After 40 years of financial ignorance, it is time to invest smart - but how?

Hello everyone

Happy to find this place and other people with DIY mentality, thanks to MP for setting up this nice forum as well.

I am a software engineer, 40+ years old, with wife and kid, born in Switzerland and live here as well. I heard Interviews mit Pete Adeney (MMM) and was hooked on the idea of early retirement (or the idea, that work is better - if you don’t have to do it for the money.)

I was never really interested in finance and investing, but my mind changed totally since heard about MMM beginning of this year and i really want to manage our financial situation now. My only experience in investing is in Cryptocurrencies so far (Cryptocurrencies) and i need to find other investment opportunities, that are simple and risk/profit ratio is ok.

I have a lot of investing questions, but i guess it is interesting to know something about our background and where we want to go.

  • My wife loves her job and wants to continue working partime in the future
  • Goal is to get to 1million, that should then generate 40k/y in the future, so one part-time job is enough to sustain our family
  • We have no car, we rent an fairpriced appartment, i ride a bycycle to work and we work both part-time
  • For the sake of simplicity let’s assume the following numbers for our financial situation
    — Assumed total net worth 500k
    — 20% in 3rd pillar
    — 20% in Crypto
    — 60% on Sparkonto
  1. What are your suggestions for such a situation to get to a million?
  2. I need investment advice mainly to reduce the sparkonto and relocate cryptos and i am trying to find the right ETF’s (passive and automated reinvesting). What kind of ETF’s do you recommend and where to you manage them?
  3. It seems that ETF’s are high right now (profitable i mean), is it wise to buy them know? Or when is and when not to buy ETF’s?

It is suprisingly a lot of work to make an actionable investment plan and i always wonder why. So many people have the exact same problem and there seems to be no blueprint as a solution, i guess i am new to this and i would appreciate any help in this area.

Hope to get to know you better and wish everybody a nice week

PS: I am glad this forum offers some sort of privacy. It seems not every post is open to public - am i right? (And is there a way to know which are going public and which not?)

As far as I know all posts on this forum are public and should be treated as such (even if there was a member barrier, becoming one is easy and open to everyone).

There are loads of blueprints, it is however important to at least somewhat know hat you are doing.

Hey @rogerized,
id like to write a pages- long answer but i keep myself short: if you believe in market timing, then now is a bad time to invest. otherwise, consider something like 60/40 or 80/20 stock/bond allocation as solid starting point to tweak your future portfolio towards your needs. consider an Interactive Broker account and check out vanguard ETFs.

And, before all that, take your time to inform yourself. half a year of opportunity costs for Sparkonto-instead-of-VT is much better than bad decisions that you would regret at some point :slight_smile:

keywords to get your journey started:
lazy portfolio
guidepost to the swiss mustachian forum
risk tolerance level
investment horizon
low interest era / bonds vs cash
Schiller’s PE ratio

you seem to be doing pretty well already with 500k, congrats!!
good luck :slight_smile:

hey @chestwood96

thanks, i guess the best way is to treat as on open forum then.

where do you find blueprints?

hi @nugget

thank you so much, very interesting answer and keyword selection. I guess i need to research a lot and take my time to find a solution that i don’t regret - but it is so time-consuming.

Where is the right place to propose a portfolio strategy and get or give feedback in this forum?

Thx :smiley:

This is probably what you are looking for Like many posts in this forum it somewhat diverged from its initial point (partially my fault), it should however still be relevant.

I would however advise you to use the search feature and not shy away from the “tedious” and “time-consuming” research, because that is the only thing between you and expensive mistakes.

Also you will probably have to adjust the “Blueprint” to your situation.


I’ve asked this question myself some time ago because I also thought ETFs were high and they’d probably drop soon. The market has gone up almost 5% since then. :smile:

The right time to invest is now, and then follow it up regularly according to your plan. Unless you can see the future, of course. But in that case, please share. :wink:


Figure out first your asset allocation and investment horizon before thinking about timing the markets.

Value cost averaging is a method to progressively invest and reach you desired allocation.

I personally went all in 1y ago as it was statistically a better choice (so far it indeed was) than dollar cost averaging but if I knew at that time about value cost averaging, I would have used it.


I have most of my stuff in VT ETF at Interactive Brokers.

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+1 excellent keyword list IMHO

top 3 for me would be:

  1. bogleheads
  2. investment horizon
  3. risk tolerance level

Wow, Value Averaging makes a lot of sense - sweet strategy is now on my radar - thank you. It is a way to get in step by step with a system in place. Gotta find the trustworthy funds/bonds first :wink:

VT ETF is Vanguard, pretty popular Mustachian thingy, definitely one i consider. Will post my plan in the portfolio section, when i have one :weight_lifting_man:. Why do you like interactive broker better than for instance swiss quote?

Thanks for shortening the list, makes it easier to start :sweat_smile:

Two reasons:

  1. IB is much cheaper.
  2. VT ETF is US domiciled ETF. You can’t invest in them via European broker. You’d have to use one of the Vanguard’s Ireland domiciled ETFs.

this is false :slight_smile:

Cornertrader offered the vanguard US ETFs and i am sure swiss quote does so, too. I know they even do the w8-BEN thing.

Swiss quote doesn’t offer VT:

I also couldn’t find it on my CT account.

In any case, even if you can buy American ETFs (on American stock exchanges) from European broker, it’s still cheaper to buy them via IB.

It seems available at swissquote:

Clicking through it for some reason doesn’t work for me logged out, detailed quote page just doesn’t load like for other stocks, but maybe after you login you can buy it, or at least ask support to do - given how ridiculously they overprice US transactions: up to $250 per trade (+ stamp duty + 1% currency conversion). whereas most US brokers charge flat <$10, one has to expect top notch support at least

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Then I was wrong. Sorry about that. I thought one can buy VT ETF only via American brokers.

If IB is cheaper, then that’s all what counts.

Thanks for all the details, swissquote transactions have ridiculous prices it seems. Would prefer to buy these stuff on blockchains and kill the middle mens. But will digg deeper, step by step.

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happy to help :slight_smile:
I normally recommend this link to anyone who is just starting out with investing:®_investment_philosophy
Those videos are very easy to follow and understand.


@mrs_oberland loved the videos, supergood basic knowhow

First post here and i’m 43 and just read your post seeing its been a year - how are things now ?