The Perth man lived in his car and showered at his local library for more than a year. But a “risky” move drastically changed his fortune.
A Perth FIFO miner who lived in his car for a year has made a whopping half a million dollars from investing in cryptocurrency.
Max*, who asked for his real name not to be used over privacy concerns, first heard about the speculative coins in 2017.
He was convinced it was a scam and spent another 18 months researching until he was willing to take the plunge and dump a whole load of his savings in cryptocurrency, primarily bitcoin and ethereum.
Now, several years later, Max, 40, has $465,000 worth of cryptocurrency to his name.
“It could easily go to zero or it could double,” the punter told news.com.au.
He described his decision to invest in cryptocurrency as “desperate” but that it had ultimately paid off.
The bitcoin enthusiast is planning to cash out once the coins reach certain price benchmarks.
He has now quit his job and owns a four-bedroom, two-bathroom house in Perth that he purchased for $202,000.
Max had always wanted to own a home and had a cache of savings from his $85,000 a year salary as a fly-in, fly-out worker in Western Australia.
However, when he realised crypto could make him massive gains, he switched tactics.
“I was saving madly, I was saving for years,” he explained.
“My initial plan was to save up for a house deposit, but I diverted my savings strategy. I thought ‘I will go twofold, [for a] house and crypto’.
“I wanted to change my life so much, I was so desperate.”
In 2018, he poured $40,000 into bitcoin when a single coin was between US$5,000 and US$12,000. A single bitcoin is now worth US$57,000, at time of writing.
He used a dollar cost averaging investment strategy, where he put his money into cryptocurrency in dribs and drabs at regular intervals.
When he saw that bitcoin had momentarily dipped, he bought more.
During that time, he also invested in altcoins such as solana and luna. He tried shiba inu and quickly sold at a profit.
Max also bought some ethereum in September 2020 when the second largest blockchain was worth just US$250. It is now valued at US$4500 per coin.
Holding was key, according to the pro.
Overall, he’s made back his money six times over.
To save money that could go towards his crypto portfolio, Max decided to live in his car for most of 2018 and 2019 rather than rent a place.
As a FIFO worker, he spent a lot of his time on worksites where accommodation was provided and didn’t want to waste his cash on a rental property when he wouldn’t be there most of the time.
As a result, he opted for his car whenever he was in Perth.
He said he got by with Hungry Jack’s for dinner and subsisted on showers from local gyms or libraries.
The miner said he had the confidence to shell out a $50,000 deposit for a property in July last year because he knew he wouldn’t be cleaning out his savings. Instead, he had a fortune on his crypto wallets.
He quit his job this week and doesn’t plan on returning to the workforce any time soon.
Tommy Honan, the Head of Corporate Partnerships at Aussie crypto exchange platform Swyftx, said that Max’s windfall was “virtually impossible” to replicate on the more traditional stock market with such a small starting amount.
“We do very often see people making significant gains within crypto, from smaller initial investments,” he told news.com.au.
“It’s like every other investment, it’s still very market dependent and market driven, except you’ve obviously you’ve got that increased volatility.”
However, he had a word of warning, saying there was substantial “risk” attached.
“It’s not unusual for them [coins] to move 60 per cent in a day, you don’t get that in equity trading,” he said.
By moving he doesn’t just mean moving up – he also means reducing in value.
A recent survey among the Aussie traders on Swyftx found that 76 per cent of them had an average profit of $10,662 over an 18-month period.
A further 17 per cent had made more than $20,000 in gains from cryptocurrency.
The crypto market is famously volatile and late last month, The Reserve Bank of Australia warned crypto investors they risk holding speculative assets with “niche” uses that could lose most of their value.
The RBA’s head of payments, Tony Richards, said the value of many cryptocurrencies, which have surged to $US2.63 trillion, had been driven by “fads and a fear of missing out” and could crash when central banks decide to assert control over their monetary systems.
“I think there are plausible scenarios where a range of factors could come together to significantly challenge the current fervour for cryptocurrencies, so that the current speculative demand could begin to reverse, and much of the price increases of recent years could be unwound,” he told the Australian Corporate Treasury Association in November.