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Why does this make me feel old?
Old 04-04-2015, 05:19 PM   #1
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Why does this make me feel old?

Hello from Michigan!

Signing up for this forum has been the first "official" thing I've done toward my retirement, and it kind of made me feel like I was old....LOL! Didn't expect that reaction, especially since my motivation for ER has been to be able to enjoy it while I still had a relatively young body.

I set a date of my 55th birthday (Dec of 2016) to retire, mainly because I vest in a health savings acct at that time and figured it was worth hanging out a bit longer to grab and extra $170k. A few things have made me wonder if trading a year an half of my life for that money is worth it or not. 1: 57 year old brother died unexpectedly a couple of weeks ago. 2: Portfolio has grown such that simple calculations show I can support myself well into my 90s. 3: Wife recently started her dream job and though doesn't' earn much money, doesn't see retiring anytime soon. 4: Rumors circulating of ER packages being offered at my work in near future.

My whole mind set for many years has been to get out and enjoy myself for several years while my body is capable of doing the adventuresome activities that I enjoy (mountaineering, backpacking, cycling).....then some time later grab a PT job once my oats have been properly sowed. and earn a bit here and there. Profession will have passed me by, so likely low pay.

So I come here to educate myself on how to refine my planning. Better spending models, withdrawal models, activities, holes in my thinking, etc. Hopefully along the way I can learn and make some new friends.

Dave
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Old 04-04-2015, 05:42 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum!

Retirement is a huge adjustment and there are a number of threads on that. Give it time and you'll adjust.
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Old 04-04-2015, 06:47 PM   #3
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I'm so sorry about your brother.
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Old 04-04-2015, 07:30 PM   #4
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Welcome! This forum helped me a lot in my ER planning. I hope you get the same benefit.
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Old 04-04-2015, 07:36 PM   #5
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I ER'd at 55 with much the same motivations. To enjoy retirement while I was still healthy. I also saw people around me suffering from maladies. A college friend had a hip replacement at 55 yrs. That was four years ago and my ER has been great.

I'm not sure what you mean by feeling old. Retirement is a new beginning. Not an end. You will find that those of us on the forum will say that you not only retire from your j*b but you need to retire to something as well. If you do then you won't even think in terms of "old".
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Old 04-04-2015, 09:45 PM   #6
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Welcome Dave! Sorry to hear about your bro... that's got to be hard.

I retired at 56, about a year after I had planned due to the great recession. Similar to you, I was motivated by wanting to be able to enjoy life while I was still healthy and active, a higher realization of mortality from picking up the paper and seeing obits for people near my age, and a desire to spend my time the way I wanted rather than be at the beck and call of clients and partners.

I've never heard of vesting in a HSA... ours was 100% vested immediately for both employer and employee contributions.

Perhaps you'll be offered one of those retirement packages at work.

I would find it very hard to go back to work, even part-time work, with enthusiasm after these few years of retirement freedom.
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Old 04-05-2015, 04:39 AM   #7
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HI Dave,

Welcome from the SE side of the state.

I got out in my late 40's ~ four yeas ago and have not looked back (I am several years younger than you now).

#1 thing that you can do to prepare for ER is to start tracking and categorizing your expenses. I had done that for 15 years in the past and when ideas of ER started to appear, having the data on how much I freely spend when unconstrained was priceless. I was also able to see what would change in retirement due to my assigning categories to everything (ie dont just say 'credit card', but use the detailed categories for each transaction).

Welcome aboard,

-gauss
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Old 04-05-2015, 08:49 AM   #8
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Thanks for the welcomes.

Marty, I hear you on the new beginning. I'll focus on that aspect for sure!

pb4uski, The company used to offer straight up retirement health care, but a few years ago changed the plan to a defined value HSA. To qualify you have to put in 15 years after your 40th b-day. At that point the account is seeded with ~$170k and grows each subsequent year you work.

Gauss, Hopefully not from Blissfield....long story, but Blissfield is not my favorite place. Agreed with the expense tracking. I'm a spreadsheet junkie and have a system set up to track/categorize our monthly expenses. I'm at 15 different categories at this point and come in around 95% of expenses accounted for. Now I've got to get a good handle on predicting expenses after ER.

Dave
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Old 04-05-2015, 10:17 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kzodave View Post
Hello from Michigan!

Signing up for this forum has been the first "official" thing I've done toward my retirement, and it kind of made me feel like I was old....LOL! Didn't expect that reaction, especially since my motivation for ER has been to be able to enjoy it while I still had a relatively young body.
I began ER at age 49 & was feeling at the time like I was 60. Now I'm 54 & feel like I'm 33.

If the numbers add up & your job's dragging you down or keeping you from doing things you want to do ..... then just pull the plug & do it. (how does spouse feel zbout it since she's going to continue working?)

For most people the answer to the question "how much money is enough" will always be "just a little bit more than I have now" regardless of how much they have. Can you truly say to yourself "I have enough?"
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Old 04-05-2015, 11:50 AM   #10
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You are as old as what you ride....imoldernu
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Old 04-05-2015, 11:51 AM   #11
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Andy, Turning back the age clock is an ER benefit I hadn't considered yet, but makes sense seeing all the stress leave and being happier everyday. Just started "real" conversations with DW re: continuing to work. She's only 90 days into the new job, so it's still shiny and new. She knows that I'm looking for a handful of years doing 2-3 big adventures a year that she doesn't have any desire to partake in. She's kind of like you, telling me to "just do it".....maybe she just wants to get rid of me 2-3 times a year .

I don't have to hurry, so that's why I came here....to make sure my ducks are in a row...and that I have enough ducks.

Dave
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Old 04-05-2015, 12:13 PM   #12
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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imoldernu, was that a GoPro selfie? thanks for the laugh!
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Old 04-05-2015, 12:14 PM   #13
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My condolences on the loss of your brother as well.
I understand about looking forward to having one's ducks in a row, too.
Welcome, I just joined as well here to get a feel for things and to assist in the thinking process.
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Old 04-05-2015, 12:21 PM   #14
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I also extend condolences for your brother. Mine died when he was just 42 (I was 45), and that had a lot to do with my FIRE intentions.

I personally would probably stay on for a half year for $170K. But I'd look into the retirement offers. I volunteered to get RIF'ed when I was ready to go. Most packages that I've seen add some time to your age and your years of service, so just getting the package might push you over the line. Of course, if I was truly FI and miserable in my job I might not wait. But that seems like a nice bonus for half of a OMY.
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Old 04-05-2015, 04:15 PM   #15
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Harley, Sorry for your loss as well. I had a late 50s friend at work pass away earlier this year and that nudged me a bit, but when my brother passed...that hit home even harder.

Agreed, half year for the $170k benefit wouldn't be bad...but I've got until the end of 2016, a bit more than a year and a half.

I intend on pressure testing my planning here in the short term. If I don't need the 170, then I'll just leave it on the table. As AndyS mentioned above, there will probably always be that, "just a little more" mentality working. Hard to break that habit of trying to accumulate wealth.

Thanks for posting....hope to "see" you around here.

Dave
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