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Greetings from the Bay Area, hoping to FIRE by mid-2030s
Old 01-09-2012, 11:36 PM   #1
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Greetings from the Bay Area, hoping to FIRE by mid-2030s

Hi Folks,

I've been visiting this site for awhile and finally joined tonight. This forum is very inspiring for people at all stages of retirement planning and I'm glad to be part of the group.

My stats:

- Single
- 38
- Female
- No kids (except a cat)
- Income: 70,000/yr (but I live in the Bay Area)
- Real Estate: I’m not currently a homeowner, but I’m looking to score a cheap (under $150k) condo in the next year or two. I've been a homeowner in another state, but didn't think I'd ever find something affordable in BA, until recently.
-retirement assets: 401(k): $84,685, Roth: $15,861...which if you do the math means my retirement assets just hit six figures tonight!!!

I'm sure this is a tiny amount to most here and not as much as I should have at my age, but this is a huge psychological milestone for me. Just a few years ago, my head was spinning because my portfolio hit $10K. Most of the people in my family (except for my dad) are terrible with money and broke in their 50s and 60s...so that was my wake-up call a few years ago to start saving!!!

May I ask a question? Although I work for a company that provides a good pension, I'm not factoring SS or a pension in my retirement planning. Has anyone here truly retired on the income from a 401(k) or IRA alone...no inheritances, or windfalls from real estate...just 401(k) and IRA? I just wonder if it's truly possible. I started maxing out both and plan to retire by 60 or 62.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:15 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forum 2035. Sounds like you have "seen the light" when it comes to financial independence.

To answer your question. Yes, several on this forum live totally from their retirement savings stash. No pension, no SS (yet or perhaps ever). I'm not one of those folks, but you can search the forum and find several examples. Some will most likely chime in here shortly.

If you do have a promised pension and the promise of SS, I wouldn't totally discount them. As you get closer to your retirement goal, you should have a better idea of how much they will contribute to your retirement income. Certainly, I look at the folks without these sources of income as "heroes"! Still, I'm glad to have these resources available. YMMV

Best of luck.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:27 AM   #3
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Hey I'm targeting the 2030s too! Specifically January 2032 For me, which is the first month of the year I will turn 55, in late December. Should be a year or so after my youngest is out of college too, so things line up nicely. So I'm a few years younger than you, and have a little more saved up in 401k and Roth IRA. I have no pention, and not planning on SS. If I get some SS payout it will be a bonus (and I bet I will, but I am not making my plan based on it). I expect to live quite comfortably from my savings alone. I do live in a lower cost of living region than you.

Congrats on your 100k! You're lightyears ahead of "normal"!
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:34 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forum and congrats on your milestone!

I believe a few folks are living solely on their stash (taxable and non-taxable) without pension or SS in ER. For my planning (I'm 42 now), I use 50% of SS number at age 62 for budgeting purposes (but will hopefully delay until 70). We will have a better idea in the future (10 or 15 years from now) if SS and/or your pension is safe or reduced, meanwhile try to enjoy the ride. Some stuff we just can't control!
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Old 01-10-2012, 02:48 AM   #5
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Welcome. It is my understanding that some contributors here have retired on their savings only, with no SS benefit.
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Originally Posted by 2035 View Post
May I ask a question? Although I work for a company that provides a good pension, I'm not factoring SS or a pension in my retirement planning. Has anyone here truly retired on the income from a 401(k) or IRA alone...no inheritances, or windfalls from real estate...just 401(k) and IRA? I just wonder if it's truly possible.
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Old 01-10-2012, 06:07 AM   #6
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Hi 2035, welcome to the forum. Congratulations on your milestone! You are ahead of the pack and hopefully you can stay there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2035 View Post
May I ask a question? Although I work for a company that provides a good pension, I'm not factoring SS or a pension in my retirement planning. Has anyone here truly retired on the income from a 401(k) or IRA alone...no inheritances, or windfalls from real estate...just 401(k) and IRA? I just wonder if it's truly possible. I started maxing out both and plan to retire by 60 or 62.
Many members here have retired without pensions and only have income from portfolios. Not always IRA or 401(k), because not all are US based, and some had taxable savings and portfolios to supplement their tax deferred savings. The way to financial independence is not windfalls but to spend less than you earn and save the difference.
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:14 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by 2035 View Post
- Real Estate: Iím not currently a homeowner, but Iím looking to score a cheap (under $150k) condo in the next year or two. I've been a homeowner in another state, but didn't think I'd ever find something affordable in BA, until recently.
Out of curiosity, where in the Bay Area are you seeing condos<=$150K?

Ha
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:16 AM   #8
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Out of curiosity, where in the Bay Area are you seeing condos<=$150K?

Ha
Yes, I would be interested too! I will be moving to BA shortly and I am looking for bargains!
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:22 AM   #9
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Yes, I would be interested too! I will be moving to BA shortly and I am looking for bargains!
I'm sure that Jacob Lund Fisker and the other Bay Area EREs have the inside track on cheap real estate...
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:25 AM   #10
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I'm sure that Jacob Lund Fisker and the other Bay Area EREs have the inside track on cheap real estate...
I am not looking for anything that cheap...
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:26 AM   #11
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I am not looking for anything that cheap...
Nor with wheels...
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:35 AM   #12
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Out of curiosity, where in the Bay Area are you seeing condos<=$150K?

Ha
Think East Bay. Prices in SF didn't dip that much, but outside The City, prices are a lot lower.
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Old 01-10-2012, 11:51 AM   #13
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Think East Bay. Prices in SF didn't dip that much, but outside The City, prices are a lot lower.
Bummer. I am looking inside the city.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:03 PM   #14
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Bummer. I am looking inside the city.
Well unless 2035 has some inside information that we don't, I think you're out of luck. I don't think even TIC's are that cheap in The City (using capital T and capital C so as not to offend San Franciscans )
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:08 PM   #15
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Think East Bay. Prices in SF didn't dip that much, but outside The City, prices are a lot lower.
Like Hayward, Emeryville? I wonder about Albany, or Oakland up near Alcatraz?
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:17 PM   #16
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Like Hayward, Emeryville? I wonder about Albany, or Oakland up near Alcatraz?
Precisely. Oakland in particular gets a bad rap with people who haven't visited, but there are some very nice residential areas there.
The Temescal, Rockridge, Lake Merritt and Piedmont Ave areas are pleasant, for example.

One thing the East Bay has that The City doesn't (unless you're near GG Park) is lots of trees and green.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:25 PM   #17
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how's the commute between the East Bay and downtown SF?
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:38 PM   #18
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how's the commute between the East Bay and downtown SF?
Depending on where in the EB you're talking about, it can be pretty quick.

I moved from the Outer Sunset area of SF, right by the beach, to Oakland, and found that my commute on BART took the same time.
The combined time of my 20 minute walk to the BART station and the 15 minute BART trip from the 19th Street Oakland BART station to downtown SF was about the same as my previously shorter walk to the MUNI stop and the much slower trundling street car that took me into downtown.

It all depends on which part of The City you're comparing to which part of East Bay.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:46 PM   #19
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Depending on where in the EB you're talking about, it can be pretty quick.

I moved from the Outer Sunset area of SF, right by the beach, to Oakland, and found that my commute on BART took the same time.
The combined time of my 20 minute walk to the BART station and the 15 minute BART trip from the 19th Street Oakland BART station to downtown SF was about the same as my previously shorter walk to the MUNI stop and the much slower trundling street car that took me into downtown.

It all depends on which part of The City you're comparing to which part of East Bay.
I see. Thank you. We are currently looking in the South of Market / South Beach / China Basin area. It seems like the most convenient location for us.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:51 PM   #20
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Hi Folks,


May I ask a question? Although I work for a company that provides a good pension, I'm not factoring SS or a pension in my retirement planning. Has anyone here truly retired on the income from a 401(k) or IRA alone...no inheritances, or windfalls from real estate...just 401(k) and IRA? I just wonder if it's truly possible. I started maxing out both and plan to retire by 60 or 62.
Plan to retire this year, and RE could be funded solely from my before tax port, although I suspect SS will be there for me and DW.

By the way, I like your Avi
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