• November 1, 2023
  • Posted by General Electric Credit Union
  • 3 read

Achieve Financial Independence with the FIRE Saving Method

Financial Independence, Retire Early, or FIRE, is a personal finance movement that has gained significant traction in recent years. It's a strategy that empowers individuals to take control of their financial future, break free from the traditional retirement age, and achieve financial freedom at a younger age. Use this guide to familiarize yourself with this method’s key principles, as well as saving options that will give your balance a boost.

The FIRE principles

  • Frugality. FIRE proponents emphasize living below your means. This involves creating a budget, cutting unnecessary expenses, and focusing on saving.
  • High savings rate. The cornerstone of FIRE is saving a significant percentage of your income. The standard target is to save at least 50% of your take-home pay.
  • Invest wisely. Once you've saved, it's crucial to invest your money wisely. Most FIRE enthusiasts favor low-cost index funds and other investments that generate passive income. 
  • Early retirement. The ultimate goal of the FIRE method is to achieve early retirement, typically in your 40s or 50s, rather than the traditional retirement age of 65 or older.

Savings accounts and programs 

Where you put your money can make a big difference as you embrace the FIRE method. Below are a few options available to you as a member of General Electric Credit Union (GECU).

A flexible approach for the hands-on saver

If you prefer to maintain access to your money and add to your balance using online tools, then a Thrive Money Market is the account for you. It’s a high-yield option that pays more in interest than an ordinary savings account. You can make deposits or access your funds at any time within Online Banking or our mobile app,1 or with your debit card at an ITM or ATM.

An easy strategy for the passive saver

If you prefer to save with a "set it and forget it" approach, then a certificate is perfect for you. Choose your term —the amount of time that you want to save for — and lock in your one-time deposit at a rate greater than an ordinary savings account. GECU offers certificates ranging from 3-Months to 5-Years,2 so there’s an option to fit your unique savings goals.

An automatic option for the everyday saver

When you enroll in Round-Up,3 we’ll start rounding up every debit card purchase from a GECU checking account to the nearest dollar and automatically transfer the change to your savings account. Plus, we'll match 5% of your rounded-up change each month, up to $350 a year! It’s an easy way to start small and make saving money an everyday habit.

GECU is committed to helping you reach your financial goals, whether that be paying off debt or retiring early. Use the accounts and programs above to give your balance the boost it needs. Open an account online or schedule an appointment to go over your options with a GECU team member. Then, use Money Management to track your progress within Online Banking or our mobile app

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