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Old 07-17-2014, 02:46 PM   #101
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I too have an expected budget, an adjusted budget if we need to cut back and an emergency budget if *it hits the fan.

The adjusted budget takes out about 20% with primary adjustments to travel, entertainment & gifts/charity. The emergency budget says sell our primary residence and cut back to something a lot less expensive.

A lot of the decision would be what's happening in the real estate market as my 11 rental properties will be bringing in a lot of what we need to retire on. If rents or housing prices drop significantly (50%+) that could put us into the emergency category.
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Old 07-17-2014, 03:07 PM   #102
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I too have an expected budget, an adjusted budget if we need to cut back and an emergency budget if *it hits the fan.

The adjusted budget takes out about 20% with primary adjustments to travel, entertainment & gifts/charity. The emergency budget says sell our primary residence and cut back to something a lot less expensive.

A lot of the decision would be what's happening in the real estate market as my 11 rental properties will be bringing in a lot of what we need to retire on. If rents or housing prices drop significantly (50%+) that could put us into the emergency category.
I'm curious how much time it takes you to manage 11 rentals? My DW has a similar interest but so far we only have one vacation rental that has a management company doing the heavy lifting.
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Old 07-17-2014, 03:44 PM   #103
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How can we be sure?

About the aliens I mean.
Imagine.....what if....we are the aliens..??
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Old 07-17-2014, 04:01 PM   #104
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Imagine.....what if....we are the aliens..??
Whoaaaa! Duuuude!
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Old 07-17-2014, 05:25 PM   #105
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Most everyone I know retiring has to cut spending...When I first sit down with a client that is retiring...we make budget...we start slashing all kinds of things like, memberships that never get used and dining out all of the time and too many trips to the grocery store without a list or meal plan...and guess what? we always find quite a bit of money.
Of course if they had a good advisor from the start they would have done that decades ago and therefore wouldn't need to cut spending because they already did. This sometimes has the counterintuitive result that in retirement they can increase spending.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:41 PM   #106
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No, that thread is specifically why I went with T-Al, not Lsbcal on the outsourcing.
In retirement we are all allowed a few loony ideas. That thread I started was part of my allowance.
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:28 AM   #107
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I break our living expenses into 3 categories; required, essential and optional. Required is high priority - keeping a roof over our heads, food, medical insurance, deductibles and co-pays, etc. Essential is fun stuff we like to do but could cut down or out if needed and is mostly hobby costs. Optional is luxury type things (for us) like vacations, dining out and charitable contributions.

If I paid off our mortgage, then the required, essential and optional expenses are 56%, 29% and 15%, respectively.

With the mortgage, they are 66%, 23% and 12%, respectively.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:52 AM   #108
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Without changing home, car and other essentials, I could reduce spending by about 20%. It would be a tight budget, but livable.
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Old 07-18-2014, 10:17 AM   #109
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In our camper with 1100 watts of solar, camping on BLM land I could cut our monthly expenses to about $200 for food/water, $100 for vehicle registration/insurance, and $200 for ACA premiums/copay (or $0 if Medicaid).

I wouldn't be driving anywhere to save gas (except to move a couple of miles every two weeks). I would be cutting out internet via cell phone, most meats, gasoline for travel/motorcycles, hotel stays, etc.

Absolute bare bones monthly budget would be $300 to $500 depending if we were able to get on Medicaid.

Kind of makes our proposed $4,000 a month budget seem a bit extravagant now...
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:04 AM   #110
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^^^^^ Here's a man who has got it all figured out. ^^^^^

I only have a 200W panel, and can add 2 more, but that is still not enough to run AC. To be able to do that would be really cool, literally as well as figuratively.

So, I would have to shell out another $4/day in New Mexico state campgrounds to have electric plug in when it gets hot. I should be able to afford that.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:15 AM   #111
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^^^^^ Here's a man who has got it all figured out. ^^^^^

I only have a 200W panel, and can add 2 more, but that is still not enough to run AC. To be able to do that would be really cool, literally as well as figuratively.
We have a small AC unit I mounted into the side of our camper (easy to do since we scratch built the whole thing) that consumes about 500 watts (but not 100% duty cycle). I have tested it in 94 degree weather and it cools the camper down to 68 easily. We used a lot of insulation in our camper build.

The 1100 watts of solar could be expanded to about 1600 watts with currently available roof space since we have nothing on our roof (vents, pipes, etc.)
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:24 AM   #112
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Nice! Go with LiFePO4 batteries for storage, and you are king of the boondocks.
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:20 PM   #113
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Interesting topic. Really have not considered how much we would be able (willing) to cut to avoid going back to wo*k... I have tacked all of our expenses since 1999 so I have a very detailed idea on what we spend and on what.... Our annual expenses are ~60K

Things we could "realistically" cut and still not go back to wo*k.
1) 2 smart phones: $1600
2) DirectTV: $1000
3) Go from 3 to 1 car:
<> $1200 (insurance)
<> $2000 (maintenance)
4) Dinning out (cut 1/2): $2500 (need to eat out sometimes)
5) Vacations (cut 1/2): $5000 (need some vacations)

Total cut = $13,300 or ~22%

More extreme cutting is to sell the paid off 2600sft house w/ pool buy/rent small condo:
1) House/pool maintenance & landscaping: $3000 (avg cost)
2) Reduced property tax: $1000
3) Reduced insurance: $500

Total cut = $13,300 + $4,500 = $17,800 or 30%

Good to know we "could" still live on $43,800 before we would need to consider going back to wo*k. To be honest I would even try to cut more before getting back into the rat race ...
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Old 07-18-2014, 02:25 PM   #114
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I have done no calculations but think I can go down to something like $1K to $1.5K/month, and still have a healthy life with no undue sufferance.

It's from reading blogs of boondocking RV'ers who spend something like that, and understanding how they live.
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Old 07-18-2014, 04:26 PM   #115
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We have a small AC unit I mounted into the side of our camper (easy to do since we scratch built the whole thing) that consumes about 500 watts (but not 100% duty cycle). I have tested it in 94 degree weather and it cools the camper down to 68 easily. We used a lot of insulation in our camper build.

The 1100 watts of solar could be expanded to about 1600 watts with currently available roof space since we have nothing on our roof (vents, pipes, etc.)
Nice rig!
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Old 07-20-2014, 01:08 PM   #116
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Old 07-20-2014, 02:04 PM   #117
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Currently budgeted for $32k/yr. Could possibly cut to $24-26k per year by cutting travel to a minimum and deferring a little maintenance, postponing big capital purchases, combined with economizing on groceries slightly. After a few years, the spending would probably creep back up some.
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