Coast FIRE is when you have saved enough money that you don’t need to continue contributing to your retirement funds to meet your future retirement goals.
It’s a variant of the FIRE movement, which stands for Financial Independence, Retire Early. Under regular FIRE, you scrimp and save until you have amassed enough money to quit your job and retire early. It often requires significant sacrifice and can take a long time.
Coast FIRE is different.
You don’t quit your job, but once you’ve hit Coast FIRE, you can stop worrying about saving for your future retirement: you’ve already checked that box. The amount you’ve saved will continue to grow and that steady growth will allow you to hit your retirement targets. You can “coast” the rest of the way and redirect the money that you were contributing to retirement toward other things.
Just like regular FIRE, Coast FIRE takes sacrifice and time (just a lot less, as we’ll show below).
But if there’s a way to get to Coast FIRE even faster, why not do it?
This article covers 6 ways you can do exactly that.
They all center around investing your existing money in assets that generate outsized returns but are still passive enough that you can do them on the side without much hassle. The six strategies are as follows:
- Buy a Profitable and Passive Blog
- Invest in Real Estate Using Leverage
- Buy a FedEx Route for Passive Income
- Purchase a Passive Income Laundromat
- Buy Vending Machines
- Rent Out Cars
We’ll cover each of these strategies in detail below, but let’s start by answering some introductory questions about Coast FIRE. Want to skip the introductory stuff and jump straight to the 6 strategies? Just click here.
The information contained in this post is for informational purposes only. It is not a recommendation to buy or invest, and it is not financial, investment, legal, or tax advice. You should seek the
advice of a qualified professional before making any investment or other decisions relating to the topics covered by this article. All investments carry some degree of risk and you are never guaranteed any returns.
What Is Coast FIRE?
Coast FIRE is when you can stop contributing to your retirement funds because you have already saved enough money to meet your future retirement goals.
The idea behind Coast FIRE is that you can have a comfortable retirement without the years of sacrifice and deprivation that come with traditional FIRE. I put together a comparison table that illustrates the differences between the two strategies.
The table compares FIRE and Coast FIRE with the goal of having around $1 million at the time of retirement:
Ending Balance Upon Retirement
Age When Contributions Stop
Balance When Contributions Stop
I highlighted the last three rows because I think they are the key data points.
Under Coast Fire, the person is only 29 when they stop contributing. They can then redeploy that $700 to whatever they want. That’s an extra $8,400 per year they can use to go on vacations, buy a nicer house, etc. They can even shift down to a less stressful job that pays a bit less.
The FIRE strategy requires the person to stay at their current job (or a comparable job) and continue contributing $8,400 each year for another 33 years before they can call it a day.
That 20 year old will be in their 50s when that day comes.
How Much Money Do You Need For Coast FIRE?
You need far less money for Coast Fire than for regular FIRE. A 40 year who wants to FIRE immediately needs $1 million if they want to retire on an income of $40,000 (under the 4% rule). That same 40 year old would only need around $200,000 to Coast FIRE immediately and still reach that $1,000,000 goal at age 65 (assuming a 7% ROI).
The reason for the dramatically smaller amount needed for Coast FIRE is because of the power of compounding over time. The person using Coast FIRE has a nest egg that is allowed to grow exponentially over decades. Unless you are a complete beginner to personal finance, I am sure you know the power of compound interest over long periods of time, so I won’t belabor the point.
Bottom Line: This compounding allows for a secure retirement in the future and the ability to enjoy life in the present.
How Do I Coast FIRE Fast?
Ok, this is the secret sauce, the ninja stuff.
Up until now, we have based all of our assumptions on achieving Coast FIRE using a 7% ROI. What if you could invest in assets that generate way more than 7%? I am talking about ROIs of 20% or more with relative consistency?
You would not only be able to achieve Coast FIRE much quicker, but you would be able to continue to grow your retirement assets faster and enjoy a finer retirement when the time comes.
So what are these high ROI investments? Here is a list of 6 options that can each generate over 20% ROI in passive (or mostly passive) income.
Buy a Profitable Passive Blog
Blogs are probably my favorite high-yielding passive income investment. The strategy is simple:
Buy an existing money-making blog and collect checks.
Starting a blog is hard work and it can take a long time to make money. I am not talking about that. You want to buy a blog that has all of the articles written and is producing steady cash flow. Doing this can be a perfect way to get passive income that produces a killer ROI.
How good is the potential ROI? Based on some real-life examples I pulled from blogs that were for sale on Empire Flippers (a leading website for buying and selling online businesses), you are looking at an average ROI of 28.3%.
Want to learn more about buying a blog, including some of the key risks you need to address? Check out my article here:
Invest in Real Estate Using Leverage
Investing in real estate can be a great way to achieve outstanding profits, especially if you use debt to magnify your returns. I own nine rental properties and this form of investing allowed me to make my first million.
It’s a tried and true path toward wealth.
Based on my analysis (using pretty conservative assumptions), you can generate over a 20% ROI with rental properties.
What’s even better is that rental properties are generally stable investments and can be semi-passive. For that reason, many people hold on to their rentals for decades. It’s a terrific way to generate high returns over the long term, without huge stress or massive effort.
If you want to learn more, check out my article on how to get started investing in rental properties.
Buy a FedEx Route for Passive Income
Did you know that you could buy a FedEx delivery route?
It can be a highly profitable business and, if you structure it right, it can generate passive income that can exceed a 20% ROI.
The business is very simple. You get a bunch of packages from FedEx each morning. Your job is to deliver those packages to locations within your territory. The great thing is that your discrete little piece of the FedEx delivery process is easily outsourced.
In fact, most owners do this.
They usually own many routes, so they are not driving a truck and making deliveries. They hire drivers and put in place managers that oversee the deliveries. Once you have good managers and reliable drivers in place, the day-to-day operations of this business can be run without your involvement.
If you want to learn more about this business, check out my beginner’s guide to owning FedEx routes for passive income.
So how good are the returns of a FedEx delivery business?
I took a sample of ten FedEx routes for sale in bizbuysell.com (one of the leading online sites for buying and selling businesses) and found an average ROI of 26.1%.
What I love about this option is that you get to partner with a massive company like FedEx and receive all of the benefits of their branding, marketing, and infrastructure.
You don’t need to worry about getting customers, fighting off competition, or really anything else that most business owners stress over. All you need to do is make sure the deliveries get done on time every day.
Purchase a Passive Income Laundromat
Laundromats can yield returns that easily clear 20%. On top of that, they can be operated in a mostly passive way.
After all, the machines are doing the hard work of washing and drying the clothes (with your customers doing the work of loading and unloading the clothes).
The process is mostly automated, but not completely. There are things you will need to do to successfully run this business as an absentee owner. If you want to learn how to do this, check out my article about starting a laundromat in six easy steps.
So what type of ROI can you get from laundromats? According to my sampling of 10 laundromat businesses on bizbuysell.com, you can generate an average ROI of 29.6%.
Buy Vending Machines
A vending machine can be a great passive income source that produces very strong ROI.
You just place it in a high-traffic location and make money every time someone buys something from your machine. The cost to get started varies, with a simple gumball machine costing only around $200 to a more expensive vending machine running between $3,000 to $5,000.
Still, that’s far less expensive than buying an entire business and it’s a terrific way to start generating some stellar ROI.
The only part of this that requires some work is restocking and collecting money from the machine, but you can easily outsource this function.
For more details on this business, check out my beginner’s guide on how to start a vending machine route for passive income.
How strong is the ROI for vending machines? Based on my sampling of ten vending machine businesses on bizbuysell.com, I found the average ROI to be 49.2%!
Now, you should temper your expectations here because most of these routes are likely operated by the owner. If you want a more passive income source, you will have to hire a route runner to take care of the routes. Of course, in that case, the ROIs will go down, but you should still have a lot of room to play with.
Another strategy is buying ATM Machines. They are conceptually similar and can have comparable or even better ROIs. if you want to learn more, check out my step-by-step guide to starting an ATM business.
Rent Out Cars
I like this one a lot.
You can rent out your car on Turo.com and make great passive income. One option is to use your existing car and rent it out when you don’t need it (perhaps on the weekends). In that case, your ROI is basically infinite.
But you can also buy a car just for this purpose and rent it out. This a legitimate business model and there are people who own fleets of cars and rent them out through Turo.
So what type of ROI can you generate doing this? Let’s find out.
Turo has a tool called the Carculator, which allows you to type in the year, make, and model of your car. The Carculator will then give you an estimate of how much you can make renting out that car on Turo. I love these types of tools because they give you amazing data!
I typed in a 2017 Toyota Prius Three Touring and the Carculator indicated that I could earn $388 per month.
That works out to $4,656 per year.
I then hopped onto cargurus and searched for a Toyota with that same year and model. They all seemed to hover around the $19,000 range. So if you take $4,656 and divide it by $19,000, you get a potential ROI of 24.5%.
Now I just randomly typed in a year, make and model for this example. But you may want to play around with the Carculator and type in different car models to see what you can earn. I have no doubt that you can find car models that can generate better ROIs.
So there you have it. A guide to Coast FIRE and six great ways to get there faster.
If you want to learn more great strategies for earning 20% (or more) ROI on your investments, check out my article on how to get 20% ROI.
Want to up your game and FatFIRE? FatFIRE means retiring early with a luxurious lifestyle. Here’s my article on how to do it fast. Check it out!