You don’t have to win the lottery or inherit a windfall to retire early.
Take Justin and Kaisorn McCurry, who retired with more than $1 million in their 30s thanks to smart saving and investing habits. They did it on a relatively modest income for a family of five.
“Neither of us ever reached a six-figure salary, with my salary topping out at $69,000 and [Kaisorn’s] at $74,000,” McCurry writes on his blog, Root of Good.
If you want to follow suit, start with their four-step plan to retiring early
1. Start tracking your expenses
Do you know how much you spend eating out, on Uber or on monthly subscriptions? It’s probably more than you think.
“You have to know what you are spending before you can plan your retirement budget,” writes McCurry. He prefers using Personal Capital to track expenses, but there are other sites out there that do similar things, like Mint or You Need a Budget. You can also write down your purchases in a notebook or keep a spreadsheet on your computer.
2. Think about your future lifestyle
Do you plan on traveling a lot, or buying a vacation home? Do you want to gift money to family members?
“Think about what you want to do in retirement and what it might cost,” says McCurry. “Take your time on this. This is probably the hardest part of budgeting for retirement expenses, as it can be difficult to think of what you want to do for fun for the rest of your life.”