June 26, 2020

retirement is great and fulfilling shannon and debbie
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A dream that is increasingly out of reach for so many people is retirement. The world has changed so much since the days of “Leave it to Beaver” when dad went off to work and mom stayed home to care for the kids. One salary was enough to feed all, and you could count on a wonderful retirement, complete with gold watch. Shannon and Debbie are enjoying the road to retirement on a formula that differs from the norm. Read on to find out what that is, and if it might just suit your lifestyle goals.

Retirement is Great And Fulfilling:

Celebration time - retirement is great and fulfilling couple with ballons and cake
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Celebration time - retirement is great and fulfilling couple with ballons and cake
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A lot of goodness packed into one year! They really aim to take your retirement from good to great!

Shannon and Debbie are a fun loving couple who are enjoying their next bite of life as partial retirees. My conversation with them was enlightening. In the personal finance world, the accepted formula to calculate if you can afford  to retire is something called the 4% rule.

The 4% rule of retirement explained:

The 4% rule is based on historical data dating back 50 years of stock and bond returns. Supposedly, you can live on a withdrawal rate of 4% of your portfolio every year in retirement to live a comfortable life. That assumes you will live 25 years in retirement. So, say you have a million dollars at your disposal, you can withdraw  $40,000 per year to have a good life. Adjustments can be made on ether side to suit your lifestyle.
This is one of the reasons why retirees move to countries with lower cost of living, like Mexico for instance. To maximise their retirement dollars. With the average life expectancy in the U.S. for instance almost 80, retiring early means you need lots more money. Other variables like healthcare can sink the best intentions.
I really enjoyed my podcast episode with them. Personal finance has always fascinated me, and l think a lot of people can benefit from reading the articles they have on the blog. Very informative, detailed, and most of all refreshing.
Debbie - the money manager
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Debbie - the money manager
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Debbie – the money manager.

Some of the highlights of the  retirement is great and fulfilling podcast :

  • What led Denise, and then Shannon to early partial retirement.
  • How Shannon coped with his job loss.
  • Calculating an alternative formula to the 4% rule for retirement using their accounting background.
  • Sharing that knowledge with others that were underserved by the FIRE experts.
  • Using their experience to help others cope with job loss.
  • Hitting all aspects of retirement life.
  • Pandemic and “Groundhog Day” for the world
  • Remaining flexible with your plans.
  • Post retirement marriage advice.
Listen to the “retirement is both great and gratifying podcast” here:
You can connect with  Shannon and Denise here:
Other podcasts of interest:

Asia travel during the pandemic

                                       *Make sure to subscribe for future episodes and blog posts*

 

 

retirement is great and fulfilling #finance #retirement #nextbiteoflife
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Valencia Is Out Of Lockdown: Good and Bad News

 

retirement is great and fulfilling
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retirement is great and fulfilling
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I never get tired of this view every morning on our walk.

The country as a whole has been out of quarantine as of June 21 as l stated in the last blog post. Further decisions have now been left in the hands of the governments of the autonomous regions. While this is indeed good news, I haven’t noticed that much difference in the number of people in the streets for instance. It still seems a lot quieter and makes me think people are still staying at home and only doing their essential shopping.
a margarita pitcher
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a margarita pitcher
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The margarita flowed for the first night out.

 

3 girls enjoying mexican food
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3 girls enjoying mexican food
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More margarita – more wild gesturing… hahah

I went out for the first time in a social gathering a few days ago, a going away dinner for a friend who was moving back home after her sabbatical. The restaurant was filled to the 75% maximum capacity and there were a lot of people dining al fresco. Weekends, at least are back it seems.
There have been causes for alarm in some hot spots. Huesca, a city in the Aragon province for instance, has gone back to Phase 2 because of recent outbreaks. I think this is going to be happening a lot more with the influx of people from other countries. It’s worrying, truth be told.
One of the things being decided right now is if tourists from the U.S. and some South American countries will be allowed to travel to Europe because of the dismal way the pandemic has been handled by the governments. It’s a tough decision because on one hand, the economy thrives on tourism, and on the other, the safety of the citizens is of utmost importance.
It will be a huge loss for the country. Over 80 million people visit Spain yearly (with at least 3 million from the U.S. alone) , so you can just imagine what a big dent it will cause. They had discussed raising taxes (what a shocker!), both income tax and value added tax (IVA). So far,  that idea has been shut down, but l won’t be surprised if it ultimately comes to pass.
wok with shrimp and spaghetti with parsley
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wok with shrimp and spaghetti with parsley
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We are getting major use of our new heavy duty wok :-).

Government Auto Aid Package:

In order to stimulate the economy somewhat, the government is encouraging people with cars older than 10 years, especially diesel ones to turn them in for scrap. In return, the buyers will receive anywhere from €400 to €4,000 euros towards the cost of a new zero or low emission car. You can find out the details here if you’re curious. Personally, I don’t think many people will take them up on it.

Masks, masks, everywhere:

retirement is great and fulfilling blue mask on table
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retirement is great and fulfilling blue mask on table
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Our new fashion accessory.

In my neighborhood, we are observing people without masks (mostly younger), while the older people have them on. I must say it’s  a high percentage of people wearing them still, including us. They are needed to shop at the grocery stores, in regular stores, the mall and on public transportation. The fines are high, up to €600, so most carry them, and wear as needed when the minimum distance can not be maintained. This makes me feel good. There will always be some twats, but most are good.

Pullmantur Bankrupt:

I had been trying to get a refund since our cruise for early June had been cancelled. A voucher was all we could get, and l found out the reason why a couple of days ago. Our cruise line Pullmantur, went into receivership so we are s**t out of luck on our substantial deposit. I am guessing we will eventually be given vouchers for their partner company, Royal Caribbean. We’re over it now, but it stung a bit. Our friends who had sailed with them gave rave reviews.
Did you say you haven’t had enough of me yakking? Check out this video of me with my unsolicited advice for wannabe expats :-).

Feeling hot, hot, hot:

It is hot and muggy in Valencia right now so we are more than happy to stay in. Spain is supposed to have another record hot summer this year. Global warming in full force l reckon. I’m happy for the breeze we get here.
How are you coping with the heat? Are you being good and wearing your mask when you go out?