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Old 06-19-2013, 08:54 PM   #81
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comicbookgujy, have you thought about looking into Ecuador or Panama, or even Thailand? I have known a few expat retirees who have been able to retire in countries (several offer incentives to retiring expats with that kind of money).

I know it may not be your cup of tea, but I have always thought of doing that once we make it to a million. With the incentives programs, plus my own interest I think it could be very doable. I would want to work part time to keep some money coming in, but that would only be because I would go crazy doing nothing all day. Hopefully it would be something I actually loved doing though. Later in the more 'elderly' retired phase I might look to move back to my home country. We have been expats for a decade though, so I might be a bit more open to it than most.
My wife is from China and we have thought about packing it in and moving to China and never having to work again. That's still an option we're open to, but it's probably our last option. Something I wish I haven't bought so much crap because it would be so easy to just pack up and move to a different country. Got too much crap to get rid of and that's living in a 700 sq ft apartment!
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:02 PM   #82
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Got too much crap to get rid of and that's living in a 700 sq ft apartment!
It's amazing how much stuff you can cram into a fairly modest living space if you pack it well!
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:12 PM   #83
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.....One more thing I want to mention. I have been wary of detailing my finances here for the simple reason that I knew if I shared them, at some point, someone would ask how I managed my healthcare. I'm pretty sure there are members here who will question my use of a system that is most likely intended for the working poor, as opposed to people with assets, such as myself. I wondered the same thing at first, but came to the conclusion that if I legitimately qualified, then I felt comfortable with applying for, and using the service. There are other government programs that specifically disqualify those with significant assets, so I took that as "proof" as it were, that it was OK for me to go ahead and use this system. To sum up my attitude in this area, I am comfortable taking advantage of government programs and subsides, as long as I legitimately qualify (i.e. don't have to lie in order to get them, something I will not do).
I have struggled with the same thing philosophically, even with Obamacare HI subsidies, etc. but ultimately concluded as you have that if I legitimately qualify under the rules that I will utilize such benefits. I rationalize it in that I paid more than my fair share of taxes for many years when I was working and if the legislative branch is stupid enough to design these programs so poorly its not my fault.

Actually, with some of these programs I suspect it would be hard to opt out of them because they sort of automatically happen if you file your taxes correctly.
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Old 06-19-2013, 10:19 PM   #84
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Hmmm - not recommended but I know this who was canned er layed off at age 49 with ballpark 250k in 1993(when a dollar was a dollar ).

No health insurance, no mortgage or rent, beater car/pickup and by habit and atitude a cheap SOB. Lived in a fish camp in Louisiana.

Toss in about a year of temp work, a 10k non cola pension at 55 and taking early SS.

Now 70 - all praise to Bogle's Folly (aka index funds) AND Mr Market of the 90's and RMD looming courtesy the IRS the cheap dude must lighten up and spend a tad more freely.

heh heh heh heh - wouldn't be prudent to copy since this guy tested INTJ and was more prone to giving advice than taking it.

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Old 06-19-2013, 10:53 PM   #85
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wouldn't be prudent to copy since this guy tested INTJ and was more prone to giving advice than taking it.
Yet another INTJ early retiree - though not typical of the ones on this board, I suspect!

(Disclaimer - I tested INTJ too.)
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Old 06-20-2013, 05:59 AM   #86
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Hmmm, I also tested INTJ. I think it makes me a smarta** with minimal to,stance for the bs at work
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Old 06-20-2013, 07:13 AM   #87
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One more thing I want to mention. I have been wary of detailing my finances here for the simple reason that I knew if I shared them, at some point, someone would ask how I managed my healthcare. I'm pretty sure there are members here who will question my use of a system that is most likely intended for the working poor, as opposed to people with assets, such as myself. I wondered the same thing at first, but came to the conclusion that if I legitimately qualified, then I felt comfortable with applying for, and using the service. There are other government programs that specifically disqualify those with significant assets, so I took that as "proof" as it were, that it was OK for me to go ahead and use this system. To sum up my attitude in this area, I am comfortable taking advantage of government programs and subsides, as long as I legitimately qualify (i.e. don't have to lie in order to get them, something I will not do).
I appreciate your ourage, Major Tom. I expect to qualify for PPACA subsidies, too and I do not feel guilty about it at all. Being childfree, I subsidize many, many other people through my state and local taxes because they chose to have children. So if I can get a few dollars back on my income taxes because I fall into a definition of "low income" I had no say in defining (and like you, won't be lying to get them) then that is fine with me.
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Old 06-20-2013, 07:29 AM   #88
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I appreciate your ourage, Major Tom. I expect to qualify for PPACA subsidies, too and I do not feel guilty about it at all. Being childfree, I subsidize many, many other people through my state and local taxes because they chose to have children. So if I can get a few dollars back on my income taxes because I fall into a definition of "low income" I had no say in defining (and like you, won't be lying to get them) then that is fine with me.

Well I have been toying with doing a lot of income shifting to try and qualify for the PPACA subsidy every odd year or so. I'd feel a tinge of guilt but not much more.

There are so many people who simply lie through their teeth to get subsidies, grants etc. that I have no animosity for anybody who honestly follows the rules. If society doesn't think XYZ person should get this benefit then change the law, lets drop the foolhardy attempt to assign moral judgements. Saying Joe has plenty of money he should not get a health care subsidy,or qualify for cheaper phone rates, starts us on pointless discussion of morality. Something is legal or illegal period.
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Old 06-20-2013, 07:45 AM   #89
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Well I have been toying with doing a lot of income shifting to try and qualify for the PPACA subsidy every odd year or so. I'd feel a tinge of guilt but not much more.

There are so many people who simply lie through their teeth to get subsidies, grants etc. that I have no animosity for anybody who honestly follows the rules. If society doesn't think XYZ person should get this benefit then change the law, lets drop the foolhardy attempt to assign moral judgements. Saying Joe has plenty of money he should not get a health care subsidy,or qualify for cheaper phone rates, starts us on pointless discussion of morality. Something is legal or illegal period.
I do hold some animosity for lobbyists and other paid insiders who rig the system to get the rules changed in their favor. That is why I added the phrase, "I had no say in defining" to my previous post.
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Old 06-20-2013, 07:53 AM   #90
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I hold no ill will to those who use the system legally. Sounds like Major Tom is doing it right, even asking questions.

I do hold ill will to those who game the system. Specifically, disability cheats. This is a very serious issue for our society.
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Old 06-20-2013, 08:27 AM   #91
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Phew, that's a relief! I was a bit concerned that I would be treated as an outlier not worthy of equal time on this board if I revealed that I'm using a low income clinic system for my healthcare. I'm glad that others here feel it is acceptable to take advantage of government subsidies, as long as they are legitimately obtained. Of course, once the PPACA becomes full law, many us will be accepting these subsidies to greater or lesser degrees.

This means that I can feel free to share my budget on a more regular basis (though there's not much to it).

The original post caught my attention because I've been wanting to get a little more specific in detailing my finances here for a while now. Most of the members here are (understandably) in the middle income range. I've seen a few others here who have low incomes and minimal expenditure but not too many, so I wanted to be able to add a bit of flesh to our presence, so to speak, by getting a bit more specific about budget.

comicbookgujy, let us know what you decide to do. The option of moving to your parents' in-law in SF and paying $700 for food and utilities sounds like a good one if you do decide to make a career change, as you indicated you might do. $700/mo + a bit extra to keep you sane is easily do-able on your 500K stash, and could give you some valuable breathing room. I bet your Mum would love having her son back under her roof too
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Old 06-20-2013, 10:16 AM   #92
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Originally Posted by Major Tom View Post

The original post caught my attention because I've been wanting to get a little more specific in detailing my finances here for a while now. Most of the members here are (understandably) in the middle income range. I've seen a few others here who have low incomes and minimal expenditure but not too many, so I wanted to be able to add a bit of flesh to our presence, so to speak, by getting a bit more specific about budget.
I think you're awesome. I also have no interest in golf excursions and new roofs and my plans are simple, low budget lifestyle. I decided to stop posting because I really didn't fit the model most people here are espousing, but I did keep reading.
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Old 06-20-2013, 02:02 PM   #93
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I think you're awesome. I also have no interest in golf excursions and new roofs and my plans are simple, low budget lifestyle. I decided to stop posting because I really didn't fit the model most people here are espousing, but I did keep reading.
I sure hope you do not need to fit any model. I personally love reading posts from the extravagant to the frugal. Different paths to find happiness. I am just the boring old dinosaur pensioner, but I enjoy reading other people's path to savings, wealth, or even just enjoying life on a shoestring budget. My goal is to live long enough and stay involved in the forum where people will ask "Hey Old Timer,Mulligan, I have heard about those pension things from the good old days. Could you please explain how people got them?"
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Old 06-20-2013, 02:45 PM   #94
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I think you're awesome. I also have no interest in golf excursions and new roofs and my plans are simple, low budget lifestyle. I decided to stop posting because I really didn't fit the model most people here are espousing, but I did keep reading.
CatInHand: the good thing is we have all types here. One member is still pushing for $10M before ERing and is well on their way. A few others are trying extreme ER on less than 500k at very young ages.

It is all good.

I did want to say one thing. I do reserve cash for roofs. Roofs are important to me. Not the look but rather that they stay structurally sound.

The example I use of semi-unnecessary spending is new countertops.
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:47 PM   #95
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CatInHand - Can we talk you into posting some more? I think one of the great things about ER is that it is available to a wide variety of people at many income levels. The one thing we all here have in common is that we have chosen to exercise enough control over our finances such that we don't spend the rest of our lives living paycheck to paycheck. Regardless of our income level, we are all the same in this regard.

Besides - I'm interested to see if you take to the water and begin living on a boat with your bf, as I think you were talking about before. That would make for some good reading for us landlubbers.
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Old 06-20-2013, 07:10 PM   #96
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Cats, boats and water - should be interesting.

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CatInHand - Can we talk you into posting some more? I think one of the great things about ER is that it is available to a wide variety of people at many income levels. The one thing we all here have in common is that we have chosen to exercise enough control over our finances such that we don't spend the rest of our lives living paycheck to paycheck. Regardless of our income level, we are all the same in this regard.

Besides - I'm interested to see if you take to the water and begin living on a boat with your bf, as I think you were talking about before. That would make for some good reading for us landlubbers.
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Old 06-20-2013, 10:02 PM   #97
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How about Topeka KS
Cheapest places to live in America - Topeka, KS for under $840 a month
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Old 06-21-2013, 01:18 AM   #98
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CatInHand - Can we talk you into posting some more? I think one of the great things about ER is that it is available to a wide variety of people at many income levels. The one thing we all here have in common is that we have chosen to exercise enough control over our finances such that we don't spend the rest of our lives living paycheck to paycheck. Regardless of our income level, we are all the same in this regard.

Besides - I'm interested to see if you take to the water and begin living on a boat with your bf, as I think you were talking about before. That would make for some good reading for us landlubbers.
aww, thanks!

I was worried about how my parents would take the news, but I finally "came out" to them a few weeks ago. They think it's a fabulous plan, so I feel a little free-er about discussing my plans now.

I'm working on setting up some online, freelance writing gigs so I'll have a source of income for the unexpected and I'll need a blog to keep the family informed of our whereabouts. The hardest part now is staying put long enough to get the boat and house into great shape.

For the OP, I consider myself retired now, although I'll need some work over the next three years or so as I don't have enough (um, barely any) assets to keep myself going until phase two.

Second phase is sell the house and hit the water. I'll have ~$100,000 to live on for about 8 years. My share of expected expenses is ~$500/month + costs of repairs as things break down (hence the freelance option).

Once I hit 60 (12 years from now) I can access the retirement accounts which are currently at ~$250,000. I plan to adjust my living to conform to my resources rather than expect my resources to maintain some specified standard of living.

I have no interest in remaining in the US, instead, if we get tired of sailing we'll pick a country, live there for a while until we get tired of it, then pick a new country.

I can't wait.
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Old 06-21-2013, 03:13 AM   #99
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Once I hit 60 (12 years from now) I can access the retirement accounts which are currently at ~$250,000. I plan to adjust my living to conform to my resources rather than expect my resources to maintain some specified standard of living.
Yeah, thanks for posting. Your statement above is good reality. Many, many people do this very successfully. My grandparents and MIL both did it. Basically, they lived primarily on SS.
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Old 06-21-2013, 07:57 AM   #100
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Thank you for sharing Catinhand We are trying to hit the $750K mark but may fall short as well. However, both DH and I are comfortably living on less than $40K a year which includes paying $400 extra per month on mortgage, $620 a month in child support, and $716/mo in college expenses. Once the rugrats are done in 4 years, we will be able to sock all that away, sell the house, and move to a lower COL area.
Yes, 25K-30K a year is bare bones for many people, but for us the ability to do whatever we want is priceless! Our time is limited on this earth...use it well! Please keep us updated on your sailing!
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