5 early retirement success stories

Doug Brown and Lisa Zandt
Chris Tucker

Doug Brown and Lisa Zandt fully embraced the notion of a nontraditional retirement path. They were sales and marketing managers at a large Fortune 500 company and then retired to sail full time for nine years.

"We were doing well financially and had always been enamored with the sailing lifestyle," Lisa says. "We got to the point where the stress of the corporate life was too much. At the same time, the company started going through reorganization and restructuring, and our division was cut."

The couple sold nearly everything -- house, cars, almost all of their possessions -- and bought a sailboat. They lived all around the Caribbean and South America. "Living on a boat outside of the U.S. was much less expensive than living in the U.S.," she says.

After nine years of embracing simplicity, they decided to come back to the United States and start their own business. They now run a CareMinders Home Care franchise in Tucson, Ariz.

"You don't need $10 million to retire," says Lisa.


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