Retiring Early in Canada | Court from Modern Fimily

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In today’s episode, you’ll hear from Court who writes over at Modern FImily.

Court and her wife are (mostly) retiring early in Canada at 32, but will continue work a bit more until their second child is born.

They did this with student debt and a priority for living a full life while chasing their dreams.

Listen, learn, and let us know what you think.

Episode Summary

Discovering Financial Independence

  • Court had $70k of student debt after her bachelors and masters degree
  • She’d start her career in 2009
  • She was focused on getting out of debt
  • Court paid it off in 2.5 years
  • At this point, she looks to buy her first home
  • She then also discovers Mr. Money Mustache

Starting a career

  • She had the opportunity to participate in this rotational program
  • It allowed her to rotate three times in six-month time segments across different jobs
  • That gave her a wider view of options and allowed her to choose one right for her

Start of  a family

  • She would meet her now wife in 2011
  • Her wife would also end up with some student debt
  • It was obvious right away that both were frugal and passionate about travel
  • Court drove the spreadsheet part of the relationship but their goals align

Looking forward

  • After getting married in 2015 they start designing their future
  • Court’s wife was originally from Canada and they set their sites there
  • They would sell their home and all their things in Florida
  • Then they traveled for 6 months before moving up to Calgary
  • Court thought she’d a while to find a job and might travel another 6 months
  • Luckily the job came through sooner
  • Court was frugal but didn’t have the investing background until finding the FI community
  • They welcomed their first child in 2018 and are planning for a second

Canadian Perks

  • Canada gives 18 months of paid time off for new parents
  • This nets around $25k per year
  • The insurance is incredible
  • She tells a story of going to the emergency room with less than $20 out of pocket
  • The medical bills for the birth of their child were limited to parking at the hospital
  • Court got her citizenship through her dad but could have gotten it through her wife
  • She also still gets U.S. perks like good travel rewards credit cards
  • Canada also gives you around $5k per year for children up to 17 years old
  • Canada will also give you $500 via match into an education saving plan
  • They also have payments to citizens over the age of 65 that’s based off income
  • She also says that taxes are actually not that much higher than the USA

Looking Forward

  • Court lays out her withdrawal plan for retirement
  • She’s moved to 60/40 stocks as she’s about to stop working
  • There is a plan to get back to 80/20 after a few years in retirement
  • They plan to try and have a second child
  • Court goes over some of the considerations for a lesbian couple having children
  • They saved and planned for a 4% withdrawal rate
  • They believe they can be happy with closer to a 2% withdrawal rate


Key Takeaways

  1. Better than expected: Court talks about how much faster FI came than expected
  2. Canada has perks: It’s so important to enjoy the journey on your way to retirement
  3. Power in learning: Court wasn’t from Canada but she’s immersed herself to become an expert

Call to Action

Take a closer look at the fine print of your city/state/country programs and retirement options and consider what moving might look like.

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Learn more about Court

Via her website Modern FImily

Via her Instagram Modern Fimily

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