My leave period was quite a retirement preview. A typical day will be as follows:
8am: Wake up, shower, papers (headlines)
8.30am: Watch Channel 8 Morning Express for local and international news, including overnight US markets closing data and analysis.
10am: Light breakfast together with reading newspapers.
12pm: Swim or hitting the gym (just sign up) for weights and treadmill.
1.30pm: A bit of TV, DVD (rental), reading of The Edge, car magazines, surfing net, afternoon shopping (where crowd is tolerable) and hitting the library to pass my afternoon. I usually do not do lunch but instead will have a more filling tea break, consisting of waffles, tea, cakes or donuts. Napping is a wonderful occasional affair.
Sometimes I meet up with ex-colleagues or friends for lunch and the day will fly by amidst our chatter and laughter at a heartland café and a movie thereafter.
6.00pm: Dinner and watching 6.30pm News (OR Meeting friends for dinner, shopping and I will catch up the Channel 55 drama serials on the following day afternoon).
8pm: Watching Channel 55 drama serials.
10.30pm: Bedtime music and reading OR Supper with the usual kakis
12am: Lights Off!
Now, that’s retirement!
When I am at home for the past 2 weeks, I realized that many of my variable spending during a typical day is actually quite affordable. I can happily pass a day by spending about $20 (on average, mainly on food and transport). However, the unseen costs are things like rent (or mortgage), utilities, club memberships, phone bills, internet, cable TV, personal effects, insurance, property and road tax together with other fixed costs all add up to a hefty amount. Moreover, we also need to set aside cash for less common things like gifts, repairs, overseas travel and even parking summons too!
I would think that to lead a modest retirement lifestyle, a $2,000 monthly retirement budget (in 2008 dollars) is likely to be sufficient if one’s mortgage is fully paid up.
I guess I will need to work harder to accumulate more savings and increase my passive income to retire comfortably!