Millions of Baby Boomers retire each year from the U.S. labor force. But in the past year the number of retired Boomers increased more than in prior years, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of monthly labor force data.
Retiring early requires some sacrifices. But if you plan well, it is possible to retire in 15 years or less. Early retirement allows for extra time spent with the family, doing the things that truly matter.
I mean, who wants to work all of their life? Who wouldn't want to leave work behind in their 40s or 50s so they can spend time with the family, travel, pursue hobbies?
No one wants to work all of their lives. We should enjoy our free time while we are young enough to do something fun. Who will want to wait until they are old and frail then try doing the things that make them happy? Early retirement is good for you because it allows you more time to do what matters most.
Know Your Goals
So how does one go about retiring early? How much money must be saved up before an individual can consider himself financially independent? When can a person call themselves retired?
To answer these questions, you should explore multiple methods of calculating when someone is financially independent and no longer needs to work for a living. The easiest way to do this is by using a retirement calculator.
For many of us that finally hit that number, this means traveling and spending more time outdoors. If you want financial independence but have no desire to work into your seventies, follow these tips to help you retire sooner rather than later.
How to Retire in 15 Years
If you're looking to retire in 15 years follow, these steps.
1. Start saving now
Retirement may seem like a long way off, but it’s never too early to start saving for it. Begin by contributing as much as you can to a retirement account like a 401k or IRA. Automating your contributions makes this process much easier – you won’t have to think about it every month and you can easily increase your contribution amount as your income grows.
Saving money means having a budget of your monthly expenses and not spending any more than you've budgeted for. Ideally, you'll want to aim to save at least 20% of your income each month. This may be tough in the beginning, but it's definitely doable if you make a concerted effort.
2. Live below your means
In order to save enough money for retirement, you'll need to live below your means. This doesn't mean living in poverty – it just means not spending all of your money every month. Find ways to reduce your expenses by cooking at home, avoiding expensive car repairs, and canceling unused subscriptions.
For example, you can cancel unused subscriptions by using tools like Truebill. Truebill is a free service that finds, cancels and negotiates your monthly bills. Truebill also monitors your spending to help you identify extra money in your budget to save or invest for retirement.
3. Invest your money wisely
If you want to retire sooner rather than later, you'll need to invest your money wisely. Investing in stocks and bonds can help you grow your wealth over time, which will come in handy when it comes time to retire.
Be sure to do your research before investing, and always consult with a financial advisor to get help creating a retirement plan that's right for you.
4. Consider downsizing
If you're struggling to save for retirement, you may want to consider downsizing your home. Selling your home and moving into a smaller, less expensive one can free up a lot of extra money each month that can be saved for retirement. Just be sure that you're ready to downsize, as selling your home can take time.
You can downsize if you are living in a place that is too big for you. If you have a lot of rooms and don't use them, then sell it. You can also downsize if your house is paid off. Why have all that extra space when you don't need it?
5. Consider working part-time in retirement
If you're not quite ready to fully retire, you can always consider working part-time in retirement. This can help ease the transition into retirement and provide a little extra income to help cover your costs.
Working part-time in retirement can be a great way to stay busy and socialize with other adults. It can also help keep your skills sharp and prevent you from becoming bored.
There are a ton of low-stress jobs after retirement for you to consider. You might consider becoming a consultant, freelancing or starting your own business.
6. Create a game plan for retirement
Whether you're ready to retire now or still considering working in retirement, creating a game plan can help you stay on track. A game plan details the steps needed to achieve your long-term goal and provides you with an approximate date for achieving it. Creating a game plan is ultimately up to you – just be sure that it's realistic so that you can meet your goal without being overwhelmed.
If you're not sure where to start, consider using a retirement planning calculator. These calculators can help you estimate how much money you'll need to save each month in order to retire comfortably.
Retiring sooner rather than later is definitely doable if you make a concerted effort. By following these tips, you can easily save enough money for retirement in just 15 years!
7. Don't quit too soon
One of the biggest mistakes people make when saving money for retirement is quitting before they've reached their goals. If saving seems difficult at first, don't give up! It will get easier as you make more money and cut your expenses.
Remember, the sooner you retire, the more money you'll have to live on each month. Don't give up before you've reached your goal.
8. Stay focused on the end goal
Remember that saving for retirement isn't something you do forever. If you start to get discouraged or lose focus, just remember that reaching your long-term goal is worth all of the work it takes along the way. Once you're able to retire, you'll be happy that you stuck with your savings plan!
9. Make retirement your long-term goal
One of the best ways to ensure that you reach your retirement savings goal is to have a solid plan in place. This means knowing exactly how much money you need to save each month, what expenses you'll cut and when you'll start increasing your retirement contributions. Having a plan gives you something to work towards and keeps you accountable – both of which are essential for meeting your goals!
Make it your mission to retire in the next 15 years by creating a long-term goal related to retirement. You can make this goal anything you want, but be sure to make it inspiring so that you'll actually feel motivated to achieve it. For example, if your goal is simply “save money for retirement,” try making it more specific like “retire at 65 with $500k in savings.” This kind of clear and concise goal will motivate you to do whatever it takes in order to reach it!
10. Put extra money towards retirement
When possible, put any extra cash left over after paying monthly expenses into your retirement savings account instead of spending it on random things around the house. This could be money from a tax refund, birthday money or any other windfall you may receive throughout the year.
If you can afford to, try increasing your retirement contributions by 1-2% every year. This will help you reach your goal quicker!
11. Remember why retiring early works
Living life in a luxury retirement community might seem appealing at first, but not having enough money saved for retirement can be a nightmare. If you ever start to lose motivation for saving for early retirement, just remember why it works and all of the benefits you'll experience once you can retire!
12. Anticipate lifestyle inflation
When I talk about “lifestyle inflation,” I'm referring to the tendency that many people have to spend more as their income increases. Once your income goes up, it can be easy to spend more without even realizing it because now you're used to spending this much money. While increasing your expenses might not seem like a big deal at first, it can quickly become a problem if you don't anticipate lifestyle inflation before it happens. Be sure to plan ahead so that your increased income doesn't cause an unexpected increase in spending – otherwise, you may not be able to save enough money for retirement.
How much is enough to retire on?
So how much money do you need to retire? The answer to this question depends on a variety of factors, including your age, health, lifestyle and current savings. However, most experts recommend that you save at least 80% of your pre-retirement salary in order to live comfortably during retirement.
If you're not sure how much money you currently have saved for retirement, use a retirement calculator to get an estimate. This will help you figure out how much you need to save each month in order to reach your goal!
How can you make extra money to speed up retirement?
Let's be honest – saving for retirement can get expensive, especially if you're already spending money on bills and large expenses like college tuition. However, there are several ways that you can free up extra money to put towards your savings goals.
Invest more aggressively in your stock portfolio
While you may sound contrary to popular belief, if you do your studying, you can speed up retirement by earning more in your portfolio.
Do you invest in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum? These digital currencies can speed up the process of retirement significantly.
If you don't have time to watch the market, you can use a robo-advisor to help manage your portfolio for you, and many of these services are low-cost or even free!
Invest in real estate
The year could shape up to be a profitable one for real estate investing according to recent findings. This is a perfect investment opportunity for small investors interested in getting their feet wet with real estate.
Real estate has traditionally been one of the most sought-after asset classes for professional investors — now it’s available to you.
With new online platforms, investors can pool their resources and invest in commercial, residential and make money from their investment.
I’ve been using an app called Fundrise to get started investing in real estate passively. It’s just like other investing apps but here they invest your money in apartment complexes and other commercial properties.
Fundrise has over 130k+ active investors, managing over 4.9 billion and has earned its investors over 79 million in dividends. You can get started with only $10 and it’s a legitimate way to start your journey as a real estate investor. It’s totally safe and you can cash out your earnings at any time.
Make money selling your personal data
Search engines and social media apps are known for selling clients’ data at exorbitant rates, and often as a user, you don’t get a dime from the money made.
However, nowadays there are apps where you can opt-in to sell your data and make some extra cash from it. Your data will always be sold if you’re using any apps on your phone, so why not make money from it?
You can get started by signing up for SJ Pulse (desktop only), Nielsen Mobile Panel, and MobileXpression (iOS only). With these apps, you simply register an account and start making money as they anonymously monitor your browsing history. You can use all three options to maximize your residual income each and every month.
Nielsen Mobile Panel, for instance, tracks people’s internet behaviors by installing an app to your desktop or iPhone or Android device. If you agree to it, then you can make $50 each year just by keeping it installed on your device. This is the same case for the other apps and you can really make money by selling your data for cash (you’d be silly not to).
Get rich owning rental properties
Investing in rental properties is a great way to build wealth, but it’s often hard if you don’t have a huge chunk of change lying around.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could become a landlord of single-family rental properties without dealing with all the hassle of buying, improving, and re-selling real estate?
You don’t have to be a millionaire to invest in these types of properties. You can now find your inner property owner with Roofstock.
As with any other rental property, investors earn returns from the rental cash flow and any appreciation in the property value when it’s sold, and all without painting a wall or getting your hands dirty.
There is a reason why the number of investors on its platform increased 126% last year, the sector is booming with investors clamoring to get a return outside of stocks and bonds.
Ask your employer for a raise
Sometimes as an employee, you get to a place in your life where you can’t foot your bills probably due to piling debt or poor financial habits. Whatever it is, you have options if you currently have a job.
No matter if you’re working at McDonald’s or have a job in IT — you can always ask for a raise.
Think about it — if you need more money then why not ask your employer? One way to earn more money is simply by asking (and presenting the value you bring as an employee) and the worst thing that your employer can say is no, at their own discretion.
Make extra money with the best delivery app jobs
Today, everything including your grocery store has been shifted online. Due to the heightened demand, delivery app jobs seek to collaborate with freelance delivery agents who benefit from the delivery fees and tips. On Indeed, based on 136 salaries, the average for delivery drivers is $19.97 per hour.
With so many food delivery services, I know a lot of people are asking: what is the best food delivery service to work for?
If you want to start earning another income stream, you simply log in to these delivery apps, provide your vehicle details, and give a valid driver’s license and immediately start your delivery escapades.
Over a year, delivering part-time can translate to a salary between $20,800 and roughly $36,899 if done full-time.
Get paid to play with dogs
If you are a pet lover, who loves being around dogs, then Rover is a perfect job for you to keep tabs with your love of your four-legged friends as you make some money.
You are simply paid to walk dogs or take care of them at other people’s homes or your own. As a part-time hustle, you can make on average $1,000 to board a dog, walk it and feed it for a two weeks period. Depending on your schedule, you can choose to take up the job full-time or part-time on your own terms.
Get paid to walk and exercise
I know you can’t count the miles you walk in a day, but the news I am about to drop now will make you more concerned with that data. Nowadays, there are platforms online conducting exercising surveys, and they are typically paying you to walk. Yes, you heard that right!
You simply sign up to the sites like HealthyWage, Sweatcoin, and Achievement and they track your walked distance and award you with points. Redeemable as either hand cash or points to buy popular gift cards.
You can also become an in-store shopper with apps like Instacart. With Instacart, you can achieve your daily step count while also providing people in your community with essential groceries and other goods.
Get paid for taking photos
Hey there shutterbugs, did you know you can make money by selling those perfect shots resting on your hard drive? You can sell some of your best photos online through websites like Fotofolia, iStock Photo, Shutter Stock and PhotoMoola, and make a fortune from your hobby.
Typically, these sites link you to potential buyers at a fee of about 30% of the total money earned. You can get as many customers as you can possibly reach. Each photo goes for about $10 depending on the quality and buyer so earning $80 fast won’t take long after you’re all set up.
Rent out your wheels
Car renting business is still one of the few lucrative ventures in the US. However, the digital wave is slowly changing the business from physical locations and nowadays people can book a car from the comfort of their homes.
This technology is so savvy that people can even book a car just they book a room on Airbnb, from anywhere in the world. And you can profit if you have an idle car that you want to rent out to make $80 fast. This is made possible by major players in the game like Turo and Getaround that help link car renters to prospective car owners from anywhere globally. The apps only charge a maintenance fee and the rest given to the car owners.
According to Getaround’s website, car owners make thousands of dollars per year sharing their cars through the platform. You can literally earn more than $900 a month renting your car through Getaround. This means you could make more than $10,800 per year renting out your car.
Sell all your junk for quick cash
Do you still have your iPhone or Macbook and other items cluttered in your house? Are you wondering how to make better use of them? Then this next money-making idea is for you, sites like Decluttr and Whistle will offer you money for your used tech. This way you can make extra money from items that you could have otherwise disposed of.
With Whistle, you can instantly sell your iPhone, tablet, MacBook, or other used electronics. You can get paid via PayPal, Venmo, Cash App, or gift card. It’s simple to use and you’ll receive a free, fast shipping kit sent to your door, no work required on your end to sell your goods. And your payment is sent within 24 hours of them receiving the device. They are currently accepting iPhones 7 and later, but check here to see what they offer you.
Got a spare room? Rent it out
Another way to make money is with Airbnb. You probably already heard about it or used it but have you ever considered listing you spare room for rent?
You can likely make $80 fast in a day or two by doing so. If you list a room on the platform then tourists seeking a place to stay can view your listing and book it online. Once they book, you get paid instantly and you can charge whatever you want.
The is a great way to earn money if you have extra space to rent out. The rate you can charge depends on your area and specifications so it’s in your best interest to see what you can make, before listing.
Make money fast donating plasma
In 2022, you can make extra money donating plasma and earn $80 fast. You simply visit a plasma donation center near you, they will test your blood, remove it and separate the plasma — the clear liquid in blood, and then return your blood.
The plasma you donate helps people with clotting disorders, and you can make up to $50 for every donation. So after a few visits, you can hit your goal of making $150 fast. Most people compare the feeling of donating plasma to the feeling of a mild bee sting. You will also be required to submit to a finger stick test each time you donate so the collection center medical staff can evaluate your protein and hemoglobin levels.
Earn money online as a freelancer
There is an avalanche of online freelancing sites offering online jobs in different fields. These freelancing sites link online workers with clients for a small fee. If you are like to write, for instance, you can join some freelance sites and start getting writing or proofreading gigs, and the same applies to every other field.
You simply require a strong online presence and start making money doing what you like, at the comfort of your couch. Some of the best ways to get freelance gigs is by joining Upwork, Freelancer, Fiverr — which allows freelancers to get a gig in typically any field.
Hustle on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and more
Still wondering how to make extra money fast to speed up retirement? Well, those social media apps installed on your devices can help. Did you know that in 2020 alone, about 3.6 Billion people used social media globally? This has opened up a wide variety of money-making opportunities for people like you and me.
Here are six ways you can make money on social media:
- Promote affiliate products
- Create and promote your own information products
- Promote products and services
- Use visual media to promote your crafts
- Promote your coaching or consulting services
- Join the YouTube Partner Program
How much you make on social media depends on your followers and how well they trust you. At the end of the day, the more eyes seeing your posts = the more money you stand to earn. Some of the social media channels people use to make money include Facebook, Instacart, YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat and Twitch.
Test apps and websites for money
Websites and app developers want to bring to market a seamless app or website, and that’s where you can profit by becoming an app tester. If you are wondering to get money fast for your savings goals then becoming an app tester is one sure fire way to go about it.
App testers basically use an app or website for usability, design, and functionality and provide honest and useful feedback. This requires you to submit a report that details all the required feedback. In return, you could earn up to $100-200 per month on average, with payments made weekly.
Get paid to read books
Want to get paid to be a bookworm? Book publishers are always on the lookout for book reviewers, to help them in editing the final copy of a given book. This is an easy way for book lovers to make money doing what they love, reading books.
If you wanted to give it try, you would sign up for sites like Online Book Club, Any Subject Books or The U.S. Review of Books and create a free account. Then you would read books that they assign you or that you choose to help them get books reviewed.
Signing up is free and as a book reviewer, you can cash out your earnings via PayPal and earn on a regular basis. It’s a solid way to work your way towards earning extra money to help you retire sooner. You can earn $5 to $60 per review depending upon the book being reviewed. Plus, you usually keep the book they send you to review, which is a plus.
Retiring Early is Possible
Retiring early is possible if you are serious about it. The key to retiring early entails making smarter choices, which includes spending less than you make, investing your money wisely and living on a budget. And if you can manage to live this way for an extended period of time, chances are you could retire early at the age of 60 or earlier.
No one wants to spend their golden years working in a job that bores them just to pay the bills. That’s why it is advisable to start getting serious about retiring early, because once that day comes it will be too late. If you want more money-making ideas that work well enough for retired people then check out how I made my 16th income stream here.