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Hoping to "ease out" at 55
Old 06-21-2013, 02:40 PM   #1
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Hoping to "ease out" at 55

Hello all; glad to be on board.

My wife and I are age 52 (53 in another week or so actually). I've been a dedicated saver all my life, and at one time -- pre-tech bubble -- I actually envisioned retiring at age 50. Well, we all know what happen to those dreams! Anyhow, we're doing okay. We have about $700K put aside. Most of it, probably better than two-thirds, is in employer retirement accounts. Our asset allocation is about 80% stock/20% fixed income. My wife is one of those rare fortunate ones that will receive an honest to goodness pension, in addition to a 403B she contributes to her self. I currently contribute to Simple IRA at work. We both receive some matching funds. We have about 7-8 years left on the mortgage, but staying in our current home is not a definite (although we could easily do that). Our biggest issues, as I see it, are paying for health insurance before eligibility for Medicare and paying for LTC coverage. We purchased LTC policies a couple of years back. They are pretty much top of the line policies, and given that we don't have kids to be a burden too they are pretty much a necessity. But they are fairly expensive -- about $5K a year for the both of us.

I look forward to exploring various issues in this forum and welcome any immediate feedback anyone might have on my introductory overview.

Best to all.
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Old 06-21-2013, 02:57 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum from a neighbor
Have you run your scenario through FIRECalc? (link at the bottom of this page)
What do you brew?
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Old 06-21-2013, 03:28 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrewer View Post
I've been a dedicated saver all my life, and at one time -- pre-tech bubble -- I actually envisioned retiring at age 50. Well, we all know what happen to those dreams!
Oh boy, can I relate. I know that story!

The suggestion above to run firecalc is good.

I'm also a firm believer in totally understanding your spending. We enter all of ours on quicken, every last dime. Having 10 years of history of spending is very helpful for our planning. Do that and you can enter good data in firecalc, otherwise it is garbage in, garbage out.

You may have seen the various threads here about retiring with $500k, or $1M or whatever. The upshot of this is your spending is a big factor in this. There is no universal magic number.

We also have a lot of threads on LTC insurance. No easy answers there either. Lots of good discussion though. We have it, but it is not inflation protected and has lifetime limits, so our 2 person policy is less than $1.5k per year.

Good luck in your ER plans and welcome to the discussion!
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Old 06-21-2013, 08:20 PM   #4
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Sailor; I mostly make wine and do a little beer brewing -- generally from kits but I hope to expand to actual "raw materials" some day.

Joe; I have about 20 years in Microsoft Money (still running an obsolete version in Windows 7) so I have plenty of data to look at.
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Old 06-22-2013, 06:39 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrewer View Post
Sailor; I mostly make wine and do a little beer brewing -- generally from kits but I hope to expand to actual "raw materials" some day.

Joe; I have about 20 years in Microsoft Money (still running an obsolete version in Windows 7) so I have plenty of data to look at.
Excellent! Now start playing those scenarios with firecalc. It is a great tool.

You should also look at http://www.i-orp.com/ which is very helpful in optimizing IRAs and SS.
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Old 06-22-2013, 09:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrewer View Post
Sailor; I mostly make wine and do a little beer brewing -- generally from kits but I hope to expand to actual "raw materials" some day.

Joe; I have about 20 years in Microsoft Money (still running an obsolete version in Windows 7) so I have plenty of data to look at.
Welcome gabrewer. I brewed an american pale ale today, all grain, got a whopping 88% efficiency! I drink a little and give most of it away, hehe.

I live in Atlanta North (4 hours north on I-85, to be exact). Used to live off of Howell Mill though.

But on to the topic at hand, I agree that having a long history of spending is very helpful. You still need to do a lot of adjusting, though, as the situation changes (kids home vs on their own doesn't just affect the 'kids' budget category, but also food, fuel, travel, etc). And lifestyle after work...there are huge threads on that topic here that question will you spend more or less in retirement. Travel budgets go up, and commuting budget goes to zero, etc.
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