A dad was able to retire early at the age of 43 in 2018 thanks to making smart saving and investing decisions.
Jim White shared how this decision was motivated by wanting to spend more time with his wife, Lisa, and daughter, Faith.
Mr White was able to retire early thanks to having a portfolio of around $1.45million, which is currently the equivalent of £1.15million.
Thanks to his frugal spending and innovative savings, the White family were able to move to Boquete, Panama in 2019 for a “new adventure” thanks to Jim achieving FIRE.
FIRE stands for Financial Independence, Retire Early and is a growing global financial movement.
Those who plan to reach FIRE make greater contributions to their savings, investments and pension funds for early retirement.
In 2022, the White family moved back to the US to be closer to loved ones but have still been able to reap the benefits of Jim retiring early.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Jim discussed why achieving FIRE was an important personal goal for him.
He explained: “I retired at age 43 at the end of 2018 with the major reason to be a more significant part of our daughter’s life.
“Our family of three sold everything we owned and moved to the country of Panama shortly after that in 2019 for a new adventure.
“We lived there for a few years before moving back to the US last year.”
According to the savings expert, his path to an early retirement was “not that exciting” but an effective one.
Mr White added: “Our ability to reach FIRE was mostly through saving and investing.
“It’s not that exciting but we kept our expenses low and just continued to push more and more into savings and our investment accounts.
“By the time I retired, we had a 60 percent personal savings rate based solely on income (my wife left her job a couple of years before).”
One of the ways the family were able to make such significant savings was by purchasing properties to rent on the market.
Mr White said: “We also went down the rental property path with a single-family home and a duplex but have sold both since.
“Although a great learning experience, those didn’t account for the majority of our portfolio, which was about $1.2million (£952,105.20) when I retired and stand at about $1.45million (£1,150,460.45).”
Since becoming an early retiree, Mr White now spends his time sharing his FIRE experience on his blog.
Sharing advice for future early retirees, he said: “Don’t focus so much on the path to FIRE that you forget about enjoying the present. I lost probably close to a year of my life fixated almost to the point of obsession on trying to find ways to save a few bucks here or there.
“That was a massive waste of time and I’m glad I woke up to it before it went on any longer. Trim your major expenses (housing, transportation, and food), automate your saving and investing to be as much as you can, and then just enjoy your time today. Don’t neglect your time today for your time tomorrow. Owning your time in early retirement can be truly wonderful but you want to be happy along the way as well.”
Route to Retire outlines the methods people can adopt when it comes to personal finance and money which can lead to retiring early.
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