We don’t expect them to be thrilled.
My parents already know, and they aren’t thrilled.
Once Martin’s parents know, he’ll work up the nerve to give notice to his job!
It just doesn’t make sense to most that an educated couple in their mid-30’s who are gainfully employed in Germany, would give all that up to essentially be backpackers.
Why can’t our next move be buying a big house with a nice garden, and decorating it?
Almost everyone we know in their mid-30’s owns property or intends to buy property in the near future. So us still living like students is an anomaly in our circle.
One of my friends even offered to lend us a significant amount of money for things like moving costs and health care expenses. I thought that was really nice, but unnecessary. We don’t live like students because we are broke! We live this way because we never really let our lifestyles inflate, and whilst everyone thinks we are scrimping hardcore because we rented a 500 sq ft flat and furnish it with furniture we bought second hand or found in the garbage – we feel like we are living it up BIG TIME!
We basically have no responsibility asides taking care of ourselves (+ our foster dog Luna), and building our marriage. We are very focussed on what’s important to us. Everything that doesn’t fit our focus, we aren’t likely to spend money on because it just isn’t fun or meaningful.
A big goal of ours is financial independence. We aren’t there yet.
But if we move to Chiang Mai we will be!
Exciting as that is, we’re not planning to use the 4% rule and draw down our net worth. We’re planning to grow our net worth as we live off of my freelancing income and focus on creating other income streams.
Chiang Mai is a catalyst* as we ‘bootstrap’ it with much lower expenses and surround ourselves with the online startup community.
So we’re not just going to Thailand (or wherever) to retire early, we’re going there to work and grow!
Which is why it doesn’t feel like a big risk to us at all.
In fact, it feels very responsible!
We’re just taking a different approach in building ourselves up.
*I do feel uncomfortable about using our western privilege in such a blatant way. But we plan on contributing positively to the local community, and are also genuinely interested to learn about Thai culture and South East Asia in general. It’s the most interesting corner of the world to me!