A 4-Minute Video: Inside the MMM Household

backyard_interviewIf you ever look at my Twitter feed, you might know that we spent a day in June hosting the fun little video crew that makes Yahoo’s Financially Fit series.

Host Farnoosh Torabi and her fine producer, camera dude, and a Denver-based sound guy and production assistant all came to Longmont to hang out, eat fine brewpub meals on the company expense account, and also shoot a bunch of video to create the latest episode of this ongoing series.

One of my conditions before agreeing to this, as you might expect, was that Farnoosh MUST ride a bike around Longmont with me as part of the interview, just as we all must ride bikes. She gladly agreed, and we had a lot of fun with it.

I think the video came out great – even with the constraints of the prescribed 4-minute format. I was hoping it would come out as an advertisement for a frugal lifestyle in general, so the big Yahoo audience can see that life can be fine indeed even if you don’t spend all your money.

If you’ve got a minute when the boss isn’t looking, take a quick look with the link below.

There’s also a secret ulterior motive with this: when a feature on a subcategory of Yahoo gets a lot of views, it might get promoted to the front page (just as we saw in the Washington Post). With our considerable numbers, we Mustachians can tweak the system whenever we like to make front page news ;-) — Update: we made it to the front page on July 23!



  • jlcollinsnh July 23, 2013, 10:34 am

    Just caught the new Yahoo piece on MMM. Cheryl sent me the link….

    Way too short to do your philosophy justice, but entertaining none the less. It also gave me a chance to show my wife and daughter what you and yours look and sound like. Great fun that.

    Unfortunately, I then made the mistake of reading some of the comments. I need a shower now….

    • Laura July 23, 2013, 10:38 am

      A lot of doom and gloom in those comments! It’s a good thing MMM didn’t consult Yahoo readers before retiring, or else he might have found out that his lifestyle is impossible and unsustainable. It’s like that BS quote about how “a bee shouldn’t be able to fly, but it doesn’t know it so it keeps flying anyway.” ;)

      • Aaronpct July 23, 2013, 11:58 am

        Awesome short video! I think 4 minutes is a perfect intro to this type of lifestyle and can’t wait to show it to my SO. I’ve already talked about this blog with her so that can only help!

        • Free Money Minute July 23, 2013, 1:35 pm

          4 minutes is a great start. You don’t want to overwhelm those who view this as an impossible scenario. Introduce it and then feed them more as they start to accept that fact that is may actually be possible.

        • Emily July 23, 2013, 4:41 pm

          Agreed. I love the video for the door-opening aspect. The MMM family is REAL and it helps that they’re also really cool. Who doesn’t want to be cool?

          Subliminal connection has surely been implanted in many young minds still open enough to grasp the wide open possibilities of money:

          Frugal = Awesome

      • les July 23, 2013, 12:03 pm

        It’s sure a lot easier to be all doom and gloom than consider that by changing yourself you too could retire. Good for them they can have my office when I quit next year at 35.

    • Mr. Money Mustache July 23, 2013, 10:45 am

      Wow, were there comments on that? Hadn’t even noticed ;-)

      I admit I do like doom-and-gloom type ones, like “THEY’LL BE FLIPPING BURGERS WITHIN 2 YEARS!!!”. Even 8 years after retiring.

      Eventually, after 60 years of living this lifestyle, they’ll switch to saying, “YEAH, BUT THE LAST 60 YEARS HAVE BEEN AN UNPRECEDENTED ECONOMIC BOOM! LET’S SEE HIM TRY THAT STARTING TODAY, WHEN TIMES ARE SO HARD!!!”

      • JaneMD July 23, 2013, 10:58 am

        I loved that so many people believed you received some crazy inheritance. Or that you live some awful constricting lifestyle that doesn’t let you enjoy anything.

        • Josh July 24, 2013, 4:54 pm

          Reading the comments on the yahoo page give me little hope for the country. Most people are self created problems to every solution. They live life in complete victim mentality. Why is there anyone like MMM willing to give out free valuable advice only to be called a liar a scam or a trust fund baby? It is almost as if people on the Titanic are laughing at the fool who chose to ride the waves in a small life boat. What about the fancy dinners and entertainment? MMM if I were you I would just let the idiots sink.

          • CrucialDebtCrusher July 24, 2013, 9:13 pm

            “When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him.”

      • Leslie July 23, 2013, 11:24 am

        Some of the commenters obviously did not watch the excellent video. Sample comments: “The bums on welfare,–arrgh!!” “He must be living in Mom’s basement.” LOL

      • Bane July 23, 2013, 12:11 pm

        The video seems to be having techincal issues. You must have brought down the server with all the traffic from this site.

        I did read the comments though and I have seen the light. You’re full of it, man! A scam arist.

        “There is more to this story (insert blah blah blah), rentals can be a problem, maintenance, pain renters”.

        That’s settles it, I’m selling my rental property and other investments and planning to sit in this cubical until I die. Farewell all you shysters!

      • SP July 23, 2013, 12:32 pm

        Here’s the link to the article (with comments): http://finance.yahoo.com/news/how-i-retired-at-32-191840012.html

        • zweipersona July 23, 2013, 4:14 pm

          Thanks for that! I was trying to find the comments with little success.

          I’m surprised most of the comments are civil. I find it strange that no one is able to do the math on their finances, when it’s really quite simple. The sad reality is that the average person simply doesn’t know what they are spending their money on. Heck, I can’t even convince my own parents to try to utilize mint.com to see where their money is going, but it doesn’t seem like people are that interested in improving their fiscal control. They’d rather blame an outside source.

      • Kudy July 23, 2013, 4:41 pm

        I consider myself to be a very savvy internet navigator, and yet I cannot find any comments associated with that video… guess I shouldn’t rubberneck anyway… don’t want to slow down anyone on the highway to FI!

        • Arin February 9, 2015, 10:54 am

          Click on the “here” underneath the video where is says, “Read the article here.” Scroll down to the bottom of the article and the comments will load.

      • Emily A July 24, 2013, 10:05 am

        Haha, too true. But congrats anyway, it was a great spot. I think you guys came off as really genuine and sane (fans already know that you are), which is great. It demonstrates how reasonable and attainable this all is.

    • Michelle July 23, 2013, 12:16 pm

      I agree! Comments on your popular posts always make me laugh. People who claim that everything on this blog is not real and so on.

      You are an inspiration!

      • SQZ July 24, 2013, 7:06 am

        Yep, those are the ones too lazy to do anything about their situation – so they whine and moan that it’s just NOT possible!

    • CincyCat July 23, 2013, 12:23 pm

      Complainy-pants comments, for sure. Yet another reason why I’m glad MMM is so diligent about keeping the posts here *constructive* (even if some are philosophically critical) here on this blog.

    • Mike July 23, 2013, 12:30 pm

      Yeah, way too short.

    • ChoicesChoices July 25, 2013, 10:57 am

      Thank you JLCOLLINSNH! I appreciate the warning about the comments! It didn’t occur to me to read them, and now I will make SURE I don’t. I prefer the Optimism that comes from not letting my money leave my possession, investing it instead, and seeing the Reality that I will be FI in 24 months!

  • Mrs EconoWiser July 23, 2013, 10:34 am

    Looooooooooooooove the video! I’m sharing this link!
    It should really appeal to the Dutch since riding a bike comes is just too easy in this country…some of us just need to be reminded of this.
    Will you do more videos?

  • Rich Uncle EL July 23, 2013, 10:34 am

    This is great now you can show these non-frugal people the right way to live. Making the host ride a bike, that is genius.

  • Joe July 23, 2013, 10:35 am

    Wow, the MMM household is going global. Nice house. You’re really good on video too, nice job.

  • BNL July 23, 2013, 10:41 am

    Nice work, once again hitting the mainstream with your lifestyle. Everytime you win someone over, I think you’re continuing to make the world a better place.

    I’d love to know more about how you got energy bills down to $40/month. That’s one area I still struggle with. Do you have solar panels, or is it just the efficiency of your house in general?

    • No Waste July 23, 2013, 10:47 am

      I would like to hear more about this as well.

      I live in a very hot and humid area; $40/month is a pipe dream.

      • Rob aka Captian and Mrs Slow July 23, 2013, 1:59 pm

        Where I live (Germany) A/C simply doesn’t exsit, hard to imagine when it’s 36 (100F) out you can’t pop into McDonalds to cool off. What my wife and I did was a rent a place that has a great cross breeze and close the windows to keep the cool in. while I do suffer sometimes I tend to freeze when I return to the land of A/C.

        BTW the best way to promote this is to post it to your FB timeline

        • da55id July 23, 2013, 2:11 pm

          Here is a good reason to consider A/C for the elderly: “2003 European heat wave” in Wikipedia – peer reviewed research shows 70,000 died…who would have lived if they’d had A/C. For myself, my 23andMe genetic analysis shows I hail from Tunguska Siberia and Northern Europe. One of my personal heroes is Willis Carrier father of modern A/C ;-)

    • higginst July 23, 2013, 10:53 am

      Here’s one of the posts re: such things. There is more info sprinkled throughout his other posts.


    • Mr. Money Mustache July 23, 2013, 10:53 am

      No solar panels yet.. it’s just about 199kwh of electricity per month ($20) combined with some good south-facing windows and insulation, and a normal gas furnace.

      I think they got the figure a bit wrong – I usually find natural gas costs us about $400-$500/year, which would bring the total energy bill closer to $50 rather than $40 as stated in the video. Pretty small error as a part of the overall budget anyway.

      • BNL July 23, 2013, 11:18 am

        Gotcha. I have pretty poor insulation and east/west facing windows, so that might be part of my problem. Summers rarely require the AC, but winters have the heat running quite a bit.

        I’ve debated fixing the insulation, but we’re not sure how long we’re going to stay in the house so I don’t think I’d ever get the return on that investment. Next house, energy efficiency and solar panels will be a priority.

        • CincyCat July 23, 2013, 12:25 pm

          BNL, you may not realize ROI in terms of dollars, but there is that “soft” ROI factor to consider. When you go to sell your house, think about potential buyers who will read “new insulation throughout” in the property description.

          • BNL July 23, 2013, 12:44 pm

            Yep, I’ve thought about that too. I doubt it would return it all, but it certainly softens the blow. I did actually install new windows this winter, since our old ones were single-pane with wooden frames. On a cold day, it felt like we might as well leave the windows open. And on a hot day, the east facing rooms felt like a sauna as the sun rose in the morning.

            • da55id July 23, 2013, 1:42 pm

              We cut our electricity use by 45% by: replacing incandescents with leds to reduce heat output and electric useage, putting an 8,000 btu window air conditioner in the bedroom and bumping up the ac 5 degrees higher. We bought this in December as a damaged box returned unit – works perfectly :-)

              and…Putting solar film on all south and west facing windows and one skylight.

            • zweipersona July 23, 2013, 4:17 pm

              If you want to save on electricity, read a bit on http://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/

              It covers EVERYTHING electricity.

            • BNL July 23, 2013, 5:33 pm

              Thanks, this is great.

      • Travis July 23, 2013, 12:02 pm

        Still I have newly constructed, 2010 home, in SE Michigan. We use CFLs, (haven’t made the switch to LEDs) and our gas/electric averages $164/mo

        • Mr. Money Mustache July 23, 2013, 1:56 pm

          Hmm.. electric clothes dryer and a laundry-happy family, maybe? We line-dry everything and only do about one high-efficiency-washerful a week.

          Also, Michigan has things like “cloudy days” and “winter”, as I recall from growing up in Ontario :-)

          • Melissa July 23, 2013, 8:51 pm

            We are installing solar in September–I’d get it sooner but the companies are that backed up. Our electric supplier is giving an enormous rebate and along with the federal and state tax breaks, it is virtually free (I will owe $400 which will quickly be returned to me in electric savings). It’s a no brainer in our area. I keep telling people about it and they’re so not interested, which blows my mind. “I’ll have to talk to my wife about it.” “Won’t the solar panels be kind of ugly on the roof?” “They last 25 years? We won’t even be here in 25 years!” Seriously. At any rate, I’M pretty freaking excited to say goodbye to the majority of my electric bills (we still pay the monthly access fee). We are not heavy users as it is, but now we’ll have energy credits which we can use in winter or the energy company will pay us for the credits. Cha ching.

          • Travis July 23, 2013, 9:49 pm

            Yea we do a lot of laundry (using a HE front loader) because we use cloth diapers. We have done some line drying in the past but our HOA frowns on it and has specific regulations against it…this is more due to the builder still in the community but the restriction is there.

            You’re right that we have some pretty harsh winters but I guess I figured Colorado had them as well…perhaps I think this simply because of the mountains.

            All that being said we’re moving to Portland OR soon and which will change some of this…plus it’s bike friendly :)

            Still I’d be interested in what makes your place so energy efficient since we plan to build once we move and efficiency is at the top of our list.

            • Kenoryn July 25, 2013, 11:35 am

              If you’re building you have a great opportunity to make an awesome house – suggest you start researching not just efficiency, though, but passive solar design. We have “The Solar House: Passive Heating and Cooling” by Daniel Chiras which is good but I bet there are a million books out there on the subject and your library is bound do have one. Here are some resources for house plans:

              Re: laundry, for the six months of the year that I can’t dry laundry outside, I dry it on a wooden clothes drying rack indoors. You can get freestanding ones or get or build one that mounts onto the wall and folds out so it doesn’t take up any space. Very handy! Clothes dryers are a real energy suck and basically not necessary.

    • The Stoic July 23, 2013, 5:58 pm

      I’m with BNL. I just purchased my first real estate investment and would love to know any ideas you may have implemented in your home as I attempt to make this place as energy efficient as possible.

      Great video! You have way more patience than I do. I would have to make a smart ass comment to everyone one of those ass clowns and their comments!!

  • No Waste July 23, 2013, 10:41 am

    So great! I have been looking forward to this coming out since you teased it via Twitter.

    It would seem to be very difficult to compress the mustachian ways into a four minute vignette but I thought they did a nice job.

    Did you have any editorial control over the final product?

  • BeatTheSeasons July 23, 2013, 10:42 am

    You come across as a reasonable guy in the video. Newbies will get a shock when you punch them in the face.

    • BobH July 23, 2013, 11:13 am

      …and when you drop them a few ‘F’ bombs. Bravo…keep the hits coming!

  • Kudy July 23, 2013, 10:42 am

    Very cool to see footage of you guys all cruising around as a family! Thanks for the link. Would love to see a 20 minute news magazine style interview that gets past that fluff of “how young!?” and “how much?!” – keep it up!

  • GalinAZ July 23, 2013, 10:42 am

    Liked the video, even more fun reading the comments, a bunch of “I can’t do that” whining folks that need to get themselves to your blog and figure it out!

  • higginst July 23, 2013, 10:45 am

    Ah, Yahoo: Home of the most complainy of the complainy-pantses. WHERE ARE YOU GETTING YOUR 4% GAURANTEED RETURN?!?!?! insurance…Insurance! INSURANCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AGGGHHHHHHHH!

    LOL got to love it.

  • Ron July 23, 2013, 10:47 am

    Nice vid. Beautiful home, cool town. However, get ready for the cycling police to get on you for not wearing a helmet. As I’m sure you know, there’s two overarching negative threads in the comments—800k isn’t enough long term and few twenty somethings can earn six figures. In terms of the first, people are really resistant to simplifying their lifestyles. Interesting how they lash out angrily. How dare you challenge the status quo. My tendency is to ignore them. In my opinion, the second critique is much more legit. Do you think you overgeneralize from your own early work experience? Your broader message would resonate with even more young people if you wrote about how to save and work towards financial independence based upon more typical twenty something salaries of 30-50k.

    • Neil July 23, 2013, 12:12 pm

      “In my opinion, the second critique is much more legit. Do you think you overgeneralize from your own early work experience? Your broader message would resonate with even more young people if you wrote about how to save and work towards financial independence based upon more typical twenty something salaries of 30-50k.”

      Obviously high incomes make it much easier to save lots of money, that’s just a given. If you have a low income, you’re either going to have a wait a lot longer to retire, or work hard on increasing that income either with your primary career or with side gigs.

    • Adrienne July 23, 2013, 12:49 pm

      I second this request! My take-home is just under $30k and 25% of that goes to long-term financial priorities for my family of 3 (retirement fund, my partner’s education, saving the cash to replace our very old, breaking down car). We have no debt, live on about what MMM suggested he would live on if he “woke up broke”, and our frugality muscles are in great shape, but we’d have to live on $9k/year to maintain a 70% savings/investment rate. We have plans to increase our income over the next few years but this whole early retirement thing would seem a lot more doable if the high savings/investment rate was within our reach. Heck, MMM, you were out of the $30-50k range within your first year! Any love for the smart, frugal, still-poor newbies?

      Or an alternative challenge: Do you think it’s possible to live a good life on $9k/year (for a family of 3) in order to invest as much as possible? What would that look like?

      • Jeremy Doolin July 24, 2013, 6:26 am

        Adrienne, you basically have two choices:

        You *could* drop your expenses to about $9k/year the way Jacob Fiser at Early Retirement Extreme did, but that’s not going to be easy. It would require some major changes.

        But more than likely, you simply will not save 70% of your income as MMM was able to. My family doesn’t. We’re more like 50-60% depending on the month. We’re going to be early retirees, but it will take us about 10-12 years instead of just 7 or so.

        So right now just save as much as you can and keep lowering your expenses. Make sure when you replace that car that you do it as low cost as possible. And definitely make sure that what you already have isn’t worth repairing. Under your circumstances you may not have a huge savings rate, but you can still at least be financially comfortable and live a much easier, relaxed life than most others at your income level.

        And, of course, keep trying to find more/better sources of income if at all possible.

        Good luck!

        • Melanie July 24, 2013, 1:09 pm

          I agree. Apply the concepts as best you can. Even the attitude of contentment can go a long way in making the best of wherever you are. I was reading thru the Yahoo comments wishing people would stop an consider another option before shooting it down.

          I started reading MMM a few months ago, and one of the posts I most appreciated was the one about back of the napkin calculations. From running several calculations, I discovered we could save about 50-60% of our income. But if I would have immediately dismissed the heavy savings idea because I couldn’t do what he did, I would have missed out. Another post I appreciated was where he advised not to look at just a monthly expense, but what is it costing your over the course of a decade. I calculated some of our monthly expenses out for 10 years and realized, by my own numbers, gas on my SUV over the next 10 years was nearly $30k! Yeah, gonna be getting rid of that ASAP.

          Not that my husband is even thinking of retiring early, but it’s nice to see that I can plan for that option. I’ve got 10+ years to talk to him about it.

      • Cat July 24, 2013, 8:36 am

        Honestly, if you are at a lower income level and you have a family, you probably need to work on boosting income rather than cutting spending (as it sounds like spending is mostly under control in your case). I spent most of my 20’s earning $20-30k per year (pre-tax) as I was in grad school, and it was hard to get my savings rate much over 30% without taking some very extreme measures.

        One thing to keep in mind, if you have a plan to increase income in the future, is that your current savings rate is not your forever savings rate. If you keep spending low, then your savings rate will rise with income. I don’t know if MMM wants to put any more of his numbers out there than he already has, but I’d bet his savings rate was probably not an even 70% for the entire 9 years of his engineering career. If you look through his “brief history of the stash” post you can get some estimates on savings rates during the early years (before his investment gains really start kicking in) and they are not quite so staggering. I know I’ve seen the same things with myself: savings rate of ~30%, then finished grad school, got a real job, didn’t inflate lifestyle, savings rate suddenly went through the roof and financial independence at 35 or so seemed like an achievable goal.

        • Cat July 24, 2013, 10:09 am

          Okay, replying to myself to say that I went and checked through the history of the stash post and estimated some savings rates, assuming an overall tax rate of 25% (a little more than what I paid last year, living in the much more tax happy state of CA and earning just under 6 figures-assuming a lower tax rates would result in a lower rate of savings, so these guesses may even be inflated somewhat). If investment gains are explicitly stated, I excluded them from the “savings”.

          Year 1: 11-16% (two different salaries noted, no timing given on raise)
          Year 2: ~41% (no investment gains noted)
          Year 3: 64% (some, but probably not all, investment gains noted)
          Year 4: 87% (no explicit investment gain number given, so probably lower)
          Year 5: 75%
          Year 6: ~72% (income is a little fuzzy b/c of “unexpected bonus”, I assumed it was 10%)
          Year 7: ~72% (assuming same fuzzy income of year 6)
          Year 8: 59% (MMM goes to 80% time and takes a corresponding pay cut.)

          The numbers are obviously not all that exact, but I do think they highlight that the savings rate only really started to take off in the later years when you have two good incomes working into the equation. If a similar scenario is in your future, take heart and stay frugal! Your reward will come.

    • VmThunder July 25, 2013, 9:58 pm

      Been following the blog for a couple of months now, after my friend causally mentioned it and then the founder of Drupal CMS (who’s probably a multimillionaire after the success of his two tech start ups) mentioned MMM on his blog: http://buytaert.net/passive-income-and-open-source

      My first comment here, though and it was prompted by the comment about the ‘cycling police’. I too was nervous seeing MMM not wearing a helmet. I hope that was just for the video shoot and MMM does wear one otherwise.

      MMM, your life and message are precious. Stay safe.

      • Jo July 28, 2013, 1:36 pm

        I think it’s great that he is not wearing a helmet! It means he is an expert rider not a novice. Experts can assess when something is risky versus a novice. Riding around his town is probably not risky even with cars. But I’ll bet he wears a helmet on a rocky mountain-bike trail.

        It also shows that he takes responsibility for his risks. And it’s similar to what he does with his money. Become an expert. Assess the risks.

        • T Schmidt December 12, 2013, 12:53 pm

          Argh. So annoyed with the Cycling police. I wear my helmet most of the time, but people, come on! A helmet does not keep you safe!

          Riding safely keeps you safe.

  • Edward July 23, 2013, 10:55 am

    Nice! (And great looking hostess!) Sadly, the Yahoo comments area needs some serious face-punching.

  • Kraig - Young Cheap Living July 23, 2013, 10:56 am


    Great video feature. It’s obviously too short to do your story justice, but good none-the-less.

    It’s great that you made them go out and ride with you. I’m with you on sharing the message of frugal living on purpose. And yes, DEBT IS A HUGE FLAMING EMERGENCY.

    Keep it all up!

  • laura July 23, 2013, 11:00 am

    Mrs. MM is beautiful! :)

    • CL July 23, 2013, 5:19 pm

      Seconded! I’ve read the handful of articles she has up and no wonder she doesn’t wear makeup – she’s way too gorgeous to need it.

      At least this time the commenters on the article aren’t screaming about imposing poverty on Mrs. MM. It’s all about health insurance, how $800k isn’t enough, how a 4% return is a pipe dream, how MMM must be mooching off of welfare and is such a leech…


      EDIT: I spoke too soon. After reading even more of the comments, I can see that people STILL think that his wife is going to leave him. If I were MMM, I’d ask Farnoosh to update the brief article with MMM’s $237 health insurance figure. It’s coming up a ton in the comments.

    • Naners July 23, 2013, 7:13 pm

      Mr. MMM ain’t half bad himself *wink*

  • Mike @ UB July 23, 2013, 11:05 am

    First time for me to actually see MMM on video and speak. Just a normal good guy. Don’t know how long the video has been up on Yahoo, but I’m around the 455 comment or so. That’s a lot of comments in a short time.

  • Jana July 23, 2013, 11:05 am

    Loved!!! the video. Tweeted it out. I hope you get a lot of hits from it :)

  • Cat Alford (@BudgetBlonde) July 23, 2013, 11:09 am

    I love it!!! Great job!!!!

  • Sarah July 23, 2013, 11:19 am

    I can’t see the comments, but oh I wish I could. MMM, I have to say you look even younger on video! You and your family look and sound healthy, wealthy and wise and you have done me and my family a great service with this blog!!

  • Debt Blag July 23, 2013, 11:22 am

    This is terrific! Glad to see that she wasn’t *too* squeamish about getting on the bike. Good luck getting to the front page. Let me know what else we can do to help.

    • Mr. Frugal Toque July 23, 2013, 11:37 am

      Makes you wonder if that’s a big problem for some people. They look at a bicycle and think “Ew!” the same way that SUV drivers will sneer at any compact or economical vehicle. That sort of “I wouldn’t be *seen* in one of those things” attitude.
      Because all those Olympic cyclists are total weenies.

  • Terr July 23, 2013, 11:30 am

    First of all, everyone knows that the “peanut gallery” on Yahoo is to be ignored!

    Second, it was nice to put a voice with a face Mr. Mustache! And I’m glad to finally see the home that you’re so proud of (With every good reason!).

    Bottom line, you’re willing to do the things that most aren’t. Overall, it’s not rocket science, it’s about A LOT of self-control. Most people aren’t willing to reign in their habits so they’ll be slaves to debts and jobs they can’t stand.

    I’m no where near where you are financially. I still have to work but I work as a freelancer. Let me tell you, even that threatens people. They HATE that I don’t have to commute, I create my own schedule, etc. Oh well, we all choose our lifestyles, right?

    • SQZ July 24, 2013, 8:10 am

      EXACTLY! It’s all about CHOICES in life! And I always remember………..Actions have CONSEQUENCES!!! Keep up the good work on saving!

  • Mr. Frugal Toque July 23, 2013, 11:31 am

    That’s well done. Very fancy, high class, production values. Beats that CBC Skype fest (as handsome as I was in it).
    Makes me want to finish work and go for a bike ride.
    Also, I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to the complainers in the comments section. Somehow, all the whining makes my heart beat a little faster, propelling me into the air like one of those Flash Gordon air sleds. Zoom! See you after I’m retired, gainsayers!

  • Tiffany July 23, 2013, 11:32 am

    It’s so strange to hear your voice! Different than what’s in my head when I read you posts, but the same in a way. Loved the video and I really hope it can help turn some more people on to living a more cash efficient lifestyle!

    • CrucialDebtCrusher July 23, 2013, 1:24 pm

      Haha, the subvocalization always had a southern draw for me.

    • Cyndy July 25, 2013, 4:27 pm

      Ha-ha, I was going to say the same thing. I always imagine this booming, gruff, authoritative voice when I read the blog. Loved the video!

  • KM July 23, 2013, 11:35 am

    It’s just not the same without any swearing ;)

    • Stephen at SE July 23, 2013, 11:48 am

      It kinda cracked me up as well. MMM came across as nice and much less face-punching in real life. I enjoyed the bikes part and it is kinda strange to see someone you read all the time in person.

    • Mrs PoP @ Planting Our Pennies July 23, 2013, 12:58 pm

      It seemed like the swearing was toned down in the Washington Post piece as well. If that’s what it takes to get more people thinking about their finances in a responsible manner, seems like a small price to pay.

      • Mr. Frugal Toque July 23, 2013, 1:35 pm

        If you know they’re just going to put “BLEEP!” everywhere, what’s the point? That’s just going to break up the lyrical nature of your rhetorical progression, and no one wants that.

  • Paul July 23, 2013, 11:39 am

    For those that can’t see the comments on the Yahoo Finance site, you’ll need to use a different url than the one in the article above.


  • Buck July 23, 2013, 11:46 am

    Great video and a great venue for spreading the Mustachian Word. I especially liked the hammock chair with built-in beer holder.

    • Mr. Frugal Toque July 23, 2013, 11:54 am

      The animations were impressive, too, as if we’re trying to explain this concept to children in grade 2.
      In fact, I’m going to show this to my child in grade 2. I bet the images will stick.
      $800k –> Bank Icon –> $32k
      (boop-boop-boop) sound.

  • Joko July 23, 2013, 11:49 am

    Looking at the comments… they deduce that from 800 k and 70% Mr. MM made over 100k a year but completely forget his wife? Their outlandish salary estimations suddenly are cut in half and that is just one of many holes in their heads, ops i mean arguments

  • MM July 23, 2013, 11:51 am

    You missed a golden opportunity to plug your new financial services business. You know, the one where people come in with complainy-pants excuses why they can’t pay down all that credit-card debt, and you administer some therapeutic face-punching.

    Otherwise a nice video, though. Thanks for introducing some badassity to the Yahoo hordes.

  • Garrett July 23, 2013, 11:52 am

    This was absolutely fantastic! So simple and loaded with common sense–and yet it managed to piss off nearly every commenter.

    Great :D

  • John Dough July 23, 2013, 11:53 am

    Very nice.
    You come across as a typically polite, mild mannered Canadian.
    I guess you can’t curse on Yahoo or (metaphorically) punch people in the face.
    They didn’t try to put a sensational spin on it either, just your message.
    Hope it gets you more hits, from people looking for the details of how not to be an exploding volcano of wastefulness.
    Well done.

  • rjack (Mr. Asset Allocation) July 23, 2013, 12:00 pm

    MMM – Great video! It makes me think you could create a few great introductory podcasts.

  • Diana July 23, 2013, 12:01 pm

    I guess the video is getting a lot of attention, I keep getting a technical difficulties message from Yahoo. Oh well, I’ll try again later, and in the meanwhile, I can laugh at some stupid comments!

  • Dan July 23, 2013, 12:12 pm

    How does MMM deal with road rage on his bike? I was driving my bicycle this morning to work like I always do, in the BIKE lane, and a Lexus SUV honked his horn at me while he was trying to get on the freeway ramp. The irony is, I was riding right next to a sign that clearly stated, “yield for bikes.” This won’t stop me from bike commuting, but how in the world do you cope? Outside of this freeway on and off ramp situation, the rest of my ride is completely hassle free. This is on a road with speed limits of 40MPH BUT it has a dedicated bike lane on both sides that does not compete with cars. Thanks, Dan

    • Mr. Frugal Toque July 23, 2013, 12:27 pm

      When you run into people like that, you have to thank them.
      “Thank you very much, random stranger, for reminding me how wonderfully relaxed my life is.
      The contrast between the kind of uptight life you lead – where even a fraction of a second of delay to allow a cyclist his share of the road is enraging – and the kind of retired, relaxed lifestyle I lead is something I sometimes forget.
      Your invective laden, illogical, and probably illiterate shouting has reminded me again of the little slice of heaven I have carved out for myself here on earth.
      Thank you, random stranger.
      I bid you good day.”

      • Mrs PoP @ Planting Our Pennies July 23, 2013, 1:03 pm

        haha, completely agree with Mr Frugal Toque here. If that intersection is unsafe for you, then I’d suggest trying to find a route that might go around it.
        Otherwise, just shake your head and smile. That’s really all you can do sometimes. After all, the real likelihood is that Mr Lexus’ road rage is directed at you for a brief moment, and in another moment he’ll direct it at someone else, most likely in a car. Mr. Lexus has to keep that rage with him the entire ride, whereas you’ve only got it for the brief moment that your paths cross.

        • Melissa July 24, 2013, 3:24 pm

          I have to agree too. When you smile at someone who’s in the throes of road rage, it’s the absolute best response you can give. You could even give them a happy wave. They’d love to see the opposite of course, but you wouldn’t want to give them that satisfaction.

      • csa July 24, 2013, 4:25 am

        I personally take a slightly different approach, which is much less stoic in nature. It usually involves telling the enraged driver to fuck off.

      • Maria Jacobs July 24, 2013, 10:44 am

        Love this! My son is learning to drive, and I’m teaching him to be patient with cyclists on our narrow Pennsylvania roads, because we often have to wait to safely pass. We are just not in that much of a hurry!

    • CrucialDebtCrusher July 23, 2013, 1:43 pm

      Smile and nod bro. That’s all they do to each other when they jockey for position and cut one another off.

    • JZ July 23, 2013, 3:20 pm

      Car drivers deal with road ragey irritable people too. They just forget about them because there’s no novelty.

      As a note, if one out of a hundred people are irritable and honk at you, as you learn to ride faster, you’ll experience a lot less of them.

    • 205guy July 24, 2013, 2:20 am

      Get a bike (or helmet) mirror and ride defensively. Once you get used to it, you can spot the ragers a long ways off and speed up or slow down so they pass harmlessly in front of you or behind you.

    • John Dough July 24, 2013, 3:15 pm

      I would simply yell, “Yield for bikes, asshole!”
      And point at the sign or give him the finger.
      This may not feel normal outside of NYC/NJ.
      Despite that, you should not feel compelled to apologize for using the roadway.

  • George July 23, 2013, 12:14 pm

    Wow thanks cool, I never seen you in a video before.

    The funny thing is how fast moving the video and scenes are in general. It is like a high caffeine, super hyperspeed version of MMM summarizes into a short segment.

    Yahoo finance allows their readers to learn about early retirement and reach freedom as long as that message does not take longer than 4 minutes.

  • SP July 23, 2013, 12:36 pm

    I spot Forbidden Island… you should write an article about board games!

    • Jarvis July 23, 2013, 5:23 pm

      Forbidden Island is a great game, was very glad to see it being played by the Mustache family!

      • SP July 23, 2013, 5:26 pm

        Yeah I don’t have it but I have Pandemic by the same designer :)

  • Janna July 23, 2013, 12:54 pm

    Hi Mr. MM,

    Nice video. I’m shocked by the venom of some of the comments, though. If you don’t agree with it-DON’T READ IT OR WATCH IT. But to tear down everything that the Mustacheod Trio have worked so hard to accomplish is just petty. Thanks for all your tips, I wish your blog had been around about 25 years ago–but I still learn from it.

  • Mrs. Money Mustache July 23, 2013, 1:02 pm

    There is no law in Colorado requiring helmet use while biking. Our son always wears a helmet while biking, which will probably help him form helmet-wearing habits as he gets older. I wear a helmet when mountain biking and when biking on busy or unfamiliar roads. I always wear a helmet on my road bike as well. But, I am comfortable not wearing a helmet when puttering around town. That’s my choice. I am going slowly, I pay close attention to traffic, and I enjoy it. I never wore a helmet as a kid — I don’t think I ever even saw a helmet until I was much older, so hopping on a bike without a helmet is very natural.

    You can choose to wear one when you bike. Note that hardly anyone in the Netherlands (or Montreal) wears a helmet either. :)

    • Sandra July 23, 2013, 4:00 pm

      Wow! I just caught the video. I thought it was incredible to be able to retire at 40, but thirty? Amazing. You are an inspiration.

    • Giovanni July 24, 2013, 10:34 am

      Are the helmet police after you? I grew up not wearing a helmet too and then started racing and was contractually obligated to always wear one. But sometime in there the helmet police left their home planet and invaded earth.

      Now I live in a very bike friendly town and less than half the people here wear helmets when they’re commuting around town, including me. I definitely put on the styrofoam cup for a road ride and on the downhills on the mtb but your head isn’t just a helmet rest and I prefer to use mine to make my own decisions, just as you do.

      Did see a woman on Galbraith not long ago who had elbow and knee pads but no helmet, thought that was a pretty interesting choice. It was working for her as she was riding strong.

    • ShavenLlama July 25, 2013, 1:26 pm

      When they passed the helmet law in CA (for minors, still not required of 18+) I was probably 12 years old. I said “Fine then, I won’t bike anymore. But I’ll be damned if you’re going to make me wear one.”
      And I didn’t ride again for about 13 years.

      Now I wear one when I commute because I wear the clippy shoes and ride alongside traffic. But not when I’m on the beach crusier or just putsing around town.

      But now they have the cool looking helmets for the kids with mohawks and brain decals!

      I do get bothered when I see the kids wearing helmets without the strap, or with the strap so loose I can swat it off their head. If you’re going to be safe and wear one, wear it right.

  • CrucialDebtCrusher July 23, 2013, 1:19 pm

    It’s kind of sad that the natural response in the yahoo comments is incredulity. You can tell there are Mustachian-types in there helping to correct folks’ assumptions, but the one thing I keep seeing repeated is how you’re supposedly a selfish or poor father because “what about college?!”

    They just can’t take that needle out of the groove.
    What about assets? What about a fiscally conscious and enterprising wife? Doesn’t that count for anything?

    Would little MMM really even need college? I’d think he’d learn from his parents’ example to be independent enough to forego it.

    • Mr. Frugal Toque July 23, 2013, 1:26 pm

      There’s no keeping up with the Complainypants.
      I need an electronic megaphone that just shouts out “COMPOUND INTEREST, YOU FUCKING IDIOTS!” over and over again across the entire domain of the Internet.

    • Alicia July 23, 2013, 5:16 pm

      I totally agree. I was trying to diffuse some of the comments, but they just don’t want to listen. Ah well, their loss.

  • ael July 23, 2013, 1:28 pm

    Not everyone was negative about the video. You made some progress with many of the “mainstream” judging by their comments.

  • Joel July 23, 2013, 1:43 pm

    Inspiring and def admiring! Seeing you guys “Live” really changes the game!

  • Olivia July 23, 2013, 1:58 pm

    Love the video! Very cool to see the Mustachian lifestyle get a little mainstream. I had a moment where I felt kind of trendy, like when you listen to a band before they’re mainstream and you just get to brag about how cool you are. ;)

  • Paris Parsa July 23, 2013, 2:24 pm

    Wow. What a beautiful family. There will always be ney sayers and naggers. Just letting you know, after reading your blog a while ago, I took action and it has been hell to convince my big spender husband to stop spending. Finally I put my foot down and starting yesterday, we separated our finances.

    Just for you to get an idea, ( i suggest you to sit down for this. ready?)

    we make around $180,000 pre tax per year and we already spent $83,000 the first six month of this year. We don’t have any debts and no loans at all. Not even car payments. it is all just spending on nonesense.

    So, starting yesterday, my husband and I have a separate bank accounts and pay the bills separately, so at least I don’t have to see all the money he throws down the drain and puts a lot of pressure on our marriage.

    Thank you for sharing your lifestyle.

    • Mr. Money Mustache July 23, 2013, 3:15 pm

      I think that’s a great solution for diverging views. While the lady and I never clash over money, I would sure get antsy if some of the spending in the extended family and friends was coming out of a big shared account. Just because we have different values on what is appropriate to buy.

      As an added bonus, you’ll occasionally see people come around after watching you peacefully setting your own example, as our friend Mad Fientist describes here: http://www.madfientist.com/an-unexpected-guest-post/

      • Paris Parsa July 25, 2013, 4:42 pm

        Thank you so much MMM for your recommendation. I will show it to my hubby. In the mean time, I am still trying to figure out how to separate our finances. It is not easy after having a joint finances in the past 20 years.

    • jlcollinsnh July 23, 2013, 3:18 pm

      Hi Paris…

      One of the great blessings of my life has been that my wife and I have always been on the same financial page. Seems otherwise would be awful.

      Your separation of finances seems the only solution, short of divorce. But I gotta ask: How are you going to handle it in ten years or so when you’re rich and he’s broke?

      Will he retire with you on your dime?

      • Paris Parsa July 25, 2013, 4:55 pm

        Thank you JL for your comment. I have been a big fan of your blog and have been thinking to do what you have done for your daughter. My daughter is following my husband’s food steps and I am worried. So I am starting a Vanguard index fund for her.
        As far as my husband goes, what we came up with is, he gives me half of his income and I am handling half of our expenses. For the first time in my life, I am not working and staying home with our two kids. But not bringing an income, does not mean that I don’t have the rights to a secure retirement. Since I am the one handling all the household managements and financials, it is driving me crazy seeing in MInt that we are spending this much while I am a minimalist and don’t spend much.

        So I came up with this solution: separating finances. He gives me half of his income and I pay half of our expenses. Then he also needs to give me 30% of his half for me to place them in our retirement plan and then he needs to deal with what ever is remaining. My only worry is that he would start spending on credit card to keep going and that would not be good since we have no debts and I made sure it stays like that. But so far, this looks like a doable solution I hope.

        Thanks again for your comment.

    • Paris July 31, 2013, 1:43 pm

      Hi guys. I think my husband has started to come around.mhe just sold his Motorcycle, thanks to the post here at MMM and also his never ever used gym equipments on Craigslist. I am so proud of him. He is trying. But still eating out A Lot is his weakness. Thank you for your wonderful blog us on track.

  • Doug July 23, 2013, 2:43 pm

    I’m not sure what else to say except your video is short, clear, and to the point. What’s even more impressive is your home. In order to retire early and live so cheaply, most people would think you’d have to live in a small run down Spartan home, but your home is anything but Spartan. You’ve shown that you can retire early and still live a comfortable life if you go about it right, just avoid (in your own words) that exploding volcano of wastefulness so typical of families in rich western societies. Good work, I’m impressed!

  • Lauren July 23, 2013, 2:56 pm

    Great feature! As a regular reader, it’s nice to be able to put an actual voice with the MMM blog voice.

  • Done by Forty July 23, 2013, 3:11 pm

    Thanks for sharing that video. I think for the uninitiated, it’s about the right length: give them a taste of the approach, a view of the life, and hope their minds are open enough to learn more when they’re ready.

    The comments are a bit much to take. I wonder what the “success rate” is with a blast like this into mass media; for every complainy pants wuss, how many people decide they’re willing to try something different and try to live a better way?

  • Gino July 23, 2013, 3:47 pm

    The Mustache family looks as physically fit as they are financially fit whizzing by on their bikes. Very attractive, you three!

  • texscrooge July 23, 2013, 3:57 pm

    Cannot believe so many people don’t understand compound interest. They all pay it. Maybe you should do an article including an amortization schedule to help their feeble minds comprehend how it works. While is somebody willing to loan the average American 300K at 3.5% APR? Because it’s very lucrative, that’s why!

  • Kristin July 23, 2013, 4:04 pm

    It’s nice to see some more exposure out there for your cause. Your wife is so pretty and your son is really cute by the way.

  • GamingYourFinances July 23, 2013, 4:20 pm

    Great video, it’s wonderful to see this message going out to a wider audience. Even if it does elicit mountains of negative comments! Great work MMM, keep it up!!!

  • Micro July 23, 2013, 4:32 pm

    I kind of want to just bookmark the comments section. There are so many blog posts that can be written from them. Like instead of jumping on the hate wagon, think about how you can apply this to your own life. Even if you don’t want to convert 100%, every little bit snowballs greatly over time.

  • BrownThumbMama July 23, 2013, 5:22 pm

    Nice to see and hear the Mustachians in action! Great video and great way to get the message across.


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