It has been a challenge for me to RWOLI had worked since before I was 13. I never had matching furniture. I didn't even have a mortgage for the last 5 yrs before retirement. I did make plans. I set goals. These goals came a reality. I retired Dec. 15, 2003 to Naples, Fl.Well, it is August 2004. Boy, is retirement great! However, I have never lived so well. And the story of my retirement so far has been RWOM. M=more. I always knew, that if you saved early in life, that when you got older you could have those things you always wanted and went without. Well, I have savored the good life. I have not done without. But now I need to get serious. I want this retirement to last a life time. I have set myself up for a more expensive life style, that is for sure. Naples can be a real challenge to RWOL. But I have been successful at other challenges in the past. I took a mortgage, cause rates were low and mortgage payments are much better here then rent. I have now set new goals. I thought if I printed them here, I would have a better chance of sticking to them. I want to pay my mortgage off in 4 yrs. So I am here to learn ways to RWOL and maybe even add some new ideas.
But now I need to get serious. I want this retirement to last a life time. Once you have tasted retirement, it's hard to give it up! Here's what I have found to help me RWOL: I live on a modest budget, however 25% of it is allocated to leisure costs. That may seem high, however for me participating in leisure activities has a priority in maintaining my quality of life. I scurtinize all my elective spending to make sure that it adds to my quality of life. If it doesn't, I eliminate it. Sometimes increasing quantity equals increased quality of life. For example: Since I want to enjoy as much leisure as possible, I stretch my leisure dollars. Taking 3 low-cost camping trips makes me happier than taking 1 high-priced trip for the same price!
My quality of life has definately improved. But I think I would like to limit my expenses in retirement a little more. Paying off my mortgage would be something I would feel very good about. I didn't want to keep working til I could pay cash for my retirement home. I couldn't save enough to keep up with the rising costs of where I wanted to spent my retirement. I am very happy with my new home. I think I could pay it off a lot sooner then 30 yrs. I would like to accomplish this by cutting my expenses in retirement.Today, I rolled change. I came up with $40.00. Because of Hurricanne Charley, the $10.00 tea dance was cancelled. I now have $50.00 to add to my mortgage this month. If I can do this every month, I will be able to reduce my mortgage another 2400.00 in 4 yrs. I also plan to give up my exercise membership of $50.00 a month. So now I can reduce my mortgage a total of 4800.00. I am on my way.I spent my day reading, swiming in the pool, and watching the beautiful sunset in the exact place where the 145 mph winds and darkness and heavy rains were. And I saved money too!
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