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38 year old Canuck in Ontario via Thailand and NZ
Old 07-28-2008, 06:17 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
Join Date: Jul 2008
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38 year old Canuck in Ontario via Thailand and NZ


I'm late into this game as is my nature. I only recently began saving for the future and it has been a small amount as well. I'm only now getting worried as I approach 40.

I am a mathematics teacher by trade and I worked 5 years in New Zealand followed by 5 years in Thailand. I am now back in Canada and hopefully will find a teaching position which will keep me here for a few years at least. I have a wife but no kids yet. The only investment I have is with Royal Skandia and is currently at about $US 10000.

I need to get my act in gear if I don't want to work all my life.

I'm hoping that joining this forum will play a part in my future planning.

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Old 07-28-2008, 08:02 PM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
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Welcome to the forum! There are quite a few Canucks here, myself included. Sounds like you need to get cracking on the retirement planning and at the present pace it will probably not be early retirement.

There is a wealth of information and knowledgeable people here, so enjoy!

For additional Canuck specific financial information, check the financial webring forum.
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Old 07-28-2008, 10:18 PM   #3
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....The concept which is most likely to change your financial situation more than any other is learning to live below your means. A simple way to look at the subject is to consider that in your entire lifetime you have spent everything except that aprroximately 10K you now have in Skandia. You might try tracking all of your expenses very carefully for several months to get an idea where it is all going and to also get ideas about where to cut expenses and begin saving more. Welcome to the forum and consider the very important fact that you have seen more of and learned more about the world than most people your age.
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:21 AM   #4
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welcome to the forum!

I lived in NZ for about 8 years myself - beautiful country but they don't pay teachers anywhere NEAR enough for what they do over there.

I just joined as well and so far people have been very helpful =) Good luck!
A car is only as fast as the driver
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:06 PM   #5
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Welcome to the forum.

Apparently you have enjoyed yourself like a globetrotting grasshopper and have essentially nothing to show for the past ~15 years. Well, you are not alone. And at least you've finally realized the need to provide for your future. Better late than never!

You still have time to save, invest and otherwise plan. If you can be happy with a modest lifestyle, an early retirement is probably still possible for you, if you aggressively ramp up your savings.

You've got a couple of things going for you: (1) you have no children, so that's one expense that you won't have to cover; (2) as a Canadian your health insurance is covered, so that's another savings.

You might get some benefit from these books:
  • Derek Foster, The Lazy Investor: Start with $50-- and no investment knowledge (2007);
  • Derek Foster, Stop Working: Here's How You Can (2005);
  • Dianne Nahirny, Stop Working - Start Living : how I retired at 36, without winning the lottery (2001);
  • Alan Dickson, Free Parking: a second look at financial planning (2001);
  • Alan Dickson, Advance to Go: the road to a rich retirement (2003);
  • Joe Dominguez, Your Money or Your Life: transforming your relationship with money and achieving financial independence (1992).
None of those titles are without flaws, but they should be of some help.

Finally, note that if you spend all or most of the balance of your working life overseas, you will have little or no CPP or OAS entitlement: that is an incentive to stay put for the rest of your career. Most publicly-employed Canadian teachers have generous private pension plans, too.
"To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive". Robert Louis Stevenson, An Inland Voyage (1878)
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:15 PM   #6
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I'll second the pension mention. Not sure how it works but stateside teachers in one southern state I am familiar with can get a decent pension with as little as 20 years of service at age 60 with no penalty for retiring early.
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