Matteo Hoch, Candidate for CFP® certification, EA

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Enrolled agent status is the highest credential the IRS awards. Individuals who obtain this elite status must adhere to ethical standards and complete 72 hours of continuing education courses every three years. Enrolled agents, like attorneys and certified public accountants (CPAs), have unlimited practice rights [before the IRS]. 

I feel uniquely qualified to help people with their quarter-life crisis because I’ve been there myself.

In 2017 I quit my data engineering job just months after a promotion. The extra money wasn’t worth the extra effort with my long-term plans, so I quit.

I had plenty saved but no concrete plan. Initially I thought I could make a living sports-betting. I had an NBA spread model that was 60% against the spread in 2016-2017 and I wanted to become a data scientist. I figured I could get more historical data and use that to improve the model.

Once I got all that together I realized 2016-2017 was a fluke! The best I could get the model was just enough to make some money but not enough to be worth it. And subject to quite a bit of risk that I could have some down years.

I pivoted into selling sports data but eventually fell back into something I’ve done before, helping people with technology for money. In the past I did PC Troubleshooting and Repair through my high-school business, Teo’s Tech Shop.

Since then, I’ve carved out a successful freelancing career primarily in data science.

I’ve made more than my past employment with significantly more free time. And get more satisfaction from work because it’s directly correlated to how smart and how hard I work. No promotion cycles! With more flexibility to work less or more. And arguably less risk from getting fired.

My wife and I even moved across the country to buy a house. Bye-bye dark Chicago winters/high taxes and hello Vegas sunshine.

No employer is making me go back to the office!

But there were definitely some stretches where I worked much harder than before. It’s not for everyone. But worth a seriously look by everyone!

Why Bird Spring and Financial Advice?

I started Bird Spring Financial because I noticed a gap between rules of thumb and financial advice for the self-employed like me.

It was hard to find a financial planner to work with that didn’t want to manage my money for a recurring fee, so I began learning on my own. Over time I realized I enjoyed learning about personal finance more than my freelance data science career and began to make the transition. Now I am running my own financial planning firm.

I enjoy showing people the benefits of being self-employed and helping them live their life intentionally.

The name, Bird Spring, comes for my newfound love of mountain biking and hiking. I go to the “Bird Spring” Range WSW of Las Vegas quite a bit and plan my schedule around good days to get outside. This freedom to avoid crowds, be available for friends in town, and going outside in ideal weather is a huge bonus to being a solopreneur.

Mountain Biking in the Bird Spring Range, NV

More Personally

I’m married, child-free, and have 2 little chihuahuas.

Me with my wife Christina and my two chihuahuas, Myla and Earl

I love to learn new things and have many different hobbies.

Cooking, baking, making drinks, mountain biking, geology, gardening, skiing, hiking, the weather, coding, guitar, drums, piano, math, physics, investments, tax, and philosophy are the main ones. I think things are often overcategorized and I love learning how and why things are the way they are.

I also volunteer as a tax preparer with the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide Program in Las Vegas, NV.

More things:

Some book recommendations:

  • Adventure of Ideas – Alfred North Whitehead
  • Enough – John C. Bogle
  • The Intelligent Investor – Benjamin Graham
  • Thinking, Fast and Slow – Daniel Kahneman
  • Antifragile – Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  • The Illustrated Brief History of Time – Stephen Hawking
  • Soros on Soros – George Soros (Alchemy of Finance is good too but drier)
  • Total Freedom – Jiddu Krishnamurti
  • Managing The Professional Service Firm – David H. Maister

Buy on eBay or AbeBooks for cheap. Better yet check your library!

Work with Matteo

Work without Meeting

Contact if you would like to explore working together without directly meeting.

Please note, not all situations can be responsibly handled without having some conversation and collaborative meetings.