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Hello from Chicagoland
Old 12-20-2014, 02:56 PM   #1
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Hello from Chicagoland

Hello from Chicagoland from a 56-year-old single lad (no dependents), early retired from Feds for about 6 months with around $2 million (depending on market gyrations!) in investable assets(55 percent in taxable, 45 in pre-taxed Thrift Savings Plan) and 52k or so immediate pension annuity/FERS supplement (currently not COLA'd but will be when I turn 62), plus continuing health insurance (I pay a little more than 25 percent of premium via FEHB plan). I took "early out" (VERA) and incentive (VSIP) from Feds because I figure I had enough and had had enough, as you ER'd people can well understand. Life is too short and 27-plus years with Feds was enough.

Routine yearly expenses are about 40k (I like my cable and WIFI), so pension/FERS supplement cover that--no plans to access anything else until I have to, so I have not needed to establish a SWR or even a WR, for that matter. When I do, I estimate it to be no more than 3 percent. I also keep about two years of living expenses in cash on the side, in case I need a new roof, etc, in the next couple of years.

I think it made sense for me to take the early out, at least from the financial side of things. Any advice at this early stage? You all seem to know a lot and I've been lurking for a few months, so hat's off to you all who took the plunge.
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Old 12-20-2014, 03:03 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum, and it sounds like you're all set.

What will you do all day?
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Old 12-20-2014, 04:42 PM   #3
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Actually, early on, it was a little tough getting used to stopping from full throttle, as I was, perhaps, not as "emotionally" prepared as I thought may be necessary, since the job became a bit a grind and I just wanted to get out. I did not have other retirement plans, just resting and not getting up at 5 a.m. and commuting, etc. But I never really missed the work, and don't, just some of my colleagues, etc. I think a number of people on this forum go through this (though some seem fine right away).

I did struggle for a while with "structure" issues and such, so your question about "what will you do all day?" does have resonance. I'm still a bit sensitive to the question, but I'm finding my way. Have others had a tough time early on and, if so, how long did it take before you felt comfortable in the transition?
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Old 12-21-2014, 06:34 PM   #4
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Sorry, I should have included the link - http://www.early-retirement.org/foru...day-37868.html

It is the longest-running thread on the forum and sort of an inside joke vs. going back to work.
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Old 12-21-2014, 06:43 PM   #5
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Got it! I've been lurking for a time, so I knew it was an inside joke (I'm familiar with the link). No harm, no foul. Thanks.
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Old 12-21-2014, 07:00 PM   #6
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Welcome aboard neighbor.

I don't think there is any common experience WRT the transition from 'full throttle' to retirement. Some adjust very easily (many here) and some don't falling into boredom or worse (few here, this is a self selecting audience), and everything in between.

I found the Get-A-Life-Tree exercise in the book How to Retire Happy, Wild & Free (Ernie Zelinski) is often helpful for the WWIDAD crowd. Most libraries have it, or you might find it via an online search.

Best of luck.
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Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
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Old 12-21-2014, 07:08 PM   #7
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Thanks, Midpack, I appreciate your advice. I will check your suggestions out. Cheers!
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