No. of Recommendations: 1
I originally posted the following message in the LBYM Single forum. I received several recommendations to post it in this area for some experienced input.

Unlike some in this forum, I actually enjoy my job at times and do not wish to fully retire early. I do want some time off to pursue some dreams before I hit 40.

I am thinking seriously about dropping out of high-tech workforce for a few years so I pursue a few dreams. I have had a LBYM lifestyle for all my after college years (14) and current save more than half my income.

My question is "How low can one go" with annual expenses?

Please allow me to ramble on further.

My current annual expenses/spending runs about $18,000/year after income taxes. (House and car are paid off; employer provided health care; higher than US average cost of living and local taxes.)

A revamped budget assuming a relocation to a less expensive area shows expenses of around $13,000/year with owning a condo/townhouse, paying for a $1,500 deductable health insurance, and downscaling from my gas guzzling Jeep Cherokee. (I am receiveing a "new" Acura Integra (aka: Honda Accord) as a hand-me-down.)

I would like to develop a plan for a $10,000/year budget for the basics. I would then have another $3,000-$4,000 available to dedicate to my passion of long distance backpacking -- a relatively cheap form of vagabon travel. (Six months on the Appalachian Trail or Pacific Crest Trail can cost as little as $2,500 when food, transportation, etc. are included.)

With a $10,000/year budget I could finance my life on low risk investments without touching my IRA/401K investments. I would probably have a job (20-30 hours/week?) to finance any "extras" which might be needed during the "off season."

I lived on less than $7,000/year in college (includes gas, car insurance, tuition, books; no health insurance) in 1986 when I owned my mobile home. I think this would more than double due to the inflation increases and more-than-inflation increases in tuition.

I have heard that Joe Dominguez ("Your Money or Your Life) managed to live on ~$6,000 per year before he died in 1998.

Your thoughts? Does anyone have a budget they can share?

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