If You Want to Retire Early, Start Doing These 12 Things Right Now

If you can implement some or all of the items on this list your journey to early retirement will be short and sweet. The hardest part is actually starting.“The thing to do is to make so much money that you don’t have to work after the age of twenty-seven. In case this is impracticable, stop work at the earliest possible moment, even if it is at a quarter past eleven on the morning of the day when you find you do have enough money.”-Robert Benchley

Dreaming of Early Retirement

While I won’t retire by the time I’m 27(I’m 36), I’m hoping to retire before I’m 45.  I’m getting more and more antsy at work.  I pretty much daydream about early retirement whenever there’s downtime.

Even though I’m not retired yet, the following list are things that I have done or currently do to help me reach early retirement as fast as possible.  If you follow this list, or do only some of the items on the list, it should help you reach early retirement as well!

Max Out Your 401k and IRA if Possible

Look, I know it’s really hard to save that much money.  Start small!  It was only 4 years ago that I was putting in 3% every paycheck.  3% was the amount I needed to contribute to get the match.  I wanted to pay down my debts before I really started investing.

Once I was debt free I slowly started contributing more and more until I was comfortable contributing the max amount.  I’m pretty sure I changed my contribution amount like four times in one year!

Pay Off Debt

Some people suggest paying off all debt before investing anything.  When I was in debt, I saved enough to get the 401k match and then focused on paying off my debts.  Making sure that my emergency fund was fully funded when I was paying off my debt was also a high priority for me.

I kept a fully funded emergency fund because I had been laid off before at a time when I wasn’t in a secure financial situation and IT SUCKED! Thanks to parental help, I made it through, but it’s a situation that I never wanted to be in again. Continue reading “If You Want to Retire Early, Start Doing These 12 Things Right Now”

5 Great Ideas for a Frugal Valentine’s Day

Five Great Ideas for a Frugal Valentine's Day!Valentine’s day is approaching!  I hope this post can give you some ideas for a frugal Valentine’s day.

Can you believe that last year people spent an estimated $19.7 billion dollars on Valentine’s Day!  Whoa.  That is a lot of jewelry and dinners out.

While Mr. Frugal Turtle and I don’t partake in the holiday like most people do, we still tend to recognize the holiday in our own way.  We’ll be extra lovey dovey with each other and probably do something from the list below.

1. Stay in and watch a movie.

Mr. Frugal Turtle and I do this all the time, not just on Valentine’s Day.  We enjoy making some deliciously salty popcorn on the stove and cuddling up under some blankets on the couch.

Watching a movie this way definitely beats paying an arm and a leg for movie tickets and refreshments, sitting in a freezing movie theater and having to put up with annoying people talking during the movie or having the people behind you put their feet up on your chair.

2.  Make a homemade dinner.

What better way to show someone you love them than by making them their favorite meal.  It can be anything from a homemade pizza with their favorite toppings to pasta with buttery, garlic bread, or a cheesy, comforting casserole.

I really love it when Mr. Frugal Turtle helps out with making dinner.  It’s a way to keep connected, have fun joking around, and simply enjoy each other’s company.

Being it is Valentine’s Day and not just another weeknight, open a bottle of wine!  Make that dinner extra special.  Turn the lights off and light a candle at the dinner table.  Super romantic! Continue reading “5 Great Ideas for a Frugal Valentine’s Day”