Interview #4 – Bob Lai from


Today on the FI Garage The Economist and The Accountant have a beer and get to speak with Bob Lai, who writes at

Introduction [0:40]

Questions for Bob

  • Bob had 3 weddings that inspired 2 cookbooks (3:35)
  • Why cookbooks? (5:08)
  • Was money openly discussed in your family? (6:10)
  • Did your family provide you with information about the net worth numbers needed for financial independence (7:15)
    • Focusing on Dividend income and not drawing down portfolio
  • Are you focusing on dividend investing as a hedge against sequence of return risk? (8:35)
    • Riding out the financial crisis
    • Passing down dividend portfolio to kids – building a legacy
  • Using logic to avoid a panic sale (11:40)
    • Father provided financial guidance during the economic downturn
  • You said didn’t have an allowance growing up, are you going to give your kids an allowance? (12:53)
  • In Bob’s Financial Freedom interview he talked about separating the “RE” from FIRE. Do people focus too much on the early retirement aspect of FIRE? (14:35)
    • Quitting your 9-5 to do something you enjoy
    • Retirement is not going to make you happy
    • FI is not a finish line
    • Bob’s struggle with mental health (19:03)
  • Bob talks about consistently improving yourself and building relationships (20:40)
  • Have you always pursued self-improvement or did FIRE push you towards self-improvement? (21:45)
  • The personal finance community is very supportive (24:45)
  • Do you think people in the FIRE community are too conservative in quitting a job they don’t like (27:35)
  • Most recent Dividend update
    • Garden pictures (30:25)
    • Including dividend history in your updates (32:25)
  • Bob’s final thoughts (33:55)
    • Thoughts on writing a blog
    • Bob was featured on MoneySence magazine
    • The banks are not helping anyone on the path to FIRE

How to Contact Bob

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