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December 20, 2014


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tom sightings

A house that costs $5000 a year, that you can rent our for $25,000 a year? That would be quite a find. If he's got one, please forward him my name and address ... Ill buy it!


All sounds like a dream. Do you have medical insurance?


I always take these early retirement strategies with a grain of salt. Rule of thumb, a $500,000 home has at least 2.5% worth of upkeep, insurance, maintenance etc. etc. How the author calculated only 1% or $5,000 per year should give one pause.
I loved the one where an early retiree touted their great retirement lifestyle and financials, only to accidentally discover they were bought out by their employer and given a huge amount of early money. Yup. They forgot to mention that little detail. Once the money ran out (and it always does) they stay home and babysit now.


Well, as Syd well knows, I did it the old fashioned way: make up a budget, scrimp and save until my savings were enough to cover my budget, using conservative projections, until I reach Social Security age (since I can live comfortably on SS). And then pull the plug on my career, helped along by a downsizing by my employer. My early retirement was sudden, but meticulously planned. Yeah, maybe not as exciting as just chucking a career and winging it, but just as satisfying, I think, because I earned it.

Looking back on early retirement sixteen years later, the big unknowable was, indeed, health and health care. With the tremendous increase in individual health insurance costs during the first dozen years of early retirement — 20% to 30% per year(!) — I figured that I would eventually have to "go bare" and trust to luck. The Affordable Care Act changed all that. Now I can continue to easily afford health insurance until Medicare age (assuming Congress doesn't kill the ACA).

However, I do agree with the author's thesis that one can live a thrifty life and be happy and content. And I am keenly aware that the vast majority of people on this planet make do with a lot less.

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