Build Scott Burns’ 8 Other Couch Potato Portfolios With ETFs

Build Scott Burns' Couch Potato-like portfolios with ETFs. See how they compare to other portfolios.
Share this with friends you care about!

What are Scott Burns’ 8 Other Couch Potato Portfolios?

Scott Burns Couch Potato and other 8 portfolios can be built with 2-10 ETFs. They are exposed to between 20% to 80% equities and 20% to 80% bonds including TIPS. They are medium-risk and low-risk portfolios.

For the past 10 years, the Scott Burns Margaritaville has returned 7.66 with a standard deviation of 11.85. The dividend yield is 1.48. The 30-year return is 7.86%. Year to date the Scott Burns Margaritaville Portfolio has returned 8.54%%.

How do you build Scott Burns’ 8 other Couch Potato portfolios with ETFs?

Here is how you build Scott Burns’ Margaritaville portfolio.

  • 33.33%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 33.33%  International All-World ex-US VEU)
  • 33.33%  TIPS (VTIP)

You can find the other portfolios that Scott Burns have made further below.

The letters in brackets denote the stock symbol for the recommended ETF. You can look up the symbols at your stockbroker. You can see a listing of all the ETFs we recommend on this page.

What is the historical return of Scott Burns’ 8 other Couch Potato portfolios?

Below you can see the historical return of Scott Burns’ 8 other Couch Potato portfolios.

Data was last updated on October 1, 2021 at 04:21 a.m. ET

NameAsset class countYear to dateReturn in 202010 year returnCAGR since 1989 (%)Risk levelExpense ratio
Scott Burns Couch Potato29.61%12.998.688.8620.04%
Scott Burns Margaritaville38.54%12.457.667.8620.05%
Scott Burns Four Square45.82%10.446.847.4420.06%
Scott Burns Five Fold59.08%7.417.298.120.07%
Scott Burns Six Ways from Sunday614.58%0.775.728.3620.08%
Scott Burns Seven Value Portfolio714.74%1.026.548.6220.08%
Scott Burns Seven Value 2 Portfolio816.05%1.26.958.9320.09%
Scott Burns Nine Emerging Portfolio914.42%2.766.69.3230.09%
Scott Burns 10 Speed Portfolio1013.93%2.186.288.9230.12%

How does Scott Burns Couch Potato portfolios compare to the best portfolios?

Below you can see the returns of the best portfolios that we have benchmarked.

NameSee PortfolioYear to dateReturn in 202010 year returnCAGR since 1989 (%)Draw Down
Premium Portfolio15.92%18.2913.8410.77-37.63%
Premium Portfolio8.30%18.118.6311.14-44.87%
Premium Portfolio13.48%19.712.8410.49-32.77%
Premium Portfolio20.78%3.198.5210.59-36.46%
Premium Portfolio20.17%3.668.6210.48-36.35%
Premium Portfolio15.18%21.0313.7810.83-37.00%
Premium Portfolio19.24%8.711.5610.65-35.26%
Premium Portfolio15.41%7.488.3910.64-37.91%
Premium Portfolio16.16%5.3610.8811.23-35.43%
Premium Portfolio20.81%3.4210.2110.47-40.85%

Who is Scott Burns?

Scott Burns is an investing legend. He came up with the Couch Potato portfolio—a super simple lazy portfolio with only two asset classes. You can get a primer on the Couch Potato in our article The Couch Potato Portfolio: Two Fund Supremacy?

Scott Burns is also a former financial columnist at the Dallas Morning News. He co-founded Assetbuilder.com, which uses The Couch Potato portfolio as an underlying portfolio. He co-authored the personal finance book Spend ‘Til the End: The Revolutionary Guide to Raising Your Living Standard.

The Couch Potato portfolio is one of the lazy portfolios, which means it is easy to implement and maintain while producing a respectable return. Our articles Lazy Portfolios and 5 Reasons Why A Lazy Portfolio Is Right For You highlight the benefits and pitfalls of lazy portfolios.

Scott Burns also constructed eight new Couch Potato portfolios to supplement the super simple two asset class portfolio.

Description of Scott Burns 8 other Couch Potato portfolios

The family of Couch Potato portfolios is constructed so that they increase the number of asset classes they use. The most simple is The Couch Potato which uses two asset classes while the last one Ten-Speed uses ten asset classes.

So, for example, the Couch Potato portfolio uses only two asset classes, while Five-fold portfolios use 5. From an asset class perspective, it means they increase in complexity.

It is an elegant textbook example of how you can slice ‘n’ dice your portfolio into individual asset classes.

The Scott Burns portfolios are some of the few portfolios on portfolioeinstein.com that specifically expose the portfolio to energy-related companies.

What portfolios have Scott Burns have constructed?

Here are the portfolios that Scott Burns have designed.

  1. The Couch Potato Portfolio
  2. Margarita Portfolio
  3. Four Square Portfolio
  4. Five-fold Portfolio
  5. Six Ways From Sunday Portfolio
  6. Seven Value Portfolio
  7. Seven Value 2 Portfolio
  8. Nine Emerging Portfolio
  9. 10 Speed Portfolio

Let’s see how these Couch Potato brothers and sisters perform.

What is the asset Allocation of Scott Burns Couch Potato portfolios?

Below you can see how to build Scott Burns’ portfolios.

Scott Burns Couch Potato

  • 50.00%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 50.00%  TIPS (VTIP)                  

You can find additional information and commentary in our article  The Couch Potato Portfolio: Two Fund Supremacy?

Scott Burns Margaritaville

  • 33.33%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 33.33%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 33.33%  TIPS (VTIP)

Scott Burns Four Square

  • 25.00%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 25.00%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 25.00%  TIPS (VTIP)
  • 25.00%  Non-US Bonds (BNDX)

Scott Burns Five-Fold

  • 20.00%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 20.00%  REITs (VNQ)
  • 20.00%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 20.00%  TIPS (VTIP)
  • 20.00%  Non-US Bonds (BNDX)

Scott Burns Six Ways from Sunday

  • 16.70%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 16.66%  REITs (VNQ)
  • 16.66%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 16.66%  Energy (XLE)
  • 16.66%  TIPS (VTIP)
  • 16.66%  Non-US Bonds (BNDX)

Scott Burns Seven Value Portfolio

  • 14.50%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 14.25%  US Large Cap Value (VTV)
  • 14.25%  REITs (VNQ)
  • 14.25%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 14.25%  Energy (XLE)
  • 14.25%  TIPS (VTIP)
  • 14.25%  Non-US Bonds (BNDX)

Scott Burns Seven Value 2 Portfolio

  • 12.50%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 12.50%  US Large Cap Value (VTV)
  • 12.50%  US Small Cap Value (VIOV)
  • 12.50%  REITs (VNQ)
  • 12.50%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 12.50%  Energy (XLE)
  • 12.50%  TIPS (VTIP)
  • 12.50%  Non-US Bonds (BNDX)

Scott Burns Nine Emerging Portfolio

This portfolio is part of Portfolio Einstein Gold, Premium Portfolios. 

Scott Burns 10 Speed Portfolio

  • 10.00%  US Total Stock Market (VTI)
  • 10.00%  US Large Cap Value (VTV)
  • 10.00%  US Small Cap Value (VIOV)
  • 10.00%  REITs (VNQ)
  • 10.00%  Emerging Markets (VWO)
  • 10.00%  International All-World ex-US (VEU)
  • 10.00%  International Large Cap Value (EFV)
  • 10.00%  Energy (XLE)
  • 10.00%  TIPS (VTIP)
  • 10.00%  Non-US Bonds (BNDX)

Resources for Scott Burns 8 other Couch Potato portfolios

Scott Burns maintains a beautiful and informative website over at couchpotatoinvesting.com

If you are Canadian, you might want to check out the site canadiancouchpotato.com

Suggestions for your next steps

Finding the correct portfolio is hard. Maintaining your portfolio is also daunting. If you are still in doubt about which portfolio to choose, we suggest you read our article How To Invest Money: 5 Simple Steps That Work For Anyone

If you have already committed to a portfolio – good for you! If you need help maintaining the portfolio you will find our rebalance worksheet useful. Rebalancing your portfolio lowers your risk and may provide higher returns in the long run. It is completely FREE.

You can find the rebalance worksheet in our article Here Is The Most Easy To Use Portfolio Rebalance Tool.

Rebalancing lowers your portfolio risk and may increase your returns.


If you want access to our high-performing portfolios then you need to take a look at the premium portfolios. This is a paid product that gives you the 59 best-performing portfolios since 1989. The portfolios represent a great opportunity for you to have a shot at increasing the returns of your portfolio.

Portfolioeinstein Premium Portfolios

Related questions

What is the best ETF Portfolio?

You can see the best ETF portfolios here.
And you can find the best ETFs here.

Which ETF does Warren Buffett recommend?
Warren Buffet recommends holding two ETFs:

  • 90.00% Large-cap blend (S&P 500) (VOO)
  • 10.00% Short-Term Treasury ETF (VGSH)

Share this with friends you care about!

2 Comments

  1. I am 75 years old . This may be to risky .
    What Vanguard Bond funds would you recommend?

    • Hi Bobby,
      Thanks for stopping by.
      The best Vanguard bond ETF is Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF (BND). If you want international exposure then you should pick Vanguard Total World Bond ETF (BNDW).
      The best Vanguard bond mutual fund is Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (VBTLX).
      I hope that helps.

Leave a Reply