Category Archives: Investment

Goals 2021!

So it appears that this became the norm and i’m doing the goals for 2021 also in February like last year.

For this year there is a scenario which will have a big play in our personal finances. We would like to start the renovation on the rental property in March and hopefully they will last until October (8 months). The goal would be that on my November update i would be talking about the new tenants now living there 🙂

How will this impact our goal setting? Lets see.


Savings rate at 18%

Last year we had 31% savings rate, slightly above our target of 30%. As i previously mentioned this year we expect to save ~500€ monthly. This would account for ~18% which is a target we are confortable on achieving. I’m also counting on our savings to go back to old values in November and December once the rental pays for itself.

Rental Units

After a few changes the plan will be to have 3x1B and a 4B duplex. Plan is to have it ready to be rented in the end of October. If earlier, better!

Increase networth in 10%

If things go as planned there is a significant equity gain from the renovation. After renovations the bank is calculating the rental building to be worth 585k. Well..after some easy search nearby we can quickly find out that market value is at least 700k. If we add the rental valuation method for a 5% cap rate (on that area, Lisbon is between 4%-6%) income of 3k monthly (36k anual) we would have 720k.

After some calculations i got to the number of 34% networth increase. Nonetheless, i want to be conservative so i will maintain the 10% increase. Which is already an awesome number.

Starting a company and having revenue of at least 10k

Here i will be keeping the same goal. I was able to achieve 34% of this goal last year and i will try my best to achieve the 10k mark. Time will tell if i’m succesfull. It won’t be for the lack of trying!


Remodel the farm houses

Even if its not a full revamp (that would cost ~80k) i would at least want to have there running water and electricity.

Finalize maintenance on the building we currently live

Our current place needs some maintenance namely the facade (which already started). I’m going to leave this objective here as well.

Create network of real estate professionals

Something i noticed while doing this investment is that i have an almost non-existent network of real estate professionals. That worked fine for buying but not for a big Reno like the one we are currently. This means i want to get at least the following good contacts:

  • Real estate investors (2)
  • Property managers (1)
  • Architects (2)
  • “Do-it-all” (2)
  • Eletrical
  • Water
  • Plumber
  • Specialties (eg. Water, HAVAC, Eletrical, etc) (1)

Those are not written in stone but as you can see i want to increase my network dramatically since i think i will need those professionals for this or next deals.

ETF Portfolio

ETF Portfolio – Baseline!

This was a month of restructuring our ETF Portfolio. Firstly i’ve shown you how our P2P Portfolio looks like, but this is not all. In fact our “Big” stategy relies on our ETF Portfolio baseline. Currently with some funds still on the way and starting to build up our position using the broker DeGiro.

Degiro Broker

This means only a part of our funds are invested. Namely 12 872.67€ with the rest 9 498.47€ either in transit or in cash.

This means a total of 22 371.14€ – for August in our ETF Portfolio baseline. Yay. I will be posting here the progress.

ETF Portfolio
Firecrackers ETF Portfolio

The main objective will be to follow the Passive investments of our friends Bogleheads with an european adaptation (Thanks PRIIPS!).

The ETF Portfolio baseline should look like this soon:

Description% AllocationTicker
Long bond5.00%CBU7
Short bond15.00%TIPS

Most of the ETFs are located in the Amesterdam Euronext market in order to lower costs. Unfortunetly Small-caps US had to be bought in the German (XETRA) due to unavailability on the MSCI Ishares Small-caps there.

I will be defining why we chose this strategy and why each particular allocation and also what could be the comparable ETFs but i will leave this for anothe time!

The positions have been opened on the 19th August and currently we are 83.25 € up. Im not worried. We are in this for the long run and this was expected this the markets are in all time highs.

A great website you could use to check our some European ETFs is JustETF, luckily is one of the few that lets you check those ETFs in many of the European stock exchanges.

P2P Portfolio

P2P Portfolio – Baseline!

After our last post on Savings Rate, we would like to set the baseline for our P2P portfolio. As of this month the total value is 10 298.61€. Currently spread between two platforms.

The percentage is the return to date of each investment. We did an increase in our investments in P2P to circa 20% of our portfolio and therefore the interest should start to kick in next month (September).

For the sake of simplicity we have invested 5k in each platform as the principal which means the rest has been interests so far.

This month we increased the investments here from 1.5k in Mintos to 5k and from 1k in to 5k. I’ve been happy with the output so far so we shouldnt be changing much for the time being.


Mintos Platform

Mintos released this month a huge list of 16% loans which i was able to catch some 🙂 Issue? They were only for 30d..this has of course meant i had to keep an eye on the platform to make sure i put my money running once the loans are finished and the principal received.

Current Mintos Portfolio

In case you would like to invest in Mintos you can get some bonus percentage (up to 1% more) additional if you do it via a referral link. Why not mine? here

RoboCash Platform

Similar to Mintos platform we have Here is a bit simpler. We dont select the investment as the platform does this for us. Its easy and the pay-out has been around 12% so far. Not bad!

Want to learn more about P2P?

For some reviews about P2P you can check the review by The Poor Swiss here and by The obvious investor here


Yet another personal finance / FI / FIRE blog! Yes…there are many over there. Let us introduce ourselves. Me and Mrs.Firecracker are a family of 2 in our early 30s (well Mrs.Firecracker is only 29 so i hope this comment wont bring me any issues 🙂 ), we are both proud Portuguese and we are newly weds who have decided during our honeymoon to start this blog. Talk about crazy humn?

Personal finance as always been a topic dear to us and has kept me busy investing and saving since my early twenties. Mrs.Firecracker as also discovered since a young age since our parents have spent some time to teach us the importance of saving, investing, etc.

As stated we live in Portugal, Lisbon not very far from this lovely square.

Resultado de imagem para lisboa
Praça do Comércio

I would say its fair that we consider ourselves as middle class even tough we both earn above the average.

Throughout our journey we will be sharing a little bit how could FI work in Portugal and for a Portuguese. Our tax system is unfortunetly extremely complex so you might hear me complaining from time to time about this.

We also dont have the same tools available as in the US nor other European countries….Forget about 401k, 3rd pillar investments or any other sort.

But, Alas ! Not all is bad! We have sun, affordable healthcare and a safe country. Did i mention sardines?

Typical Can of Sardines

Tons of it! Also other types of fish and great seafood! But lets move on..

We are here to share with you, dear reader, our journey towards FI and for you to also hold us accountable on this. We expect to get some nice tips from you if we are on the right path.

As always we intend to learn from you and maybe also share some lights. Reach out to us in either English or Portuguese and we will try our best to anwser.

Happy FI and remember, wear suncreen. Easy joke when its 31 degrees outside.

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