Goals for the New Year

Here in Canada, it’s coming up to New Year’s Eve and I’ve been reflecting mostly on the year that will be ahead of me. Similarly to how I will usually look at a company’s forward P/E ratio, instead of the past when considering which stocks to buy, I like to focus on what is ahead of me instead of what was behind.

I’ve decided to move to Canada (99% certain!) at the end of my teaching contract in Korea in Feb. 2016, so this year will mostly involve preparing for that. I want to be a financial adviser or portfolio manager of some kind and not a teacher. Here are some goals that I have:

1. Stockpile money in preparation for my return to Canada. I want to work a reasonable amount of overtime (maybe 12 hours/week) and save at least $2000/month, which will be transferred straight into my Canadian bank account. Combined with my housing deposit ($10 000), emergency fund ($10 000), money from selling stuff (~$3000), and pension payout (~$30 000), I hope to have at minimum $70 000, which is enough to get set-up (rent a house/ buy home furnishing/ buy a car and pay for insurance/ get a cellphone/ pay for health insurance before Canadian insurance kicks in/ move my cats to Canada/ buy toys that make me happy such as a paddleboard and bicycle) and live for 2-3 years without having to sell my stocks. It would be nice to have a portion of this money left for a down-payment on a condo or something when I get a real job.

2. Live frugally, even more so than now. I’ve had a pretty happy life in Korea these past 10 years, generally taking 2 trips abroad per year but after this trip to Vietnam I have coming up in February, I’m officially on lock-down and am going to be the master of the stay-cation. No more late-night taxis or eating at Western restaurants. Definitely no more shopping for things like home furnishings and clothes.

3. Be organized about leaving Korea. I’m going to make it my priority to stay on top of all the paperwork like requesting pension payouts and getting letters of reference. And, I want to start selling my stuff early, because the desperate people at the end always end up getting nothing for their stuff. Downsizing is going to be a year-long process.

4. Be organized about moving to Canada. I want to have an idea about where I will live, which cell-phone plan is the best deal, what kind of car I want, where I can buy it and for what price, have an acceptance letter for school, get transfer credits for courses I’ve already done and have networked with at least a few people in my new city before I move there.

5. Continue to focus on getting passive income streams set-up. I would like to continue to have at least $500 coming in per month for this next year and beyond. This will involve going on lock-down when I return to Korea and finishing the book I’m writing about personal finance for teachers abroad.

If you want my ever-so-prime job when I leave Korea, check out: How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams

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