Motivations for buying Bitcoin (BTC) are numerous: hedging against inflation, financial independence or even hopes for a Lamborghini and life in the sun. 

For “Mr. ERB,” a blogger and Bitcoin enthusiast, it’s all about retiring early. ERB keeps a detailed account of his finances on his “Early Retirement by Bitcoin” blog and spoke to Cointelegraph about his retirement plan.

He told Cointelegraph that he first “got interested in Bitcoin in summer 2017” when a coworker briefly brought up the decentralized peer-to-peer currency.

However, in a familiar story for Bitcoiners when they first enter the space, “The price was about 2,000 euros at that time, and I thought it was too late for investment.”

ERB told Cointelegraph that he soon stumbled across a Bitcoin podcast where Trace Mayer predicted Bitcoin would hit $1 million.

Interest in the FIRE moment (financial independence, retire early) coupled with a newfound passion for Bitcoin changed his mind:

“That’s when I understood I’m not late but actually early. I saw Bitcoin as a great possibility for reaching early retirement and bought my first coins in October 2017.”
ERB’s retirement strategy favors Bitcoin over dollars. Source: Early Retirement by Bitcoin

ERB hatched a plan to retire with Bitcoin. He set a target retirement goal of 1,000,000 euros, contributing 500 euros per month, every month. His first contribution — or the first time he “stacked sats” — was in 2017. Five years later, “The success has obviously been great,” he told Cointelegraph. 

Bitcoin price (green) vs. retirement savings in euros (orange) vs. amount of cash invested so far (dotted line). Source: Early Retirement by Bitcoin
“I don’t think I could have made similar returns on any other strategy. Not to mention, the Bitcoin strategy is extremely simple and doesn’t require active investment management. You buy and you hold, and then you keep buying more.”

The Early Retirement by Bitcoin blog details how his current return on investment is over 450%. Compared with using the S&P 500 as an investment vehicle (44%), “That’s a 10x, and it’s going to be 100x.”

Over the course of his investing journey, ERB has gleaned valuable lessons. He spoke cogently and wisely about how Bitcoin underpins his values:

“My worldview pre-Bitcoin was pretty narrow. Life looked like school, work, retirement, death. Nowadays, I think slightly differently. The ultimate goal [now] might be better described as entrepreneurship and self-sovereignty.”

Related: Redditor stashes away BTC worth $100 for 100 years in public library

ERB shared useful nuggets of advice with those new to buying Bitcoin. He explained to Cointelegraph:

  1. “Keep mining fiat, keep buying Bitcoin.” And don’t try to get rich quickly because “You’re not gonna.”
  2. “Give yourself five years” to really get to know Bitcoin (which works out to one year more than Bitcoin’s halving cycle), and really take the time to learn. Listen to the right podcasts, read the right books, and learn if “it was a good idea to invest in Bitcoin.”
  3. “Resist the urge to orange-pill everyone around you,” particularly early in the Bitcoin learning curve. ERB admitted he may have dealt some “damage” to certain relationships due to his overexuberance at the early stage of his Bitcoin education.
  4. Finally, HODL. While the March 2020 crash in the price of Bitcoin down to $3,600 “felt really bad,” ERB explained that “In hindsight, those were the best times to buy.”

As a United States spot exchange-traded fund looms closer, ERB is fast approaching the quarter-million-euro milestone. As his blog surmises, “Cut costs, stack sats.”