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How much is enough savings? (+Musings)
#1
So, how much is enough? 

By time I get on the road with the rig I want, I'll be low in liquid cash (though by time I sell most of my stuff that may not true, here's hoping!)
I have some retirement accounts and they have done pretty well these last years, but I think everyone has the concern that they will run out too early. I think I have enough given when I run some of the calculators like this one it says I'm getting really close if I get my spending down to $8000/year.

So I guess the question is, when did you feel safe enough to leave it all behind? Was there a magic number? Assuming of course that it was a voluntary choice (I know things can change in an instant, and I've see too many people fall on hard times). Or was the mentality "I have rice for today; I will be thankful. Tomorrow is tomorrow". 

I guess the fear that I have, as I'm sure most people do given the materialistic way that society leaves its indelible bruise, is not having enough (yes I'm aware that this is a trap, there will never be enough once you are in the cycle, it is the nature of want vs. need). Yet the fear still exists; it is real because I give it power, and I have known nothing else. 

Once one transitions to this nomadic lifestyle, does the fear start to abate? Or is that all part of the journey of differentiating between that which is important and that which is not? Of learning what was once valuable is a manipulation, a travesty of what could be.

It's late; sorry for the ramble, at least i'm not screaming into the void, or am I... Will the void answer back?
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#2
It's all up to you. I would say $500 is the least you could do it on up to $2000 to comfortably travel around full time.

If you are able to plan it I would go $1000 minimum a month, so you can enjoy some leisure stuff and eat well too.

I did it on much, much less years ago, $20-30 a week on a motorcycle, but I was young and able to live off ramen well.

I plan on a minimum of $1500 for myself, so I can hit some National and state parks in addition to boon docking every month.

BTW $8000 / 12 is an ominous number Tongue $666 a month is too low to have a really enjoyable time, are you able to supplement it by part time work like campground hosting?
[Image: attachment.php?aid=16152]My Freedom-24' 4,000lb 1993 Lance 5th wheel w/1235 Watt Solar/LiFePo & 2003 4x4 Chevy Duramax

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#3
My skill set is broad and wide! My patience; well, that's another story Smile

I'm sure I can find work when I want it, I just don't know if I will want it. The first year I will be doing some tech work for my mom's office remotely and getting like 1k a month or so. I can always go work tax season somewhere, though if I work for someone other than my mom I think I may be better off shooting my own foot, lol. I can do just about anything computery except for photoshop and the creative stuff (that stuff takes talent, not just skill). I can do bookkeeping and other accounting stuff. If times really get desperate I can go back to school and get a masters or just put my degree to use...

I think my biggest issue is finding stuff to do that is there when I want to do it, as opposed to being on the hook to continually perform. Most places want to pin you down and want long term commitment, not that I mind being reliable. Maybe I'll feel different after a while on the road and in the desert.
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#4
The most used method is the 4% rule for retirement. Your current age may be the biggest factor and what will be your plan B. No matter what, always have a plan B if the nomadic life doesn't work out has you though. If you plan on living on 8000/year, which is more surviving than living IMO, you need to have 8000x25= 200000 in saving if you never want to work again. Your chance of success will be in the 90% range. If you're 20 years old, this may not work well since the 4% rule is for a 30 years retirement.

Basically, your question can't be answered, some people feel happy with having 1000$ in the bank account without having any job and some feel stressed with 200000$ and a full time job.

For me personally, having a plan B is more important than the money in the bank account, knowing what to do in advance if X happen is my way of reducing stress.
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#5
How much is enough - that depends entirely on the person!

The most common suggestion is that you have at least enough available to replace an engine or a transmission and to cover the cost of a cheap motel while it's being done.

Personally, I like having enough in my bank to cover replacing the vehicle itself if it all went to hell in a handbasket in a hurry. Yes, my insurance is set up to replace the whole vehicle but they're not known for being fast to hand out the check, particularly if I'm on the road somewhere, which I always am! I want in to another van NOW, not later. I don't want to be looking at buying a piece of crap vehicle because I don't have enough money for something better!

The knowledge that if I ever needed to pick up a job is also priceless. If I ever found myself in a hard place, work is always a possibility.

Keep in mind that the retirement calculators were set up for people who wanted to maintain their *existing* way of life...3 bedroom home, 2 cars, annual vacation etc. etc. etc. The calculators only reduce down by the amount of 'work related costs' like business clothing etc. They do NOT take into consideration a different way of living at all.

Living on $8G a year is entirely possible. I can run out fingers and toes many times over, of names of people who do so every month, every year, because that's in line with what their SSI is. They have no choice.

Herein lies the problem:

I guess the fear that I have, as I'm sure most people do given the materialistic way that society leaves its indelible bruise, is not having enough (yes I'm aware that this is a trap, there will never be enough once you are in the cycle, it is the nature of want vs. need). Yet the fear still exists; it is real because I give it power, and I have known nothing else.

Quit giving it power!

And yes, most people find that their fears subside, stress levels lower and their entire way of thinking of the universe shifts once they're out here!
Worry is a misuse of imagination!
 
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Full-timer again as of November 24, 2015 - 14 glorious years on the road before that!



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SondraRose (11-14-2017)
#6
I always keep a few thousand on hand for emergency repairs if needed.

And I at least TRY to keep enough on hand to replace the van and everything in it if necessary.

It's my home. I can't be without it.

Living in "Ziggy the Snail Shell" since May 2015
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#7
The calculator is based on your spending and not a lifestyle, if you spend 8000/year, in a home or in a van, you need to have 200000 to maintain that 8000/year for a retirement period of 30 years, that how the 4% rule is calculated. For more info, google it.

To know how much your spending will differ from home vs van, It depend on how much traveling you do, for me, I put the rent has gas money, maintenance cost, etc and it's close to be the same. If your rent is very expensive and don't plan to travel a lot, it will probably mean saving.
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#8
I was just thinking of this very question this morning. Initially it will not be a problem for me as I plan on keeping my job. However, that depends on how willing they will be to allow me to work remotely. I think there is a good chance that they will but if they don't and I decide to quit this super good paying job, things will be different. I do have skills though which are transferable to other jobs and I thought that maybe I could make do with $1500-2k a month, which is about what I think I could earn full time temping. Half of my monthly expenses would be health insurance though. I guess there is really no good way around that.
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#9
Vsession, that 200,000 figure is dependent on there being no further income of any sort whatsover so that it is the sole generator of income by way of interest or investment potential.

I don't need 200G to start off my retirement with because I have a monthly income. If it's not sufficient to support me in the manner to which I would like to become accustomed (it is) then and only then do I need to have a way and means to supplement it either by having money in the bank/investment or by some other means.

Here's where that 4% rule came from:

The 4% rule was introduced in 1994 by financial advisor Bill Bengen and was later made famous in a study by several professors at Trinity University. The rule suggests that you can withdraw 4% of your nest egg in your first year of retirement, adjusting future withdrawals for inflation, in order to make your money last through retirement. It assumes a portfolio that's 60% in stocks and 40% in bonds, and it's designed to make your money last through 30 years.

Guess what - it was formulated by someone who thought you should have thousands and thousands of dollars in investment accounts and takes absolutely nothing into consideration about lifestyle or other sources of income such as pensions.

IMHO it's just another piece of the fear mongering that tries to keep us all nicely invested in a material way of life!
Worry is a misuse of imagination!
 
Build link: http://www.cheaprvliving.com/forums/Thre...g-Arabella
Full-timer again as of November 24, 2015 - 14 glorious years on the road before that!



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mayble (11-14-2017)
#10
if you're making under $13.5k insurance can be had through medicaid (or it used to, better double check now). If you're income is low you can also get SNAP. actually cooking from scratch saves a ton of money. and you're going to be 'out there' so it's easy to avoid fast food everyday. Get a list together of meals you like to eat and make it budget friendly. widle it down to cheaper ingredients. you'll find eating for $100 a month not unreasonable.

So with insurance out of the way and food budgets under control the next step is try and control the urge to burn the road up. Spend your time in towns on the weekend and camp on the way to a different town during the week. keep it under say 150 miles. So then you're looking like 50 gallons a month at todays prices - $125. 

for a savings for breakdowns apply for a credit card. $3000-4000 should be plenty. Now with all that you dont need full coverage. If you classify the van as an RV, basic coverage is somewhere in the $10-15 a month. Mine is $11.25 

you're looking at an annual budget more around $4-5k depending how much internet you want and whether you go with a mifi/pre-paid phone or just a general smartphone plan.
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