Financial Independence and Expat Living

2 Replies

I have an autoimmune disease in my colon that is triggered by stress.  When it is active it makes my life miserable.  The biggest cause of stress is working as a construction project manager in NYC with a lot of pressures coming from all sides.  The biggest stress relief for me would be to know I could walk away from work at any time without having to worry about money.  I don't know if I would quit a job that I do well at, am appreciated, work with a great team, and enjoy most days.  But having a safety net, a plan B would go a long way for peace of mind and physical health even if I never quit what I'm doing.

So I am trying to reach a basic level of FI as soon as possible.  Through research and travel, what I realized is there are many areas in the world that I would be open to living that are much cheaper than NYC or much of America.  On even $1,200/month I could live very comfortably in areas such as Bali, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines.  For stocks using the 4% rule in low cost index funds, I would need $360,000 invested to make that $1,200/month expat plan happen.  I'm 26 and at my current income and savings rate I'll have that money by age 35.  If I get raises in line with what my coworkers have gotten while maintaining the same expenses, I can expect to have the money by age 32, just 6 years away.  

My question for the Bigger Pockets community is to lay out a scenario with real estate of how I could get there faster.  I am saving $30,000/year and don't want to invest anything I already have in real estate because that is my emergency fund.  How many doors and how much invested in down-payments and up front costs is a reasonable middle of the road assumption to make a $1,200/month profit on real estate?  

Account Closed - Sorry to hear about the IBD. It can be rough. Lowering stress, and taking care of yourself physically can go a long way in making IBD more manageable. 

You are very right, there are great parts of the world were you could live a great life for a fraction of the cost of living in the US. 

I would start looking at doing a House Hack/BRRR combo. Do it as a way to reduce or eliminate your housing costs. This will help you save more money to get you to FI faster.

Then after living in your initial house hack for a year or two, do it all over again. You could do this 3-5 times over the next 8 or 9 years and this alone could get you to that $30k in cash flow from real estate. Then you would have 401/IRA investments on top of that.

I am one who have decided to live an expat life once I hit 40 (29 now). There are tons of resources out there, as this is a difficult choice for those in relationships, kids, family, ect. If your a family person I would add Caribbean and South American locations as well to be closer to the USA if need be. You have the WHY just need the detailed plan. Good luck