money making ideas. Find where your passion meets proficiency.
Call to Action
Survey your life and find one unique skill or passion you have and develop a plan to monetize it
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Links from the Episode
Mike and Lauren’s YouTube channel
Contact Mike & Lauren:
Learn More About Your Hosts:
Fly to FI (Cody’s Blog)
Saving-Sherpa (Justin’s blog)