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Published on December 24, 2020

How To Retire Early (And What To Consider Before You Do)

How To Retire Early (And What To Consider Before You Do)

When it comes to knowing how to retire early, the process is both simple and complicated. It is simple for those who understand how to do it and are ready to put in the effort and discipline to have enough to retire early. But the process is complicated for those who have no such understanding.

Have you realized how easily some people make millions? Have you also realized how challenging it is for some to make a living? This is the reality everywhere around the globe.

In many countries, the normal retirement age is between 60 and 65. At this age, a person has worked for 40 years or probably more. Many people work for 40 years with a decent salary but end up depending on social security for survival after retirement.

This shows that having a decent job with good benefits is not enough to retire comfortably, let alone retiring early. Is a good job a solution? If not, then what is?

This article will not only teach you how to retire early but also how to retire early and rich. If you start following the steps in this article, you can retire in 10-15 years as a millionaire.

4 Things To Remember If You Want to Retire Early

To retire early, you have to make enough money to guarantee a decent living after retirement. This has to be done early. The process is simple:

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  1. Earn more money.
  2. Spend wisely.
  3. Save and invest wisely.

However, before we look at the process, we must keep in mind the following important points:

1. Set Your Retirement Goals

Setting goals

is the first step to any major achievement. They show you the way and help you know when you get there.

These retirement goals should answer the following critical questions:

  • What is retirement to me? This can be not working again, leaving formal employment and starting your own business, or just doing what you are passionate about.
  • When do I want to retire? Do you want to retire at 20, 30, 40, or 50? This will help you evaluate the amount of time you have to achieve your goal.
  • How much should I have at retirement? What net worth do you want to have at retirement? How much income should your assets bring you every month after retirement?
  • What kind of lifestyle do I want to have after retirement? Some people want to retire and travel the world. Others want to retire and just spend time with family. The lifestyle you want to have after retirement should dictate how you live today.

2. Understand Where You Are Today

When heading to a certain destination, you have to understand where you are currently to know the shortest and most convenient route to take to that destination. This calls for an honest evaluation of your current circumstances. Do a thorough life audit to get this understanding.

3. Evaluate Your Options

After setting your retirement goals and understanding where you are currently, you need to evaluate the options. You can start a business, get a better job, invest in real estate, get a financial advisor, and all that.

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4. Know the Way Forward

What options will I take? After understanding all the options available, you need to choose an option or a combination of options. These options will guide your actions moving forward.

After answering these questions, there are specific actions that will help you retire early. We will divide them into the three major steps we pointed out earlier. These are: earn more, spend wisely, and invest prudently.

Earn More Money

This is inevitable. To retire early, you have to earn more than the average person. This will enable you to invest more and get financial freedom faster.

Earning more money is not easy. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. After all, everybody wants more. You need financial education, effort, and discipline to make more than you are making today.

As we pointed out, your lifestyle after retirement should guide your actions.

1. How to Retire Early to Rest

If you want to retire early and spend time with family or rest, there are several steps that you can take to earn more. These steps will give you enough to pay for your bills after retirement.

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They include the following:

  • Get a second job. For those who are employed, a second job can increase your income at the end of the month. You can then live off one income. This will give you more investment capital to push you to your retirement goals. I have an employee who works for me during the day and then takes other jobs at night.
  • Get a better job. You can a job with better remuneration if you want to make more money. However, you need to increase your level of education and specialization.
  • Renegotiate your current remuneration terms. You do not need a better job if you can make the current one better. Renegotiate the terms with your employer to make more every month.
  • Start a side hustle. A side hustle will bring extra dollars at the end of the day. This can be a small business that you run in the evening and during the weekends. You can also employ someone to run it on your behalf.

2. How to Retire Early as a Millionaire

If you want to retire early as a millionaire and travel the world, you need to take a different path.

Here are the following things you should do:

  • Start a scalable business. To become a millionaire, your business has to serve thousands of people. Here, the business idea should be working. The business should have working systems that can run even without you having to work every day.
  • Use other people’s time. People who retire early understand how to leverage other people’s time to make more money. Successful people give money to buy time while average people use the time to get money. This is the difference. This is why the richest people have thousands of employees in their companies.
  • Use other people’s money. To get more money, you need to invest more. In this case, you need to know how to utilize debt to your advantage. Debt is a catalyst for financial growth. It is also important to be cautious because debt can be a catalyst for financial distress and disaster.
  • Work smart. To retire early as a millionaire, you cannot just work hard, you need to work smart. Working smart means achieving more with less. Get more by investing less time, effort, and resources. It can also mean earning without having to work.

Spend Wisely

It does not matter how much you earn if you cannot spend it wisely. To retire early and retire rich, you have to spend little as you can and invest the rest.

The following actions can help you spend less:

  1. Track your spending. Record everything you purchase in a book and do the math at the end of the month. Consider whether what you bought is adding value to you or it was just an unnecessary expense.
  2. Only purchase what is necessary. To retire early, you only need to spend on what is needed, not what you want. Is it a need or a want? A need is something you cannot do without. A want is something you desire but is not necessary. Only buy needs.
  3. Sell your greatest liabilities. Liabilities take money from your pocket. They reduce your economic value. To spend less, you need to dispose of your greatest liabilities. If you have several SUVs, you can dispose of them and purchase a fuel-efficient car. This will save you money every day.
  4. Avoid consumer debt. Consumer debt will ruin your financial future. You will incur unnecessary interest payments without making anything from the debt. As Robert Kiyosaki says, when you take a loan, do not pay for it. Let others pay for it. This means that you have to invest the debt and use the profits from your customers to repay the debt.
  5. Live your life. One of the best ways to avoid unnecessary expenses is to live your life. Avoid unnecessary influence to upgrade your lifestyle. Do not keep up with the johnnies.

To retire as a millionaire, you have to spend as little as 10% of your income. However, to retire early with just enough to spend, you can follow the 50-30-20 rule.

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The rule says that you should allocate 50% of your income to your needs. This includes paying your most necessary bills like rent, food, school fees, taxes, etc. Also, invest 30% of your income on wants. These are things that increase your standard of living but they are not necessary. They include cars, a bigger house, a vacation, etc. Then, invest at least 20% of your income on investment. This is the bare minimum.

Invest Prudently

You cannot retire early and rich without becoming an investor. It is the investment that multiplies what you have into what you want to have.

Investment is a risky area because money can easily go down the drain. This is why most people fear even the term itself.

To invest prudently, the following are important:

  • Get financial and investment intelligence. This is what most people lack. They cannot distinguish between a good investment and a bad one. This is why they find it easy to play it safe and keep what they have as is.
  • Take calculated risks. This means that you do not just throw your money ignorantly into a project. You have to do your due diligence and gather as much intelligence as you can.
  • Overcome fear. Fear is common in all of us. However, successful investors overcome it. The rest allow it to stop them from doing what they have to do.
  • Overcome greed. A good investor is ambitious but not greedy. It is greed that causes the average person to lose money. As they rush desire quick returns, they lose everything. As Warren Buffet says, a good investor is cautious when others are greedy.

Final Thoughts

If you want to retire early and rich, you will need to come out of your comfort one. You will need to get knowledge, change your attitude, take risks, make moves, and become your best version.

As I pointed out, if it were easy, everyone would do it.

More Tips on How to Retire Early

Featured photo credit: Nguyen Thu Hoai via unsplash.com

More by this author

Mark M. Gachunga

Founder Wealthy Wolves Consulting Ltd and Giimark Education & Publishers Ltd

How To Retire Early (And What To Consider Before You Do) 21 Money Making Ideas to Try At Home Now How to Start Investing Without Taking Major Risks

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Published on January 8, 2021

How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Fast: 7 Powerful Tips

How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Fast: 7 Powerful Tips

Ever wondered whether your credit card debt is the reason you’re in a bad financial situation? You can’t enjoy any fun activities because a good chunk of your money goes toward debt payment. Heck, you’re even behind on some of your monthly bills.

The effects of clumsy debt management are too many to list here. This guide is going to help you discover how to pay off credit card debt fast and start chasing your financial goals.

Debt problems are the last thing anyone wants to encounter. But things can get out of hand when all the “little debts” you take accumulate in interests.

What if you knew some simple and proven ways to be debt-free quickly? Implementing them would mean better financial health for you. It becomes possible to free up cash for your “wants.” These include taking a trip or buying something you’ve always desired. All that while paying your bills on time!

Let’s not wait any longer. Here are 7 powerful tips for paying off credit card debt fast:

1. Pay More Than the Minimum Credit Card Payments

Many people only pay the monthly minimum on their credit cards. Truly, that’s the right amount for staying on good terms with your credit card company. But you need a different approach if you’re looking to achieve financial independence within a short time.[1]

Most of your payments go toward interest costs when you only pay the minimum amount. A substantial sum of your balance remains standing. As a result, it becomes more expensive to eliminate your debts.

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You don’t want to wait more than 10 years to get rid of debt while it’s possible to do it sooner. All you have to do is double that $100 minimum payment to $200 or go higher.

The good thing is that minimum credit card payments are affordable in most cases. By paying a higher amount, you reduce your interest costs, lessen your borrowing period, and boost your credit score.

2. Start With High-Interest Credit Card Debt

If you have more than one credit card debt, prioritize putting the extra money toward the ones with the highest interests. This debt pay-off strategy, known as the debt avalanche method, is essential for being debt-free quickly.[2]

First, you need to list down all the credit card debts you have in the order of their interest rates. Next, you choose the one with the highest interest and pay a significant amount toward it each month. It can be an amount twice or even thrice larger than the minimum payment.

At the same time, you make monthly minimum payments on the other debts. Their interest charges won’t be as costly as that of the first debt on your list. You only move on to the next high-interest debt after the first one is gone. Remember that your focus is on the interest rates and not the balances.

3. Revisit Your Budget

Budgeting is useful for tracking your financial moves. Once you create a budget, some tweaks along the way can make it work for you better. One situation that requires you to revisit your budget is when you’re struggling with debts. It might hurt a bit to slash some expenses. But you also don’t want to miss out on achieving financial freedom in the long run.

You can reduce some variable expenses to free up more cash for credit card debt payments. They’re the ones that change from time to time. Some examples are groceries, fuel, and clothing.

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Other opportunities for cutting down your spending lie in non-essential expenses. Instead of dining out all the time, you can cook at home more to save money. You can also share some subscriptions with friends and pay a fraction of the cost.

If you’re determined enough, you can eliminate all your unnecessary expenses and focus on paying off your credit card debt first.

4. Avoid Using Your Credit Cards

Do you want to know how to pay off credit card debt with a low income? One simple way is to stop using them. Having your credit cards everywhere you go means that you’ll be more tempted to buy unnecessary stuff. In this case, you spend money that you don’t really own and get deeper into debt.

The quickest fix to stop the debt build-up is spending with cash. You’ll be more aware of everything you can afford at any particular time. If you decide to keep one or two cards to ease the transition, always make wise choices. For instance, only use them when experiencing financial difficulties.

It’s best to categorize your fun activities under “discretionary spending” in your budget. This way, you won’t need more debt to kill your boredom. By halting your credit debt from accumulating, it’s easy to pay down what you already owe and be happy with the progress.

5. Start a Side Hustle to Boost Your Income

You’re probably turning away a lot of money by not monetizing your skills. Everyone has something that they’re good at doing. And you can use that to generate extra income for attacking your credit card debt.

If you look around your neighborhood, you can find several side hustle opportunities. It can be pet sitting, tutoring, or lawn mowing. You can start an online business by offering services such as digital marketing, content creation, and web development. Such skills go in high demand on freelance sites and job boards.

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Finding clients on social media is also a good strategy to utilize your skills and make more money. Facebook groups, Quora Spaces, and subreddits are some places to look for side jobs. You only have to join a niche-specific platform, share your services, and respond to any opportunities.

It’s possible to learn a skill, practice it, and earn from it. Use the free resources online or purchase some e-courses to get started.

6. Sell Your Used Items for Extra Cash

Starting a side hustle isn’t the only way to generate extra money. You can turn unwanted items into cash for paying off credit card debt. Whether it’s an old TV, book, or furniture, there is always someone itching to buy your used stuff.

A garage sale, as much as it’s old-fashioned, is perfect for getting your neighbors and passers-by to buy from you. You keep all the money because there are no business permits or taxes involved. While you may not make much cash, it’s better than leaving your stuff to go defunct in your storage.

Other than that, you can sell your used stuff on online marketplaces. Facebook groups are great places to start if you want quick approvals and hence sales. You only have to ensure that your listing follows Facebook’s commerce policies.

When selling any pre-owned items online, ensure they’re in good shape to avoid problems with your buyers.

7. Know When to Seek Help With Your Debt

Asking for help with your credit card debt can be challenging to do. But letting it drown you is a road you don’t want to take. While you may feel embarrassed at first, it’s the best way to get back on track when you run out of options.

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There are tons of non-profit credit counseling organizations that can offer you free guidance on how to escape the debt trap. An example is The National Foundation for Credit Counseling. They simply review your finances and help you determine the source of your financial problems. After that, they match you with an actionable debt management solution.[3]

In extreme cases, the debt solution can be:

  • Debt relief – where your debt is partially or wholly forgiven
  • Debt consolidation – taking out one loan to repay others
  • Debt settlement – the creditor forgives a significant portion of your debt
  • Bankruptcy – legal process for seeking relief from some or all your debts

It’s necessary to carefully weigh your options before deciding on the way to go. Find out how it might affect your credit score and any other risks.

Wrapping It Up

Debt is a major setback when you’re trying to prosper in life. Paying off credit card debt is essential if you want to reach your financial goals. That means having more free income, a good credit card score, and even a chance to retire early. You become more productive each day because of the peace in your mind.

So, you now have some tips on how to pay off credit fast. Go ahead and get rid of that good life progress killer!

More Tips on How to Pay Off Debt

Featured photo credit: rupixen.com via unsplash.com

Reference

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