Man who saved up enough money to RETIRE at age 36 reveals the brilliant budgeting methods he used to amass his fortune and quit work for good

A data scientist has revealed how he’s saved up enough to retire before his 40th birthday.

Yaron Goldstein, 36, earned his PhD in computational and applied mathematics in 2012 before going on to work for Boston Consulting Group, Google and Meta.

Early on in his career during an internship in New York City, he’d encountered a Wall Street investment advisor who’d become something of an unofficial mentor.

The advisor recommended he read books including Tim Ferriss’s 4-Hour Workweek and Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers, which compelled him to think about the connection between happiness and money. 

Yaron Goldstein, 36, who holds a PhD in computational and applied mathematics and has worked at Boston Consulting Group, Google and Meta, retired in May 2023

How YOU can live the high life! Top tips for early retirement 

  • Establish early on how much money you will need to live off once you retire – this will give you a savings goal
  • Begin putting aside as much of your paycheck as you can 
  • Increase this amount as you begin to earn more money 
  • Find cheaper alternatives to your favorite things in life – e.g. swap a daily Starbucks coffee for luxury coffee you can make at home 

‘This guy is making quite a good case for: Maybe 40 years from now, I don’t want to be the guy who focuses his whole life on doing a career,’ he told Business Insider about his reaction to Ferriss’s book.

At the outset of his professional trajectory, he decided he didn’t want to worry about making money for the rest of his young life.

By summer 2017, he established €5,000 ($5,460) as the amount he’d want to be able to live off each month come his retirement.

At his first job at as a post-doctoral student at Freie Universität Berlin, he was able to start setting aside a few hundred dollars per month, according to Business Insider.

On getting hired at Boston Consulting Group in Berlin, he was able to begin putting aside up to €1,500 ($1,638) monthly. 

At the beginning of his career, he lived off about two-thirds of his income; when he started raking in bigger paychecks, he began living off of about half of his income and putting the rest in stocks.

By 2020, Yaron was making €330,000 ($360,416) per year as a senior data scientist at Google.

The more money he made, the more conscientious with his expenditures he became.

Yaron emphasized that his frugality both pre- and post-retirement has and continues to be key to the growing and saving up of his net worth (stock image)

Yaron emphasized that his frugality both pre- and post-retirement has and continues to be key to the growing and saving up of his net worth (stock image)

‘Is there something else that would satisfy me in a similar way for a third of the price?’ he’d ask himself before every purchase. 

His love for green tea was a prime example.

Rather than buy Starbucks every day, he treated himself to ‘luxury tea’ at $50 per 50 grams.

‘Even if I buy luxury tea, which is $50 per 50 grams, at the end of the month, it’s still cheaper than going to Starbucks every single day and getting coffee,’ Yaron said.

‘But I have this much more exclusive thing in my life that gives me a lot of joy.’

On top of that, he was able to get away with never buying a car given the robust public transport systems in Zurich and Berlin, the two main cities he’d been working out of. 

Another smart move was investing a massive chunk of his wealth into Tesla stock in 2016, right as the value began to soar.

After 10 years of scrimping and saving and investing, while holding down full-time work, Yaron retired in May 2023. 

He now follows the four per cent rule adhered to by those in the ‘financial independence, retire early’ community – known as FIRE – which dictates that it is safe to withdraw about four per cent of your portfolio each year once you’ve retired.

But Yaron added he was aiming to get that figure down to three per cent, aiming to be even ‘more frugal’ than when he was working. 

‘No one can ever force you to say success means joining a big company and staying there for 40 years and going up the career ladder,’ he concluded.

His current position on LinkedIn simply reads: ‘Opinionated Data Guy, Jun 2023 – present.’