People could look to new 3D printing to save money but there are likely many conventional ways to save money that they could choose.
There are also ways to aggressively pursue early retirement.
It may be unorthodox to retire at age 50 but not impossible. It may take unorthodox strategies to execute though. For many, it may be worth the effort since there are multiple benefits of retiring early.
1. Save substantially more. There are only two ways to save more – increase earnings and cut spending. The current savings rate in the U.S. of 3.7% won’t cut it. In order to retire early, the mantra needs to be “save as much as you can and spend the minimum” following the lead of the proponents of the early retirement extreme movement who live on 25% of their income and save 75%.
2. Drastically reduce major expenses in retirement. When looking to cut expenses, housing and taxes should be at the top of the list. Housing costs typically take up to 30 – 35% of an average household budget. Moving to an inexpensive part of the country such as Spokane, Washington, Modesto, California, or Knoxville, Tennessee, while downsizing at the same time is a huge cost save. Also, move to a state with low state taxes. Reduced housing costs and lower taxes eliminates the necessity of about $575k in retirement assets for most typical americans.
3. Barter or trade services for luxury items and lifestyle. Use your expertise and talents to volunteer or barter and trade for services in retirement.
4. Control every expense you can. Move to a town with reliable and inexpensive public transportation to go down to one car or get rid of your car altogether. College towns like Davis, California, which houses the University of California campus, have excellent bus systems that are subsidized. Taking public transportation on a regular basis and renting a car on an as needed basic can provide substantial savings. There are new car sharing services and services like Zipcar.
5. Plan for the gap. Don’t get trapped into early withdrawal fees from retirement plans. Traditional IRAs and the earnings in a Roth IRA cannot be withdrawn without a penalty until age 59 ½ and 401(k) plan assets are not available without a penalty until age 55 (if you retire from your company after that age.) Non-retirement assets are needed to bridge this gap with one exception–the principal (although not the earnings) invested in a Roth IRA can be withdrawn without penalty,as can the principal from a Roth conversion (after five years). Home equity is suited to tap into for early retirement since the timing is perfect to sell and downsize at retirement. The IRS allows a married couple who have lived in their primary residence two out of the last five years to exclude $500,000 in gains from the sale of their home from income tax (single taxpayers $250,000.)
Extreme Early Retirement has ways to save on many different areas. Pick and choose what is comfortable for you
Guides to saving money relatively painlessly
There are several online checklists for lowering your monthly expenses. There are many simple options like getting your insurance right and not wasting energy.
* Refinance your home mortgage
* Appeal property taxes. If your house has lost value since it was last assessed
* Get rid of your private mortgage insurance.
Lower Your Utility Bills
* Use a programmable thermostat.
* Unplug electronics when they’re not in use.
* Launder everything in cold water and air dry where possible
Lower Your Transportation Costs
* adopt hypermiling techniques
* try not to go over 60 mph on highway and have more moderate acceleration
* Use the (Gasbuddy app to find the lowest cost gas prices
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.
A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts. He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.