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View Poll Results: How long have you been retired?
I am not retired yet 52 41.27%
Less than two years 37 29.37%
two to four years 18 14.29%
four to seven years 11 8.73%
seven to nine years 3 2.38%
nine to twelve years 3 2.38%
twelve to fifteen years 1 0.79%
fifteen to eighteen years 0 0%
More than eighteen years. 1 0.79%
Voters: 126. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-29-2007, 05:20 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tightasadrum View Post
Soon. Very, very soon. But...

An observation:

I love looking at statistics and letting numbers talk to me if they will. Folks on this board pour out alot of heartfelt ideas concerning how to safely retire as early as possible. The sample is still small, but look how the numbers skew toward the low numbers.

86.8% retired 4 years of less, or not retired yet

It sort of makes me wonder how reliable all this advice and information really is with 86.8% of it coming from a group who have only been retired 4 years or less! I sure hope the mathematical models are accurate.


Quote:
I would be even MORE curious about how much in assets the long-retired group started with.
I believe that Uncle Mick, Jarhead and I were not very well capitalized; Jarhead probably best of the three. Mick early on was an award winning LBYM guy; I have been colossally lucky; and I am not sure what Jarhead's secret is. I think he is in very good shape, as he spends his time playing golf and doing what he wants to. Billy and Akaisha have a secret formula; I think it may involve pixie dust.

Remember too that we had essentially 20 years of bull market to enjoy. About 5 years into my retirement I showed a broker friend my investments. He said you will be broke in 5 years. But he was wrong. I am not sure that I have ever had a down year even after withdrawals. (Except of course the year of my divorce. ) Mainly I didn't know enough to be nervous.

Quote:
Did anyone out there have to quit retirement and go back to w**k? Is this just pre-retirement jitters I'm suffering from? (Not that I plan to change MY plans.)
These people would likely not be here. But I believe if you check back in 10 years, you might find that the still-retired might be heavily skewed toward people who were older at retirement, and/or had military or government pensions and benefits, or at least who had no children to support or had a lot of money conservatively invested and were willing to live cheaply.

An unpopular thought that I sometimes post here is that somehow workers have to survive. Not true of retirees. So if push ever comes to shove, expect a lot of shoving.

Ha
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Old 11-29-2007, 06:37 PM   #22
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Whats even funnier is that a fair portion of the <14% that have been "retired" for more than 4 years arent living totally off their portfolios. My wife still works a couple of days a week and her job covers most of our health care. I *was* fully and truly independently retired for more than 3 years before we got married, but its definitely not a "pure" ER. We could get by fine without her income and paying our own HC, but she likes her job and it sure solves a couple of problems that many ER's run into.

Off the top of my head, with only a handful of exceptions, most of the ER's I'm familiar with have a part time job, spouse works, they have income from book writing or some financially advantageous "hobby".

I also know several who did go back to work, some that subsequently re-retired, some of those went back to work again, and some of those re-re-retired. Whether the moves were financial, boredom-induced or just a great opportunity is hard to say. You dont get the straight story from most folks most of the time. We might all be dogs or 17 year old girls from Missoula (happy birthday uncle mick!).

It also makes it hard to form and state opinions. I've long held to the idea of doing so on the basis that the output was to someone who was or planned to be fully and independently retired with no job related income, probably before the age of 55. Turns out that theres about 1% of the board that are actually doing that and maybe another percent or two who actually will do so.

You can also tell the "really" retired, long term folks as they're almost always the most conservative investors...in the traditional sense. The really brave, balls to the wall folks often have some sort of income thing going, have gone back to work periodically (or will), have a working spouse and/or have only been retired during the current bull market. Be interesting to see how things go around here during the next big bear. And we'll sure have one.

The whole intertubenet wasnt fully functional and no reasonable substitutes existed prior to the big run since 1994. I suspect that "lower end (1-4M) FIRE's rarely met or discussed their situations or kibitzed on lifestyles or investments. So we have no idea really how it went "way back when"...
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Old 11-29-2007, 07:10 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tightasadrum View Post
Soon. Very, very soon. But...
It sort of makes me wonder how reliable all this advice and information really is with 86.8% of it coming from a group who have only been retired 4 years or less! I sure hope the mathematical models are accurate.
Statistical bias is coming from people who can figure out how to operate a computer long enough to post to a discussion board, and who allocate enough time in their lives to actually do so. JG is in the first category, and perhaps Kitty would be an example of the second.

I suspect that many of the long-term ERs found something else they wanted to do-- especially guys like Jarhead, Ol' Rancher, & GDER. Sitting around yakking about something that you figured out how to accomplish a couple decades ago can get pretty boring, especially when the crowd is way too young to address your other concerns.

And I'm sure that a sigificant number of potential respondents saw the heaving disruptions this board's gone through in the last few months and decided not to waste further time here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tightasadrum View Post
I would be even MORE curious about how much in assets the long-retired group started with. Did anyone out there have to quit retirement and go back to w**k? Is this just pre-retirement jitters I'm suffering from? (Not that I plan to change MY plans.)
People lie about money and sex feel bored or unfulfilled or want to tackle new challenges or can't pass up an incredibly good deal...

But you don't have to trust a bunch of anonymous 17-year-olds from Missoula Internet posters. The safest thing would be to keep working until the survey data indicates that you're OK!

Have you read Rich's "Just One More Year" thread?
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:31 PM   #24
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Well this has been interesting and as others have said, a bit disconcerting. But I suppose we really can't draw much of any conclusions given our self selected sample. Nevertheless, our experience level is pretty low.

But here is to a healthy economy!
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Old 11-30-2007, 01:36 PM   #25
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Nevertheless, our experience level is pretty low.
uh oh, and to think i've been accepting advice. that does it. i'm going back to work.
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Old 11-30-2007, 03:03 PM   #26
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Uh oh. I think I might have pi**ed in the punch bowl on this one. Sorry Martha. Very thoughtful responses though. Yes, Nords, I have read the "one more year" thread. In fact, it helped me decide to go ahead and do it in the next month or so. Just need to get a smooth transition worked out for DB. In fact, if I stay much longer, I'll just be a dragging anchor to the business.

My personality tends to be a weird mix of frozen rudder and throw off all lines. It's taken me a long time, of DW pointing it out, to realize that there really is something in the middle to work with. So course is set, and rudder is amidship. Besides, I've got too much to do to be working.
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