Retirement isn’t a game, but it can feel that way. There are many ways to lose, but only one way to win: happiness. At Capital Investment Advisors, we make it our mission to help families retire sooner than they ever thought possible. The more we believe we’re teaching our clients, the more we realize that sometimes, they’re teaching us.
Susan and Robb are the latest examples of HROBs (Happiest Retirees on the Block) who seem to nail every retirement checkpoint. So, let’s take a look at their recipe for success.
Susan and Robb on a recent trip to Boston for a Braves vs. Red Sox series at Fenway Park.
How These Happy Retirees Are Supplementing Their Retirement Savings
Can you say multiple streams of income? They can. With two pieces of income-producing property in Woodstock and Blue Ridge, Georgia, and a photography/video business, they’re taking some of the pressure off that fixed income.
The only thing better than making more money is needing less of it. Robb and Susan have that concept covered, too. They’ve scaled back — selling two properties to buy their next primary residence with a renter apartment on the terrace level. Yes, the two-story dock is impressive, as is the entirety of this wholly gutted and renovated building, but what makes me stand up and cheer is constructing an apartment at the terrace level that they’re self-managing. Having operated the short-term apartment for six months, they’ve had over thirty bookings (Airbnb and VRBO) and achieved Super Host designation with over twenty five-star reviews.
Their Lake Allatoona property has a two-story private dock.
They are now relocated closer to their Blue Ridge home atop the exclusive My Mountain community. Purchased in 2018, their property has been the most consistent short-term rental on the My Mountain cabin list. If you’re interested in taking a trip, you better jump on it — it’s been sold out for most of the past two years.
Susan and Robb’s beautiful mountain view from their rental property in the North Georgia Mountains.
Robb and Susan Both Have Multiple Core Pursuits
Susan writes, draws, visits her twin grandkids in Portland, travels, rides horses, goes fishing, and volunteers. Not to be outdone, Robb has used his video and photography skills to shoot conventions, tradeshows, and corporate events around the country and over 1,500 concerts for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC). It’s been a steady stream of income for over twenty-five years. What began as an excuse to see free concerts led to the designation of AJC’s principal concert photographer (since 2002). He continues to pursue it because of a natural passion and enjoyment. Just take a look at his concert gallery here which features some of the biggest highlights of his live photography. Pretty hard not to relish the chance to see Barry Manilow, Bruce Springsteen, Carrie Underwood, and John Mayer. He even shot footage of me as the guest speaker at the SECO Optometrist convention a few years back.
Barry Manilow in 2023 at State Farm Arena on his Hits 2023 Tour (Robb Cohen for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
John Mayer at State Farm Arena in 2022 on his SOB Rock Tour (Robb Cohen for The Atlanta Journal Constitution)
Over the years of attending events for his business, Robb became especially passionate about volunteer photography. He enjoys shooting wishes and fundraisers for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The opportunity fell into his lap when he connected with the organization at the Tabernacle in Atlanta, GA for rapper and artist, Lecrae.
Together, Robb and Susan travel with their beloved Atlanta Braves. The overarching goal is to see them play in every Major League Baseball stadium in the U.S. and Canada. Eighteen and counting! Recent trips include Boston and Michigan. Outside of baseball, they’ve even jet-setted to Jamaica!
Robb and Susan on horseback in Jamaica! They honeymooned there and have returned six times.
Susan and Robb told us they feel so very blessed to be enjoying life. It wasn’t just luck. They worked hard to create this retirement together. Use their story as inspiration and education for your own. First, figure out what you want to do, where you want to go, and finally, with whom you want to share it. Knowing is more than half the battle. From there, follow the retirement principles in You Can Retire Sooner Than You Think and What the Happiest Retirees Know. You’ll be amazed at how much happiness a little direction and discipline can bring.
I can’t wait to hear your story.
Please note, Susan and Robb have given us permission to share their story and photos.