Author Topic: From Military to Expat - Looking for Advice!  (Read 1490 times)

tk2356

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 25
From Military to Expat - Looking for Advice!
« on: June 02, 2015, 08:18:55 AM »
hello Mustachians! Here is my situation - any advice would be greatly appreciated. 

I am 28 years old and will be separating from the military in exactly one year. I'll have a net worth of approximately $310,000 ($250,000 in cash/taxable Vanguard funds, $60,000 in Roth IRA). I've been fortunate in that the military paid for my Bachelor's, and multiple deployments allowed me to save up fast. I'm engaged to a Belgian Architect just out of school, and would like to move there to learn French and teach English for 2-3 years until deciding on what to go back to school for (free with the GI Bill).

Though recent architects only make about 12k euros a year, and I won't make much teaching English, I'm confident we won't have to dip into my savings to live. What should I do with the savings? Belgian taxes are considerably higher, so I was thinking of keeping it in index funds without touching it until I move back to the States for grad school. What stock/bond allocation would you recommend for a 6-7 year timeline? I've read a lot of advice here about that, but I'm not quite sure how the Expat twist changes things tax-wise.

My dream is to buy a small, nice apartment in Brussels outright after grad school and reach FIRE. The fiance wants to work no matter what so that makes things easier. It seems that if i own my home outright then COL will be very low: property taxes in Belgium are low after the high transaction costs, no need for a car, cheap daycare, cheap health insurance, free college for children (we hope to have one in the distant future)... Do any of you have FIRE experience while living in Europe? Am I thinking it will be easier than it will be, and do you see anything I'm overlooking?

sorry for the very broad first-post! I'm a little terrified about the prospect of civilian life and thought I'd ask you guys for some guidance. Thanks again!
« Last Edit: June 02, 2015, 08:20:31 AM by Robear »

MsPeacock

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1549
  • Location: High COL
Re: From Military to Expat - Looking for Advice!
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2015, 04:20:52 PM »
Robear - I have no specific advice about Belgium or FIRE. I am former military though (got out after 4 years when I was 32) and I wanted to reassure you that you will be fine! Only about 1% of people ever serve in the military - so 99% of the people manage w/o the military. It helped ease my anxiety when I was transitioning out to keep this in mind.

tk2356

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 25
Re: From Military to Expat - Looking for Advice!
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2015, 07:09:18 AM »
Thanks for the reply! It's good to hear success stories like yours to put my mind at ease :D just gotta keep reminding myself of that. Thanks again.