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Sharing some good news this morning
Old 06-18-2013, 03:50 AM   #1
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Sharing some good news this morning

Though news that strangely works against FIRE, at least on the surface. My spouse is going into the office today to give notice, starting a new job early next month. The part that works against FIRE is that it pays 20% less than my spouse's current job.

However, it cuts the commute down from three hours a day on average to an hour a day on average, round trip. What's more, it coincidentally is located in a building across the street from where I work, so we'll drive in together. Another mitigating factor is that my spouse's current job wasn't going to last forever; the project would have ended either this fall or next spring, and a new project would likely have been located prohibitively further away from home. (My spouse is one of the few people who commute to the office from home; most of the folks working there are put up in hotels each week.) So this new job represents (we hope) three to six years of additional employment, instead of barely one. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. And given that the last "between jobs" period lasted almost a year, I suspect that 20% pay cut is washed away by the fact that there will be no "between jobs" period this time.
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Old 06-18-2013, 03:59 AM   #2
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Congrats that sounds like a good life style improvement.
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Old 06-18-2013, 04:17 AM   #3
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Overall it sounds like a good decision. Although quality-of-life issues are hard to put a price tag on there's a lot to be said for a shorter commute and cutting commute costs in half or better.
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Old 06-18-2013, 04:59 AM   #4
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One of the nice things about a shared commute is it forces all the riders to have more discipline when it's time to leave, especially at the end. Of the day. Hope the extra hours of life your DW regains and the time you get to spend together benefit you both.
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Old 06-18-2013, 05:14 AM   #5
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I'm especially looking forward to that. It isn't just the extra hour together in the car each day, nor that plus the extra couple of hours together in evening, but also the fact that it takes her out of the grueling rush hour traffic for those two hours, taking that much wear-and-tear off of her psyche and body.
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Old 06-18-2013, 05:26 AM   #6
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Reducing the commute by that much is HUGE! That plus the fact that you can share the ride would make up for the cut in pay in my book. If your partner has less stress/more energy, they may find performance at work is stepped up to the extent that raises/bonuses come more frequently and at better rates, too.

Hope you both enjoy the new arrangement.
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Old 06-18-2013, 05:30 AM   #7
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Life is more important than FIRE and it sounds to me like your quality of life will be much better. Was it a hard decision or easy?
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Old 06-18-2013, 05:43 AM   #8
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It was a no-brainer for me. After all, I made a very similar decision over fifteen years ago, leaving a senior manager position at a Big Six firm, changing careers to something less stressful. I've never recovered from the pay-cut, in real (inflation-adjusted) terms, but I've never regretted the decision.

I think my spouse's main fear is the actual giving of notice. My spouse hates confrontation, and this will be a very major hit to the organization, because my spouse is just about the only competent person in the department. (My spouse even won an award, and in no uncertain terms the director made it clear that it was specifically for dealing with the "vortex" - the director's word - of confusion and disorganization that is my spouse's supervisor.)

My spouse is also a little reticent about this being a bit of a career change at age 59. In the old job, my spouse was essentially a quality assurance engineer. In the new job, my spouse is a business analyst. Of course, with age and experience comes maturity and perspective, qualities that make one a good business analyst. I think it's a great career change at this point in my spouse's career.
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Old 06-18-2013, 06:04 AM   #9
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I made a similar lifestyle decision decades ago when offered a job that would double the present salary with additional incentives and much greater potential for fast track advancement to even higher income. I turned it down for the work I enjoyed, being able to stay where I was and not have to travel. The money would have been nice but I had gone that way before and learned my lesson. I spent the next 20 years enjoying my career path and spending more of our time together while still being able to prepare for a comfortable retirement.

Best of luck making your decision.

Cheers!
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:06 AM   #10
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It was a no-brainer for me. After all, I made a very similar decision over fifteen years ago, leaving a senior manager position at a Big Six firm, changing careers to something less stressful. I've never recovered from the pay-cut, in real (inflation-adjusted) terms, but I've never regretted the decision.

I think my spouse's main fear is the actual giving of notice. My spouse hates confrontation, and this will be a very major hit to the organization, because my spouse is just about the only competent person in the department. (My spouse even won an award, and in no uncertain terms the director made it clear that it was specifically for dealing with the "vortex" - the director's word - of confusion and disorganization that is my spouse's supervisor.)

My spouse is also a little reticent about this being a bit of a career change at age 59. In the old job, my spouse was essentially a quality assurance engineer. In the new job, my spouse is a business analyst. Of course, with age and experience comes maturity and perspective, qualities that make one a good business analyst. I think it's a great career change at this point in my spouse's career.
I think this is a great decision on many levels: easier commute, sharing the commute with you (that should mitigate the pay cut at least a tad), and the bird in hand you referenced. If your DW is 59, and her current j*b has a short term "life expectancy," finding a job at age 60 would have been tougher (i.e., when one is "forced" to look). This new position seems to put DW in driver's seat as to her longer term career decisions. Congrats.
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:14 AM   #11
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Sounds like a big win for your DW and you. As one who has suffered through a horrendous commute, what a relief this will bring.
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:26 AM   #12
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Life is more important than FIRE and it sounds to me like your quality of life will be much better.
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:56 AM   #13
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Life is more important than FIRE and it sounds to me like your quality of life will be much better.
+1
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:24 AM   #14
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I'm especially looking forward to that. It isn't just the extra hour together in the car each day, nor that plus the extra couple of hours together in evening, but also the fact that it takes her out of the grueling rush hour traffic for those two hours, taking that much wear-and-tear off of her psyche and body.
+1 on this.... a long commute is a drag...

Also, if she works across the street you might be able to get lunch together every once in awhile...


good new indeed....
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:49 AM   #15
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There's more to life than how much you get paid. DW has worked in jobs she loves for her entire adult life, and while she earns less than her skills and resume would be worth on the open market, the fact that her jobs generally make her smile and are pretty flexible... well, there's value in that too.

I'll do all the suffering for money in this family, thank you very much! :-)

Congratulations to you!
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:43 AM   #16
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This sounds like a great idea to control change before other people's plans change your lives. Self-imposed positive change and taking control. That's also what FIRE is about.

I hope we get to hear the outcome, bUU. I'm on pins and needles now.
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Old 06-18-2013, 11:19 AM   #17
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Sounds like a great change. I, too, want to hear how it went for your DW. Hoping it was a piece of cake and she feels pure relief and joy and that you two celebrate this evening.
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Old 06-18-2013, 11:38 AM   #18
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I think that it is a great idea. My DH made a similar move many years ago. We were renting a place between our 2 places of work and his commute was definitely the worse one. It allowed us to move to the city where I was working and buy a house. He could have walked to his job in 10-15 minutes and I worked 6 miles from our house. We have never regretted that decision.
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Old 06-18-2013, 11:49 AM   #19
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Congrats - sounds like the quality of life for you two will spike dramatically. Just curious - are you saying this changed your projected FIRE date from 1 year from now to 3-6 years? That kind of sucks if I read you correctly.
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Old 06-18-2013, 11:59 AM   #20
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Congrats!!!
The shorter commute & more stable position sound like a winner.
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