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Old 11-13-2009, 07:27 PM   #21
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[QUOTE=FurBall;875151]We never had a plan. In addition to maxing out 401Ks we banked at least all of one person's take-home pay. We didn't think it was for retirement so much as our "take this job and shove it" insurance plan -- a guarantee that we could live on one person's income if one of us quit or lost our job.

[QUOTE/]


Again, you had a plan but did not know about i,t but you worked it and it has worked for you...A Plan.
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Old 11-13-2009, 07:29 PM   #22
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Old 11-13-2009, 07:55 PM   #23
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There was a time when I thought that a financial plan was something all nice and printed out and bound and given to me, by a financial planner. It was a plan that was written in stone, that I would follow for the rest of my life. Being too cheap to go to an FP, I didn't have one.

I started making my own plan in Excel, a dynamic plan in which I would tweak and change things as I learned more. After a couple of years of that, I realized that I HAVE a financial plan. It just isn't one that I bought - - it's homemade, from scratch, like good bread!

So, maybe a lot of those folks really do have a plan, and it's a matter of definitions.
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Old 11-13-2009, 08:40 PM   #24
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People who frequent this forum are head and shoulders above the average person. According to a recent survey, nearly 50% of the population couldn't raise $2000 in a month if their life depends on it. Not just Americans, but people in the UK and Germany fare even worse.

If they do not even have $2000 cash in their name, how can they even think of retirement, early or not?

See News Center | TNS US.
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Old 11-13-2009, 09:07 PM   #25
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People who frequent this forum are head and shoulders above the average person. According to a recent survey, nearly 50% of the population couldn't raise $2000 in a month if their life depends on it. Not just Americans, but people in the UK and Germany fare even worse.

If they do not even have $2000 cash in their name, how can they even think of retirement, early or not?

See News Center | TNS US.
My 2 sisters and my parents (in the UK) have a plan common to most of my family - live from week to week, pay your taxes and live on very meager SS after age 65. Only advantage they have over their US counterparts is that they will never pay a penny out of pocket for health care including prescriptions, LTC and eye care once they get to 65.

My brother (in Australia) is a lot more savvy and for years has been making extra payments into his pension scheme to ensure a decent private pension on top of SS when he retires.
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Old 11-13-2009, 09:22 PM   #26
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1976 - in ancient times, one sheet of K&E Engineering graph paper with upper and lower 8&10% interest lines going out to 2006(aka age 63) - inputed $ invested and marked to market every month or quarter or so gave me two more lines.

All marks made with(drum roll please) a mechanical drawing pencil with No. 2 lead.

Alas I was canned. layed off, made redundant jan 93 but I kept it as a momento til Katrina - interestingly even in ER way early Mr Market in the 90's made the graph look real purty -until 2000.

heh heh heh - that's even though we got regular fancy quarterly updates on our 401k - with projection tables at 8% - my graph was better looking. .

At least where I worked if you were in the 401k - they gave you a retirement plan - including estimated SS and defined pension(we still had one).
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Old 11-13-2009, 09:33 PM   #27
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1976 - in ancient times, one sheet of K&E Engineering graph paper with upper and lower 8&10% interest lines going out to 2006(aka age 63) - inputed $ invested and marked to market every month or quarter or so gave me two more lines.

All marks made with(drum roll please) a mechanical drawing pencil with No. 2 lead.
Wow, I didn't know mechanical pencils had been invented then

I remember at age 10 (1965) we were still using nib pens with ink wells at our desks in school - I was "ink monitor" in the class that year and we made up the ink from powder and water.

Other than a good job with a private pension I had no plan until age 38 after I had started on my 4th company and 4th pension plan (they didn't allow credits or rollovers when changing companies). At that point I started with the tried and trusted Excel spreadsheets making simple projections out to the future and also keeping a track now and again on how much we were spending so I had an idea of how much income we'd need.
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Old 11-14-2009, 12:06 AM   #28
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Despite being active on this board since 2003 I have never ran Firecalc and happily retired in March 08(!). Not a big written plan but have a COLAd pension, paid off house and adequate funds (I hope) in an IRA. Generally a LBYM type. But the convincing element was a night in the cardiac ward. Just decided that what we have is enough and now if the time.
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:02 AM   #29
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So you have had a plan, but did not call it a plan or did not realize that it was a plan. But, it was your Plan.
I am not calling it a plan because there really was no plan (at least not a conscious one anyway). I call it LUCK.
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Old 11-14-2009, 08:59 AM   #30
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My "plan" was a COLAd pension and as much savings as we could generate. By and large, I think that is good enough for most people. Better would be to learn enough to make sensible decisions about asset allocation and fees at a young age. DW and I didn't do that until we bumped into this board shortly before I retired.

A couple of years before ER I finally developed a real written plan with detailed listings of expenses, assets, income flows etc., and ran it by a financial advisor as a reality check. I have never bothered to update that plan -- now I just watch my allocations. My "plan" is to follow a conservative safe withdrawal strategy which will be my budget. I will LBYM within that amount, hopefully generating a small excess to fund a mad money pool for frivolities.
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:18 PM   #31
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Per John Lennon - life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.

Our plan was that rentals would care for us in our dotage. That was refined to thinking that we would move from one to another rental selling every couple years and reaping tax free profits - multi-unit rentals and tax code nixed that plan. Then we thought of rolling all the rentals into a big unit with on-site management. Seemed too eggs in one basket-y, so that hasn't happened. Then we thought that we would sell one unit/year, reducing our management duties and taking profit from the sales. That's not happening. Currently we have a trusted person managing the units - mostly - keeping my hand in to be sure that maintenance, tenant affairs, and bills are paid, and all as I wish. Passing on the lore of our old places. Paying him 10% of the rents and feel fine about it. With luck, he'll do this for a few years and decide he wants to buy most of the units from us. That's the current plan - we'll see what life brings.

Not really Unca Mick's agile, mobile, and hostile - more like the river - persistent, flowing around obstacles, delayed but never stopped.
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:43 PM   #32
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Per John Lennon - life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
Or even older:

"To make the Gods laugh, tell them of your plans."
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Old 11-14-2009, 03:12 PM   #33
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Oh those Greeks!
Might almost think that's a lesson we just keep re-learning.
"Man proposes, God disposes."
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Old 11-14-2009, 03:46 PM   #34
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Oh those Greeks!
Might almost think that's a lesson we just keep re-learning.
"Man proposes, God disposes."
More than one way to skin a cat. Remember Wm Nickerson's paperback - How I turned $1000 into a Million in Real Estate - in my spare time. I think in the 1960's??

Sooo whadda do all day eh!

heh heh heh -
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Old 11-14-2009, 06:00 PM   #35
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I think my family is a microcosm of the population:

Self -- I claim I had no plan but as mickeyd points out it really was a plan.
Sister -- "But I need a new car and I shouldn't have to drive a tin can"
Brother 1 -- 'We love our jobs. It's so sad that you people think you need to retire." Live frugally on minimal pay from a non-profit.
Brother 2 -- "Everything I try to save, she spends" Eaten up with worry.
Brother 3 -- "The CPA wont' let me buy a new car" CPA is his wife who confirms she does have a plan and savings.
Brother 4 -- "We'd love to save for retirement but we can't afford to. Besides we deserve to have all the things everyone else has."

That's 33% with a plan and 67% without a plan/clue.
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Old 11-14-2009, 06:46 PM   #36
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.........
Brother 2 -- "Everything I try to save, she spends" Eaten up with worry.......

Brother 4 -- "We'd love to save for retirement but we can't afford to. Besides we deserve to have all the things everyone else has."

That's 33% with a plan and 67% without a plan/clue.
These pretty well exemplify my 2 siblings, however my "Brother 2" sibling isn't eaten up with worry, but that's only 'cause he ain't gotta clue of how it could be. And my "Brother 4" sibling has been so enamored with the 'Joneses' for so many years, that we figured that we would have heard that she changed her last name by now!
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Old 11-15-2009, 09:24 AM   #37
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People who frequent this forum are head and shoulders above the average person. According to a recent survey, nearly 50% of the population couldn't raise $2000 in a month if their life depends on it. Not just Americans, but people in the UK and Germany fare even worse.

If they do not even have $2000 cash in their name, how can they even think of retirement, early or not?
This reminds me of several relatives. One SIL just bought another new car, the third in three years. She's also the same one who told her husband to reduce contributions to his 401k because "it wasn't earning anything". He dumbly complied. And now she's thinking of leaving her job because she was late getting paid (again) because the business is slow.

But they eat out several times a week and take 3 or 4 week-long trips to the shore resort areas.

And when the family learned that FIL was three weeks away from losing his house to a tax sale for nonpayment of taxes, DW and I were the only ones who could come up with $3k on one day's notice.
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