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Old 03-29-2015, 08:53 AM   #21
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I agree with ivivsfan. No sense in looking back and ruminating over the past. Learn from the past, but it's over. You did the best you could with the knowledge you had. I too think 7(or less) more years could be very doable if your both contributing. Of couse it depends on your spending and savings. Best wishes to you.

From the FAQ here's some great stickys. This is just a subset of the link Gumby posted. There's more out there too.

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Old 03-29-2015, 12:23 PM   #22
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I'll check if I made a mistake, but pretty sure I was saying would be downsizing by close to $100k. If I said it wrong, that's what I meant.




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Old 03-29-2015, 12:43 PM   #23
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Sorry I got that wrong,... the question was would you actually have a 100K after you swapped homes .....Keep up your spirits and work those numbers!
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:52 PM   #24
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We have good income between the two of us ($~200k), which on the one hand allows for some recapturing of funds, but on the other hand gives us a lifestyle that will be hard to maintain with lower than originally planned retirement funds.
What we did was look for ways to trim recurring expenses and increase passive income. We also compared our expenses to the Consumer Expenditure Survey to look for relatively painless opportunities to cut back.

Our taxes dropped quite a bit with a lower AGI in semi-ER, so that was an easy cut. I don't miss paying more in income and SS taxes. I found a better hair stylist with lower rates. We are switching over to all solar and LED lighting. We make pizza in a Presto Pizza oven that uses 70% less energy than the wall oven. We switched from a 1% cash back credit card to 2% back. We started putting our insurance on our credits cards for the 2% back instead of paying cash. With lower expenses we became FI and once FI we could eliminate life and disability insurance.

We just found a few hundred items like that and they all added up to being able to keep the same basic lifestyle, same house and actually nicer cars (better MPG and repair records) with much lower overall expenses. I wish we had done this years ago. If your expenses are already optimized this won't help, but our expenses were not optimized so we saved a bundle doing this. Every $1K you can cut from annual expenses might mean needing $50K less over a 50 year retirement.
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:27 PM   #25
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Hi- I am 52, wife is the same (6 months ahead of me). We both work, but would like to enjoy more of life sometime relatively soon. I'll give some details, and hope that we are not judged to harshly....

I have worked in various engineering and manufacturing management jobs since 1987. Wife has worked as Admin Asst at various levels since about 1984. Both of us are still working. We both were previously married. I have 2 daughters from my previous marriage, both are grown and out of the house/college and on their own (for the most part). My wife had no children from her previous marriage, but has 2 elderly parents with very limited means that we provide some occasional, although not significant, assistance to.

Divorce, and a company bankruptcy due to asbestos litigation all but depleted my retirement savings in 1999 as unfortunately, that company matched and provided profit sharing as company stock only.
Wife had not even thought about retirement savings up to the point that we met, and she was one of the rare (maybe not too smart?) ex wives that just wanted out of her marriage and did not bring anything from former husbands retirement plan(s). I wasn't quite so lucky....

In any event, we reset our finances and retirement accounts in 2000 after all of these events (divorces, child support, college tuition, company bankruptcy). We have good income between the two of us ($~200k), which on the one hand allows for some recapturing of funds, but on the other hand gives us a lifestyle that will be hard to maintain with lower than originally planned retirement funds.

Our current situation is $564k:
My 401K - $360k;
Wife's 401K - $110k;
Company ESOP and Stock Grants - $38k;
Previous employer defined contribution pension - $56K (accessible at 65, expected value then of ~$90K)

We have no CC debt, $200k mortgage with home value est. at $320k

I would retire tomorrow if I could. Very tired of running manufacturing plants and all that involves, but not possible for sure. Would love for wife to retire in a few more years (55), and then for me to retire at latest, 60.

That's all I have for now. Just came across the site yesterday. Hoping to learn a lot and MAYBE pull in my retirement date!
If you and your wife can both max out your 401ks and Roths doing the catch up contributions you will have no problem retiring at 60.

You are in the 8 to 10 year home stretch savings wise. You have enough saved now to build on. Just keep your eye on the age 60 carrot and super save.
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:27 PM   #26
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Thanks

Wow Daylate, that's incredible about your spending/costs. I don't think we are anywhere near optimized on spending, as we haven't really looked at it through that lens as of yet. It sounds like you did one heckuva job though. Did you have some guidance on where to look for opportunities? If so, where did you get it? If not, can share some of the 1st things you started with?

Thanks. Just getting so fed up with work, and the reality of looking out another 8-10 years has/had me down. I did talk with DW about prepping for sale of house and downsizing, and I think once we get a recent loss in the family behind us we can turn our focus a little toward that as an initial step.

IVIN - No, we won't have the $100k in our pocket or to invest, but we should have that toward our downsized home, lowering our payment and outstanding mortgage. I know a lot of people swear by the "no mortgage" approach, but I just can't wait that long, and a "2-story doublewide, paid for" is not going to cut it for either me or DW.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:10 PM   #27
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Wow Daylate, that's incredible about your spending/costs. I don't think we are anywhere near optimized on spending, as we haven't really looked at it through that lens as of yet. It sounds like you did one heckuva job though. Did you have some guidance on where to look for opportunities? If so, where did you get it? If not, can share some of the 1st things you started with?
Not Daylatedollarshort - but I'll chime in here.

Look at recurring monthly bills. Telephone, utilities, cable, housekeeping, yard-service, cell phones, software subscriptions, magazine subscriptions, etc... Those are the first to tackle.

I switched my cell phone from Verizon to Ting. Spending less for 4 smart phones/month than I did for 1 smart phone, 1 feature phone. (Kids now have phones - or I'd be spending even less.) Saved about $30/month.

I threatened to cancel my cable and they dropped my bill to just the price of "standard" internet. Saved $80/month.

Looked at energy bills/water bill, etc and made some changes to reduce those.

I don't have a housekeeper or lawn service - unless you count me demanding my teenagers to chip in.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:14 PM   #28
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Pilot, instead of focusing on your shortfalls compared to the crowd on this site, focus on the fact that you are currently better off then over 90-95% of the general population. Pat yourself on the back for doing as well as you are. Now that you have patted your back, get back to work and track those spending habits. I'm confident you will do what it takes and retire in just a few years. Good luck and welcome.
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Old 03-29-2015, 08:26 PM   #29
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Wow Daylate, that's incredible about your spending/costs. I don't think we are anywhere near optimized on spending, as we haven't really looked at it through that lens as of yet. It sounds like you did one heckuva job though. Did you have some guidance on where to look for opportunities? If so, where did you get it? If not, can share some of the 1st things you started with?
We started comparing our expenses to the Consumer Expenditure Survey and realized we had a lot of opportunities to cut back and still lead a middle class or better life. So that was step one. Then we looked at how can we do even better than that by implementing frugal, sustainable living and urban homesteading ideas from sites like this and other ER and frugal forums, books and Mother Earth News and the Zero Waste home blogs. We sorted our expenses and just went through them one by one from the top down - down to the cost per pound of toilet paper and cost per load of laundry detergent. Even small expenses like that really add up over decades of potential retirement.

Rodi gave you a good list for starters. Some of our biggies were raising insurance deductibles, doing our own taxes, dropping the landline, replacing some poor MPG / high maintenance cars, going to basic cable and internet only and regularly renegotiating the rate to always get the new customer rates, dropping the landline, cooking more from scratch, eating less fast and processed food, cutting our overall energy bills by 2/3s, installing low flow shower heads and shopping for groceries mostly at ethnic, outlet and warehouse stores instead of the retail stores.
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Old 07-17-2016, 06:12 AM   #30
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Had fun this morning looking back over this thread. Just a couple of updates:

Still both working, although DW on leave to help FIL and potentially ID assisted living facility

Much more "help" being provided to DW's remaining elderly parent. (see above)

Up to a total of ~ $750k total funds, although a LOT more after tax funds now after reading through other threads.

Still in same house (with stress on DW with 91 yr old FIL, not the time to change)

When things resolve with FIL, considering a career change to help with my personal well being. Continuing to read threads and learn!
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Old 07-17-2016, 07:48 AM   #31
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Pilot I missed your thread last year so thanks for bumping it with the update. A (belated) welcome to you from down in Charleston.

You've made some great progress and I'm glad you are considering a job change to break up the monotony of plugging away til retirement.

We've been fortunate thus far not to have to put any extreme time/money into our parents, but mine are iffy at this point and I could see needing to do more for them sooner than later.

I hope things improve with FIL and y'all are able to get into another house to give you another boost toward your goals.
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Old 07-17-2016, 08:08 AM   #32
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Thanks Sarah! Grew up in Charleston, by the way. Dad and Sister still there.

Forgot to add, sold the Plane so less expense there (but much less fun too )
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Old 07-17-2016, 02:25 PM   #33
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Ah, probably wise to ditch the plane. We've only had boats and they were plenty expensive!

I'm sure you've heard from your family how insane the traffic is here now. Would hardly recognize the place, and I've been here all my life.
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Old 07-17-2016, 05:10 PM   #34
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Ah, probably wise to ditch the plane.
Not sure how wise a water landing might be, but if you run out of airspeed and ideas you may have no other choice.
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Old 07-17-2016, 08:11 PM   #35
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Thanks for the update and glad things are progressing well. Good luck dealing with DW's family situation - that can be hard in so many ways. Glad you're their to support her as she helps them.
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