2019 was the hottest year on record

No really, 2019 was the hottest year on record! We have never been this hot (and dry) and we loved every minute of it πŸ™‚

I mean, it was HOT!

Happy, Opportunity rich & Time rich. Who does not want to be HOT? I know we do and in 2019 we were pretty darn HOT! Sorry for everyone that click on this title believing to find a post about the environment. Not that we don’t like the environment, on the contrary, we love it and are trying out best to keep it as pretty and “stable” as possible. Our frugal lifestyle and our primarily plant based eating habits should help in this respect. Anyhow, why was 2019 so HOT and how did we do financially? A quick overview!

2019 was the hottest year on record

Lot’s of time

I’ve enjoyed a slow year with a minimal amount of “work”. I certainly was time rich in 2019! Even Mrs CF was pretty time rich this year, with having only worked about 9 months of the year (and in those months she even had some paid time off too!). Not that all this time was spend usefully, but it was great against stress and perfect to get into a state of “piece of mind”.

The plan is to be a bit less “time rich” in 2020, as I hope to find a job that I really like doing (and increase the Happy). Perhaps Mrs CF might increase her amount of time (and opportunity) if I’m successful in finding that “ideal” job this year. We will see.

Our previous work efforts have at least giving us the ability of having more “time” and provided us with increase happiness too as we don’t have to worry about money, or do work we don’t like. 2019 was a good (albeit a bit boring) year!

Savings Rate

Having completed the year-end bookkeeping, I was positively surprised about the results. We actually managed to spend less on a yearly basis for the 4th year in a row! How good is that πŸ™‚

But without me providing any significant income, and Mrs CF having traded in her high paying job for one without stress, the savings rate could not be that great. Or could it? Here it is:

2019 Savings Rate Overview

It’s definitely a lot more bumpy that in the years before! We had months with a lot of money coming in. This was due to tax returns, a bonus and payout due to Mrs CF leaving her employer. It all resulted in a few months with really high savings rates. But other months were….uhmm… disastrous. August was really (not) pretty with a savings rate of -1.608%. Beat that!

Despite being bumpy, the year end result was phenomenal! We still had a savings rate of 43.1% On pretty much just one (part-time) income. We could have only done this due to our frugal lifestyle (and associated limited spending). We actually came in a whopping 12% higher than our target for the year. I’m a happy camper saver.

Cheesy Index

What about the (in)famous Cheesy Index? As you might expect, it did good! Now, it will drop in the coming years (specifically after 2022) due to some tax changes (i.e. we need more money to be able to spend the same after taxes).

However, for now, we are still going full steam ahead to be FI on a 4% net return (after inflation) by about 2022. The good thing is that we are currently actually already FI on our investments, but this is because our returns are (much) higher than the 4% we plan for. On a cash-flow basis we are unfortunately not year FI this year, albeit we got really close and are within €1.000!

Our year-over-year wealth increase actually topped 6 figures this year! Insane…..but it shows FIRE is possible and money really makes more money. So get your @$$ moving!

2019 Cheesy Index Overview


How did our dividends do in 2019? No complaining here either! 2019 really was a killer year. We managed to slowly increase our dividend portfolio throughout the year as well as the dividends themselves. Here is an overview of where we were at the end of 2019. For the Canadians among you, we actually crossed the magic $10.000 (CAD) this year!!

I’m still tinkering with the portfolio and would like to lower the exposure to the financial sector. Might divert some of these funds into the energy sector and/or real estate (we have a lot of cash now too at about 12% of the portfolio value). Unfortunately, due to tax reasons, we have to stick to Canadian shares and that market is heavy on certain sectors. Especially when looking at solid dividend shares, which makes keeping a balanced portfolio a challenge.

In case you read this for the first time and wonder what happened in 2018. We sold our Dutch shares and reinvested into real estate. Hence the drop in total dividend income.

Looking for dividend stock pics for 2020, check out this post by Tom.

2019 Monthly Dividend Overview
2019 Yearly Dividend Overview
2019 Portfolio Sector breakdown

How was your 2019? Did you do good too on your investments?


  1. The -1608% savings rate looks weird. As far as I understand this means you spent 16 times your monthly salary, so you can already achieve this with an income of 200 euro, spending 3200 euros. Looking at the whole year makes more sense πŸ™‚
    Our stocks were also doing great this year, really exceptional. In a few months all the tax statements will be available from our banks/brokers, that’s the time when I make up the balance of the previous year. But it’s already looking good!

    1. You are almost bang on with your calculation! We virtually had not income that month, but expenses kept on going. Hence the negative savings rate.
      Good luck with the investments!

    1. Funny thing is that this was all achieved on pretty much auto-pilot. Which is why I was surprised to see the numbers, didn’t feel like we had to “work hard” to get here (we did though, especially Mrs CF).
      Thanks for the note Bob

  2. Wow those are some great savings rate on a single income. Looks like things are going very well for you. Keep up the great work and here’s to a successful 2020 and beyond.


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