Quick and Easy Way to Retire Comfortably

Don’t borrow money to live on while you go to school. If you must borrow, borrow only enough for tuition and books. You don’t need cable TV, Fancy cell phone plans, money for eating out or partying. If possible get a dependable roommate. If you work steadily, you won’t need entertainment. Peanut butter, whole wheat bread, and beans are nutritious, high protein foods, and you can keep them in a metal lockbox in your room if your roommate is a moocher.

Buy your clothes at resale shops and Goodwill if you don’t have cash. You don’t need as many as you think, especially if you don’t eat out and party. Take a job, any job, until you get one that pays better. Never quit one job till you have another.  If your boss is an idiot, keep your mouth shut.  If he really is stupid, he will undo himself without your help.

Live without credit cards.  You will probably have to finance your first vehicle.  Get a sturdy used car and drive it as long as you can.  Luxury vehicles are for people with cash and those who plan to go bankrupt.

Start out with a small house.  Pay more than the principle every month.  Don’t upgrade till you have sufficient equity and cash. If you are a couple, make sure one of you can make the note if the other is out of a job or out of the picture.  It happens.

Do without whatever you can’t pay cash for.  You need less than you think. Take care of your vehicles and drive them as long as you can.  Cook at home except for special occasions.  Get a freezer and buy on sale.  Enroll in a retirement plan as soon as you get a steady job at the highest rate you can afford.  Increase your investment every time you get a raise.  Chances are, the tax withholdings will make you bring home a lot more than you thought.

Take the vacation you can afford.  Short days trips to the zoo and local attractions and camping, run far less than cruises and Disneyworld.  Kids love this stuff.

When the kids are little, if you have the opportunity, work alternate shifts so one parent is with the kids as much as possible.  You will save a fortune on daycare and have a better idea of what is going on.  Teach kids the difference in what they want and what they need.  It’s a good reminder for them and you.

Decrease your expectations.  You don’t need all that stuff.  Nobody cares, and if they do, find new friends.

Did I say it was quick and easy?  I guess I was thinking in geological terms.

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43 thoughts on “Quick and Easy Way to Retire Comfortably

  1. Very good post. Nobody thinks like that anymore, and a lot of people need to start. In Greece many have now found themselves in trouble because of years of living above their means, encouraged by the banks and the government, I might add. You had ads on the radio to get out ‘holiday loans’ and a ‘gift loan’ at Christmas! Pure folly.

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        • They sound good, but I would need my office and a good kitchen. I love to cook. Bud’s cousin had a one bedroom house with large great room, living room combo. They had nice patio. When they had a child, they added a bedroom. Not one inch of wasted space. Company slept in the living room. Even after the add on, it was under eight hundred square feet. There’s lots of pleasant weather in Louisiana, so most times they had company meals out doors. July and August are very hot, and we get about six weeks in winter when we have some, freezing days. Even then, warmer days are mixed in.

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  2. Good advice, Linda! When I went to University, I had a scholarship fund (thanks to my parents) for tuition, lived in residence and worked there as well for any money I needed to live on. I never took out a student loan so never had to pay one back! 🙂

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  3. Good advice, Linda. In the first paragraph, you mentioned the possibility of roommate food moochers. I don’t think, with peanut butter, beans, and whole wheat bread, there would be much danger. Junk and fast food junkies wouldn’t be tempted. Peanut butter–maybe? I did get your points about being frugal–however.

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    • When I had a poor roommate, my peanut level kept dropping, believe it or not. Something is better than nothing. Ou rent was $22 a month each for a shared room with bathroom privileges in an old lady’s house. All we had to eat was pork and beans, tuna, peanut butter, and bread. No soda, coffee, tea, or milk.

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      • I was thinking in terms of now, vs. back then. I was a “poor” college student–worked in the college cafeteria washing dishes, pots & pans. I took out loans to pay for room and board, tuition. Sometimes worked for the maintenance dept.; worked for local farmers putting up hay. Helped a farmer build a barn.

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        • I did the same. Took any job I could get, babysitting, working in a drug store, filing pages in ROTC policy and procedure manuals. The boss showed me into a room full of P&P manuals and about 10 tables piled high with pages to be added or exchanged. I worked for over a semester and only made it through a couple of stacks. It might have been the most tedious job in the world, but I got twenty hours a week. Kept me in peanut butter. I only bought a couple of pairs of shoes and no clothes while I was in college. I never ate out. When friends ordered pizza, I said I didn’t like it. I got my degree in three years owing $1800. I didn’t buy anything till I paid that off.

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  4. All good points Linda, especially when you are on a tight budget.
    Sadly we did most of them and retirement is a struggle. It doesn’t help that our government have extended the state retirement age that affects us both, and I have to wait another 6 years, possibly 7 or 8 as they are likely to do it again.
    In the house our three questions to ourselves when shopping were:
    Do I want this?
    Do I need this?
    Will my life end if I don’t have it?
    On the boat it’s
    Can I eat it?
    Can I wear it?
    Where can I put it?
    It’s saving us a fortune (that we haven’t got anyway)
    Saying that though, it is amazing just how much stuff you DON’T need. I think our lives are better and our way of life less stressful, and at the moment, I wouldn’t change a thing! 🙂

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