Situated in the southwest of Honolulu is the island of Guam. With its beautiful tropical beaches, friendly people, and fairly-affordable cost of living, it’s one option for potential retirees that shouldn’t be overlooked.
If you’re a beach and history buff, or if you’ve just fallen in love with the island’s tropical charm and rich culture, you may be wondering how you can save up to retire and live a comfortable life in this gem in the Pacific.
The following are some practical tips on how you can meaningfully begin saving more money for your retirement in Guam.
1. Automate Your Savings and Pay Yourself First
Saving doesn’t come easy for many people. That’s why it’s important to use automatic savings whenever possible so we’re not tempted to spend our hard-earned cash on the wrong things.
Your company, for example, can help you stay on track with your retirement contributions. Since these come out of your pay directly, you can set a higher amount and never have to think about it again.
Having an emergency fund is another important part of your financial plan. Before anything else, you’ll want to be insured for unforeseeable events such as illness and death. Once that’s taken care of, you can then focus on building up a nice nest egg of savings as a safety net for other financial emergencies.
2. Consider Starting a Side Business
Living paycheck to paycheck isn’t only boring, but it doesn’t help you get any closer to a comfortable retirement either. Remember that retiring in Guam is just slightly less expensive than living in other parts of the US, so you’ll need to consider other ways to bring money in.
Realistically, you may not have the funds to start a business yet, but you can approach several banks in Guam to get the financing to make it happen.
Running a successful business can help you build wealth faster. Just be sure to build good financial habits first, and invest to become a kick-ass entrepreneur.
3. Minimize Expenses
Cutting costs is anything but sexy, but it’s another way to accumulate wealth. Let’s face it, if you’re currently living beyond your means, there’s no way you can save money.
There should be a considerable gap between your expenses and income, with the latter naturally being higher. The larger the gap between the two, the more you save for retirement.
If there’s a way you can skip paying for home mortgages and car loans, do so. A simple cost-benefit analysis can help you determine which expenses are beneficial and which ones aren’t.
4. Work Hard Now
Finding great opportunities doesn’t come easy. For now, it’s best to focus on working hard until the people around you can’t help but take notice.
If you’re working under a company, treat it as if you own it — give it everything you’ve got. This may sound contrary to what others tell you, but hard work can truly give you the single best competitive advantage.
As Jim Rohn once said: “Don’t wish it were easier. Wish you were better.”
After you blast through the obstacles and receive that much-deserved raise (or better-paying job), you are sure to be in a better spot to save and invest more for your retirement in Guam.
5. Take Care of Your Health
A healthy diet and lifestyle can significantly lower medical costs later during your retirement years. What’s more, you decrease the chances of developing an illness early in life, which can also eat up your savings.
Exercise regularly, and consider being more proactive in the kitchen instead of constantly eating out. It’s another way to free up more money that can go to your retirement fund.
6. Don’t Let Bad Debt Derail Your Plans
There are certain types of debt that are helpful if incorporated in your overall financial plans such as business loans, student loans, and others. Each may put you in a hole temporarily, but they generate massive returns in the long run for having borrowed the money.
Bad debt, however, is something you incur for things that quickly lose value and don’t generate an income, such as a 60-inch flat-screen TV or that $500 branded pair of jeans that have the same material and quality as a $30 pair.
Have in mind that many of the food items in Guam are imported, making them considerably more expensive. So you’ll want to practice better spending habits early on if your goal is to stretch out your retirement savings for as long as possible.
Start Saving Today so You Can Retire in Style
The ideas shared here are just some ways you can kickstart your retirement savings. Start small, pay yourself first, and keep making smart financial decisions so you can enjoy your retirement years just sprawling on the beach, scuba diving, or enjoying the delicious local delicacies in beautiful Guam.