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Old 03-06-2012, 11:53 AM   #41
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I don't think LBYM in retirement is a virtue? You will either spend it or give it away. Obviously you don't want to LAYM either. Maybe it's a terminology issue that revolves around the uncertainties of future investment returns?
In my mind it is not something that easily yields to algorithmic analysis. My goal is neither to save money, nor to spend it, but rather live in a way that I enjoy and that is in accord with my values-which include a degree of restraint. Others may well be different, but I find that purchased pleasures dim with frequent repetition. Often enough, but not too often is for me a satisfying schedule.

As for money, I would not enjoy retired life knowing that periodically I might encounter frightening and income threatening drawdowns. Just wouldn't be prudent for me. For that reason although I find Firecalc interesting, I would never say "Ok, FIRECALC likes this plan so I'll give it a go".

And regarding having money left over at death, I regard that as a sign of life well lived, not a problem to be solved. Anyway, it is too risky to spend heavily early on, and the ways older people find to blow money just do not look appealing to me. For example, how did getting locked onto a floating disease-incubating Disneyland with a lot of old people become appealing? Or how did stopping at heavily touristed trading posts, where as the uninformed buyer you will always be cheated, become appealing?

Ha
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Old 03-06-2012, 12:21 PM   #42
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Ha, you sound like a very sensible ER guy. I'm constantly asking myself if we are spending the right amount? We are down about -8% from the start portfolio inflation adjusted value. Should we spend less and try to get it back up? Are we on a slow glide path down or is it only temporary? Tick tock, tick tock, ....

We don't do the vacation shopping for pleasure thing. But we are going off to Paris for 2 weeks this year. Will be indulging our love of art and mostly tourist haunts. My spreadsheet says we are doing reasonable spending.
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Old 03-06-2012, 12:29 PM   #43
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We don't do the vacation shopping for pleasure thing. But we are going off to Paris for 2 weeks this year. Will be indulging our love of art and mostly tourist haunts. My spreadsheet says we are doing reasonable spending.
That sounds like a very good trip to me also. Enjoy!

Ha
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Old 03-06-2012, 02:45 PM   #44
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IMO there is nothing dumber than trying to make oneself spend money he doesn't really want to spend, for stuff or experiences that he doesn't really want.
I agree. I see no reason to buy a McMansion simply because I can. My modest 3 bedroom home perfectly suits my needs.

I've been LBYM all my life. This is not likely to change after I retire. I have no desire for this to change. I buy what I want, and forgo what I don't want.

I believe a LBYM lifestyle in retirement is a virtue. A lot of people say, "spend it now because you can't take it with you." While that's technically true, I don't see a problem with giving your money to charity or to family and friends after you die. Even if it's a lot of money. More so, the future is unknown. Financial security and flexibility have significant emotional value. Knowing that I *can* buy a McMansion is far more beneficial to me than actually buying one.

My problem is that by continuing to work, I am sacrificing time for money. I don't need to stop saving. What I need is to fully recognize the value of time.
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:41 PM   #45
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So some like Nords have spoken of parents, and others have more income than they need or spend. My mom is in a situation where she gets 2 checks each month, one from pension and one from SS. She also has paid off her home and has about $450K in investments.
Each month she spends one check and deposits the other into a savings acct. She has asked me to watch over her investments so every 6 months or so I sweep savings into her investments and invest according to AA I set up for her with her broker. She is worried she will need long term care and spend her savings and end up needing help.
She is happy, but it pains me to see her saving at the age of 80 and not enjoying her assets. But she is happy, so why screw with it. Just another example FWIW.
My father lived like this for nearly two decades. His idea of a "big trip" was a two-week drive through the Rockies, camping & hiking. In later years when he got tired of sleeping on the ground, he'd do the same with cheap hotels.

He kept a couple years' expenses in cash, but for his lifestyle that didn't require much cash. When he turned over his finances to me, his investment portfolio was over 85% equities.

My spouse and I still lock up over some large one-time expenses. Our initial reaction is "That costs too much!" followed a few minutes later by a more rational question: "Compared to what?" Eventually we realize that spending a big chunk of change once or twice a year isn't going to bankrupt us. Or, as my spouse says, "Well, that's what money is for"...

We're getting better at it. My nephew the Army Ranger is getting married next month, so we'll be spending the weekend at a luxury hotel in Austin (the site of their wedding & reception). We wanted to reserve adjoining rooms so that spouse and I could hang out with our daughter, but the hotel wouldn't guarantee "adjoining". By the time we were finished with the conversation we'd ended up reserving their 1400 sq ft "suite". With free coffee!

We don't live like this on every trip, but I suspect that this time we'll appreciate having the party suite. And compared to what we save during the rest of the year, this week will only be a fraction.

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I find it difficult to cease frugality.
Have found it easier to give away money than to spend it.
Same here. Although it's not for lack of opportunity to spend it (like during my working days), but it seems like such a hassle to actually do it.
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:07 PM   #46
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Knowing that I *can* buy a McMansion is far more beneficial to me than actually buying one.
This reminds me of a joke on a bubble gum wrapper that I read as a kid.
First guy says "I wish I had enough money to buy an elephant."
Second guy "What would you do with an elephant!?!?!"
First guy "I don't want an elephant, just enough money to buy one!"

It has taken the deaths of several people close to me to make me realize that my plan to work until I was 66 was flawed. I believe somebody at this site once made the comment that his father said "You can always sell your time to the man, but you can never buy it back."
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:13 PM   #47
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I believe somebody at this site once made the comment that his father said "You can always sell your time to the man, but you can never buy it back."
This is pithy, but incorrect. Plenty people have found and will continue find that they can no longer sell their time to the man, or to anyone else, as no one appears to want to pay for their time any longer.

Ha
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:13 PM   #48
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By the time we were finished with the conversation we'd ended up reserving their 1400 sq ft "suite". With free coffee!
Well, the free coffee is the clincher. For the three of you (Nords, spouse and daughter) a couple of trips to SBUX or the local coffee house would be expensive - $3 for each coffee, plus some goodies to go with the coffee, plus the expense of driving to the coffee house, plus assorted taxes on coffee, food, and tourists, plus the value of your time, plus the new taxes to pay for Obamacare, plus the new fees to balance state and local budgets. I figure the room is costing you about 37 cents a day.
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Old 03-10-2012, 01:16 PM   #49
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This is pithy, but incorrect. Plenty people have found and will continue find that they can no longer sell their time to the man, or to anyone else, as no one appears to want to pay for their time any longer.

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Old 03-10-2012, 04:54 PM   #50
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DH will retire sometime this year and almost from day #1, we have been savers. Ya, that first pension check is probably going to freak me out.
+1.....It is like you hit the lotto every month.
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Old 03-10-2012, 06:09 PM   #51
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For the three of you (Nords, spouse and daughter) a couple of trips to SBUX or the local coffee house would be expensive - $3
Ironically I'm the only coffee drinker in the family, and anything better than Navy coffee* is wasted on my delicate palate.

*[I know, I know, there is nothing better than Navy coffee...]
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Old 03-10-2012, 08:34 PM   #52
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The solution is to convince yourself that you indeed have enough, and that there is a danger that you will not spend enough.

Create a spreadsheet that tells you how much to spend each year, and displays any spending shortfall as fun money.

Visit Amazon frequently, and read reviews.
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Old 03-10-2012, 09:11 PM   #53
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My problem is that by continuing to work, I am sacrificing time for money. I don't need to stop saving. What I need is to fully recognize the value of time.
... and to know what to do with the free time you have in retirement.

Simple as it is, many people do not know or even think about the answer.
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Old 03-11-2012, 09:08 AM   #54
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My parents-in-law are like this. They walk around their condo with the lights turned off and the heat (or A/C) at a minimum, complaining happily about how much things cost.
Sounds like my parents.

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...I doubt frugal conservative spenders will actually want to or be able to mentally, raise spending later in retirement.
My Dad can't make this change. Too many years of scrimping and saving and he can't undo the mindset.

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My problem is that by continuing to work, I am sacrificing time for money. I don't need to stop saving. What I need is to fully recognize the value of time.
I still need to work at least 6 more years until I can retire, but one of my big motivations for striving to ER is that life if finite and I want to be young enough/healthy enough to enjoy it.
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:18 AM   #55
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Seems a little irrational to save all your life and not spend it at some point.
@ Nords great story. My inlaws are like that. I sure don't want to end up that way.
However, a derivative of this "problem" is the fear of spending principal. That is we live (nicely) on dividends and pensions. My DW often says if things go well we can spend part of the portfolio over time as well. Not sure I feel comfortable doing that. We'll see.
I agree it does seem irrational. I admit, I will feel somewhat uncomfortable when I start to withdraw. In fact, I have plans not to need the money (live on my pension) well into my retirement. I wonder if our generation, or at least the subset that read this board, are not much the same as our parents in that respect. Easier to save than to spend - even though we are frequently in far better shape financially.

Life-long habits, of any sort, are hard to change. More of an 'issue' rather than a 'problem' though...

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Old 03-11-2012, 11:36 AM   #56
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...(snip)...
My problem is that by continuing to work, I am sacrificing time for money. I don't need to stop saving. What I need is to fully recognize the value of time.
Maybe generating some keen interests would help to get away from the work-money path. This assumes the work-money path is unfulling, not true for all. It is not in everyone's makeup to develop a passionate interest in something that does not make money. And it may not at first be all that compelling an interest until you develop skill levels there. One only learns this by activity over a period of time, maybe years.

Looking at what I do now, these were all interests I had before ER but did not fully develop. Now they become more fully explored and developed. Sort of like filling out a tree with lots of branching structures and some new limbs.
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Old 03-11-2012, 08:35 PM   #57
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Same here. Although it's not for lack of opportunity to spend it (like during my working days), but it seems like such a hassle to actually do it.
It's a total pain to shop/find people to do stuff/ arrange time and space.
Donating is a simple as writing a check or doing a few clicks.
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:31 PM   #58
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Well, I'll admit it. We don't have any problem spending money. The only apparent constaint is the fear of running out. i realize this is not the norm here.
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