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Great post from the Kaderlis on ER on 30K a year
Old 08-27-2013, 11:42 AM   #1
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Great post from the Kaderlis on ER on 30K a year

Billy and Akaisha are frequent posters on this board, but are probably too modest to draw attention to this recent post:

After Fifty Living: The Price is Right for Retirement

I think it's inspirational on many fronts, not least because it shows that it's all about choices and it is possible to have a rich and very adventurous life in ER on a relatively modest nest egg. Their choices - car-free, child-free, very little stuff but lots of adventures - may not be for many, but how cool!
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Old 08-27-2013, 01:40 PM   #2
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The cost of housing definitely drives spending level. $3,900 per year is impressive to say the least, especially as that number apparently includes rentals while traveling. My wife and I have been living quite modestly in flyover country and it seems like we'd have to forget traveling and take on roommates to get our costs that low.

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Old 08-27-2013, 01:49 PM   #3
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The only way I know of to get your housing costs that low is to have a mobile home that you either own outright on its own piece of land or that's in a rented space and can be sub-let at a profit when you're gone. More and more people are using Airbnb and similar services to rent out space at a profit as well.

Having followed the Kaderli's site for awhile and read a couple of their ebooks, they are masters at finding good places to stay in Mexico, Thailand and Guatemala for $15-40 a night, which is certainly do-able in those countries. As they mention, housesitting is another way to bring those costs down. You really do have to spend most of your time outside the U.S. in developing countries to make some of this work, though in my experience you can live for $24-30K a year all-in in a lot of "flyover" parts of the U.S. but won't be able to afford much if any travel.
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Old 08-27-2013, 02:59 PM   #4
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The only way I know of to get your housing costs that low is to have a mobile home that you either own outright on its own piece of land or that's in a rented space and can be sub-let at a profit when you're gone. More and more people are using Airbnb and similar services to rent out space at a profit as well.

Having followed the Kaderli's site for awhile and read a couple of their ebooks, they are masters at finding good places to stay in Mexico, Thailand and Guatemala for $15-40 a night, which is certainly do-able in those countries. As they mention, housesitting is another way to bring those costs down. You really do have to spend most of your time outside the U.S. in developing countries to make some of this work, though in my experience you can live for $24-30K a year all-in in a lot of "flyover" parts of the U.S. but won't be able to afford much if any travel.
My basic expenses will be in this range. Luckily, my income should be enough more than that to allow for some fun money and travel.
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Old 08-27-2013, 03:34 PM   #5
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That sounds like a great life. Thanks for posting the link. It is very inspiring. We hope to do something similar once the kids are settled in careers. Instead of house sitting we have jobs we can do from lap tops.

We're having fun in the present making our list of all the places we want to check out. Instead of regular travel we would just like to live in furnished apartments for a few months at a time in different countries.

In the mean time we have to downsize and declutter decades of stuff. If you are a young ER wannabe reading this - try not to accumulate too much stuff if you eventually want to travel around in retirement. Stuff costs money, which delays ER, and it a pain to get rid of when you are older.
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:18 PM   #6
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I'm not much of a travel nut, but I always appreciate hearing about people making ends meet on relatively little. Thanks for posting.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:04 PM   #7
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The article says,
Quote:
(Contributor's note: We have taken on house sitting commitments in these last couple of years and this has impacted our housing costs positively.
so it sounds like the house-sitting is responsible for keeping their housing costs so low. Just maintenance, property tax, and insurance surely would exceed $3900 for most paid off homes.

To be honest, I don't envy a lifestyle that involves a whole lot of house-sitting, especially if it is house-sitting for relatives. I don't know if that is the case for them or not, but just the idea is a big turn-off to me.

On the other hand, what is appealing to me about the Kaderlis is that they seem so HAPPY! More power to them as they live the life of their dreams.
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:21 AM   #8
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I visited Chapala with a friend. We were traveling from Morelia to Mazatlan and wanted to stop by -- I had already met them in Thailand a number of times. Billy and Akaisha arranged for us to stay in the beautiful, well-located backyard villa of a friend in Chapala for a few nights, and the price was that we pay for a party for everyone. What a great deal for all involved!

We had a great time there and Billy and Akaisha and their friends were all gracious hosts (in fact, that is understating it but I am out of superlatives). I played doubles tennis a couple of mornings and was the worst player even though the other players were an average of 15 years my senior.

The friend who accompanied me, my ex-girlfriend from the USA, was in Mexico for the first time and did not speak much Spanish and they made an extra effort to make her feel at home.

We also visited the place that they were renting at the time and it was quite nice!

Just like in Thailand, they knew everyone there. I think Chapala is pretty much their hometown now . . . but we would still like to see them return to Asia some day ;-)
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Old 08-28-2013, 03:09 PM   #9
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The article says, so it sounds like the house-sitting is responsible for keeping their housing costs so low. Just maintenance, property tax, and insurance surely would exceed $3900 for most paid off homes.

To be honest, I don't envy a lifestyle that involves a whole lot of house-sitting, especially if it is house-sitting for relatives. I don't know if that is the case for them or not, but just the idea is a big turn-off to me.

On the other hand, what is appealing to me about the Kaderlis is that they seem so HAPPY! More power to them as they live the life of their dreams.
The Kaderlis truly are wonderful - and happy! - people. My wife and I have been lucky to spend time with them here at Lake Chapala and they are delightful.

The Kaderlis have truly forgotten more about how to save money on housing than I will ever know, but like them I/we are big on manufactured housing - be it a late model mobile or park model home in a complex - as a way to not let housing rule one's lifestyle. As an example, my wife and I spent 23K on a very comfortable 3BR/2BA late 1990's mobile when we lived in expensive Boulder, Colorado. It was so tightly sealed we had to be vigilant in checking our carbon monoxide meters, but winter gas and electric bills for the nearl 1300 sq. ft. home were around $80 a month, total. Maintenance ran about $300 a year and taxes were less than $200. Now we did have to pay space rent - around $500 a month that included pool, clubhouse, sewer, trash and water - but that's 6K a year and we could easily have rented out the place when traveling and reduced our costs further. Not bad for a city where a 70's rancher needing tons of work costs over 500K.

As for housesitting, we ER types can afford to be selective. For me it has to be a multi-month gig in a beautiful place at a time when I want to be there, with limited and cleary defined responsibilities. Check out the Kaderli's web site for what some of these things look like: months in a private villa in Antigua, Guatemala, a lovely house right on the shores of Lake Chapala, etc. Last year I met a guy from Australia who's been on the road for two years going from one deluxe housesit to another - he's got such good references now that not only can he be choosy about assignments but he often gets paid in addition to free rent, utilities, often use of a vehicle, etc. Reliable, handy housesitters who are good with pets are in demand.
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Old 08-28-2013, 03:25 PM   #10
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The article says, so it sounds like the house-sitting is responsible for keeping their housing costs so low. Just maintenance, property tax, and insurance surely would exceed $3900 for most paid off homes.

To be honest, I don't envy a lifestyle that involves a whole lot of house-sitting, especially if it is house-sitting for relatives. I don't know if that is the case for them or not, but just the idea is a big turn-off to me.

On the other hand, what is appealing to me about the Kaderlis is that they seem so HAPPY! More power to them as they live the life of their dreams.
The article mentioned they maintain their US home. So they must live in an area with low taxes. I believe some states have means testing or age testing on property tax... so that can help.
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Housing listed here includes our maintenance, repairs, insurances, and taxes for our home in the States, as well as hotel rooms or apartments and the utilities we pay while on the road.
Also of note - the article mentions the $30k is "net" - so taxes aren't included.
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(Keep in mind that the $30,000 is net spending per year, not gross income. This amount reflects our actual spending, not a paycheck amount from which taxes and savings must be drawn.)
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Old 08-28-2013, 10:44 PM   #11
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The article mentioned they maintain their US home. So they must live in an area with low taxes. I believe some states have means testing or age testing on property tax... so that can help.


Also of note - the article mentions the $30k is "net" - so taxes aren't included.
Their life may be wonderful, but it is also true that a)they are working(in the US housesitting if often a paid position and dog walking, let alone dog sitting, brings quite a nice sum) and of course they are blogging; and b) I am not sure, but I think I have read many posts on this forum of couples who live on $30,000 net, or less, which appears to be what the Kaderlis claim.

Of course if they mostly live in very deluxe houses and very deluxe places and the dogs are not too much of a hassle and if these things make up for he fact that they are not exactly in their homes, with their books and their stuff, it sounds like they have found just the right combo for them. But like W2, I would not like it. All that interfacing with others would seem to remove one of the main advantages of being retired- your time and your life is totally your own.

Ha
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:34 AM   #12
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Some people don't mind interfacing with others. What might be odd to you, could be very important to others. I wouldn't be happy without regular interactions with others whether that be just family or friends. For me that's one of the great things about early retirement, having a lot of time to spend with others.
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:02 AM   #13
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Different strokes, obviously. That lifestyle would drive me bonkers. They are thriving on it.

What a boring world it would be if we were all the same.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:42 AM   #14
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We just had an older couple house-sit for us for 7 weeks and they really enjoyed their time at our place. I don't think they'd characterize what they did here as "work" per se, but they did get to see a lot of the area while staying here. But I must say the house was way cleaner when I got home than how it looked when I left!

Kudos to the Kaderlis for enjoying their lives so much and finding ways to live exactly the way they want, on the money they have.
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Old 08-29-2013, 11:35 AM   #15
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Some people don't mind interfacing with others. What might be odd to you, could be very important to others. I wouldn't be happy without regular interactions with others whether that be just family or friends. For me that's one of the great things about early retirement, having a lot of time to spend with others.
Oddly, I think I know this. This is why I said "Ο would not like it". And to tell the truth, among all the people I know or have known, none have become house sitters. So it may be a minority interest, but you OTOH may enjoy it very much.
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Old 08-29-2013, 12:28 PM   #16
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I think house-sitting is a pretty small minority of folks. I only know one other person who has even used a house sitter besides us, and it is one of my friends here on the forum!
I read about it on a few traveler blogs, but don't personally know any of those folks.

I'll admit my interactions with the house-sitters were minimal, email mostly. They stayed a day ahead of my departure and left the morning before I came home.
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Old 08-29-2013, 05:28 PM   #17
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I enjoy checking in on the Kaderlis from time to time. Thanks for posting.

I do have a question for those that have met them.

How do you pronounce Akaisha Kaderli?

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Old 08-29-2013, 06:34 PM   #18
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The cost of housing definitely drives spending level.
+1. Not only in retirement, but during the working/saving/investing years too. While most folks I know spent as much as they could including as much house as lenders would let them buy, we've always had a nice but modest homes and new but modest cars. Makes everything a lot easier at any age, even without resorting to house-sitting etc.
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:00 PM   #19
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+1. Not only in retirement, but during the working/saving/investing years too. While most folks I know spent as much as they could including as much house as lenders would let them buy, we've always had a nice but modest homes and new but modest cars. Makes everything a lot easier at any age, even without resorting to house-sitting etc.
If I had a financial do over it would have been to buy a smaller house years ago. We never really thought through all the upkeep and utility costs.
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Old 08-30-2013, 03:38 AM   #20
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I am pretty certain these folks would still be having quite the retirement, even if they couldn't house sit.
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