January 2018 Cheesy Index

We have been busy making some updates and modifications to the underlying calculations (and numbers) for the Cheesy Index, which will apply as per this January 2018 Cheesy Index. There were some significant changes implemented. This caused our target wealth number to change, albeit not too much. What did we do and what changed?

January 2018 Cheesy Index

We closed out 2017 with an incredible increase in the Cheesy Index, we really could not have hoped for anything better. Based on last years target numbers we got to 69%. But that was so last year! 😉

Here are the latest stats:

January 2018 Cheesy Index
January 2018 Cheesy Index


Huh, hold on, you went backward by about 2.1%. Cheesy, that’s the wrong direction! Yes, it is, let me explain.

Cheesy Index Updates

As time goes by, things change. What changed? Well……

  • Taxes!
  • Future Housing situation
  • Family loan write off


A new year and we got new wealth taxes (again). I’ll do a more detailed post on this in the future, but it boils down that if you have less wealth than about €200.000 per person, you are better off. If you are worth more, not so much. Albeit the changes are not very drastic (fortunately), it’s not helping either.

Future Housing Situation

Once we are FIRE (and before FIRE obviously) we still need a place to live. As Mrs. CF already hinted on in this post, she’s not moving to Thailand (or somewhere else warm, sunny and cheap). The current plan is therefore to move out of our current home in 2020-2021, which we will split and rent out (yay, extra rental income!).

However, we are planning to move into one of our own rentals that is closer to family. Because this property is paid off, we suddenly will have more equity that is not doing much, but our expenses will also drop. The end result is a slight increase in wealth required to FIRE.

The plan is however to get a mortgage on this property and use that money to invest into other real estate (or the stockmarket if it has a major correction in the mean time). Borrowing at say 1.5-2% and reinvesting in something that provides about 6-7% seems logical to us.

Family Loan Write Off

To be blunt, we wrote off about €9.600. Ouch! This is an (very) old loan that Mrs. CF gave to her sister. She used it to buy a car to get to work. She started to pay off this loan but stopped once she moved to Africa for volunteer work. Instead of paying back the loan when selling her car, she used it to pay for the volunteer work (amongst others, pissing off Mrs. CF in the process).

Fast forward a few years, she is now a mom of two, no job, partner with a “average salary”. They live fairly frugal, but have no way to pay of this loan right now. We stopped charging interest a few years back already (problem just got worse). There is still the intent to pay it back, but Mrs CF does not want to push the matter at this time. She might once her sister start working again when the kids both go to school.

In short, we have taken the loan value off our balance sheet. We might still get the money, but it will be a bonus if/when we do. It does not impact our existing investments, but just dropped the “non-income” assets a bit. But it obviously will impact our future possible investments/cash-flow, since we have less to invest.

Moral of the story, never loan money to family! (Almost) always a royal pain in the @$$. If you do, make up a formal contract and keep your relatives responsible. Cheesy top tip.

Cheesy Index Forecast

So, with the above changes, and me voluntary becoming unemployed as of May 1, there will be more changes. Oh, and don’t forget the 10 week road trip that is coming up! The major impact is the speed to get to FIRE. Instead of taking about 3-4 years, it will likely now be about 6 (getting us to late 2023, subject to market developments). This is assuming I don’t make any money at all from potential side hustles.

In case you are wondering why the Cheesy Index chart above says a target of 72.5% for 2018 and the one below 70.9% for 2018, we like to aim high 😉

This is the new forecast:

Cheesy Index Forecast 2018-2025
Cheesy Index Forecast 2018-2025

Taking into consideration the new wealth target, we were not at 69% by the end of last year, but actually “only” 67.4%. Despite the major write off, we actually only dropped 0.5% month over month. There is probably another drop coming in February, due to the recent market corrections. Such is life, but we just keep going!



How about you? Did you go forwards or backwards?




    1. Right now, in the accumulation phase We are taxed on both! But in case of FIRE, you’d only be taxed on wealth. Taxes are indeed one of the two things that are certain in the Netherlands (death being the other one). No tax returns for us anymore going forward…..

  1. Bummer with the write-off, but it sounds like Mrs. CF is doing the “right” thing right now by not pressing the issue. Family matters are tough and I’ve luckily been able to stay out of money affairs and my family hasn’t really pressed it/ But lets just say I’ve heard some very ugly money stories from my family in the past that ruined relationships between my grandparents and their siblings. It is just tough and your Cheesy Finance tip sums it all up.

    Outside of that and taxes, it is still impressive how high the Cheesy index continues to climb. FI is getting closer and closer with each passing day. These reports are a lot of fun to read.


    1. Thanks Bert. Agree with you on money ruin relationships between family members. Seen it happen a couple of times with inheritances, not pretty. Hope that I never had to deal with anything like this. Not worth the money, really! We have strongly encouraged our direct family (read parents) to spend it all (not very FIRE-y, I know)! We know we will receive some money from uncles/aunts at some point, but they are smart and have already setup their will to divide evenly between all parties! Done deal 🙂

  2. Sucks about the loan. We’re in the same situation, for nearly the same amount (in $). $10k (with no interest) to MrsSLM’s brother to replace his car a few years back. We’ll probably never see the loan fully repaid.

    1. Glad to read that we are not the only ones that have such issues, family and money rarely seem to mix well (not even talking about inheritances!).

  3. A wealth index of 65% is still pretty good. Too bad of the family loan. They say “do never give money to family as you never see it back. My best friend gave 100k to his brother and never saw it back. So 9k is not so bad in the bigger picture of your wealth. Maybe one day you will get it back. Never lose hope 😉

    I will keep on following.

    1. Considering we only really started in 2014, it’s not too bad. Can you imagine how this would have looked if we’d started in 2006?? Would have been done!

  4. Moving closer to family is a good thing. And the potential benefit of freeing up equity to make an extra investment sounds sweets.

    I must say, the Cheesy family has guts to use leverage to invest in real estate… Seems to be working out just fine for you. Happy to be able to follow the story.

    1. “I must say, the Cheesy family has guts to use leverage to invest in real estate”, says the guy that is heavily invested in options 😉

      The plans seem to make sense, it’s just going to take a while before we can fully implement.

  5. Too bad on the write off, but the plans for moving and refinancing sounds very appealing! Had the recent correction any major impact on the Cheesy Index?

    1. We say it coming, had not done it because it felt too painful. Now that we had to recalculate anyways, it made sense to take it out.
      And yeah, the latest correction made another €10.000 or so disappear rather quickly. That will certainly show up on the Cheesy Index, unless we see a massive rally during this month.

    1. May is coming up fast, especially as I will get out 2 weeks before that (still have paid time off)!
      Cheese stacking will be tough this year though……

  6. Wow nice future plans of moving into your own paid off rental unit to lower expenses and get a new loan for more investing opportunities! To bad you had this default family loan, but I guess family could be more important than money.. Good luck hitting your index targets never the less! Keep it up, loving these posts!


    1. Thanks DI, they are still plans, but they do seem to make financial sense (and from a practical perspective they do too).
      It’s going to be a rough year thou….

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