I’m sure y’all remember back in the day when the FIRE (that stands for Fuck It, Retire Early) collectively took a giant coiler on Suze Orman and her AUDACITY of having an opinion that there are just too many variables to count on a million bucks lasting 50-60 years, even if you’re damn cheap. If you don’t remember, don’t worry! I wrote about it.
Naturally, Suze was attacked with more vigor than blue checkmarks on Twitter going after that MAGA hat kid (TOPICAL!). She didn’t get it, went every blog post ever, because she is so rich she doesn’t remember what it’s like to be a regular person. They dismissed Suze’s valid criticisms with studies that prove the math behind early retirement is foolproof. (Spoiler alert: it’s not)
The big issue, at least from this guy’s perspective, is healthcare. Canadian readers might be blissfully unaware of this, but I’m constantly amazed at how expensive U.S. healthcare is. I’m as capitalist as they come and even I have to admit it just doesn’t work. There’s just too many people looking for a piece of the pie.
Orman was specifically referring to long-term care when talking about these medical risk, and she’s onto something. Look at these numbers:
You’re looking at $100k per year in today’s dollars to stay in a nursing home.
That’s okay, you say. I can just insure away those risks.
Uh, no. Long-term care insurance essentially doesn’t exist in the United States any longer. Genworth, who used to offer it, stopped because the underlying care costs went up way faster than even the worst case model predicted.
Think about this for a second. Insurance executives, who are smart guys who think about insurance every hour of every day, took a look at this risk and noped out of it. What chance do you have of guarding against it?
Anyway, good news. At least for all the Americans reading this. I have a way you can have your cake and eat it too.
Move to Canada, yo
You know you want to. You’ve probably been thinking about it ever since Trump got elected.
Two political references in one post? You’re on thin ice, pal.
Health care isn’t the only reason for you to join us up here, either. All you really need to do is make sure you have enough money to last until age 65 and then you’re golden.
Don’t believe me? Check out all the programs Canadians have to help out seniors:
- Guaranteed Income Supplement
- Old Age Security
- Spouse’s allowance
- Discounted prescriptions
- Income splitting
- Fantastic taxation on dividends
- Discounted housing programs
- Government subsidized assisted living and long-term care
And so on. There are a million of these, which collectively can save seniors between $10-$30,000 a year. Yes, really.
Related story time. My grandparents, despite having a sizable nest egg, qualified for $500/month rent at a local seniors’ apartment. The reason? The assets were all invested in GICs that didn’t pay much of anything. This kept their income low, which qualified them for discounted rent. They’re now milking that same teat at the local assisted living facility.
These programs are everywhere in Canada. And nobody dares cut them because they know seniors are the only ones with enough spare time to actually go and vote.
More bonuses for Canada
You’ll likely pay higher taxes while you’re working here in Canada and winter blows, but those disadvantages are nothing compared to the perks of living in the Great White North. You’ll get:
- An instant 33% boost to your net worth when converting your U.S. Dollars to Loonies
- Health insurance that covers absolutely everything (including dentists, prescriptions, eye wear, chiropractic, and travel insurance) for about $100-$300 a month, depending if you can get your employer to pay for half. Most can.
- Way fewer murders
- Some of the nicest cities in the world
- Cheap housing (assuming you stay away from Vancouver and Toronto)
- A national pension plan that isn’t insolvent
- The handsomest Prime Minister
- Basically be Nelson’s neighbor
Now I’m not going to pretend emigrating to Canada is as easy as showing up at the border and asking pretty please. But it’s not really that hard, either. There are plenty of investor programs that are basically begging for foreigner money in exchange for citizenship. Americans will do well at the ranking system used to sort applications too, because we share a common language and it’s easy to visit Canada to check the place out.
Manitoba has a entrepreneur pathway that just about every American with a US$1 million net worth would qualify for. Winnipeg isn’t that bad. Ontario, Quebec, and B.C. each have similar programs. It’ll take a minimum $150,000 investment in Nova Scotia to get residence there. This is very achievable. There are also plenty of skilled worker programs that make it relative easy for teachers, nurses, doctors, and so on to switch. Canadians all know a person or two who went to the states in search for more money. It was a thing for a while there, we called it the brain drain.
Okay, let’s wrap this up
Health care in the United States has the ability to screw even the most well-laid plans. Coming to Canada (or any country with socialized medicine, really) will take that risk away. So if you want to FIRE, join us up in Canada. We’ll save some poutine for ya and we promise to explain all the rules of hockey.