My wife, 3 y.o. daughter, and I are in the middle of a major financial shift. I've been extremely fortunate to be making really great money in IT, my wife doesn't work. We've managed to cut our expenses as much as we can renting in Santa Monica, CA after selling our second house to eliminate the commute and capture a nice profit from flipping it. My first house is a cash positive rental but is still upside down thanks to the 2008 housing crash. On top of being a landlord, I do consulting on the side and I'm involved with two startups, trying to catch an early windfall. We used to live a far more lavish lifestyle, 4 cars, including a Tesla Model S, lots of dining out, fancy wine collection, and material accumulation to fill our 4bd/2ba house.
We are down to one car, which is a few months from being completely paid off; I walk to work. We've given away or sold many things to fit into a 1000sq ft 2 bd/2ba apartment. Our biggest expense unfortunately has been the apartment which is already far below the city's average. We are expecting another kid in 4 months as well and will definitely need more room eventually. Thankfully, my job is becoming 100% telecommute soon and we'll be able to relocate most likely out of state in some community nice and cheap and buy another house with a mortgage half of what our rent is now.
But before that, we're planning on doing a 1-2 year "dreamliner" (see 4-hour workweek by Tim Ferris), traveling the world, selling everything once our next kid is at least 1 and vaccinated. This shouldn't be overly costly, since I'll still be telecommuting and we'll rent cheap furnished places (airbnb most likely). We are currently living on about 40% of our income, saving and investing about 30% in stocks and traditional accounts (401k & IRAs), and the remaining 30% has been flagged for one startup which I'm a founder in and am funding with one partner (until we can get some investment capital). Ideally, we'd like to keep this ratio or even improve the savings part when we travel abroad.
Once we come back, we'll settle down and live even more frugally. With a contractor and a mechanic for uncles and an electrician for a dad, I've managed to acquire a large set of tools, I do all my own remodeling and repairs, plumbing, electrical, carpentering. I'm also well versed in traditional ICE (internal combustion engine) car mechanics, though I plan on doing EV conversions as a hobby, I'm definitely interested in cycling more. My wife is a lawyer and a writer and will likely be homeschooling our kids while we travel abroad and I'll also pitch in when we settle down.
I'd love to build an earthship style home, able to be completely off the grid, but that's not a hard requirement. Ideally, we'd like to find a community of like minded people and maybe do some collective homeschooling and other fun projects. I enjoy tinkering with electronics and am interested in home automation and growing heirloom fruits and veggies as well as mushrooms.
So yeah, it's became much longer than I originally intended it to be, if you got this far, feel free to ask me anything.