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annegriet

At what age did you retire?

Annegriet
6 years ago

Just curious. Were you happy with your decision. Did you find that you had to compromise your lifestyle at all?

Comments (50)

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I retired effective 31 Dec 2013. Shocked some folks I worked with, as they didn't think I was old enough to retire. In state service, you have to be 55. I had turned 64 in August 2013. :-)

    No, I didn't have to compromise anything. Hubs didn't compromise anything when he retired early in 2014, at the age of 63 - two months shy of his 64th birthday. Our gross income dropped $30k upon retirement, so at first glance you'd think we were screwed, but our net income went up by over $29k. We both have a retirement pension from the state as well as Social Security.

    We no longer have monthly deductions for SS or Medicare taxes, retirement contributions, parking, or union dues, which is why net income went up. And one retirement benefit is that the state pays our health insurance premiums, so we don't have that monthly deduction, either.

    Hubs hadn't planned on retiring when he did, but when we ran the numbers and found out his net income would go up by more than $2k per month it was a no-brainer. My monthly net went up more than $400. Nothing great, but I get to buy a lot of yarn with it! And Hubs gets to play as much golf as he wants.

    No one controls our schedules but us. It's great.

  • jakkom
    6 years ago

    I was 56. Stayed home while DH worked another 3 yrs; he retired age 56 also. Never made a lot of $$$, but MIL helped us out; she lived with us for 7 yrs before we had to move her to a seniorcare facility (she had moderate dementia) so sharing some costs helped a lot.

    We did our own financial planning starting about 15 yrs. before DH's final date, the very last day of 2009. I was lucky enough to have worked in the insurance and banking industry for decades, then worked for a very knowledgeable CFP on my last job. He really helped me understand how to stress-test all our assumptions, and see if we could still have a good lifestyle if everything went South all at once - which, of course, it did in 2008/9!

    Because we did so much planning, we had no problems when he retired despite the market chaos and overall downturn. In fact, it was a great time for us to pack up and travel - every place we went was empty, LOL. We were able to spend days at a time enjoying an area, instead of visiting for a weekend or just making a day trip. It's one of the ironies of where we live that millions of tourists come every year, but residents hardly have time to enjoy the area without fighting traffic roundtrip.

    We do at least one long trip every year, with a shorter 3-5 day trip planned every 6-7 weeks. We live in such a gorgeous area, but it is expensive to travel here. We're fortunate to have the extra $$$.

    Since we had numerous hobbies, retirement has been no problem for either of us. We always prized a good work/life balance, but it did mean we made a lot less money than most of our friends and family. So it was very interesting that during the downturn, we were the only ones who were able to retire on schedule. Everyone else either worked longer or cut back their plans substantially.

    Our income is higher now than it was when we were both working. We take minimal distributions from our portfolio - just started doing that when my MIL died in 2015. We aren't eligible yet for SocSec but will probably defer it as we don't need the money right now.

    One thing critical in our planning: we have no children, and very few family members around. So long term care was a big part of our strategy. We still own our own home, but within 5-7 yrs we'll sell and move into a senior facility. We'd rather do it sooner than later!

    There's an excellent one we have our eye on, but still haven't finished looking into other candidates. It's the best of the nine we've seen so far, but with MIL gone we can now look further afield, so we may move out of our neighborhood. That opens a whole new can of possible places.....!

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  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I also retired at 56 and I'm also not yet receiving SSecurity. I could get it at the reduced level now but I'll delay to get the max amount. Both of my parents were long-lived and I'll assume the same for myself. If that's not my destiny, waiting for the maximum benefit also affects the amount my wife would receive as a surviving spouse. Her parents both lived until their mid-90s

    I'm very happy with the decision and have no regrets.

  • C Marlin
    6 years ago

    We both retired at fifty, we haven't regretted retiring "early". We live a financially comfortable lifestyle.

  • sherwoodva
    6 years ago

    I retired at 65 only because I was fed up with my boss. Husband can't retire until 2020. A previous Director asked me to work for her as a contractor. I negotiated a part time schedule of 20 hours/week. Just retired from that job, as she is retiring. Have plenty of savings and a pension. I'm just starting to look at volunteer opportunities. It is so nice just to have the free time and be able to sleep in.

  • jooanie5
    6 years ago

    I retired at 62 at the end of 2014 because I had been unhappy in my job for quite awhile. My original plan was to go at 64....about the time we'd have the house paid off....but I couldn't take it anymore so we cashed in some stock to pay off the house. No regrets at all. With no house payment and DH still working we are fine financially. I have not filed for SS yet since we don't need the $. I get a small state pension since I worked for the schools (14 yrs) and our health insurance is pretty nominal through the school system.

    When DH decides to retire....we're the same age....we will then both file for SS and supplement if needed from our 401k.

    I not only retired because I was miserable in my job, but also because in 2013 I had a good friend die of colon cancer at 59 and a coworker die unexpectedly during surgery. She was 64 and had planned to retire in 6 months. It really made me think.....why am I getting up everyday and going to a job I dislike....I don't know how much time I have left but I sure as heck don't want to die still working and unhappy.

  • Annegriet
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Thanks for the response Jooanie5! I completely agree--why stay at a job that makes you miserable--life is too short--I also think the stress of working in a job that you don't like can wreak havoc with your health!

  • sedona16
    6 years ago

    I gave notice at my job of 32 years this summer at age 55. Hubby sold his business of 30 plus years six years earlier when he was 55. We live on the payments we receive from the sale of his business since neither of us are old enough to receive social security. We have no debts and several assets (including retirement investments) so it helped me walk away from a job I really liked but didn't love. Hubby had been wanting me to quit for a long time so we could spend more time together, travelling, etc. He was diagnosed with a terminal condition a few months after I left my job and I know for sure that leaving my job was the right decision. Buying private health insurance was something that I dreaded and probably kept me working longer than I should have. When I finally shopped for it I had many more choices than I did when I was employed (employer gave us three choices, all with high deductibles). And I was surprised that we qualified for a monthly discount (they don't care how much you have in assets) and since we only have one source of income we are currently getting a rate comparable with what I paid when I was employed but I like the terms better.

    So I have been absolutely happy with my choice to "retire".


    PS I never know if I should refer to myself as retired since I'm not drawing from a retirement account yet. I'm probably just unemployed, but loving it all the same!

  • Annegriet
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    I applaud your decision to spend time with your husband and enjoy your time together. I am of the believe that you can always make more money but God isn't making any more time for any of us. Good luck to you and your husband.

  • littlebug zone 5 Missouri
    6 years ago

    I was 59 11/12 when I retired last year. I, too, was fed up with my boss. If he had moved on and I had a different boss, I probably would have worked at least a couple of years longer.

    I still work part-time - about 10 hours a week - at the same organization. I contribute everything I earn from the part-time job to my IRA and Christmas Club and live on my retirement benefit from our state-funded system. (I had 31 years in the system.) I am still receiving about the same amount of money now, that I did when I was working full-time.

    DH still enjoys his job and continues to work full-time. I am lucky that I am able to purchase my healthcare through his job at about $250/month. I hope he works until we both qualify for Medicare!


  • 2katz4me
    6 years ago

    It's definitely a plus if you have a government (taxpayer) funded pension and health insurance. Some of the rest of us must continue working beyond our 50's to fund our retirement and in doing so we're also indirectly funding those government pensions. We pay so much in taxes that sometimes I think I'd rather just quit working so I can put a stop to it. With the upcoming election the politicians are talking about all the "free" stuff they'll give people if they're elected. Free? Who do people think pays for all of this?

    DH owns his own small business and in trying to take care of his employees, provide them with health insurance (which has increased astronomically since Obamacare) and invest in the business, he pays himself very little. If I quit working we'd probably qualify for government subsidies ourselves if assets aren't counted since his income is so low. I'm about ready to jump on the "free" bandwagon myself - getting tired of working so hard to fund free stuff for others. Okay, end of rant.

  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago

    Healthcare costs (the costs that insurance reimburses) continue to increase at faster rates than the general cost of living and that has been so for most of the last 25 years. That's a primary reason for the continuing increase in insurance costs, though not the only one.

  • azmom
    6 years ago

    Jakkom,

    "He really helped me understand how to stress-test all our assumptions, and see if we could still have a good lifestyle if everything went South all at once - "

    Could you please share how you stressed test all your assumptions? Thank you in advance.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    "It's definitely a plus if you have a government (taxpayer) funded pension and health insurance. Some of the rest of us must continue working beyond our 50's to fund our retirement and in doing so we're also indirectly funding those government pensions."

    Two of the three state agencies for which I worked were not part of the General Fund -- that is, their budgets came from money that they raised -- not tax dollars. California State employees contribute a percentage of their salary each month to their own retirement fund, as does the agency for which they work. CalPERS funds the retirement pensions from those contributions as well as from investments.

    Our (CA State employees) monthly retirement benefit is calculated according to which retirement tier you're in. Hubs and I were both Tier I -- so our monthly benefit is a percentage of our 12 months' highest salary (averaged if you've received a pay increase somewhere during that 12 months) times the number of years of state service that you have. For Tier I, it's a basic 2% at 55. That means if you retire at age 55, you get 2% of your salary for every year you have of state service. However, if you work beyond age 55, the percentage goes up a tiny bit each year until it tops out at 2.5% at age 63. Hubs and I were both over the age of 63 when we retired; he had 31 years of state service, and I had 25 years. (The Tier II retirement is 1.25% at age 65.)

  • Annegriet
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Lindsey--great explanation. I am very happy for you. It sounds like you worked very hard and saved.

  • azmom
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    '"It's definitely a plus if you have a government (taxpayer) funded pension and health insurance. Some of the rest of us must continue working beyond our 50's to fund our retirement and in doing so we're also indirectly funding those government pensions."

    First, Same could be said about small business owners who get write-off for all type of business related expense (including meals, travels, entertainments...etc), which folks like us working as employees for companies never could have. Also, they could make their income "so low" that folks working for companies could never have the options to alter it.

    Second, would appreciate if you could provide a list of employee retirement programs are funded by taxpayers.

  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago

    "a list of employee retirement programs are funded by taxpayers"


    ?????


    All retirement programs that cover governmental employees (at any level of government) are funded by taxpayers. Did you mean something else?

  • Annegriet
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Don't government workers fund their own retirements? I know I pay 8% of my salary each paycheck to the retirement fund. My employer also contributes money to the defined pension plan. How is this different from corporations? Corporations match employee contributions to their retirement plans. I think government workers get pension/security instead of crazy huge salaries with opportunities for bonuses.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    "Don't government workers fund their own retirements? I know I pay 8% of my salary each paycheck to the retirement fund. My employer also contributes money to the defined pension plan."

    I think what Gibby2015 meant was that the amount that the employer contributes is contributed from taxpayer dollars. But Gibby should read each and every bargaining contract for each and every state and local government before making such an assumption.

    As I stated earlier, "two of the three state agencies for which I worked were not part of the General Fund -- that is, their budgets came from money that they raised -- not tax dollars." So, the money automatically deducted from each of my paychecks and deposited into my retirement account was not tax dollars. Further, the employer (whichever agency/department you worked for) also contributed an amount each month into each employee's retirement account. But here's the kicker -- per our contract, those contributions are to be made from the same source of funds as used in paying the wages. So, at least in the case of the employees at two of the agencies for which I worked, none of the retirement fund contributions were made from tax dollars.

    Oh -- that third agency was actually the first agency for which I worked. And I, along with the majority of employees there, was what's known as a Permanent Intermittent employee (although we worked overtime nearly every day - usually a total of 12-16 hours a day instead of 8). As a PI, you cannot join the retirement system until after you've worked there for six months. So, at the end of the sixth month, I became a member of CalPERS, and retirement contributions came out of my month 7 and month 8 checks. Then I transferred to another agency (at a higher classification and substantial increase in pay). So, only 2 months' worth of my retirement contributions were made from taxpayer dollars. Big whoop. Retirement contributions only came out of your regular pay -- not out of overtime pay -- and I think we were making $8.50 an hour.

  • Annegriet
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Got it. Thanks for the explanation--you did a good job delineating what Gibby2015 meant. So I understand that the government runs on taxpayer money and government pensions are therefore sometimes funded by tax money. But what is the big deal about this? The government has to run and to do that, it needs good qualified employees. I love this HOUZZ site and certainly wouldn't want to get into a big argument with anyone here about big government vs small government and all of the implications of each. I do think, however, that even small governments need good employees to make the state run efficiently and these folks need pensions since they don't make huge salaries. So, yes, some government employees have pensions funded by taxpayers and I don't have a problem with that--I want my state government to run smoothly.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    Anne, to be fair and unbiased I do have to say that there are government employees who aren't worth their salt. Civil service can be awesome in that you cannot be fired at whim (i.e., your supervisor can't fire you because he/she doesn't like the color of the shirt you're wearing that day), which CAN (and does) happen in the private sector, but because of the civil service protections, many supervisors don't want to go through the hassle of documenting the bad/poor/indifferent employees to the point where they can terminate them. Often what happens is that a lousy employee just gets moved to another unit and becomes another supervisor's problem. The retirement plan, the health, dental, and vision care benefits are great, as are paid vacation days.

    There are also aspects that suck. California State employees had to suffer through unpaid furlough days for several years. There was a significant period of time when we had THREE unpaid days per month. And when you're a two-income family with both wage earners being State employees, that really sucks. My husband and I both worked for agencies that were not paid out of the General Fund, but both of our agencies furloughed their employees. One furlough day was equal to about 4.9% of your salary, so three furlough days was 14.7% of your salary -- and the higher your salary, the more you lost to furloughs. Not only did we not get that money back, it also affected our retirement benefits because you can't get credit for salary you didn't receive.

    Yes, for a period of time the employees got unpaid days off for the furlough days. But then the Governor decided it wasn't enough punishment and we were switched to unpaid days worked.

  • Annegriet
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    You make some excellent points. However, in general, I am tired of public sector workers being demonized for a few bad apples. In particular, I am frustrated that we are always talking about first responders and how incredible they are yet we don't want them to have pensions or earn decent livings. I am all for the guy running into the burning building have a city/state pension and a decent salary! Same for the guy willing to wear a flak jacket to work, the guy in the big hole in the road I saw fixing pipes today, social workers, teachers and all the rest. Just my two cents on a Friday night.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    I agree, Anne, that the good public sector employees outnumber the bad ones. But, as in all aspects of life, the bad ones get the publicity.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    I agree, AZMom, state and local governments don't have a lock on lousy employees.

  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    No, but too often we all encounter public employees who, often because of a lack of energy, a lack of initiative or other reasons, are unwilling to take responsibility or act on something within the scope of their jobs. It's easy for people like this to hide in a bureaucracy and point fingers elsewhere when there are problems. Several people I know socially who are public workers fit this description personality-wise. It's because of employees like these that people develop a negative view toward public workers. It's wrong to paint a large group with one brush but the perception is what it is.

    Public jobs have historically attracted people who were looking for security and stability (absent periodic funding hiccups lindsey describes). That sometimes was the trade-off for a lower salary compared to a comparable private sector job but public sector wages and benefits these days are more competitive than they used to be.

    While not always the case, and sometimes less so in bigger companies, it's easier in the private sector to terminate employees with sub-par performance. Those low-performing, non-terminatable government workers are also who we can encounter in our dealings with these folks.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    Oh, another comment I wanted to make regarding the complaint of "government (taxpayer) funded pensions." Please don't forget that government employees are taxpayers, too.

  • jakkom
    6 years ago

    azmom, I apologize for not
    following this thread and answering your question:

    >>Could you please
    share how you stressed test all your assumptions? [re retirement]>>

    If you go to a planner, the
    chances are they'll use a computer program to run Monte
    Carlo simulations on your situation and assumptions. Like anything
    else, there are differing levels of quality in the softwares, and the more
    expensive programs run an enormous ## of simulations.

    I seem to vaguely recall that
    cheaper programs run maybe 2-4K scenarios, but expensive programs run two or
    three times that many. But don't quote me, it's been YEARS since I was clipping
    articles from financial columnists like Liz Pulliam Weston, Jason Zweig and
    Brett Arends!

    At the time we didn't have
    enough assets to use a CFP. But having a previous background in insurance,
    where I worked with underwriters who evaluated morbidity and mortality risk, had
    helped me to understand what a physical risk profile is, and the equally
    important concept of risk mitigation.

    On my last job as an
    Administrator - basically the client liaison - for an independent CFP, I also
    typed any long documents, which were the financial plans done for clients. One
    of the CFP's was an eldercare specialist (she was a former social worker); she
    did all the financial plans by hand, no computer s/w involved.

    It took her a minimum four
    weeks to do a full financial plan, more usually 6-8 weeks (she also took care
    of a small group of assigned clients, so she only spent about 50-60% of her
    time on doing plans).

    A plan ran from 25-40 pages
    in length; mostly text, very few charts. It covered every aspect of a client's
    financial profile: from whether there was sufficient auto/homeowner coverage to
    the odds of achieving the client(s) stated long-term goals based on their
    current financial situation.

    Such plans cost a minimum of
    $6,000 and ran up to $12K, depending on the complexity of a client's financial
    and legal situation, especially if family money was involved and/or the spouse
    also worked (which brings in its own issues into a comprehensive plan).

    Being able to read plans that
    detailed a "holistic approach" was extremely helpful to me in illustrating how financial
    planning worked. Like most people I had heard the term but didn't really
    understand it. In those days there were very, very few articles on retirement
    planning and what factors were involved.

    What I learned was:

    - Planning has almost nothing
    to do with investing. Planning is affected by savings, but savings are not a
    good substitute for planning!

    - Good planning involves
    looking at ALL aspects of your risk profile. This means:

    * Your physical risk profile, including your
    family's medical history

    * Your employment and its associated risks:
    Is it stable? What would happen if you lost your job? What happens if you can't
    find a new job easily? (Remember, this was long before the 2008/9 market chaos
    and massive unemployment!)

    * If your household finances depend on your
    spouse's earnings, what happens if those earnings are reduced or stop entirely?
    Can your household manage? For how long?

    * What are your goals - short-term,
    medium-term, long-term?

    * If you're part of a couple, have you both
    agreed on what your long-term goals are?

    * What are the biggest risks to NOT
    achieving those goals? Can you lower any of that risk? Do you know where to
    go/who to ask for advice for risk mitigation in a specific situation?

    * If you don't achieve one or more of those goals,
    will that affect your future lifestyle plans? If so, how will you cope with
    those changes?

    * Have you included inflation in your
    financial calculations?

    * Do you have a fallback plan, in case of
    disability, severe injury, or catastrophic illness?

    * How would your retirement be affected if
    you had to retire earlier than planned? What adjustments are realistically
    possible?

    * Have you planned for extreme old age? Have
    you assessed your home for universal access capabilities, and is it worth the
    expense of altering? Do you know what facilities cost in your area, and which
    ones you want to avoid? Do you think your assets would last long enough? Do you
    know where to look for home healthcare assistance and (if necessary) any public
    funds to help you?

    * Are
    your legal docs in order, do the right people have copies, and do they know who
    your doctor, attorney, tax advisor, and financial advisor are, with all contact
    info?

    * Do
    your heirs/beneficiaries know what you want done in case of medical emergency? Does
    your agent have an up-to-date copy of your Healthcare Durable Power of
    Attorney?

    In short, good financial
    planning means thinking about what can go wrong, and knowing that often, bad
    things can happen on multiple fronts, all at once. You cannot solve every
    problem, and so you cannot be 100% protected from everything bad.

    What you can be, is be
    mentally prepared - because you have spent time and effort thinking various
    scenarios through, so that as little as possible 'catches you by surprise'. You
    should mitigate risk as best you can; whether physical, financial, or legal. Where
    are your biggest risks, and how much do they threaten the achievement of your
    goals?

    That's why [good] financial
    planning is expensive to buy, and takes considerable thought/time if you want
    to DIY. It's always customized, whether your assets total $40 Million or $40
    thousand.

    Only you can decide how much
    $$$ to devote to risk mitigation. What is crucial for me might be unimportant
    to you. There's probably more, but this is all I can think of, off the top of
    my head. HTH!

  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago

    I disagree with some of the preceding comments.


    Personal financial planners/advisers aren't gurus with crystal balls. Retirement planning involves considering many aspects of one's personal finances. A 25-40 page report is going to be 22-35 pages of standard boilerplate that can be found in any of the many books that are available. For people who aren't financially astute, reading up in advance on the various topics to consider is a good idea. A realignment of investments may or may not be advisable, but again, such assessments aren't rocket science. For things like stock market investments, most fund plan sponsors have sections suggesting appropriate asset diversification for retirees.


    As for retirement income calculations, these are also boilerplate insofar as there are software packages and Excel spreadsheets that produce standard projections. Such projections can also be done by anyone with basic familiarity with Excel. Future income and asset assessments can be very useful for the individuals concerned.


    My personal opinion is that Monte Carlo analyses aren't useful in retirement planning. It's nothing more than a probability analysis of what all would agree are variable outcomes in any event. A +/- sensitivity analysis accomplishes the same outcome, how retirement income and assets vary by different movements in the stock market or other investment assets.


    Good retirement planning can be accomplished by following a checklist (widely available) to be sure each key factor is properly investigated and assessed. Estate planning (with a lawyer) is a side project to consider but that's also something that for most people should have been done decades before retirement age is near.

  • artemis_ma
    6 years ago

    I am putting in for retirement in a couple of months, which means I will be working for up to three months more, although I suspect it will be two months max. I'm 62 (and will still be 62). I have always been financially cautious, and I do have a good financial adviser who has helped out a lot over the years. I'll be getting a pension and a 401K, plus I have other savings. I have no intention of drawing from SS until I have to. I think I'll be fine.

    Those of us who have been in service where I work long enough to still have a pension -- will see that go away in 2019 or thereabouts if we haven't retired by then. Good incentive!

  • SaltiDawg
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    In spite of having a low IQ, I fully retired 22 years ago at age 52. Additionally, I've got considerably more money in my portfolio now then I did at the age of retirement.

    (Also, I paid off my home mortgage ten years ago.)

    No change in financial lifestyle. Just more time to enjoy my interests.

  • jakkom
    6 years ago

    >>A 25-40 page report is going to be 22-35 pages of standard boilerplate that can be found in any of the many books that are available. >>

    It's wonderful how you can make assumptions, Snidely, about something you've never seen and never will. OTOH, I've seen those personalized reports, and read a lot of retirement planning books, and there is NO comparison. That CFP did a lot of work on each report, and they were highly individualized. I've seen a $2K financial plan generated by a software program and it was kindergarten level in comparison.

    The prelim for the report required three meetings with the client(s). Although scheduled for 90 min each they often ran longer. And she read every single word of every single legal contract the client had - from auto insurance to trust docs. We copied hundreds of pages of legal docs before she could begin the process. She was meticulous about her work, as I'm sure you were about yours.

    >>Estate planning (with a lawyer) is a side project to consider but that's also something that for most people should have been done decades before retirement age is near.>>

    And if wishes were horses, beggars would ride, as the saying goes. Most people SHOULD, very few people HAVE, which you know as well as any of us do.

    Don't you ever get tired of being contemptuous/patronizing about everybody's qualifications except your own? It must be exhausting to be so perfect, LOL.

  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    jakkom, I'm going to try to do something that you didn't try to do - respond to your comments with no intent to insult you.

    With all due respect, you say worked as an administrator to a planner. You coordinated client meetings and you typed reports. Don't assume your understanding of the tasks or the subject matter compares to that of someone with the training and experience to DO the work. As with nurses who too often can begin to think that their understanding of what they do is comparable to that of the doctors they assist. It isn't the case.

    What I will observe is that someone who needs to copy hundreds of pages of docs, read auto insurance policies (Really?), and prepares dozens of pages of copy manually doesn't know what they're doing. The best professionals (of any kind) are brief and succinct, they identify and act on the key factors involved, and they process and condense their recommendations and findings so that it can all be easily referred to and understood. All possible unforeseen happenings don't need to be addressed in a financial plan, most have very low likelihood of occurring. A much better approach is "when your facts change or if something happens, call me."

    You are repeating terms and reporting what you observed but not all seems to be stuff you fully understand. Nor, apparently, did some of the people you were working with. I'm sure you work was important and appreciated but stick to what you know.

  • WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a
    6 years ago

    I was a bit over 70 years old when I retired.

  • zippity1
    6 years ago

    dh and i retired at 59 1/2 he worked at a large corp for 40 years and i worked in public service including teaching for 27 years and private sector for almost 20 , we both worked a total of 46 years each fortunately he planned ahead and we contributed to retirement savings for 30 years and he has a generous retirement plan and mine is minimal after 3.5 yrs we have not withdrawn from our savings my only "complaint" is that after working all those years i am only able to draw about 2000 dollars a month from pension and none from social security, after working in the private sector for 20 years if anything were to happen to him i would draw 40 percent of his pension and my 24,000 all of this due to the windfall elimination plan (results from teaching in Tx or 15 other states)

    we have lots of hobbies and travel plans and our health is reasonably good (unless i expounded on all our issues, then you'd think we were both sickly) retirement is really great......

    teaching the last 5 years was pretty much unpleasant....

  • Elmer J Fudd
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    You were a teacher yet you don't punctuate or write proper sentences? Yikes, that's just common courtesy.

    I won't read what you wrote, sorry.

  • Lindsey_CA
    6 years ago

    Snidely, perhaps she taught art or phys ed. :-)

  • WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a
    6 years ago

    Regardless of what was taught, any teacher should use correct spelling, punctuation, and sentence structure.

  • artemis_ma
    5 years ago

    Retired at age 62, this past July. Maybe it's too early to tell, but I'm doing fine and not remotely regretting it. I always saved, so I don't expect any big compromises other than the ones I was already doing all along.

  • lam702
    5 years ago

    I retired at 61, end of June 2016. I have no regrets as of yet, trying to catch up on projects around the house that I never seemed to have time for. We planned for retirement starting in our 20's, saved, contributed to our 401k's and did most of our home improvements DIY. We lived moderately frugally, without depriving ourselves of things we really needed or wanted.

  • zippity1
    5 years ago

    59 1/2 for both of us

  • Pamela White
    5 years ago

    I retired last year at 52. I've been single since 2000, had $30k to my name. I saved my butt off, maxed ROTH, 401k, etc. I bought a small retirement house and rented it out until I was ready to move there. Sold my other house and I'm at my daughter's waiting for the tenants to move out next month.

    I too was tired of my job, forcing myself to go to work every day. The company filed bankruptcy 4 years ago and we languished in run-off for 2 years (insurance). They were bought by a national company and it became a place I didn't want to be. They did a couple of rounds of layoffs and the last one I was told that my job would be changing to something I hated doing. I said I would just quit then. My VP scrambled, saved someone else's job, and got me the severance package instead. I was thrilled to be paid to leave like I wanted to!

    I'm fine on retirement funds and withdrawing 3.8% per year. I'll take SS at age 62 since there's no reason not to and will leave me more disposable income.

  • fuzzy wuzzy
    4 years ago

    The major investment companies have retirement planners on their websites. You do not usually have to be a client. I am particularly fond of the Fidelity Retirement Income Planner that allows for a very detailed expense analysis and tracks your investments. You could perform these analyses before spending money on an "adviser".

  • marielle
    4 years ago

    This is an old thread but it caught my attention. I was 48 years old when I retired. I started working full time at the age of 17. I am now 63 and each day I smile thinking how smart I was to quit the rat race at such an early age.

  • mary_md7
    4 years ago

    I retired for the first time at 56, because I was burned out, stressed out, and tired of my job. Plus, the Mr. was willing to go along with it. I knew I'd work again, so I called it my "first retirement." That involved staying home for 14 months, during which I got certified as a master gardener.

    I went back to work in a less stressful role, and only worked 3 or 4 days a week for the rest of my employment time. I retired for the second and final time at 61, at the end of March 2016. I won't be going back again.

    At this point, I'm using after-tax savings, without dipping into an emergency fund. I plan to start using some IRA/401k funds around the time I turn 64 (maybe a 3% withdrawal, still working on those numbers). But I won't file for SS until I'm 66 (my full SS retirement age).

  • PRO
    Joseph Corlett, LLC
    4 years ago
    last modified: 4 years ago

    I damn near retired this year at 61 when they tried to quadruple my liability insurance, but I found some. I like my work and it pays well; I don't know if I'll ever "retire" in the conventional sense, I'll just keep raising my rates.

  • Mrs Pete
    4 years ago
    last modified: 4 years ago

    I'm not retired yet, but I'm getting close. I anticipate retiring at age 55. We've planned carefully, and we expect things to work out like this:

    Early retirement years:

    With our house and cars paid for, my pension will cover the bare-bones of our month-to-month needs. I will have my basic medical paid, and I will be able to cover him (at cost). We will be eleven years too young for Social Security. We intend to work either part-time or seasonally rather than dip into our savings too early. For example, if I substitute teach 8 days a month, I'll have as much money as I make now. We're also interested in "fun work" such as working at the seasonal Renaissance Faire. We have plans for travel and other such things in these years. We are not against using our savings at this point, but we want to do it sparingly /want to see that money continue to grow for later years, when we may need it more for medical issues, and we may see inflation eat into our spending power.

    Middle retirement years:

    67 is full retirement age for both of us, and we're operating on the assumption that we'll begin collecting Social Security at 67. With two Social Security checks, we stop any part-time work in which we've been involved, and we will have more money than we are spending now ... and we won't have withdrawn much from our retirement savings.

    Later retirement years:

    Looking at our ages and health, this probably means just me. I'm assuming his Social Security will be gone, and we are assuming that inflation will hurt the value of my pension ... so it may not be enough to cover my basic needs at this point, especially because I may be paying for house cleaning, etc. -- things that I won't need to pay for in early retirement. However, at this point it'll be fine for me to dip into our savings.

    We have calculated the above general thoughts using real numbers, and we feel confident about financial security in our retirement years. Our biggest concern, of course, is medical needs.

    Regardless of what was taught, any teacher should use correct spelling, punctuation, and sentence structure.

    I do agree that anyone who teaches should be able to write well; however -- in my experience -- it's the elementary teachers who come across worst in terms of the written word.

    All retirement programs that cover governmental employees (at any level of government) are funded by taxpayers. Did you mean something else?

    False, but not entirely false.

    I'm a state employee. When I retire, I will have contributed 8-10% of my salary to the state pension fund for 30 years. That money has been invested and has grown. The taxpayers won't be funding my retirement; rather, the state will be returning my own investment to me.

    HOWEVER, a pension is a defined benefit program, which means I cannot outlive my investment. If I retire at 55 and live only 5 years, the state wins ... they get to keep a bunch of my money. and I'd die unhappy knowing that I couldn't leave that money to my kids. On the other hand, if I live to be 105, my money will run out, and -- yes -- the taxpayers will kick in for my later years.

    Actuaries work on these numbers, and they predict how long the average employee will live -- and that's how they decide how much to withdraw from our paychecks. On average, people will live just about long enough to "make back" their own contributions plus interest earned.

    I'm fine on retirement funds and withdrawing 3.8% per year. I'll take SS at age 62 since there's no reason not to and will leave me more disposable income.

    Well, there is one reason not to take SS at age 62: For every year you take your benefits early (early meaning prior to your full retirement age, which is probably 67), you sacrifice 6% of your benefit. To say it differently, if you could collect $1500 at full retirement age ... and instead you take it five years early (at age 62), your monthly benefit would only be $1050 ... that's a great deal of income to give up for the rest of your life. Obviously, I made several assumptions in that equation, but consider exactly how much that 6% per year would be for you personally.

  • SaltiDawg
    4 years ago
    last modified: 4 years ago

    Regarding taking early/late SS. The amounts are intended to be actuarialy neutral as far as at what age you opt for benefits.

    In the best scenario, start taking at age 62 and die at age 66. lol

  • Elmer J Fudd
    4 years ago
    last modified: 4 years ago

    Salti, I think a more accurate term is to say that the early/late SS amounts are actuarially equal, if the person lives under any starting age scenario to the expected age used in the calculations.

    Mrs Pete, in another thread you recently commented that others had added wrong information to the conversation. The same is true for your comments here. You don't understand these topics to the extent you seem to think you do.

  • SaltiDawg
    4 years ago
    last modified: 4 years ago

    You may chose whatever terminology that you want, the SSA uses the term I cited.


    You are, however, totally correct about Mrs. Pete

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