One millennial Toronto couple, Bryce Leung and Kristy Shen, famously retired young by shunning home ownership and smartly investing $500,000 in stocks and bonds. The return? A paltry $40K annually — at most. So you can retire by 40, sure, but do you want to? Probably not.
The supremely early retirement types are outliers, argues personal finance expert Preet Banerjee. “If your life expectancy were 80, and you started working at 20,” he says, “you would have to earn enough over a 20-year career to support your lifestyle while you were working and fund it for another 40 years.” And where’s the fun in that?