My wife and I have had an on again off again conversation out how long we want to work before retiring. This has been going on for several years now. For the past five years she has been diligently monitoring the real estate market in the location we want to live. Meantime I have been calculating savings rates and plotting cash flows. My retirement age moves from fifty five to fifty seven to fifty nine. Argh. Wrong way!
A few weeks ago we finally decided to “go see the money guy” and get real about it. Once we laid it all out the answer was stunning. “You could go now, if you wanted to”. Holy Frack! Didn’t see that coming.
Now, I recognize that all this comes with caveats. “Could” is all about what lifestyle you want to have. Want to travel to Europe once a year? Then no, go back to work. Want to live to 100? Go back to work. In our case “could” means I can live to 90 without a lifestyle change from today. That’s significant. I have a pretty good life. Not 4 weeks in the sun every winter and a new car every few years good. My truck is turning 13 years old and a winter holiday means staying home to watch World Junior’s on TV every Christmas.
It does mean I keep my cabin and its growing armada of boats (six now, is there a 12 step program for boats?). It means I can continue to enjoy restaurants as frequently as I do today. It means I can still hope to go to Europe at least once.
More importantly it meant that I could do what we just finished doing. We put all of my wife’s efforts to use and bought that property in the location we want to be. We won’t be using it immediately. For the next couple of years at least it will be a rental property offered very discriminately to hand picked tenants. After all, it will be my home one day.