Needless to say that 2020 is an interesting year. It’s the first year we are rich, stuck and bored all at the same time. Let me elaborate.
Albeit we are not FIRE (close though), and we are not millionaires (yet), we do consider ourselves rich in multiple ways. We are in fact “rich” when looking at the graphs and distributions in the following CBS post (in Dutch). I’ve lifted out the wealth distribution for those non-Dutch to make our point (yes, it’s 2017 data, but it has not changed that much).
We currently happily sit within the €500.000-€1.000.000 wealth category. Looking at how small that sliver is within the total wealth distribution, I think it’s safe to say that we are likely “rich”.
In absolute terms, we sit in the second highest cohort which accounts for about ~4.8% of the households in the nation. There is only one cohort above this (the real millionaires), which accounts for ~2.3% of the households in the nation. In short, financially, we are part of the upper ~7% of the Dutch households. So yeah, pretty sure we can call ourselves “rich”. Not that is feels that way, but what the heck!
But besides the financial side. We are also rich in having a great life. We are happy and healthy, two things that are not to be taken lightly (or for granted). That being said, we could be happier. Let me further elaborate.
Like most of you we have been stuck in our home for most of 2020 (bloody virus thingy…). Initially it was due to the lockdown, but lately it’s also because of money. I should actually say income. We are both (still) unemployed. Mrs CF because she is studying, me because I cannot work internationally due to all kinds of Covid-19 related issues (many projects are on hold). It looks like this situation could continue for a couple more months (hopefully not years!) before work may resume. In short, no work, no income, no mortgage.
This is problem for us as we are looking forward to move. Not sure where to, or when, but the house we currently use is being transformed into two rental units. We will likely rent one out and use the other for ourselves temporarily. But ultimately we want to move to greener pastures, sort of. However, we cannot until one (or both) of use get some (temporary) income. We have cash, but not nearly enough to afford a home we would like in this HCOL (high cost of living) part of the Netherlands.
Obviously we can downsize our wish-list, but we are spoiled at this stage and are not (yet) ready to do this. Plus, we are not willing to pay insane amounts of money (read €3.500-5.000/m2 or $375-525/sqft!!) for place that still needs renovations and is situated on a plot the size of a postage stamp. The housing market is ridiculous at the moment. It’s plain stupid actually. Anyhow, did I mention we are spoiled?
Now, the above leads us to being bored. Somewhat anyways. We are currently heavily into the renovations to make our house into two units. We upgraded and split the heating system, plumbing, electrical wiring and placed two kitchens. However, we still need to finish these kitchens (one is missing a countertop for example – still to be ordered).
Other outstanding works include new ceilings, partition wall, two new doors, door removal and replacement with a window and installing/finishing a new heating unit. In short, and with no rush behind the deadline, we are likely still going until October or November before we are completely done.
After this, we will be really bored (again)! Well, perhaps not Mrs CF, who will be studying, but me for sure. This is especially the case if that bloody virus continues to circle around (which it likely will). Without the ability to work, move, renovate and socialize the way we used to. Life can become quite boring (as you might have noticed earlier this year, I sure did!).
Considering I tried the entrepreneurial route, which was not a success, I’m not going to do that again. I’m also not a fan of side-hustling. Never found a topic that got me all excited and made me turn that excitement into money. I might focus again on working out some more. Perhaps I’ll hire myself out as a contractor! But I’m afraid that the future might be more boring than I would like it to be. I’m craving excitement here. I look forward to travel and see the world.
There might be one exception to being bored: Castle of FIRE! Yes, it’s still supposed to go ahead, we still have some spots as people had to cancel due to moving it to October 16-23, 2020. Let me know if you are interested! Really hope a second wave of the Covid-19 virus will not kill this event too….
Are you bored too? Still have a job?