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Frigid Fifties
Old 12-05-2011, 07:06 PM   #1
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Frigid Fifties

Hi y'all. Been lurking and a very occasional contributor. My wife retired in June of 09 at age 54 and I retired on New Years Day 2011 at age 55. We live in one of those very blue, very cold, states on the North Coast.

Thanks to many on this site for great advice over the years. We are making it via my wife's small pension and 3 other annuities (all annuitized 403b's), as well as dividends, interest, and chunks out of my traditional IRA (via 72t). (I infrequently see discussions about 72t distributions here, I think it makes much sense in your mid fifties, particularly recently when marginal income tax rates have been low by historical standards).

But our real godsend has been my wife's retirement health benefits, a great High deductible family coverage policy with all premiums and out-of-pocket expenses (for covered charges) reimbursed via an HRA which her previous employer deposits monthly payments into. This sweet deal ends at the stroke of midnight on her 65th birthday. It was a deal that we could not pass up - and is contractually guaranteed (as long as the local school district stays solvent).

We are healthy and very active. We are looking forward to staying 6 weeks in Kailua, Oahu mid January to late February 2012. And I can kiss my snow-blower (a temporary) good-bye.
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Old 12-05-2011, 07:32 PM   #2
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North Coast, eh? That means the Cleveland area to me.
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Old 12-05-2011, 07:57 PM   #3
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Hi, Region2, and thanks for de-lurking. Kailua, Oahu, is a lovely place and was my home for many years. I hope you have a wonderful respite from the snow and cold, there.
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Old 12-05-2011, 08:11 PM   #4
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Hello region2, welcome to the forum. You'll likely learn a lot here. Sometimes we invent new words like W2R's "de-lurking". I like that. What else would you call it?
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Old 12-05-2011, 09:14 PM   #5
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Welcome Region2,
US Navy shipped me to snow country one winter. It was a very chilling experience. I spent most weekends either at sea or on the slopes. Never did have to shovel any snow though. What a shame.
It looks like you have opted for mostly income sources in retirement. What about inflation protection? Anything in long term equities for (hoped for) growth?
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:08 AM   #6
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We do not live in Cleveland, but where we live is Cleveland-ish, or perhaps, Cleveland-oid.

Our separate portfolios are each about 60-40, equities over bonds, and my portfolio is approximately 40% larger than my wife's. Her portfolio is invested primarily in income-producing assets, and mine is invested solely for growth. I use the minimum method (based on predicted lifespan) to break off a chunk of my TIRA for my 72t requirement. And will just plan to do that annually for as long as I walk this blue orb. (Although after age 59.5, I hope to reduce my T
IRA balance via Roth conversions - I do not want to have to take huge RMDs from that account when I hit 70.5, for I fear the taxman)

I call our retirement income plan a "Drip-and-Chip" method.
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:25 AM   #7
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Sounds good. I've been making yearly transfers to a ROTH account for several years now up to the maximum of the 15% bracket. Rental property helps with this due to depreciation expenses etc. But with pension kicking in for 2012, the amount will be reduced. But every little bit helps with MRDs.
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