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How to retire early... or simply survive

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Came across two "similar but different" stories today.

The first was an extract from a book on Living Frugally and how to retire (to an idyllic paradise) at 32.

The second was from a blog site on living frugally - just to stay alive. I wondered what ASF posters would make of the differing slants to the Living Frugally question ?

Extreme frugality allowed me to retire at 32 – and regain control of my life
Money

Elizabeth Willard Thames abandoned a successful career in the city and embraced frugality to create a more meaningful life. It enabled her to retire at 32 with her family to a homestead in the Vermont woods

Elizabeth Willard Thames

Thu 8 Mar 2018 22.00 AEDT Last modified on Fri 9 Mar 2018 07.22 AEDT


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The Vermont homestead that Elizabeth Willard Thames shares with her husband and daughter. Just a few years ago, this seemed like an impossible feat. Photograph: Elizabeth Willard Thames
As I write this, I’m sitting on the back porch of the rural Vermont homestead I share with my husband and our daughter, gazing out on the 66 acres of forest, fruit trees, gardens, ponds, and streams that we feel incredibly lucky to call our own.

Just a few years ago, this seemed like an impossible feat. My husband and I were struggling to conceive a baby and attempting to chart a path out of our frenzied 9-5 grind in urban Cambridge, Massachusetts. We wanted to achieve financial independence, quit the cubicle jobs that made us so unhappy, and create a simpler life of purpose in a rural setting.

My husband, Nate, and I are not exceptional people. We’re not rich or famous or geniuses or even particularly good-looking (although we have our moments). We’re just some average, middle-class kids from the midwest who decided we wanted something more out of life than what our consumer culture sells us.

While it’s true that Nate and I are average people, and we’ve never won the lottery or had investment banker salaries or been the beneficiaries of inheritances or trust funds, I’m keenly aware that we are also extraordinarily privileged.

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/mar/08/how-to-retire-early-frugal-spending


Versus


Millennial finance
Living on a budget? How trendy! Frugal bloggers live on the cheap, by choice
The countless people who document their thrifty lifestyles give readers with money woes emotional support – but they don’t often deal with true poverty

Angelina Chapin

Mon 8 Aug 2016 21.00 AEST Last modified on Sat 15 Jul 2017 04.55 AEST


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‘If you’re connecting with someone and you relate to their story ... you can learn what you need to do by accident.’ Illustration: Joanna Gniady
On Sunday mornings, Katie practices the same ritual: she sits down on her couch in Toronto with her laptop and a cup of tea, pulls the receipts from her purse and makes a tally: “Groceries: $55.90. Petrol: $43.10. Hospital parking: $0. Total Spend: $99.” Then she hits publish and shares her weekly spending with the world.

Katie, a single mother of two adopted children with special needs, has to keep track of her money. Multiple surgeries over the past year have left her paralyzed from hip to knee, unable to work her healthcare job and saddled with between $15,000 and $20,000 CAD of debt. Once government assistance kicks in, her budget for the year will be just under $17,000.

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/aug/08/frugal-bloggers-budget-personal-finance-poverty
 
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So_Cynical

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Early retirement can be done, it isn't done often due to many reasons, staying close to the kids, kids living at home into their 20's, i like where i live and don't want to leave etc, basically anyone who owns a house in a capital city and sell and move somewhere at least 4 hours from a capital and buy a house for half or less of what they sold their capital house for, pocketing maybe half a million, thus funding the first 10+ years of frugal retirement.
 

tech/a

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Early retirement is very alive and well.
Just wander down to any Social Security
Office and you’ll find a whole room full
Of experts.

Sun Surf lazy afternoons
Work—-why?
Both are a life style choice how good
IS the lucky country!
 

PZ99

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If you don't have a lotto lotta coin then keep $10k and use the rest to pay all your bills a few years in advance.

Use the $10k for some quick trading :)

After that you can live frugally on $50 a week and the bills are paid.
 
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I’m not into sitting in the dark eating baked beans every day but a lot of common consumer spending is completely pointless in my view.

Buying new phones etc for the sake of it.

Designer label anything. Amazing how crap much of it actually is anyway.

Cigarettes. I can’t think of anything more silly than taking $ thousands every year and settling it on fire in a manner that will quite likely kill you.

Voluntary taxation in all forms.

Steer clear of things like that and you’ll gain a decade of actual living.
 
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The first article rang a bell with me. Being fairly frugal when young and employed, allowed us to get ahead in life. We were able to pay off the first house loan at high interest rates in a relatively quick time. This then allowed for borrowing against the house for investment when young.
 
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The first article rang a bell with me. Being fairly frugal when young and employed, allowed us to get ahead in life. We were able to pay off the first house loan at high interest rates in a relatively quick time. This then allowed for borrowing against the house for investment when young.

Thanks for reading the story and offering your experience. I'm wondering if the overall picture of careful and thoughtful spending, far more self reliance and a rejection of our current consumer culture posed some thoughts ?
 
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Rejection of the current "consumer culture" or put more bluntly, economic system is a double edged sword. It's a case of if 'most people' did likewise, then the economy would really suffer, which would lead to job losses for a lot of those trying to be frugal.

One advantage of being frugal when young, is how it teaches you how to live well later, but at the same time not overspend. For example, we could buy a 'great' wine to be enjoyed with meals/friends, but instead will choose a 'good' one at a quarter of the cost. We can easily afford both, but just got into a habit of not overspending when young.

With the baby boomers now nearing or in retirement, only those that were frugal and got ahead of the pack when young, are likely to have good comfort in being able to spend money on those things that they can no longer do for themselves.
Basically the older a person is the more likely they are to have too spend money on things that younger people should be able to do themselves.
 

tech/a

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Brty

I attacked life differently. In the first week of marriage at 21 my wife and I sat down and worked out a budget.
We had $5 surplus. I was certain there was no way I was going to life a life where money inhibited my life style.

My Plan
I worked for someone who gave me incentive to perform.
My commissions doubled my wage but was still limited
The extra cash built up enough to buy my first business.
A lawn round. Realising my income was limited to hrs in a
Day I soon found getting clients was easy and they were worth
More on the open market than cutting them.

So I found another Lawnie who’d also worked it out.
Together we would build up our rounds and combine them together
To make a third round selling it splitting profit,buying new gear and
Keeping only the best clients.

Then we kept the rounds and employed others to run them pocketing 30%
Of the turn over.
Fast forward 40 yrs ———-
The rest is history a financial life built around leverage of earning capacity and re sale value of
Assets
Sure I’ve been frugal but I didn’t want it to be a way of life.
 
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I'm on track to be semi-retired (part time work - single income) by 35 and fully retired by 40.

There is a strong interest lately in the "FIRE" lifestyle, as per the recent ABC article and appearances on morning shows:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-02-14/why-i-decided-to-skip-home-ownership-to-retire-at-35/9378412
https://au.news.yahoo.com/a/38941088/why-man-30-is-skipping-home-ownership-in-order-to-retire-by-35/

Also some Australian blogs:

https://lifelongshuffle.com/
http://www.aussiefirebug.com
http://firebythirtyfive.blogspot.com.au/

Very handy calculator (for Australia's unique SUPER system):

http://firebythirtyfive.blogspot.com.au/p/superannuation-needed-to-reach.html
 
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Honestly I do not want to retire. Simply because I am so workaholic that there is nothing beyond that for me. A real slave. My grown up son some times jokes, dad what will happen when you retire ? Just drop dead ? So I want to work no matter the money is fabulous or not . But that is me :(
 

Wysiwyg

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that calculator is a nice reminder about the power of compounding!
You can salary sacrifice into your Superannuation account before taxes - so if you make $1,000 a week (a nice round number for doing maths with) then you would be paying $162 tax. If you could salary sacrifice half of your income, then you're only paying a measly $28. By placing half your income into your Superannuation, you get to 'take home' $972 a week, as opposed to $838.
She could have stated the gross amount earned per week, using the net amount makes the math confusing.
 
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tech/a

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Honestly I do not want to retire. Simply because I am so workaholic that there is nothing beyond that for me. A real slave. My grown up son some times jokes, dad what will happen when you retire ? Just drop dead ? So I want to work no matter the money is fabulous or not . But that is me :(

Similar

Once you stop work you lose whatever your worth/expertise was to
Society.
Many feel that as a very real loss.

I enjoy the value I and my people give to those who need our expertise.
I don’t have to retire
I love what I do and I can choose to work or not work and I do!
So I totally agree money or no money!
We need to have a value and sometimes it’s not monetary.
Often it comes hand in hand
 

Wysiwyg

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Honestly I do not want to retire. Simply because I am so workaholic that there is nothing beyond that for me. A real slave. My grown up son some times jokes, dad what will happen when you retire ? Just drop dead ? So I want to work no matter the money is fabulous or not . But that is me :(
Snap out of that dream man. Now! Once you have paid for your waste to be treated, your roads, parks, environment maintained, your treated water supply and your general household usage bills/insurances then you owe society nothing. Feel and be freer dude. :xyxthumbs The planet is huge, you should see it.
 

tech/a

No Ordinary Duck
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I suppose Warren Buffett,Bill Gates , Zuckerberg, Rupert Murdock Frank Lowe
Should stop living their dream Wyzzi
 
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I think there are two reasons to retire
1) You want to move onto do other things in your life.
2) Quite while you are ahead. As we see with elite athletes (when they are much younger) there comes a time where biology may get the better of you and its better to quit whilst ahead.
 

tech/a

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(3) When you never worked a day in your life
(4) When no one wants what you have to offer.
 
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