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Early retirement costs & targets - July 2023

The executive summary for this month is that it was good for progress on my early retirement targets and boring for our early retirement costs. That's a summary I'm happy to take!

Early retirement targets

Maybe I should call time on my targets for this year - I don't think I've ever had a month where there hasn't been at least some red on my tracker. Of course, this is just one moment in time, if I lose focus, some of the greens or ambers could change to red in the months ahead.

I continue to find it useful to set targets and to then check my progress on a regular basis. I appreciate this process won't suit everyone but, if you're worried that your early retirement might lack some purpose or aren't sure how you'll fill your days, a similar target setting process could be useful.

Early retirement target setting
Progress against my early retirement targets - July 2023

This month, I completed my hiking the Tour du Mont Blanc target. I won't go into the detail here because I already wrote a separate post on it.

I also made some progress on imagining a new adventure for Sally and me and, a week after floating the idea of volunteering abroad, Sally still hasn't shot it down. The likelihood of us doing it might only be fifty-fifty, but it's progress from not having any ideas at all. My next step is to spend hours and hours investigating the options, something that will keep me busy, and I will enjoy the research. When I was thinking about retiring early and trying to come up with a list of activities to do, this type of thing wasn't on the list. It's useful to know that you don't have to have everything planned out ahead of time, there will be plenty of activities and interests that will come to mind as your early retirement develops.

As I said earlier, my targets are looking quite good, but that can change. Some of the green could turn to amber, the amber turn to red, or I could make some more positive progress. The choice is mine, and I'm going to aim for the latter. In the coming month, I'll try to understand more about French capital gains and inheritance tax (they also have a property wealth tax that is particularly unhelpful given our buy-to-let investments) - this isn't an exciting target, but it is an important one. I'll also aim to watch more French television to try to improve my French understanding from woeful to slightly less hopeless. Neither will be as much fun as the Mont Blanc hiking trip, but life is a balance and not everything can be exciting.

Early retirement costs

The good news is that our costs were boring this month, which means no surprise expenses. Even our grocery costs, although still high, were not as high as they have been. There really isn't anything else to say, so I'll just let the numbers do the talking.

How much does early retirement cost
Early retirement costs - July 2023


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Hi David, enjoyable reading as always, I liked your comment about not having everything planned out in advance, it would be a little dull if when you retired, especially if retiring "early", your had the whole of the rest of your life planned out in advance with no surprises. Just made me chuckle. Peter

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I agree with you, Peter, although I also know that when I was deciding whether or not to retire, I did spend a lot of time thinking that I needed to have everything worked out in advance. Eventually I came to terms with realising that this was neither possible nor necessary which was one of the most useful things in terms of my early retirement decision. It also makes me chuckle in hindsight 😃

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