I would like to partly retire by my late 40s
I am in my early 30s, and nowhere in near as good a shape as some of you guys. I graduated college in 2007, and due to the bad economy worked part time jobs or was unemployed for a long period and lived with my parents. I only got a decent job a year ago. Science is very overrated as a career choice.
But from 2007 through now I have seen my net worth go up by about 50k and all my student loans were paid off within 4 years of graduating. I buy my cars with cash and have never had to take out a loan.
So I guess my goal is by my late 40s to be in a state where I own outright a duplex or triplex with no mortgage (preferably one with solar panels so I will have no energy bill either). I figure by doing that (eliminating my rent/mortgage, eliminating energy bill and having income from a renter) I can cut my monthly living expenses down to 1000 a month or so. That may not sound like a lot but for a single person who is going to save $500-700 in rent/energy bills and have an extra $200-400/month coming in from rent after expenses, it is a pretty decent standard of living. If you need about 30x your annual expenses in savings, that works out to about 400k in assets plus a paid off mortgage for full early retirement. I don't know if I can pull that off, my field is not too high paying it is more middle class. But who knows, in 20 years I can probably do it which would mean early 50s.
Health insurance and health care are always the wild card on retirement planning in the US, sadly. I hope the ACA stays the law, but it doesn't do much to slow the rate of medical inflation. Health care will still be overpriced and inefficient, just moreso than now.