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I had a really interesting conversation with my boss today. He shared that my star is rising within the organization and that I may have the ability to take over my boss’s job when he leaves.
While he has set up the job perfectly, the even better news is that if I take the job, I would have the opportunity to go abroad the following summer, which has been my goal for awhile now.
The big push for me to get overseas is the ability to do some super savings. While abroad, housing would be covered. We would also receive some stipends as well.
This would super-charge my ability to reach FIRE. At that point, I would be free to do whatever I wanted in retirement, well within reason. 🙂
LeanFIRE vs. FatFIRE
As many of you know I am anticipating that I only need to work three more years before I reach LeanFIRE (having 25x expenses saved up). If I want to reach FatFIRE (having a good 100k to spend each year), I will probably need to work at least until I’m 50, which would include healthcare insurance the rest of my life.
My boss also threw a curveball at me. He asked if I was interested in joining him on a new project. This new assignment would have me continue to work for him on a brand-new, exciting project. It would undoubtedly stretch and grow me. The downside would be that I would lose the ability to go overseas. And, my wife and I have been interested in that potential for some time now.
For those of you who don’t know, my wife and I grew up in the DC suburbs, just 7 houses away from each other. However, we didn’t really know each other until we were adults. Although, she distinctly remembers selling my mom girl scout cookies each year (two boxes of Thin Mints to be precise).
One of the biggest blessings is that my wife and I currently live 10-20 minutes from the majority of our family, including our grandparents, parents and siblings.
The really nice part is that our extended family spends a lot of time with our kiddos. We are truly spoiled. I don’t know many who have this luxury.
While we love being so close to our families, the DC area is an extremely expensive place to live. One in 8 homes for sale in DC is over a million dollars. In fact, DC ranks as the 5th most expensive place to live in the US. Unfortunately, it is not getting cheaper any time soon.
Proximity to Family
If we were to move overseas, we would be leaving behind all of our family. One of our family friends, who is essentially a Grandma to our kids, told us that she’d be heartbroken not to see our kiddos weekly.
Most people don’t live so close to their families. According to a New York Times article, the typical American lives 18 miles from their mother. For reference, I’m about 5 miles away from my mother. The article goes on to say, 80% of people live within a couple hours drive from their parents.
Here are some interesting stats:
- 37% of adults have never left their hometown.
- 63% of adults have moved homes at least once in their lives.
- 57% of people have never lived outside the state that they were born.
- Only 15% of people have lived in 4 or more states.
Benefits of Proximity
A great aspect of living close to family is the reliance upon one another for financial and care support. With an aging baby-boomer population and a growing number of two-income families with childcare needs, studies confirm that this trend of familial support may continue.
I actually just had a friend leave the area because he couldn’t afford daycare anymore. He took a job, making less money, to move closer to his family, where he would receive more childcare support to help defray some of those costs. Likewise, I know some women who never went back to their jobs after having children because daycare costs were just too high.
Weighing the Pros and Cons
Running through the numbers, if I took the domestic job and worked for my boss, it appears that I would probably need to work an additional 7 years. This is based on the age that I could retire at work, as well as our desire to continue expanding our family.
While our house is sufficient for now, we would like a little bit more space in the future. So, I have to factor in a potential mortgage as well.
Thus, the tradeoff for us is: do I delay retirement by 7 years to stay close to family, or do we move overseas so that I can start my retirement earlier? I think I am leaning towards delayed retirement so that we can stay close to our family. It’s only 7 extra years, right?