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15 years to go!
Old 08-01-2015, 08:30 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Port Washington
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15 years to go!

Hello everyone,

I have been using this forum for a few years, and would like to thank everyone for the great knowledge, and keeping me motivated toward financial independence!

Here's my into:

I am an e-5 in the Air Force, and plan to stay for 20. I am investing $750 a month into the roth TSP (L2050), with a balance of $23,000. I plan to max my TSP as soon as I can! Additionally, I have no debt and $13,000 liquid.

The Air Force is paying for me to go to college, which is awesome! I am majoring in Computer Science, and plan to get my masters in software engineering.

When I retire from the Air Force in 2031, I hope to be completely financially independent and become an independent software vendor/developer. Whether I make $5,000 a year or $100,000 a year, I want to be financially independent and work for myself. To do this I will combine my military retirement and life expectancy withdraws from my TSP, and LBYM.

I look forward to any input.

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Old 08-01-2015, 09:59 PM   #2
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Getting paid to get a masters in software engineering - now that's smart. There many many different opportunities for consulting or developing your own products in that field. Good luck with your plan.

Even clouds seem bright and breezy, 'Cause the livin' is free and easy, See the rat race in a new way, Like you're wakin' up to a new day (Dr. Tarr and Professor Fether lyrics, Alan Parsons Project, based on an EA Poe story)
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Old 08-02-2015, 02:01 PM   #3
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Welcome! You didn't mention your life status - if you're married and have (or want) kids, and it's possible that over time things may impact your plans. But the money you save now will be a powerful addition to FI in the future, so kudos for taking these steps now.

Sounds like you have a good plan, but more importantly the awareness of how your actions now can have a long term impact, and how little things can make a big difference. That awareness will serve you well in your life no matter what developments happen.
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Old 08-02-2015, 03:43 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum, Wisco! Looks like you have a sound blueprint for your future. I can't add much input other than LBYM and maximize your savings. Starting work for yourself may be a little bumpy until you build up a good client base, but after that your business should support your retirement goals. Good Luck!
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:04 PM   #5
Confused about dryer sheets
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Port Washington
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Thanks for the replies. I forgot to mention, I am married with two kids, and will not have another. My daughters are 3 and 5, so they will both be out of high school by the time I retire from the Air Force. Also, I am 25, so I will be 41.

Does anyone have any input for my asset allocation. My situation is kind of unique, so I am unsure if I am making the right choice. I am in the L2050 and will begin to withdraw in 2031. Do you think this will be to risky?
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:31 PM   #6
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Send a PM to Nords. He knows everything military.
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:44 PM   #7
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I was putting all of my money into L2040 until L2050 opened up, at which point I switched. The way I see it, with plans to retire so young I need to be as aggressive as I can stomach in order to grow my money. If something bad happens I can keep working, but if all goes well (or it mostly goes well) this risk will pay off. Plus, L2050 will be considerably less aggressive in 2031 than it is now, and you can always adjust as you get closer to retirement. My .02.

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Old 08-09-2015, 02:06 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Wisco2031 View Post
Does anyone have any input for my asset allocation. My situation is kind of unique, so I am unsure if I am making the right choice. I am in the L2050 and will begin to withdraw in 2031. Do you think this will be to risky?
I think you're good. That fund is currently 85% equities (C, S, & I funds) and they'll tweak the allocation as you approach that date.

Your situation's unique for this forum, but it's common among military servicemembers. You have a relatively high expectation of continued employment (steady, bond-like income) so you can be aggressive with your asset allocation. Milevsky's "Are You A Stock Or A Bond?" goes into more detail on why steady earners can invest aggressively in equities, and why NFL football players or Wall Street financial employee should put all of their investments into Treasuries. L2050 can certainly help you sleep better at night, but you could also just split your Roth TSP contributions among the C, S, & I funds and do perfectly fine.

It must be the time of year, but that's the third TSP L2050 question I've seen this week...

Active-duty retirement:

I understand your motivation to go to 20 or even further, but I'll pass out the standard advice for those aspirations: take it one obligation at a time.

While you're in that obligation, learn about your opportunities in the Reserves or National Guard. When the fun stops, be ready to leave active duty for a drill billet in the Reserves/Guard and get your 20 in that way. Your quality of life will immediately improve, you'll find plenty of opportunities for drills and active duty (even mobilizations), and you'll be able to start a bridge career or even your own business.

When the fun stops, don't just grit your teeth and clench your jaw and grimly slog it out on active duty until 20. You'll risk your physical, mental, and emotional health-- and your family will get awfully tired of you too. The Reserve/Guard option will give you an inflation-adjusted annuity and cheap healthcare at age 60, and that's enough. You can bridge the gap between your 30s and age 60 with your drill pay, your bridge career, and your savings.

You can check whether a copy of the book is in your local library, or search the blog for keywords. Send me a PM if you have more questions.

The book written on, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
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Old 08-09-2015, 04:28 PM   #9
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To do this I will combine my military retirement and life expectancy
withdraws from my TSP, and LBYM.
You're almost there already. With LBYM in the mix, you are golden.

Thank you for your service.

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Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. Groucho Marx

In dire need of: faster horses, younger woman, older whiskey, more money.
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