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Old 06-20-2016, 04:57 AM   #21
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A little bit of worry is a good thing... There's a young guy on YouTube wife, young daughter. He's cashing in his Ira to buy a sailboat and go cruising. Search sailboat story in YouTube if you're interested.. I find it amazing people will cast off on a shoe string...

Perhaps we could bottle our conservative money ways and sell it.


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Actually that guy is gonna write a blog or do a video blog and he'll be ok.

Its possibly Bruno's brother, Franco
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Old 06-20-2016, 05:02 AM   #22
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The fear is real.
Experience and time seem to help.
First year of FiRE has been very fiscally conservative for me.

Finally I'm starting to spend -- my airline freq flier miles, my hotel points , and the stash of gift cards.

It's like I am going through the spending motions ..training myself to spend a little ... but without it hurting the wallet so much or triggering the guilt and fear sensors the same way.

It's been fun ...
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Old 06-20-2016, 05:54 AM   #23
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I'm not even retired yet and I'm having the problem. I'm working way less hours and even looking to go to 4 days a week and the lower income (which also means less deposited into 401k) is a little disconcerting even though I know I don't need the money.
It's tough to overcome a lifetime of discipline.
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Old 06-20-2016, 06:41 AM   #24
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+1. I'm still a w*rking stiff and would love to FIRE but WHEN I finally reach FI, now I have to worry about being afraid to spend any money while also avoiding OMY Syndrome, not to mention quitting way before all my friends and family do. Yeesh! At least I was warned. Seriously, I might be a candidate for ramping down to part time before going cold turkey, just to earn fun money and keep momentum toward my goal of FIRE. I've also read stories about depression that can develop from denying oneself their deserved reward. It's a minefield out there apparently!
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Old 06-20-2016, 06:56 AM   #25
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DW and I have increased our spending somewhat, but have come to grips with the fact that we are savers and not spenders. We have what we need and realize that it does not take a lot to make us happy. DW and I are at peace with that...
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Old 06-20-2016, 07:09 AM   #26
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I have a related problem. No problem spending divs as this feels like an income stream. Just have a much more difficult time selling stock. At some point I should "bite the bullet". Not really sure what I would spend it on though. Maybe another house? Just kidding.😃
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Old 06-20-2016, 07:12 AM   #27
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I have plenty to live on, but I do wonder what my / DW's long term care costs will be.
This is a real concern for me as well. A conservative assumption means continuing to live beneath our means and keeping a lid on spending. Oh well ..
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Age old issue: the transition from saver to spender
Old 06-20-2016, 07:29 AM   #28
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Age old issue: the transition from saver to spender

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I wonder if it's a matter of time and getting used to it.

After a while (11 years might be overly cautious) you slowly come to the realization that 'yeah....we're good'

No question time is a major factor. Probably "the" reason.

With each year that passes, it is one less year your stash has to last. I am certain I will feel substantially different about the "withdrawal issue" when at 70, for example, then I do now. I suspect that 5 year increments in this regard are readjust your thinking periods (assuming nothing dramatic occurs in the interim).

When you are young you assume your life is infinite: when you approach, or have claimed, SS, you realize that the horizon is quite a bit more definable/comprehendible.


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Old 06-20-2016, 04:53 PM   #29
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I have a related problem. No problem spending divs as this feels like an income stream. Just have a much more difficult time selling stock. At some point I should "bite the bullet". Not really sure what I would spend it on though. Maybe another house? Just kidding.😃
Funny, I also have no difficulty spending dividends (and CAP gain) distributions from my taxable fund accounts (which fortunately with the addition of SS and a tiny pension have been enough for a comfortable ER) but I am extremely reluctant to actually sell shares. I realize intellectually that there is no difference from a total return standpoint but it really bothers me when I contemplate actually selling shares...
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Old 06-20-2016, 10:28 PM   #30
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Funny, I also have no difficulty spending dividends (and CAP gain) distributions from my taxable fund accounts (which fortunately with the addition of SS and a tiny pension have been enough for a comfortable ER) but I am extremely reluctant to actually sell shares. I realize intellectually that there is no difference from a total return standpoint but it really bothers me when I contemplate actually selling shares...
I don't think it's that odd. After all, the dividends and cap gains from your funds are taxable whether you reinvest them or not. Selling shares is a taxable event you have control over.
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Old 06-20-2016, 10:53 PM   #31
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No question time is a major factor. Probably "the" reason.

With each year that passes, it is one less year your stash has to last. I am certain I will feel substantially different about the "withdrawal issue" when at 70, for example, then I do now. I suspect that 5 year increments in this regard are readjust your thinking periods (assuming nothing dramatic occurs in the interim).

When you are young you assume your life is infinite: when you approach, or have claimed, SS, you realize that the horizon is quite a bit more definable/comprehendible.


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Agreed, after over ten years of retirement which is one quarter of what I expected to live after bailing, and with a portfolio 20% higher than 1996, I wonder if I will ever spend it all. Of course it is fun trying.
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Old 06-21-2016, 01:18 AM   #32
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We are on a trip in Iceland. Last "family vacation" with DS who just finished college. Iceland is expensive. Everything here is double what it is in U.S. We searched travel companies and found the cheapest one. There have been interesting adventures going cheap. Instead of eating out every meal, we bought bread and mustard and lunch meat and fruit and are making lunches. I packed 2lb of nuts in our suitcases, as well as granola bars. We're mostly eating as cheaply as we can find, with only one meal being the quintessential Iceland food experience. Not buying alcohol here, except for one local beer. We went to the Myvatn nature baths instead of the Blue Lagoon for our mineral hot water soak, saving about $90 for the same experience.

Hiking is free. Seeing glaciers and moonscape a from the road is free. Seeing the birds is free. I accidentally got too close to an arctic tern's nest (in a parking lot and videotaped the bird trying to get into the car...free. Getting lost, quite fun actually, free (well, except for the extra fuel for the car).

Being frugal is about spending carefully as needed, not about not spending at all. No need to change frugal habits.

It is strange spending dividends instead of reinvesting though.


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Old 06-21-2016, 02:12 AM   #33
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I realize intellectually that there is no difference from a total return standpoint but it really bothers me when I contemplate actually selling shares...
Naturally selling shares is proof that you have entered the final phase, liquidating principal.
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Old 06-21-2016, 02:24 AM   #34
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We are on a trip in Iceland. Last "family vacation" with DS who just finished college. Iceland is expensive. Everything here is double what it is in U.S.
It is the same in mainland Europe. At The Hyatt, having breakfast included costs 27 euros pp more. We went to have a great breakfast on the main square (not the cheapest place) and it only cost 27 euros for two. Then we bought some buns and are having those in the room with the free coffee today. We also bring in wine and cheese for our late afternoon snack because we enjoy it better.
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Old 06-21-2016, 06:31 AM   #35
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My paternal grandparents were 2nd generation Sicilian immigrants to Upstate NY. My paternal grandma was on of 11 children. They took in laundry, sewed, worked in a canning factory, etc etc. She raised 5 children during the depression, 2 of whom were blind, one of whom could never leave the house.
She raised my dad to be very frugal. Dad did well financially, but letting of go of the lessons of frugality was hard.
Whenever we'd eat cheese he would repeat the story of his mom's admonitions to "never eat cheese without bread" because the cheese would stretch farther with bread.
During retirement he and my mom bought a place in a condo on the beach near Naples, Fl. While shopping for all of the furniture etc. needed for a newly build residence, he told me "with all of the money I'm spending, my mom has to be turning in her grave".

I put my arm around him and said, "no, Dad. She's smiling. She's happy that all of the hard work she put in raising you guys, it all turned out well. Wouldn't you be happy to see your kids doing well? Nobody gave you anything you didn't earn, every day. I'm sure she's happy"

I think it helped to hear that from one of his children. Now, I have to remind myself of that conversation from time to time.
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Old 06-21-2016, 06:37 AM   #36
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As for me, I seem to have a reluctance to spend money on stuff that doesn't retain some value, at least for a while. For example, while I love to eat, I don't enjoy really expensive meals "out". I love the food, but then, it's just a memory. I may spend more than I need to on a toy, like a fishing boat, but at least I can still enjoy the toy for years.

I think that's also one of the reasons (among some others)I don't love traveling to far away places. Clearly, some of my Dad's frugality has worn off on me. Probably a good thing in some ways, and curse in others.
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Old 06-22-2016, 10:14 AM   #37
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It definately take some time to get used to!

I'm 1,5 years in and I'm basically living like I used to. I'm soon spending a few days in a town across the country and almost booked at the usual bargain price hotel. A couple of hours ago this. Then I remembered I don't need to - and don't really want to either. So now I'm having a break from browsing for hotels to post here. So many choices!

I just bought a new car - that is new for me 12 months used - the smallest Mercedes model. And I decided to upgrade to the in-car GPS system. But it's taken me like 3 months to actually call the dealer and order it. But today I did - picking it up on friday.

So today I have taken two small steps towards becoming a spender!
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Approaching the void between saving and spending
Old 06-22-2016, 02:02 PM   #38
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Approaching the void between saving and spending

As someone who is quickly approaching the chance to FIRE, it was to be in 2017, but looks like near the end of 2016 now, I am already having the second guessing jitters. I have looked this over so many different ways, run Firecalc over and over just to make sure it keeps telling me the same thing. It is the unknown, it is the anticipation of finding out if my anticipated excel spreadsheet budget numbers are really going to become reality, whether my choice of low cost index funds will continue to perform as the market has for 80 years, if my plans on how much to draw from the funds is high, low, or just about right.

It has been great to see posts like these that help reassure me and I'm sure others that this type of thinking, overplanning, nervousness is all normal.

I will transform from Saver to Spender, cautiously over the next couple of years but everything is going to be all right.....
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:55 PM   #39
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I've been at the retirement thing for about five years now. I've always liked the Fidelity RIP tool, mainly because it figures the taxes in and a lot of our stash is IRA. We're on vacation now away from home so don't have access to them, but about once a year I print out the "detail" of the output (withdrawals, sources, amount remaining, etc.).

We've kept our draw at about 85% of what the max amount FIDO says we can do (including all sources such as SS which is still dormant and waiting), amounts to pulling about 3.2% of portfolio. That draw was less (2.5%?) starting out but as we've gotten comfortable we're pulling more.

Point is, over 5 years the portfolio has grown 21%. If I run it today at what is CURRENT max til we're in 90's, it shows the portfolio dropping about 27% over the next five years (but still safe). What this tells me is that it's easy to forget all these calculators are built around more or less "worst case" and .... that's rarely the case. If we'd pulled the actual max the results wouldn't be that different.

I get it. I don't want to outlive the money or watch the portfolio plummet. But if you are reasonably conservative (and I think a lot of us here are a lot so) in time you can not only relax but realizing we're not in that outlier worst case, can increase spending. Of course if it happens, adjust as necessary. I suppose a lot depends on how much of a person's expense is considered essential. If a lot is discretionary then it makes it pretty easy to accept an adjustment for a few years.
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Old 06-23-2016, 09:19 AM   #40
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My paternal grandparents were 2nd generation Sicilian immigrants to Upstate NY. My paternal grandma was on of 11 children. They took in laundry, sewed, worked in a canning factory, etc etc. She raised 5 children during the depression,

She raised my dad to be very frugal. Dad did well financially, but letting of go of the lessons of frugality was hard.
Very similar story to mine. It was my paternal grandparents who emigrated to Canada from Italy (les Marches). My grandfather was 16 and penniless when he came over, in 1912. Was quite successful financially and instilled the same values of hard work and frugality in his 6 children. These values sometimes can get diluted over time but often last at least for a couple of generations. Cheers.
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