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Old 05-21-2016, 11:19 AM   #21
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With a 2.5% WR (without factoring in Soc Sec), I was confident when I retired.

However, ask me after the next extended recession/depression for a truly meaningful answer...

Few can give a credible answer until they've been through many years/cycles IMO.
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Old 05-21-2016, 11:34 AM   #22
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I was laid off in July 2009, right in the middle of the recession, stock market crash, housing crash etc. I was originally planning to retire in about 2 or 3 years, so I was very concerned about being financially capable of retiring at that time. Along with severance and unemployment, I did retire and it turned out great.
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Old 05-21-2016, 11:44 AM   #23
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I suggest reading the book, What Happy People Know for the antidote to the OMY or one more dollar syndrome. You might also feel more secure with a baseline income in a matching portfolio. There is a limited upside potential with this strategy but the ability to cover retirement expenses with near certainty. And for some peace of mind and a pleasant lifestyle are more important than more money.
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Old 05-21-2016, 12:44 PM   #24
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I was very confident when I left, no second thoughts at all. I was really looking forward to beginning my "new life" and I had much I wanted to address.

Not only had my wife lost both of her parents, I had lost my Ma and soon after my wife followed by my father. I was quite alone and I didn't want to live like that anymore.

My desire to "get out there and live", find a girlfriend and restart "life as I knew it" was compelling and far more so than stacking a few more bucks.

Have fun, don't worry and enjoy your new life!
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Old 05-21-2016, 12:49 PM   #25
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I was pretty confident. I had two main concerns: 1) availability of affordable healthcare in the US and 2) a permanent drop in wealth, our only source of income since we have no pension and still are many years away from Social Security. But I have the EU citizenship and would not mind in the least living in Europe again, so I know that I can have secure access to quality healthcare and, even if my portfolio is permanently cut in half, I'd still be able to maintain a comfortable lifestyle there (DW is totally on board with a move to Europe as well).
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Old 05-21-2016, 12:59 PM   #26
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But I have the EU citizenship and would not mind in the least living in Europe again, so I know that I can have secure access to quality healthcare and, even if my portfolio is permanently cut in half, I'd still be able to maintain a comfortable lifestyle there (DW is totally on board with a move to Europe as well).
That is one of our backup plans and if the ACA had not come along we might be there now.
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Old 05-21-2016, 02:33 PM   #27
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I was confident that I was done w*rking. I was at my wits end, stuck doing something I absolutely hated. Up many nights, stuck with 2 idiot backstabbing co-w*rkers that fit in with our screaming management. I'd been there 29 years in many different areas that was the worst.

I wasn't too sure about the financial aspects, three years later things seem pretty comfortable.😊
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Old 05-21-2016, 03:19 PM   #28
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I was pretty confident but I retired in January 2008 and then the drop happened . I immediately lost almost 40% of my portfolio and seriously debated returning to work . I did not but that drop left my confidence shaky so I usually way under spend .
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Old 05-21-2016, 03:45 PM   #29
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We were fairly confident, but like others we knew it was a huge lifestyle change that could not be undone. The financials showed we would never have to work again if we didn't want to. And I have a well-funded DB COLA'd pension with heavily subsidized health insurance, a rare package now. After the move to WV DW fully intended to get another job and we both thought that would be fairly easy since she worked for federal govt. and always got outstanding reviews, service awards, commendations, and the like. Turns out things are different in WV, you have to "know someone". She applied for and interviewed for several jobs but somehow was never hired. Shortly after her father began having health issues and that became her "job" since we lived only 35 minutes away. She said that giving her the free time to take care of him was the best gift I ever gave her. It was a good move for both of us, she would have been miserable and exhausted trying to keep a job and do that too and at some point the money just isn't worth it. We were long past that point.

Both of us had planned on getting at least part time jobs but then we found those didn't pay enough to justify the expense of commuting. I later stumbled into a low stress job a bit over 3 miles away that paid almost what I was making before I retired, a surprising find. I stayed on there ~5 years and quit when things went downhill, which was fine because I was about to quit anyway. It was a good gig while it lasted and we put most of that money away, which became instrumental in delaying SS until much later than planned.

So financially we are in better shape than we thought we'd be when we first pulled the plug and moved.
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Old 05-21-2016, 06:01 PM   #30
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I was totally confident 5 years ago both financially and psychologically. It has been great ever since. However, it has been interesting to watch DW struggle with the psychological part. She hasn't retired yet. She plans to ER in December but this will be about the 6th exit date in the last several years. So far everyone I know who has ER'd is just fine with the decision.
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Old 05-21-2016, 07:07 PM   #31
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I was laid off with an excellent negotiated severance package. That cemented the numbers for an early retirement. Could have done some consulting but preferred to walk away. Never regretted it for a moment. Finances are better than anticipated. Not surprising since we took a very conservative approach to the numbers.
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Old 05-21-2016, 07:30 PM   #32
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Everyone's situation is different. Knowing how confident I was will have little to do with how confident you should be, unless we match exactly.

Having said that, and because you ask, here goes. 99%, nothing is 100%, and I'm sure there was a little doubt somewhere. In our case DB pension income was enough to cover until SS kicked in. Then another pension kicked in and shortly after RMD's. We do not depend on savings so economic worries are at a minimum. Living in Texas, we can defer property tax when we reach 65. For us that is about a fifth of our expenses, so it is a safety net. Retired military, so Tricare takes care of medical. We take one or two one week cruises each year, and two to three weeks of car trips. We have also replaced automobiles.

Hyper inflation, natural disaster, War, or some other unforeseen event maybe, but I don't loose any sleep over it.

I will say that we under estimated the amount of disposable income we would have. I did not realize how much you save by not working.
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Old 05-22-2016, 12:45 AM   #33
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I have been test driving ER for a month or so now. I was WAY more worried when I had income than I have been in the last month (3 month unpaid sabbatical... with open end for ER).

Honestly I haven't noticed. I just put a couple months of cash in checking and left the rest alone.

I HAVE realized that I want to get my portfolio management to as close to 0 time as possible... so I've been doing that.

Aside from that I run firecalc simulations much less and spend little time looking at money.

Separately I spend less... dunno exactly yet... but seems like 20% or so. It's not from any one thing... it's a combination of time arbitrage and a general sense of knowing there's no "income" so I think a little bit more before buying anything.

It's really weird having so much time... not having to be anywhere... playing with kids all day.

Each day that goes by I get closer to making the sabbatical more permanent.

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Old 05-22-2016, 10:55 AM   #34
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I was confident in the financials, took a little while to reconcile what I did with my spare time. Turns out that I like to loaf.

But it has only been 9 years, so maybe I was overconfident.
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Old 05-22-2016, 12:58 PM   #35
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I was confident in the financials, took a little while to reconcile what I did with my spare time. Turns out that I like to loaf.
I am pretty sure part of the reason I stay busy is simply poor time management.
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Old 05-22-2016, 01:22 PM   #36
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I'd say I was highly confident since I had planned, planned and planned some more. Now, after more than 4 years of retirement, the numbers are proving out as planned and I have had no regrets other than I probably should have retired a year or two sooner. I'd be willing to pay back every extra dollar I made in that last ~two years to have that time back.
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Old 05-22-2016, 02:33 PM   #37
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I was very confident financially, but after a few months of decompression, I decided that I "should" do some consulting. After spending a couple of months working with a coach on a business plan and doing all the LLC paperwork, I found that I wasn't enjoying pounding the pavement to get gigs, and realized that I truly didn't need the $$. I ended up making just enough to pay myself back for the upfront costs and closed it all down for good early this year. Now I'm strictly a volunteer, and still staying plenty busy.
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Old 05-22-2016, 02:39 PM   #38
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As I had back-ups to my back-ups, I was quite confident with one caveat. Inflation or some unknown "black swan" could be around any corner. Remember the turmoil caused by 9/11. We can all image a worse scenario though there isn't much point to do so. YMMV
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Old 05-22-2016, 05:48 PM   #39
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I was extremely lucky, so I was confident.

My goal, ever since I was a teenager, had always been to retire by 55. I had picked that since the "normal" age was 65 and I wanted to beat that by ten years.

So when I hit the magic number of 55, I knew I was FI and could do it, but was stuck in OMY syndrome and just put it off.

The lucky part is that at about that time the rumors started flying around that our company was going to be acquired by a larger one, and that meant layoffs. So I decided to stick around until the end of the year to see if I could snag a layoff package.

Sure enough, the big day came and something like 60% of us got the layoff notice (mostly the higher paid ones). My boss was practically in tears when he gave me the news, but I was grinning from ear to ear.

I saw it as a sign from above, and never thought about w*rking again.
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Old 05-22-2016, 10:54 PM   #40
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I was extremely lucky, so I was confident.

My goal, ever since I was a teenager, had always been to retire by 55. I had picked that since the "normal" age was 65 and I wanted to beat that by ten years.

So when I hit the magic number of 55, I knew I was FI and could do it, but was stuck in OMY syndrome and just put it off.

The lucky part is that at about that time the rumors started flying around that our company was going to be acquired by a larger one, and that meant layoffs. So I decided to stick around until the end of the year to see if I could snag a layoff package.

Sure enough, the big day came and something like 60% of us got the layoff notice (mostly the higher paid ones). My boss was practically in tears when he gave me the news, but I was grinning from ear to ear.

I saw it as a sign from above, and never thought about w*rking again.
I'm in a very similar situation and am aiming for the same thing. No luck in the rounds so far, but the big one's coming next quarter. I was very confident when I first pulled the plug three years ago because my annual spend (excluding income taxes) was less than 1% of my taxable accounts. I went back to work after quickly running out of stuff to do at home, and it's been OMY ever since. No change in confidence because my spending is up by the same percentage as my taxable accounts. I still don't have any preference for ER or not, happy to leave the timing up to my employer.
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