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61 and hopeful about retire at 62
Old 11-03-2009, 12:11 PM   #1
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61 and hopeful about retire at 62

Hi, I'm (as I said) 61 and hoping to retire at 62. I've developed a lot of spreadsheets showing anticipated expenses vs. income and I think I'll be okay. I am kinda hoping SS stays around. Female, in a LT relationship with a man who is in the same situation financially. No debt except a small mortgage. I plan to pay that off when I hit Medicare age - my health expenses should go down.

Lately I've been ill with asthmatic bronchitis once or twice a year for the past 4 years. I feel like I never get my energy back all the way - due to working. That feeling that I can't keep working is driving this move. The age 62 is so I can collect SS - it would be harder to do now and I'll be 62 in June 2010.

So - how to get health insurance... My current plan is to see if they pass any legislation that helps me. Then in April or May apply for insurance and see if I get denied coverage. I can stay on COBRA for 18 months but there will be another 18 months to cover. At least I'll know if I seem insurable. I have to have health insurance for fear of being bankrupted by an unforeseen illness. We do have a high risk pool where I live (MO) but it's around $800 a month for high deductible coverage. A friend of a friend is on it.

Hoping that I don't have anything that would preclude being insurable. We live simply but not in a spartan manner, don't spend a whole lot of money on "stuff". The cars are paid for. No debt except whatever I've spent this month.

Anyhow - this is my intro even though I've read stuff off and on for a while. I don't really need investing advice - I'm good at that. Any other advice - especially for this 3 year window between 62 and 65 - is very welcome.
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:37 PM   #2
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With asthma you are very likely not insurable at normal rates. If you are sure of entry into the risk pool, $800/mo. might not be too bad.

The other option is to wait for Medicare to retire- your SS will be higher, you will be guaranteed insurance at discount rates, and if you will have a pension it should be larger.

Ha
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by thinker25 View Post
Lately I've been ill with asthmatic bronchitis once or twice a year for the past 4 years. I feel like I never get my energy back all the way - due to working. That feeling that I can't keep working is driving this move.
I am 61 also, and will be 62 next June. Even though I don't have problems such as asthmatic bronchitis, it is a LOT harder for me to put in a full week's work than it was just two or three years ago. I don't know why that is, but suspect it is simply due to the aging process, in my case. When I was younger, I assumed that I would work until 66. Now, I am so glad that I will be able to retire next week. I guess what I am trying to say is that I very fully understand. I hope you can get health insurance so you can retire in April or May, and I truly, truly wish the best for you.

Like Ha says, maybe the $800/month Missouri high risk pool is something to consider. For three years that would come to $28,800, and for just the 18 months after COBRA that would be just $14,400.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:09 PM   #4
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Thanks - yes, it is really hard for me to work full-time. I get paid pretty well <grin> and there's no reason to change jobs. But getting older is not for the weak. I am so jealous that you (Want2Retire) are retiring next week. I'm hanging on for the extra money and the continued health insurance. I always thought I'd retire at 63 1/2 (with 18 months of COBRA to fill in the gap). But I don't think it is healthy for me to continue working that long.

What I find ironic in all the articles (not here) about healthcare reform is that they assume that working until 66 is a choice and an option for all. Oh we are just too lazy to continue to work. It's easy to think that when you are 35. In fact my manager is 34 and she has a mind-set that is really different than my own.

I'm in no way sick enough for SS disability, but the bronchitis has been unreal - I've been on FMLA 3 or 4 times, out for weeks at a time. I hadn't had it since I quit smoking in around 1970 - until late 2005. Go figure. I suspect I'm allergic to the building but that one's hard to prove :-)

The more I think about it the more I convince myself that retiring around my 62nd birthday is the way to go. I'll find out more about the high risk pool in MO too.

This forum is very interesting! Thanks again.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:31 PM   #5
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Welcome to the boards, Thinker.

Is your significant other also planning to retire when you do? Is there a possibility of going on his insurance as a domestic partner?

Otherwise I guess you need to budget a boatload of money for COBRA and the 18 months following that. Perhaps you will be able to get something other than the high-risk, but if not, at least you'll have planned for it.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:58 PM   #6
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Welcome ,
I also have asthma and when it flares up it really takes a toll on me so I know how you feel . Healthcare is the one big retiree consideration especially when you have a pre exsiting condition . I hope you get it all worked out .
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:59 PM   #7
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I'm in no way sick enough for SS disability, but the bronchitis has been unreal - I've been on FMLA 3 or 4 times, out for weeks at a time. I hadn't had it since I quit smoking in around 1970 - until late 2005. Go figure. I suspect I'm allergic to the building but that one's hard to prove :-)
I'd bet that you are absolutely correct about that one, even if it can't be proven. I used to get asthmatic bronchitis 3-4 times a year until I quit smoking in 1977. I haven't had it since, not even once. I don't see why you would start having it again so often, if there wasn't something polluting the air. (But then, I am not a medical doctor).
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Old 11-03-2009, 02:15 PM   #8
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Welcome to the boards, Thinker.

Is your significant other also planning to retire when you do? Is there a possibility of going on his insurance as a domestic partner?

Otherwise I guess you need to budget a boatload of money for COBRA and the 18 months following that. Perhaps you will be able to get something other than the high-risk, but if not, at least you'll have planned for it.
My SO is self-employed so no, I can't go on his insurance. At least, I never thought of that - I wonder if he can modify it to add a domestic partner? Probably that's out.

He is more or less retired now (but a little younger, 60 in February). He has been able to get insurance despite some potential medical issues. I am budgeting something like $12K or more for medical, per year, for that 18 months. More, if it's the high-risk. I also threw several thousand dollars into the budget each year as a cushion.

I am good with spreadsheets so I keep messing with all of the facts and figures...

By the way, this was on a different thread but I did the math on taking SS at 62 vs. 63, 64, 65, 66 and in terms of what I got, I didn't start totalling more money until I was around 79. That doesn't even consider the time value of the money I don't get in the first year or whatever. So I'm taking it at 62. I don't have kids to consider in this equation.
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Old 11-03-2009, 02:18 PM   #9
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I'd bet that you are absolutely correct about that one, even if it can't be proven. I used to get asthmatic bronchitis 3-4 times a year until I quit smoking in 1977. I haven't had it since, not even once. I don't see why you would start having it again so often, if there wasn't something polluting the air. (But then, I am not a medical doctor).
Yes, it is very strange - I assumed (after what, 35 years and no bronchitis?) that it was related to my smoking in college. Apparently not in my case. The doctor didn't rule out the building making me sick, but said there's no way to prove it. No one else is getting bronchitis regularly, or even complaining of being sick a lot, etc. So I don't have a case...
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