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Made it!!
Old 08-10-2010, 08:25 PM   #1
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Made it!!

Back in November 2007, I posted the following:

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Just a little background about me.

- Married 52 years old, married DW is 49 and one child who is 14.

- I work for large (megacorp) company, employed as a manager. Been with the same company for 18yrs. Will be eligible for a Non-Colad pension of approx. $9,000 per yr and subsidized healthcare at age 55. However, very bored with job plus the office is very Dilbert-like (i.e. unnecessary meetings, buzzwords etc...)

- Wife works part time for library. No benefits. She could take or leave her job as well.

- We have a 15 yr mortgage at 4.75% and are 4 yrs into it. $90,000 balance. House worth about $550,000. No other debt.

- Presently have $75,000 in a 529 plan for our son's college expense.

- In addition, we have approx. $250,000 in taxable (mix of MM and MFs) and about $950,000 in tax deferred (401k and various IRAs). Overall mix is 50% equities, 25% bonds and 25% cash. Of the equities, 30% is in int'l funds. Almost all funds are with Vanguard (including 401K).

- We presently spend about $75,000/year.


I realize the prudent thing for me to do is work (suck it up) the next 3 yrs at my present employer so I qualify for the pension and the subsidized HC benefits. However, I am not sure I can handle my job for another 3 yrs as it has become brain numbing. Unfortunately, a day does not go by without me thinking of being free of this place. Sometimes, I (along with my wife) wonder if we should just quit, down size our home and just FIRE (or maybe find part time jobs we both enjoy).

I would think alot of people are in our shoes or have been. Any thoughts or musings would be appreciated on this cold Sunday evening.

__________________________________________________ ______________

Well I made it (just turned 55). Alot of cr@p happened in the meantime.

Got older!

Non-colad pension is now worth $8,100/year.

There were layoffs in 2009, I survived them but got demoted but maintained my wage.

Subsidized healthcare is now available to me - would need to pay approx. $9,600 per year for a family of three.

Balance on mortgage is now $62,700 and have a heloc with balance of $20,000.

529 plan is now at $88,500. Son will start college in 2011. Will be in state public college.

Survived the 2008 market massacre but stayed the course with approx. 48% equity, 34% bonds and 18% (chicken) cash). Portfolio approx $1.3mm.

If I do decide to FIRE, I can now take dist. (if necessary) from my 401k penalty free.

- Expenses are around $80,000 including taxes.

I want to take the time to thank all the individuals who advised me to hang in there in order to qualify for the hc benefits. It wasn't easy ! But now I feel like I have some add'l options I did not have prior to turning 55 yrs old.

This forum is the best!

Regards,
Golfnut
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Old 08-10-2010, 08:33 PM   #2
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Happy Birthday, and congratulations!
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Old 08-10-2010, 08:35 PM   #3
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Happy Birthday, and congratulations!
Thanks, appreciate it.
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:05 PM   #4
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way to go doooooood....
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:47 PM   #5
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Congratulations!!!!

You've put yourself in a good spot. What options are you going to take?

Keep working?
Part time work?
Reduce expenses and bail out?
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:54 PM   #6
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Very Impressive!!
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:02 PM   #7
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Congratulations on hanging in there with the job. It sounds like you are in a good spot right now financially.


Can you take a lump sum on your pension? My husband and I will each be eligible for a lump sum instead of a non-cola pension when we turn 55. Not exactly sure how much it will be as it is from a former employer. Basically it is like free money for us since I never counted on the place still being in business, but right now it is looking good.
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:40 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Darryl View Post
Congratulations!!!!

You've put yourself in a good spot. What options are you going to take?

Keep working?
Part time work?
Reduce expenses and bail out?
Thanks, weighing my options. part time work sounds very appealing. Nest egg is not quite there yet without part time work. My wife is still working part time (20 hrs a week and approx. $13,000 annually). We are thinking seriously of downsizing home in 2 years and living w/o a mortgage. If I were to FIRE, we are would be looking at about $36,000 yearly between healthcare, RE taxes and mortgage/heloc. Once we downsize, probably could easily reduce this figure to about $15,000 between healthcare and RE taxes.

TooFrugal

Thanks. Lump sum would be $130,000 which is in addition to our investments. Not sure if we would take a lump sum or the $8,100 per year which a 100% joint amount i.e. if I kick off first, my wife would get this amount.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:29 PM   #9
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Lump sum would be $130,000 which is in addition to our investments. Not sure if we would take a lump sum or the $8,100 per year which a 100% joint amount i.e. if I kick off first, my wife would get this amount.
I have an actuary for our small business pension plan. He offered to run the numbers for us to see if it would be better to take the lump sum or the monthly amounts from our former employer's pension. I think I am just going to go with the lump sum no matter what it is because the company has been in kind of sketchy shape financially, so I'm foregoing his sophisticated financial modeling offer in favor of the bird in the hand methodology.

I've actually don't mind getting older these days so we can get those lump sums!

Quote:
Thanks, weighing my options. part time work sounds very appealing.
I would recommend considering starting a small business. Health insurance is a deductible business expense as is work related travel. Plus you get to set your own hours.
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Old 08-11-2010, 07:07 AM   #10
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Congrats, golfnut!
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Old 08-11-2010, 07:32 AM   #11
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Wow, good job. Very impressive the way you hung in there.
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Old 08-11-2010, 08:09 AM   #12
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Congratulations. Sounds like the additional security has alleviated some of the stress if you are now evaluating your options rather than immediately jumping ship.
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Old 08-11-2010, 08:42 AM   #13
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Congratulations! It sounds like you are making some very sound decisions and will be enjoying a nicely funded ER.
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Old 08-12-2010, 06:39 PM   #14
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Congratulations. Sounds like the additional security has alleviated some of the stress if you are now evaluating your options rather than immediately jumping ship.
Thanks, it definitely has alleviated alot ( but not all ) of the stress. Now I have to work on my exit strategy.
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