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Waiting to 65 to retire - death risk versus finances

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I liked my job too but realized that it was just a job with no real lasting effect that couldn't be done by whoever replaced me. I wanted to be able to spend my days doing things that I consider to be important, which is the reason we chose to live the RV volunteer lifestyle. Now that it has been 18 years since I retired, we still enjoy working at things that we believe to be important. I write this while sitting in the RV at our latest resident volunteer RV site. 🤗

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36 minutes ago, Kirk Wood said:

I liked my job too but realized that it was just a job with no real lasting effect that couldn't be done by whoever replaced me. I wanted to be able to spend my days doing things that I consider to be important, which is the reason we chose to live the RV volunteer lifestyle. Now that it has been 18 years since I retired, we still enjoy working at things that we believe to be important. I write this while sitting in the RV at our latest resident volunteer RV site. 🤗

"I liked my job too but realized that it was just a job with no real lasting effect that couldn't be done by whoever replaced me.

"We retired on a Friday and the next day the entire Air traffic control system did not miss a beat"

I like that. One of my promises to myself was that whatever I did would have absolutely nothing to do  with what I had done during my work career. I have driven a school bus,  been a over the road charter driver, been a cast member at Disney World, traveled over this great country. What's next we have no idea.None of those things paid much but they are adventures of our choosing.

"

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My Dave still does a lot of software writing and computer consulting. Just now he doesn't get paid for it so he gets to chose what to do when. Currently he spends a lot of time working on model railroad signaling systems. He's back to thinking it's fun.

Linda

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in one word.

money.

cash in and  cash out.   at 58 things keep happing that put my back into debt. just this month a $4000.usd repair bill for my truck. got some bills to pay off. and then income.  pension comes online at 65 for me. ( age + years, it's a union thing). and ss payout 100% at 67%. 

i should get somewhere between $3000. and $4000. usd a month (gross).   net ???.

i have worked hard all my life ( started at age 10) but had three years total off due to a crushed leg, neck surgery, cancer. when i retire i do not want to work again. would like to enjoy life at my pace. no worrys, about bills, or where i park my home.

so money drives it all. if i could be set up today for no money worrys. i would not go in work on thursday ( my monday).

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I retired at 55 due to disability. I now receive 3 checks, 2 tax free and the other will not be taxed due to that is my only income. Two years ago I was diagnosed with cancer. We were in Mesa, Az and I have a fantastic oncologist. It is in remission but I have to take a cancer pill every day. I am more busy in retirement due to the grandkids that I ever was working. When you retire you had better hang on. 

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On 6/20/2018 at 10:20 AM, Barbaraok said:

Pack rat, in your planning remember to subtract Medicare Part B from your SS each month.  

yes cost is a unknown right now.

but that is why i said "gross" not "net"

i do understand there will be a loss involved. i will go the cheapest way i can, if i get sick i will just walk into a er room,

if bad sick, party time.

fi d a nice place to watch all the remaining sunsets i have left.

NO not a death wish. just do not fear death. many times in my life i have been trying to kick in deaths door. so on with life till the end.

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Quote

things keep happing that put my back into debt.

It is all about money management. The earlier you start to manage what you have the more successful you will be as it takes time to be effective. Credit can be a very helpful tool if used properly but can also destroy your future if mismanaged. The later in life you are and the more deeply in debt, the more time that it will take. It is difficult to stick to a retirement plan when you are only 30, but if you wait until you are 50 to start to plan you aren't likely to be retired when the people who started at 30 get there. 

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On 6/13/2018 at 4:01 PM, JRP said:

I'm not sure if your glasses are too rosy or you lead a sheltered life, or you're choosing the wrong words to describe this complex situation. When you start traveling around the country you will find dozens of trailer parks in all areas of the country, filled with folks forced to decide between fuel for travel or food for survival.  

Something tells me those people would be in the same situation if they lived in a S&B.  

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On 6/12/2018 at 5:23 AM, offroad said:

 

*****************

Am retiring early with significant cut in pension, but SS at 62 will cover that mostly.  Please comment about your perception.  Can see living day to day, and just rolling the dice; but best to get out and starting living that RV life now.      

 

  

 

Retired at 62, DW at 57 - both in pretty good shape - nothing to slow us down.
We've always been worker bees.  Can't seem to stop doing projects, saving and investing.

But finally did a detailed analysis of our financials; expenses, income and projected income.
The outcome was that our modest lifestyle will probably never eat through our incomes/savings . . .short of a devastating illness. 

The advisor to the advisors posted this article:
Retirees Aren’t Spending The Way They “Should” - It might help with your decision.

 

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23 hours ago, Kirk Wood said:

It is all about money management. The earlier you start to manage what you have the more successful you will be as it takes time to be effective. Credit can be a very helpful tool if used properly but can also destroy your future if mismanaged. The later in life you are and the more deeply in debt, the more time that it will take. It is difficult to stick to a retirement plan when you are only 30, but if you wait until you are 50 to start to plan you aren't likely to be retired when the people who started at 30 get there. 

This is true to a point, but bad things happen to good people, and they can be catastrophic. Suppose you did what you felt was right and saved as much as you could afford for decades. Perhaps you had a business failure, or one of your family members had a catastrophic illness. Perhaps you lost everything in a natural disaster. These things take decades to recover from, if you ever do.

Take my own case, a sick spouse can cost you everything you have, all your retirement savings and put you deeply in debt. What are you going to do, let your spouse die and be a miser? Of course not. So if you start over in your 40's or 50's, deeply in debt with no savings, or assets, having spent them all to keep your loved one alive, there's just not enough time left to dig yourself out, even if you have a decent job. This is the number one cause of bankruptcy in the USA, affecting more people than you might think. High small business failure rate is another and leaves people in similar financial straits. 

Do the math. Let's say you make $60,000 a year, just to use the median US income. By the time you pay your withholding and health insurance you'll be lucky to have $50,000 left. Then you've got food, housing, transportation, communication and medical expenses not covered by insurance which will probably eat up at least $30k of that. Then you need at least $5k a year for an emergency fund to fix things that break, right? So if you live a frugal lifestyle, minimizing your controllable expenses such as entertainment, clothing, utilities, fuel, camping, etc. expenses you have maybe $5k yr to invest. In truth, most people pay over $800/yr in credit card interest alone, not to mention interest on their car loan, mortgage loan, etc. But let's just say you're not typical and are a frugal money manager who avoids all this, paying for whatever you can cash and have that $5k to invest. Let's say you are 45 yrs old and want to retire at 65, giving you 20 yrs. This will mean you will have about $150,000 in a tax deferred account assuming a 4% growth (which you will have to pay taxes on after you retire.) Now $150k, 20 years from now won't buy what it does today, just like $150k, 20 yrs ago bought much more than today. At an average inflation of only 2.9% it will be worth only $85k in today's dollars - not much of a nest egg, is it? And this assumes that everything goes well for you from that point on. If a natural disaster like Hurricane Katrina hits you, like it did me, it will set you back a ways too, even if you are properly insured, as insurance never covers everything, not to mention the loss of income after such a catastrophic event, impacting millions.

Let me summarize: Life's a B, you marry one, then you die. 😜 

Chip 

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6 hours ago, sushidog said:

This is true to a point, but bad things happen to good people, and they can be catastrophic.

True, but planning and hard work play a major role in being lucky. Perhaps I have lead a charmed life. 

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Retire? How about just quit and go for it! Yep, quit jobs and sold house, husband 51 wife 47. Did boondocking and volunteering that provided free rent. We were not debt free and motorhome payment and medical was a big bite from our budget. We had savings because we did not buy a lot of stuff while we were waiting to full time. After a few years we did work on the road, part time. Unfortunately after 13 years husband diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Blessings abound as he is a two year going on 3 year survivor. We now have a small motorhome and plan to travel a bit this summer. David just turned 70, oh, the adventures we would have missed if we waited until wifey was 65 - like all of it!

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On 6/13/2018 at 3:18 PM, Zulu said:

 I read where you will start full timing next month. In a year or two, why don't you stop back here for a reality check.

X's Three! Zulu

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On 6/12/2018 at 6:23 AM, offroad said:

1)  Average age of death is 72 in WV and 82 in Wash DC.  This is average, meaning many will die younger (half); and does not mean you will make that age.  It means that given all conditions half the people live to that age.

For the record, that's not what "average" means.  The point at which half of the set is below and half of the set is above is the "median."  The "average" or "mean" is the sum of the data points divided by the number of data points in the set.

 

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3 minutes ago, richfaa said:

Well I am 81.What shall I do keep on Rv'ing or coil up and wait.

I'm 76 and not ready to park it yet. My first Love passed away at 63 and are plans was to start traveling as she turned 64. A neighbor often stated travel as your able. That is my plan although my second Love of 2 1/2 years did have a medical problem so the RV is parked for up to 3 months opposed to one month previous summers. I think we just going to see bigger Mosquitoes when we to get to Northern MN.

Clay

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On 6/25/2018 at 2:14 PM, Kirk Wood said:

True, but planning and hard work play a major role in being lucky. Perhaps I have lead a charmed life. 

Being lucky can put you in a position where you understand about planning for the future when you're relatively young.  You were lucky to have a father who understood planning for the future and who was able to convince you not to take the job that offered more money but less retirement.  Things could have been very different if you'd had a father who didn't value retirement planning or who hadn't been able to convince you it was important enough to forgo actual money in your pocket. 

Barbara was in a similar position--she said she had her parents as an example. 

And no amount of planning or hard work can change who we get as parents.  Society can try to make up for that, like with financial literacy classes in schools, but it's an uphill climb when someone's role models aren't financially literate themselves, through no fault of their own. 

So yes, I'd say that having a parent who convinced you to take a path that led you, many years later, to a position that allowed you to do what you wanted is lucky, and it sounds like a charmed life to me.  I'm not discounting your planning and hard work, but at least you got the chance to do that--lots of people don't.

 

Quote

Every year that you wait to begin the plans to provide for an early retirement, the more difficult it will be to achieve that goal, whether the action is in job selection or in savings and financial planning. The best route is to do both.

No doubt.  But that's assuming that a person is in a position to select his job, never mind selecting it for the retirement benefits it offers.  Or to save money, which assumes that he has a good enough job that there's money available to save.  Not everyone is born with the brains or talent to rise above subsistence.

And don't forget--your financial plan worked because you and your wife lived long enough to take advantage of it.  If that hadn't been the case, in retrospect it might have been better to take the job that paid more and maybe use that money to more fully enjoy your life.  If you'd known you'd die when you were 49, there's every chance you'd do things differently.

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, ms60ocb said:

I'm 76 and not ready to park it yet. My first Love passed away at 63 and are plans was to start traveling as she turned 64. A neighbor often stated travel as your able. That is my plan although my second Love of 2 1/2 years did have a medical problem so the RV is parked for up to 3 months opposed to one month previous summers. I think we just going to see bigger Mosquitoes when we to get to Northern MN.

Clay

We will continue till we can't do it any longer.We have been on this "long timing" adventure since 2006. We are slowing down.This is the first summer since 2006 that we  will not be doing a summer road trip as Helen and I both had medical problems that needed taken care of. We are both in good health but time takes its toll .

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If we have it our way we will quit when we are good and ready!  We'll look at each other and say, "Let's stop traveling and do something else."

However, we are well aware that life doesn't always work that way.  So our second preference is to gradually slow down.  Longer stops, fewer moves, ultimately becoming point to point travelers - summer and winter.

And, truth be told, there's a good chance that we won't get a choice in the matter.  Life will happen and we'll suddenly find ourselves unable to travel.

In other words, we have our plans and hopes but we know we aren't always in control.  We'll just appreciate today, plan for tomorrow, and then deal with what actually comes.

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2 hours ago, GR "Scott" Cundiff said:

appreciate today, plan for tomorrow, and then deal with what actually comes.

Words of wisdom.

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A very recent event happening. My nephew, basically an older brother to me, is in the hospital. He was working at a construction job in Savannah Georgia. Working 13 days, then 1 off. Got weak and quit eating. Drinking all the water he could. Drove to home, NC (bad decision I know). Went straight to emergency room and one looked and admitted. He was severely dehydrated and kidneys non functional. He is recovering and says retirement now. That brosse with death woke him up. Seems his kidneys just couldn't keep up with that demand. Very sobering.

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2 hours ago, Barbaraok said:

People wait until thirsty to drink, that is too late.  Need to drink on regular schedule 

Oh, that not the problem. He does and knows too. He has been doing this for over 40 years. Age and weaker kidneys.

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