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Divorce Proof Your Retirement

A few months ago, divorce Attorney Ronan Blake sent me an email. He asked to write a guest post sharing his perspectives about how divorce can affect your finances and retirement plans. Understanding how divorce would affect your retirement is a very important topic that we’ve never directly addressed. Still, I initially planned to decline …

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Pulling Your Retirement Levers

How does your retirement equation work? When you finally retire, does your financial life go on autopilot, subject to precise mathematical rules? Or, is the retirement equation more a guideline than prescription? So your financial life after retirement is subject to a set of variables, but the end result — exactly how your wealth will …

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Retirement Mindset Shift: Saver to Spender

Tammy LaGorce recently wrote an excellent piece for the New York Times highlighting the difficulty retirees have spending down the retirement assets they worked so hard to accumulate. I hear this sentiment frequently in emails from readers. The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College reported half of retirees are afraid to spend from their …

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Summer Travels and Travails

Ever since I started writing about retirement 8 years ago, I’ve stressed the importance of being active while you can, to minimize regret. Don’t defer your dreams. Case in point: I had hoped to spend this past summer trekking in the western mountains. But, an injury forced me to cancel my plans. June, July, and …

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The Stages of Financial Independence

I started reading this blog about five years ago, when I was literally asking myself the question “Can I Retire Yet?”. I desperately wanted to escape a career that dominated my time and left me feeling burnt out. Reading this and other blogs was incredibly educational. However, as I better understood the challenges and uncertainty …

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Making the Transition From Spender to Saver to Achieve Financial Freedom

Today, I have an interview with Rob Berger of Retire Before Mom & Dad. I’ve gotten to know Rob through the blogging world over the past couple years. You may be familiar with Doughroller, the popular blog and podcast he started. He is now also deputy editor at Forbes. Rob has a fascinating money story. …

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Because You Never Know

I spent the last week in Washington D.C. at FinCon, a conference for those who create digital content in the personal finance space. After long days, late nights, too much noise, and traveling cross country, I planned to take a week off from posting on the blog. Then I saw something that I felt every …

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Playing Offense in Retirement

In a comment responding to my recent post about making better decisions in the face of uncertainty, a reader wrote: “Life is inherently risky. To try and compensate for every contingency is irrational. We can “what if” ourselves right into a straight jacket! You retired early … you won!” As a lifelong football fan, this …

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Paying It Forward — An Early Retiree Case Study

In our April Best of the Web post, I shared an interview with an early retiree who was a long time reader of Can I Retire Yet?. It was the most clicked on selection that month. This showed me the desire of those figuring out their own transition to retirement to hear the real world …

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Going Back to Work

Can I Retire Yet? It’s a profound question that many of us struggle with. After saving and planning for years or even decades, there is no easy answer. Many people stay in jobs and careers they are not passionate about and save more money than necessary, trapped by feelings of safety and security that accompany a …

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Using Rental Properties to Create Retirement Income

A few months ago, I crossed paths with real estate investor G. Brian Davis who asked if he could write a guest post for Can I Retire Yet? Using rental real estate to create retirement income is a topic of interest for many readers, and a topic Darrow and I have little personal experience to …

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Helping Aging Parents With Their Money

Many of us will have to care for aging parents at some point in time. For some, that will mean managing your parent’s finances as they deal with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. For others, it may mean helping support your parents financially or physically. Some reading this are parents who want to make their wishes …

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3 Reasons a Child Can Help You Retire Sooner (And 1 Big Reason Why You Shouldn’t)

Are raising a family and saving for early retirement compatible? Raising children costs money. There is no disputing it. A common narrative says having kids makes achieving a secure retirement difficult. And early retirement is a pipe dream for those with children. I’m going to challenge this conventional wisdom by sharing three reasons having a …

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3 Bad Financial Decisions That Helped Me Retire Sooner

We tend to judge our decisions by outcomes. In her book Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts, Annie Duke points out the faulty logic of thinking this way. We love things to fit in neat little boxes. But life is far more nuanced. Nearly all decisions have to …

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Staying Strong in Retirement

Retirement planning exposes some cruel ironies of life. Most young people have an abundance of time and health in their school/training years, but little money to take advantage of these non-financial assets. Most of us enter our adult years with our health as we shift our focus to careers and family during our peak earning …

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Reasons to Live: Finding Your Purpose after Retirement or Financial Independence

What, exactly, is the point of retirement? With all our focus on the mechanics of saving and investing, it’s easy to lose sight of the bigger picture. Is financial independence really your goal, or is your ultimate purpose something that lies beyond the dollars, something that wealth enables but doesn’t deliver on its own? In …

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Staying Healthy and Mobile In Retirement

I’m passionate about helping people use their money to live a better life. I’ve written hundreds of blog posts and recently finished a book manuscript to these ends. But I have no formal training in investing or financial planning. I’m also passionate about helping people improve their health and fitness to live a better life. …

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4 Things I Gave Up to Retire Early

Every significant accomplishment in life requires trade-offs. It’s the law of cause and effect. If you want to be an Olympic athlete, you’ll be training while others are relaxing. If you want to be a doctor, you’ll be grinding through medical school and long hours of residency while others are sleeping. If you want to …

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Financial Autopilot

In an era of two income households struggling to make ends meet, my story sounds extreme. I retired from my career as a physical therapist at the age of 41 while my wife cut back to part-time work five years earlier at age 35. Some might think we spent a lot of time thinking about …

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Building Your Work Optional Life

Tanja Hester and her husband, Mark Bunge, retired in December 2017 at the ripe old ages of 38 and 41. Hester, author of the award winning blog Our Next Life, is releasing a new book, “Work Optional: Retire Early the Non-Penny-Pinching Way,” to help others create their own early retirements. As a long time reader …

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Does FIRE Make Life Harder?

I was an avid reader of financial independence, retire early (FIRE) blogs on the path to my own early retirement. They served as inspiration and education. However, I found them to be an echo chamber. Each tries to outdo the next in an effort to show you how to optimize your life. Then you can …

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