Future Plans

With two to three years left to go, we’re within striking distance of early retirement, and are starting to hone in on some long term plans for our post-retirement life. We’ve narrowed it down to three options, and plan to devote a lot of time in 2019 to exploring these. Here are the three things we’re considering:

A Slightly Modified Version of our Current Setup

We’ve got a good thing going in Vancouver. We know how to find cheap housing, are experts on the local grocery options, and have tons of friends and family here. So how about we just keep going with that? We would definitely move out of downtown, since we don’t relish spending our retirement getting woken up at 6 AM every weekday by a million garbage trucks under our window. Not a huge deal now since I have to get up for work anyways, but when that’s no longer an issue? NOPE.

We would have tremendous flexibility for location anywhere within the Lower Mainland since we wouldn’t need to factor in commuting, so heading out to the suburbs would definitely be an option. We both like Burnaby, New Westminster, and North Vancouver. Renting would definitely continue, as there would be no way to make the math work on owning anything in Vancouver or the surrounding area.

Move to an Island and Build a Cabin

This option would be getting back to my rural roots! We could move to an island, buy a tiny and cheap plot of land, and build a cabin or tiny house. Alternatively, we could rent a cabin if there was one available in our price range. This would give us the peace and quiet we crave, as well as a fun project, because we would probably get into homesteading a bit as well. Pretty much any of the Gulf Islands are solid options here, and we’re going to start making island-scouting weekend trips happen starting in spring of 2019.

Head Overseas

Over our many years of extensive international travel, we’ve come across a number of places that seem like great places to live. Our top choices include Budapest, Marseille, Chiang Mai, Berlin, Vienna, and Nice. There would certainly be a number of hoops to jump through depending on the country, but people manage to do it somehow, so it’s an option. I may have the option of receiving Hungarian citizenship through bloodline, which could be one option for European residency. An immigrant investor program could theoretically be an option as well.

So those are our current considerations for long-term living. We look forward to figuring out which one is best for us!


  1. I look forward to hearing about your decision making process and which option you finally decide! That’s nice that you have so many options.

    Oh, I have a request for a blog post. I understand that you are investing with the best practice of using index funds (robo investing). Recently however the markets have corrected a bit. I was wondering if you could share how that has effected your portfolio, and any mental tips in terms of dealing with market movements like this, especially when so much of your net worth is impacted by it.

    Thanks and as always, love reading the blog!

    • Thanks! There’s really not much to say about our investments – we’ve dropped by roughly $8,000, or 2%, but don’t really care or pay attention to it. Our “strategy” if you could even call it that is to just focus on enjoying life and dong fun things, throw as much money as we can into our investments, and ignore it. We do that regardless of what the markets are doing. I don’t really have any mental tips because we are truly apathetic and spend very little time thinking about our investments at all.

  2. One of the gulf islands seems like a really good idea I’m almost retired at 28 and thinking about doing the same thing. My plan is to buy a house on Mayne island for under 400,000 ( so many under this amount right now) and build an additional 100 sqft loft cabin I can stay in while I air B and B the main house occasionally in the summer. Not looking to make money but cover my taxes mainatance and some of the interest so I basically own a place and live there for free . Maybe you guys could do something similar and retire next year on one of the gulf islands 🙂 I live in Sidney so I’m constantly visiting the islands and look ing for real estate (lots are privately listed by owner maybe half of them right now)

    • Sounds like fun! Personally, we would not tie up a large amount of funds in something as risky as AirBnB, especially since there seems to be a push right now to heavily restrict it on the gulf islands – we prefer to keep our portfolio in index funds instead. We would be looking to buy a plot of vacant land and do a very cheap build of some sort, like a tiny cabin. Vacant lots sure seem to go for cheap on Mayne!

      • You guys are so smart I didn’t really consider that … I checked there’s few lots there right now for under 50,000 . It wouldnt take much more to get permits for a tiny cabin…. probably all in 100,000 for a 1/2 acre with tiny house if you build most of it your self. Long term even with taxes and maintenance that would be cheaper then renting where you are now.

  3. Yes, that’s exactly what we have in mind – try to keep the entire thing under about $120,000, and do as much ourselves as possible. It would be cheaper than our current setup, for sure. We just need more money first – a couple more years worth of saving and investment gains.

    • I don’t think AirBnB is bad, I just think it’s probably a bad idea to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars into an AirBnB property in an area that’s pushing hard for restrictions – it would be very easy to end up with a non-liquid asset that wasn’t producing any income and had a lot of associated expenses, which would absolutely torpedo early retirement. If you could find a way to do AirBnB without tying up tons of money into an illiquid asset, in an area where there wasn’t a strong push by locals to ban it, it could work out okay.

    • I think air b and b is not a bad thing… however, it comes with some draw backs, they would have to spend more (composting toilet won’t cut it lol) on land with privacy/ view and cabin so that it is nice enough to compete with other listings on Mayne. so lets assume an extra $200,000 and at 6% rate of return thats $1000 of lost opportunity cost per month… so lets say you can get net $80 a night (after the new “hotel” taxes consumables air b and b fees etc) realistically on Mayne you can expect 60% occupancy average over the peak 5 month period (the rest of the year is about 20%) so that would be roughly about 120 nights over 12 month period x 80 a night would be $9,600 net income however you need to spend another 200,000 to get this amount and be competitive with other air b and b listings. however you can get $12,000 a year for doing absolutely nothing other than investing in low risk REITs or 15-18k average a year investing in total market efts. also this 9,600 from air b and b is income taxed at margin rates and thus less favourably than stocks.

  4. Just bought a lot on Mayne for 30k walking distance to ferries, parks with year round washrooms , planing on putting in a 100sqft cabin (max sqft allowed without permit ) on the property , planing to camp there on weekends , all in with lot , cabin, gravel for drive way and lawyer fees looking at a whopping $34,000! Taxes are only 34 a month, Not to bad . If you guys every want to Try Mayne island and camp for free at my place just send me an email 🙂

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