Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
More Work = More Security?
Old 08-03-2008, 07:44 AM   #1
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,962
More Work = More Security?

This is not meant to be provocative as you might think on first read, but I expect I might get blasted anyway.

Why not work as long as possible even after you reach FI to further enhance your security and standard of living in retirement, even if it's 200-300% of what you think FI is? I am not advocating living a much grander lifestyle in retirement --- the point is the long term future a retiree faces is uncertain to be sure, a lot can (and will IMO) change in 30-40 years. A larger nest egg invested more conservatively would be preferable if possible no? Wouldn't it be very hard if not impossible to generate meaningful income to recover at 80 or 90 years of age if you were wrong with your FIRE assumptions? As I've pointed out before, I read all these gleeful posts here from folks who are thrilled with RE after months or years into it - the proof on the decision to RE is decades away, not 10 years or less.

There are quite a few people here (not all by any means) who sound like they RE mostly because they despise their jobs and they've reached some level of FI. I realize it's not easy, but I can't remember seeing finding another employer or career as an alternative if you don't like your work instead of RE. I find it hard to believe anyone dislikes work in general, but maybe I'm wrong.

Again, I hope you can see the question and not focus on the RE observation. I am not thinking of anyone in particular or asking anyone to defend their particular case - it's a general question.
__________________

__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is online now   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-03-2008, 07:47 AM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
HFWR's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Lawn chair in Texas
Posts: 12,964
I'm having enough trouble reaching FI 1.0...
__________________

__________________
Have Funds, Will Retire

...not doing anything of true substance...
HFWR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 07:48 AM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Dawg52's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Central MS/Orange Beach, AL
Posts: 7,432
Work = Unhappiness, at least for me. I'll take my chances on ER.
__________________
Retired 3/31/2007@52
Full time wuss.......
Dawg52 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:17 AM   #4
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,494
Some jobs, like mine, (police officer) require that a high level of physical fitness be maintained. With rare exceptions, few people north of 50 are still in condition to be chasing 20-year-old bad guys through back yards and jumping fences even if they're technically assigned to positions where they don't have to do that. Where I worked, if you didn't pass the annual physical there were a few light-duty positions but they were limited. You had about a year to get in shape/recover or be gone.

And some jobs have a high stress levels that simply cannot be maintained. Air traffic controllers have mandatory retirement dates for a reason. I've seen posts from people in medical professions dealing with issues that I know I couldn't deal with.

So for many the decision to RE is not entirely financial. Often that's a minor consideration.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:18 AM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Spanky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 4,046
more work = more stress, less fun, shorter life span.

If a person still enjoys his/her type of work, working for a few more years after FI is fine.
__________________
May we live in peace and harmony and be free from all human sufferings.
Spanky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:29 AM   #6
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,962
HFWR: I guess an easier way to state my question: Wouldn't we all be better off working until 65 or so whether than means FI 1.0, 1.5, 2.1 or whatever (next point is a factor).

Walt34: No question, but how about another career at something you enjoy? My FIL was a career Navy man and I don't think he wanted to 'go to sea' anymore after almost 30 years. But he became a Sales Mgr at a hometown car dealership, enjoyed it, and went on for many more years. He and his family were much better for it than if he had just retired from the Navy as he could have.

One of the VP's at my MegaCorp is 70, plans to retire at 72. I am sure his net worth is staggering, so his retirement will be more carefree than I could hope for which has a certain amount of appeal. He has the good fortune of being very good at what he does, he enjoys it (obviously) as is paid handsomely for it. He could have retired 15 years ago...
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:33 AM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Helen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Portland
Posts: 1,338
Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
This is not meant to be provocative as you might think on first read, but I expect I might get blasted anyway.

Why not work as long as possible even after you reach FI to further enhance your security and standard of living in retirement, even if it's 200-300% of what you think FI is?
This sounds like planning for the worst case scenario, which I personally think is futile.

In addition, who knows how long we will have good health? I love to backpack and do physical things. The earliest I can retire is age 56. How much longer after that am I going to be able to put a backpack on and hike through the wilderness?

I don't plan on bailing from the work place with just enough to get by, I will have plenty of cushion, but I'm not shooting for 200 - 300% of what I think FI is.

Maybe too, we all define FI differently. I would not consider myself to be FI if I had just enough to cover my basics. There will always be home repairs and new cars needed as well as medication, health care and flights home to visit family. To me, FI means I can cover all of that. 200 - 300% above that is over kill.

-helen
__________________
Helen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:33 AM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,020
It's simple.

If you like what you do and can't imagine doing anything else, if you define yourself by what you do, or if you don't feel financially secure enough to retire, then you should hold off on retiring as long as possible.
__________________
Marquette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:45 AM   #9
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,823
Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
Why not work as long as possible even after you reach FI to further enhance your security and standard of living in retirement, even if it's 200-300% of what you think FI is? I am not advocating living a much grander lifestyle in retirement --- the point is the long term future a retiree faces is uncertain to be sure, a lot can (and will IMO) change in 30-40 years. A larger nest egg invested more conservatively would be preferable if possible no?
I am working beyond FI right now, and have been for the past six months or so. I probably have enough to live several lifetimes, given my frugal habits. The reason I am continuing to work is that I will qualify for lifetime medical in fifteen months, and I would like to take my medical expenses out of the unknown into the known expense category.

I don't expect that the extra money from fifteen months' more work will change my lifestyle much, or make much difference in the long run. In my case I received a windfall recently but even if I hadn't, I had already built in a lot of fail-safes in my ER plan. I never intended to retire at the first moment I could possibly keep body and soul together, and I think most board members judiciously allow themselves a "cushion" as well.

One advantage of my additional 15 months of drudgery is that while some people on the board moan and fret about the market (and justifiably so), I can view recent market trends with equanimity.

But consider this: my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer on the day when he retired - - while he and my brother were literally moving the furniture out of his office he took an hour's break to go see his doctor, and got the news.

I DON'T want that to happen to me. I am feeling older every day. I don't want to spend my entire life at work. I deserve more.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:45 AM   #10
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Helen View Post
Maybe too, we all define FI differently. I would not consider myself to be FI if I had just enough to cover my basics. There will always be home repairs and new cars needed as well as medication, health care and flights home to visit family. To me, FI means I can cover all of that. 200 - 300% above that is over kill.
I respect this POV, but my point is that no one can predict what it will take to 'cover the basics' for 30 or 40 years IMO. I probably should have said 150% instead of 200-300%. Restating, working longer (beyond supposed FI) can only increase your odds in all probability, so why not do it even if it requires a change in employers and/or careers to be reasonably happy?

I also get the physical aspect. Despite working out regularly, at age 54, I am astonished at what I can no longer do well physically...

I have had an adequate chance to make my point, so I will just listen from here on.

It's encouraging that I haven't been attacked yet, I was not looking for a flame-off...
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 08:48 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
growing_older's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,608
I like the work I do, but I hate the stress and office politics. I have been fortunate occasionally to work in environments where the things that really get to me about the workplace were mostly not present. In such a company, I would happily continue working (perhaps part time to enjoy more time for hobby pursuits) to give my portfolio a bit more time to grow before drawing it down, or even to add modestly to it, all together enhancing security and reducing SWR. But even when I have been in a work environment to my liking, it only lasted a year or two at most before changes turned it something I couldn't abide.

As soon as I reach FI, I will want to RE. I have lots of interests to pursue, but if I miss the parts of work I liked (and I DO like the work very much) I might look for something part-time in a company with all the right environment. With no need for the money, I could be particularly picky. I cannot imagine wanting to stay after FI in a stressful office - for any manner of additional FI, but I could imagine finding something rewarding and low-stress, assuming it didn't impinge on hobbies too much. That certainly rules out full-time employment, but I have no objecting to growing assets so that SWR decreases to safer and safer levels.
__________________
growing_older is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 09:04 AM   #12
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
2B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Houston
Posts: 4,330
I am also working beyond my personal definition of FI. My personal situation keeps me from being free to travel or move like I would like so I'm hanging in there.

I actually discovered I was FI shortly after I discovered this forum in 2004 or 2005 (lurked for about a year). Everything since then has been building a bigger nest egg although I wish the stock market was helping out more.

My j*b is no stress and actually kind of fun. I make an unholy amount of money for doing one of the few things I've ever been good at. I get 4 weeks of vacation every year, work 4 day weeks and can take (almost) unlimited unpaid time off.

My personal goal is to take better vacations and spend more money on them than I normally would if I was truly "retired" and without a dependable income. After years of total cheapness, it's actually been hard to get myself and DW to loosen up.
__________________
The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane -- Marcus Aurelius
2B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 09:04 AM   #13
Full time employment: Posting here.
GoodSense's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 678
I guess everyone has a difference sense of how much financial security is enough. I think somewhere around 150% of what I need gives me enough financial cushion.

My view is that you can never fully predict what will happen. If 150% of today's FI is not enough, I probably have bigger problems than money can solve (severe health issues, complete market collapse, divorce, etc.). I can't possibly plan for every worst-case scenario.

For me, the risk of not having lived a life of pursuing hobbies that I love (what I imagine what I will spend retirement doing) is much scarier than the remote possibility of having to tighten my belt at a future time, which I don't think will happen.
__________________
GoodSense is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 09:32 AM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Spanky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 4,046
Quote:
My j*b is no stress and actually kind of fun. I make an unholy amount of money for doing one of the few things I've ever been good at. I get 4 weeks of vacation every year, work 4 day weeks and can take (almost) unlimited unpaid time off.
That's the kind of j*b to have. Congrats.
__________________
May we live in peace and harmony and be free from all human sufferings.
Spanky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 09:43 AM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Spanky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 4,046
Quote:
Originally Posted by Helen View Post
In addition, who knows how long we will have good health? I love to backpack and do physical things. The earliest I can retire is age 56. How much longer after that am I going to be able to put a backpack on and hike through the wilderness?
-helen
I feel the same way. Does your significant other enjoy hiking also? DW does not like camping, hiking, or walking. Her favorite activity is shopping -- bummer. It's going to a challenge for us since our interests are quite different. I enjoy playing tennis, hiking in the woods or by the river, and biking while she likes primarily shopping. We do however enjoy dinning out and watching movies.
__________________
May we live in peace and harmony and be free from all human sufferings.
Spanky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 10:18 AM   #16
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 384
Midpack, it sounds like your question is another take on the 'just one more year' syndrome. One could delay retirement forever, but I think it boils down the question of what you really want to do with your life. If you enjoy working at your job, then you should probably never retire, ie, why stop doing something you enjoy? If you don't enjoy what you're doing, then you find something else - either RE, or as you suggest, maybe a career change.

Myself, I think I'm close to the point of FIRE'ing, but I just want to get a better handle on my finances before I do anything drastic. And my vision of RE is really a career change to doing something I really enjoy doing but will probably never make a lot of money at. I don't want to get trapped in the 'just one more year' syndrome. All the joy has gone out of my day job, I've had 2 friends die way too young (36 and 52), there are other things I want to be doing with my life right now, so once I'm sure about the FI part, I'm gonna RE.

I certainly don't want to run out of money before I die, but I also don't want to be one of those people you hear about who never did much with his life yet died with a million buck in the bank. The way I see it, there will always be a risk, but the trick will be in not letting the fear of failure get in the way of living the life you want to live.
__________________
JoeDreaming is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 10:37 AM   #17
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Bikerdude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,901
Quote:
Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
HFWR:
One of the VP's at my MegaCorp is 70, plans to retire at 72. I am sure his net worth is staggering, so his retirement will be more carefree than I could hope for which has a certain amount of appeal. He has the good fortune of being very good at what he does, he enjoys it (obviously) as is paid handsomely for it. He could have retired 15 years ago...
Sounds like he's a finalist for the 'Richest guy in the graveyard award'. Or maybe he just likes what his job provides him, status, perks, and self esteem. Another big reason that people do not retire early is that they don't want to spend that much 'quality' time with their spouse. Only he knows.

I don't see a problem with having a small buffer built in (one or two extra years). As far as for me the 4% SWR should take care of the uncertainties of the next 30 yrs.
__________________
“I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly clear, you've probably misunderstood what I've said” Alan Greenspan
Bikerdude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 10:49 AM   #18
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
donheff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 8,634
Midpack - my brother is 75 and happily working. I say all the more power to him. And all the more power to you --IF you like your work and see it as preferable to whatever retirement might offer. What you tend to see on an ER board are people who don't want to continue working, some, because they are burned out, others, because they want to do other things. If you want to work, by all means do.
__________________
Every man is, or hopes to be, an Idler. -- Samuel Johnson
donheff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 10:52 AM   #19
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff View Post
Midpack - my brother is 75 and happily working. I say all the more power to him. And all the more power to you --IF you like your work and see it as preferable to whatever retirement might offer. What you tend to see on an ER board are people who don't want to continue working, some, because they are burned out, others, because they want to do other things. If you want to work, by all means do.
Seems to miss my point, but I won't belabor it...
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-03-2008, 11:06 AM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Ed_The_Gypsy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: the City of Subdued Excitement
Posts: 5,292
2B and I are in the same business and roughly in the same situation (except I ain't FI if we want to live in the US). It hasn't always been this good, but today...laissez les bon temps rouler!

Having said that, W2R's words haunt me:

Quote:
But consider this: my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer on the day when he retired - - while he and my brother were literally moving the furniture out of his office he took an hour's break to go see his doctor, and got the news.
__________________

__________________
my bumpersticker:
"I am not in a hurry.
I am retired.
And I don't care how big your truck is."
Ed_The_Gypsy is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
When to take Social Security sgeeeee FIRE and Money 244 05-27-2007 10:48 AM
Social Security Again Again??? greg Other topics 60 11-13-2006 05:06 PM
Social security? cute fuzzy bunny FIRECalc support 12 09-11-2006 01:47 PM
Social Security...or what? jake Other topics 19 10-16-2004 07:39 AM
Social Security lauraf13 FIRE and Money 17 06-12-2003 07:58 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:35 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.