How Will We EVER Retire
I am 40. My husband is 46. We have both been previously married so any saving retirement or otherwise prior to us meeting 15 years ago is null and void. Fast forward through years of struggling with child support, medical issues and education expenses and we still are at ground zero when it come to retirement preparation.
I started working for a company a year ago with a strong retirement savings program but I can only afford so much each month. My husband works as a contractor (not the big bucks government kind) so he has no insurance or retirement. As he approaches AARP…I meant 50 with me close behind, frankly…I’m getting scared. How can we make it?
Then we started hearing and seeing more and more about the Tiny House. First impression of tiny houses, “How cute.” (Tiny house community please forgive me…that was first impression.) Then I started listening to the stories. People going tiny were doing so for one of two reasons: environmental or financial. (In some cases both).
The first stories I heard were environmental. Some of these were extreme. Their needs were met by their Tiny homes, but I know me and I was not willing to go that small. Besides where would my great danes sleep? Don’t get me wrong, I do admire people that are committed to the environment to this level, but I’m not there yet. I don’t know if I’ll ever be there. I do want my Tiny Home to be environmentally conscious, I am looking at many off grid options that consequently result in less environmental impact. I want to be more sustainable. I will not claim to be going green because that would insult those who dedicate their lives to minimizing their impact on the earth. We can all do better and treat the earth kinder though…right?
Then the financial stories started emerging. People drowning in debt or trying to recover from catastrophic financial setbacks were finding reprieve in living tiny. The I found Macy’s story (minimotives.com). Go read it NOW. Stop reading my blabber and read Macy’s site. She built a tiny home for less than most used cars go for. For the environmentalist…she repurposed and upcycled tons of materials. Her story sold me on going tiny.
We have two sons left in the nest ages 16 and 18. We are working to buy our trailer in 12 to 18 months. Then starting to build right after. My personal goal is to be dried in by the end of 2017. By the time the youngest leaves for college we plan to be able to move into out Tiny full time. We are going to put our brick and mortar house up for sale as soon as out tiny is livable…not necessarily finished. We already have a place to park so the hardest part post build is dealt with.
The next 3 years will be tight. We are committed to have no or minimal debt for the Tiny house build. That could obviously impact the time line. We are working to pay off debt in the process so we are on a bit of a spending diet. (Sucks just as much as a regular diet, but it’s the end result that matters)
Once we can sell our house, we will be able to aggressively save toward retirement, general savings, and debt reduction. After 5 years in our tiny we can be debt free and have significant appropriate retirement savings in place. Why wouldn’t I be willing to go tiny?
I am excited and anxious. Once we start the process I will be documenting everything, until then, I’ll be talking about the lifestyle changes we are embarking on. This is going to be a huge change, but so worth it.
Down the rabbit hole we go….