As part of a FIRE retirement plan, you need to have an idea of total cost. As a minimal apartment dweller, I don’t have all of the things I’ll need for my retirement. While I may not have these items yet, I’ve compiled some starter ‘forever’ lists of what I think I’ll need to meet my needs for my entire life. My retirement plan is comprised of 3 main pieces:
- A Canadian homestead
- A Canada-based adventure van
- A foreign property in a warm climate to hide from winter
I haven’t fleshed out my plan for more foreign property yet, but I have started to think about needs for my adventure van and homestead. A lot of the items listed cross over between the two, so I’ll have a shared, homestead, and van list. Let’s get into it!
- First Aid Kit – Safety First, folks! [PURCHASED] [Needs Upkeep]
- Fishing Rods – Teach a man to fish, and he’ll eat for a lifetime. [PURCHASED]
- Chopsticks – The only utensil you’ll ever need! [PURCHASED]
- French Press – Always keep good coffee on-hand. [PURCHASED]
- Hand Coffee Grinder – Don’t waste power grinding coffee. [NEED]
- Cookware, Silverware, Tableware – Stainless steel will last forever. [PURCHASED]
- Mattress – Good mattress = Good sleep. Good sleep = Longer Life. [PURCHASED]
- Fire Extinguisher – Safety First! [NEED] [Needs Upkeep]
- Butane Stove – Portable stove for indoor, road, and outdoor use. [NEED]
- Carbon Monoxide Detector – Safety First! [NEED]
- Smoke Detector – Safety First! [NEED]
- Water Jug and Pump – Depending on water use, this may not suffice. TBD. [NEED]
- Wire Rack – For campfire cooking at home and abroad. Incredible [NEED]
Adventure Van Items
- Dash Cam – Gather video, and cover your ass. [NEED]
- Car Toolkit – Carjack, Jumper Cables, Pump. [NEED]
- WiFi Extender – Use wifi from outside a store..keep a lower profile. [NEED]
- Sleeping Bag – A warm weather sleeping bag that works into fall. [PURCHASED]
- General Toolkit – Screwdrivers, Socket Set, etc. [PURCHASED]
- Canning Pot + Jars – Preserve the fruits of your labour. Literally. [NEED]
- Hunting Rifle – Hunting offers a great opportunity for food and experience. [NEED]
- Tiller – Cut time and expand your garden operation. [NEED]
- Fruit Trees – Start these as early as possible. Pears, Apples, Peaches, etc. [NEED]
What do you have on your forever lists?
An economy is essentially a byproduct of monetary transactions. Money comes in, money is spent on services. Money is lent, money is spent, money is paid back with interest. These are the fundamental parts of the system.
Investing relies on the economy and we hope the economy grows in a healthy way. However, every investor should be prepared to weather a storm. Unfortunately, due to extreme amounts of lending and not paying back these loans in the western world, things are getting pretty scary out there. Is a crash imminent? I can’t say. What I can tell you is, by keeping your personal economy strong you can be prepared for this.
Lately, I’ve cut spending on items that don’t produce value. I’m spending more on investments, saving more liquid cash, and seeking novel ways to grow my money. If everyone were to do this, the economy would slow. The few FIRE minded people out there can benefit if they jump on this opportunity while the economy is strong; your money will go further when it’s not.
It may sound like I’m not enjoying the fruits of my labour, but I am:
- Getting more enjoyment out of the things that I have
- Finding joy and new experiences in starting businesses
- Focusing on internal growth. (Go to your local library and get a book. Do it now!)
I really enjoy seeing my net worth increase and learning, so this is easy work for me. If it’s not your cup of tea, I hope you can see the light at the end of the tunnel and can grow your own way.
Look at your personal economy and see how you can make it stronger, more robust, and be prepared to weather any storm. When the downpour starts, you’ll be happy knowing you came prepared and can hit it full on.
I’m going to learn Spanish. I’m going to learn to be a good swimmer. I’m going to write a book. I’m going to retire early. These are all goals that I have. It’s important to have goals, they give you something to strive for. I believe in improving myself everyday and so should you.
Each of these goals has a different end point, which makes planning difficult. The result of writing a book is a book; simple. How does one quantify being able to read, write, and speak Spanish? It’s a little bit subjective. What is a good swimmer? Early retirement just means you stop working. Seems easy enough? If only it were.
Money makes the world go round. You need it so survive in this day and age even if you farmed all your own food and made your own clothes, you have property tax to pay which requires Canadian Dollars. To retire early you need to figure out how much money you need per year to survive, and figure out how to get that amount as a return from your investments. It’s impossible to know how long you’ll live, so it’s ideal to live off your dividend and your principle investment amount will be a great emergency fund.
I found my goal amount, and setup a number of milestones to hit along the way. In a spreadsheet I have an additional column to make note of when I hit the milestones. Here’s what I have:
- $15,000 Net Worth
- $30,000 Net Worth
- $50,000 Net Worth
- $75,000 Net Worth
- $100,000 Net Worth
- $150,000 Net Worth
- $200,000 Net Worth
- $275,000 Net Worth
- $350,000 Net Worth
- $450,000 Net Worth
- $600,000 Net Worth
- $750,000 Net Worth
Feel free to put in smaller milestones if you really need to see the progress. The idea of reaching financial independence to me is a milestone enough, but these are nice to see, too.