- Hardcover: 227 pages
- Publisher: Bantam; 1st edition (July 1, 1988)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0553052896
- ISBN-13: 978-0553052893
- Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #411,777 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Cashing in on the American Dream: How to Retire at 35 Hardcover – July 1, 1988
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Top Customer Reviews
In a conversational style, Terhorst explains how he realized his job was sapping the life out of him, and how he used his skills as an accountant to devise a plan that would enable him to retire at 39 years of age. Unfortunately, the specific financial advice he gives (invest in high-yield certificates of deposit) is no longer possible. But number-crunching is not the most important message that Terhorst has.
Cashing in on the American Dream advocates a no-nonsense approach to determining just what you want in life. Do you want to be free of working for others? Then it might mean giving up your car and dinners out. But it doesn't have to mean giving up what you really love (or need). Terhorst and his wife, Vicki, have been retired almost twenty years now and have spent much of it traveling the world. They have health insurance abroad, because it's cheaper than U.S. insurance, and better.
The Terhorsts have their own website and I like to check in on them once or twice a year. The fact that they have made their plan work all these years is more important than any advice they have. Cashing in on The American Dream is an inspiring book. If they could do it, why can't you?
It may not be for everybody, but it appeals to many.
This book is a little dated when it refers to 8% CDs, but the concept is one which is timeless. The author, Paul Terhorst was featured in "Money" magazine several times and has a web site [...] The author retired from his CPA job at KPMG to live the life of world travel and financial freedom. When he retired in 1984 he was making in excess of $125,000 a year. The concept works best where you have a high priced personal residence in a hot real estate market. The premise is that you sell your high priced house and your status car. Then you take the proceeds and invest it in a SAFE, CONSERVATIVE investment living off the interest and never touch the principle. You move to a lower priced area, either in the US or outside. A friend of mine spends much of his time in Costa Rica and tells me that one can still live there for $10,000 to $20,000 a year. I have been to Lake Chapala in Mexico where many Americans live a comfortable low cost life in a moderate temperate climate. A major consideration is health insurance and health care. Some people will be able to get continued coverage from their former employers or the employer of their spouse. For many people this does not work.
One of the basic concepts of the book is that you have money to begin with. If you have no money this process just won't work. But the author does have a chapter entitled "It takes less money than you think".Read more ›
The main premise of this book is that by tapping into equity you may already have (like your house), and keeping your expenses at a reasonable level, you may find that you are closer to retirement than you think.
A key component of Mr. Terhorst's philosophy is appropriately entitled "Don't work for your Assets". When you consider the amount of money that many of us spend on property taxes, car payments, car insurance, expensive toys, swimming pools, etc., who are we really working for? Are we working for ourselves or simply supporting our assets? His solution to this situation is to calculate how much those assets would be worth if they were converted to cash. When he went through the exercise for himself, he realized he had enough money to retire at age 35.
Many years after retiring and writing this book, Mr. Terhorst and his wife are still retired, doing what they want each day, instead of slaving away from 9 to 5 for someone else, which is a testament to the effectiveness of his early retirement philosophy.
An excellent book. Highly recommended.
John L. White, author "I'm in Debt, Over 40, With No Retirement Savings, HELP!"
Most Recent Customer Reviews
nice for an old book the author did retired at 35 and continues living outside the us mostly to stretch the dollars.Published 1 month ago by rglaredo
Our CPA gave us this book in 1990 - we were living in San Francisco with careers in Silicon Valley and downtown SF. Read morePublished 4 months ago by JOHN
As others noted, the subject is a bit outdated but there are still plenty of food for thought.Published 4 months ago by metheus
This book was written when banks had 8 percent interest in savings accounts. It is not practical now. That is the whole book, save up and let it grow in savings accounts.Published 9 months ago by William Dreesen
A very readable book and a very approachable strategy. In a nutshell, the goal here is to realize that you want to retire, and figure out what you need to do to get there. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Sam Mercer
Basically be born rich, get into Stanford and graduate Suma Cum Laude, be the youngest partner of the largest accounting company in the world, make 3 million dollars by 35 and then... Read morePublished 18 months ago by ourjewishstorysam