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costs to retire "comfortably" in each state
Old 06-24-2019, 01:50 PM   #1
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costs to retire "comfortably" in each state

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/th...ica-2019-06-19

How much do you need to retire? It depends heavily on where you live
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Old 06-24-2019, 01:57 PM   #2
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There's a lot variance even in one state. The article says it costs $67,810.61 to live comfortably in Washington state. We've never spent much over $40,000 even now while working, but someone living in Seattle would probably have a difficult time living on that.
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Old 06-24-2019, 01:59 PM   #3
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There's a lot variance even in one state. The article says it costs $67,810.61 to live comfortably in Washington state. We've never spent much over $40,000 even now while working, but someone living in Seattle would probably have a difficult time living on that.
no doubt, the numbers are probably an "average" for each state
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:00 PM   #4
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Yup. Lot's of places here in CA that are brutally expensive, but the central valley is not one of them.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:02 PM   #5
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Seems quite high doesn't it? Even in the poorer states like Mississippi and Alabama and Louisiana it is still $50k+. I wonder if that is before or after Tax? We spend about $45k of REAL after Tax money in NE Florida per year to just break even, before discretionary spending and we do not have a mortgage.

I would also bet that the median of families in those states will be way below that in reality, especially the poorer ones I mentioned. So even pre-retirement living would not be considered "Comfortable" by their standards I am sure. Add the cost of going to work every day may push it even higher.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:04 PM   #6
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Yet another study totally detached from reality, IMHO. Apparently, they claim you can retire "comfortably" in my state for $55K. That's complete hogwash. Our core expenses (property taxes, 2 average cars, utilities, etc) are roughly that - and I know precisely what they are as I track them to the penny using Quicken. Add in Healthcare (survey says $6,600 - riiiight..try $25K+) and it jumps to $80K. Then taxes - $90K+. Then one 2-week vacation annually - $100K+. Is that "comfortable"? Sure..but we're sure not living large on that, either. Maybe eat out once or twice a month..clip coupons..use Kroger fuel points..now, if "comfortably" means living in a super small house out in the sticks somewhere, having one owned vs. leased older car, etc..maybe. But I wouldn't define that as "comfortable" - at least to us..YMMV.

Sigh..
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:07 PM   #7
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Yet another study totally detached from reality. Apparently, they claim you can retire "comfortably" in my state for $55K. That's complete hogwash. Our core expenses (property taxes, 2 average cars, utilities, etc) are roughly that - and I know precisely what they are as I track them to the penny using Quicken. Add in Healthcare (survey says $6,600 - riiiight..try $25K+) and it jumps to $80K. Then taxes - $90K+. Then one 2-week vacation annually - $100K+. Is that "comfortable"? Sure..but we're sure not living large on that, either.

Sigh..
They did day post 65 years of age so assume Medicare prices, not $25k.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:10 PM   #8
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...the average over-65 household will spend nearly $50,000 a year...
Yeah, but the important question is whether that average includes RobbieB!! He'll throw off the whole thing!


EDIT: oops, reading comprehension issue; OVER-65 could not be possible yet based on his sig!
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:10 PM   #9
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They did day post 65 years of age so assume Medicare prices, not $25k.
Sure - but even Medicare can be very expensive. There was a thread recently on what people were paying total (including OOP) and the numbers were surprisingly high.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:12 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by 24601NoMore View Post
Yet another study totally detached from reality, IMHO. Apparently, they claim you can retire "comfortably" in my state for $55K. That's complete hogwash. Our core expenses (property taxes, 2 average cars, utilities, etc) are roughly that - and I know precisely what they are as I track them to the penny using Quicken. Add in Healthcare (survey says $6,600 - riiiight..try $25K+) and it jumps to $80K. Then taxes - $90K+. Then one 2-week vacation annually - $100K+. Is that "comfortable"? Sure..but we're sure not living large on that, either. Maybe eat out once or twice a month..clip coupons..use Kroger fuel points..now, if "comfortably" means living in a super small house out in the sticks somewhere, having one owned vs. leased older car, etc..maybe. But I wouldn't define that as "comfortable" - at least to us..YMMV.

Sigh..
It seems you actually proved the article's point, as you are counting for 2 of you.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:19 PM   #11
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It seems you actually proved the article's point, as you are counting for 2 of you.
I think they said that's a "household" cost..unless I just misread/misunderstood..
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:22 PM   #12
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The problem is defining "comfortably", IMO. For some of us that means a sirloin steak cooked at home once a week, for some it means filet mignon at a nice restaurant. (And there's nothing wrong with either, unless you run out of money after very few years of retirement due to your expensive tastes.)
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:29 PM   #13
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Sure - but even Medicare can be very expensive. There was a thread recently on what people were paying total (including OOP) and the numbers were surprisingly high.
Only if folk take an MA plan because they "seem" cheap, verses Supplement G or F. Otherwise it is very predictable year to year.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:58 PM   #14
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These numbers look really high to me. My state is listed as roughly $55k.

Considering my take home expenses are around $2,700 a month and that's with paying inflated apt rent, leasing a car, and eating almost every meal out. I have never understood what people are spending so much money on. I don't make any effort at all to spend less. I guess its because I'm not married and don't have kids.

If I bought a house and car I could cut my take home expenses down to $1,350 or so. If I stopped working I could eliminate taxes (my largest expense). If I wasn't working I could also cut my food bill in half or more. So, I'd probably need like $1,000 a month plus health insurance.
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:03 PM   #15
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I think it's interesting that they'd put Maryland at $81,310.81. That's more or less what I'm shooting for. FireCalc gives me a 94.9% chance of making it on $80K per year, if I retire in 2021 at age 51. I think that should be enough for me to be fairly comfortable. However, "comfortable" to me is doing it with a $2600/mo mortgage, and the costs that go with maintaining a swimming pool. That might be considered a bit "extravagant" to some.


And, like others have said, these things are just rough averages. There are places in Maryland where I couldn't make it on $80K per year, and places where I could live like a king, on $80K per year. Just like any state.
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:10 PM   #16
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It's interesting but such a generalization it may not mean a lot for any individual. You can still find cheap homes in HCOL areas and expensive homes in LCOL areas, highly variable. It's a relief to find the state we're moving too only costs 3.5% more than the state we're leaving according to the marketwatch link. But our new home will cost 56% more than the old one, with higher ongoing home owner costs across the board, so it won't be 3.5% higher for us - it'll be substantially more. We could not buy an equivalent house in the new state for 3.5% more than the old one...
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:13 PM   #17
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"The biggest chunk of that is on housing at more than $16,000 a year"

We retired with no mortgage and spend well below our state's average of $60K/year. Our annual spending includes almost year 'round overseas travel.
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:16 PM   #18
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These numbers look really high to me. My state is listed as roughly $55k.
I suspect that virtually every state has areas where the COL is either very high or very low and everything in between. Having lived in Maryland for most of my life I know that state is one. For example Potomac, Chevy Chase, and Bethesda in MD are all extremely HCOL areas, right up there with NYC and San Francisco.

The western counties of Allegheny and Garrett (except near resort areas like Deep Creek Lake) are (or used to be anyway) low-cost and some counties on the Eastern Shore are also. Or again, at least they used to be.

We live in one of the wealthier areas of WV now, and I've been told that there are other areas where if you have a paved driveway you're a very rich man. Relatively speaking, of course.
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:21 PM   #19
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It's MarketWatch click bait.

"This is exactly how much it will cost to retire well in every state in America"

Yeah, provided you are average, in an average area with average costs. EXACTLY?
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:31 PM   #20
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Seems quite high doesn't it? Even in the poorer states like Mississippi and Alabama and Louisiana it is still $50k+.
True, higher than I would have thought although not far off from what I spend per year. And although MS is the cheapest as I would have suspected, not that far off from a lot of states. i would have thought there would have been a wider variance.
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