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View Poll Results: Just wondering demographics here? What was your income level before FIRE?
Below $50,000 9 4.84%
$50,000 - $75,000 24 12.90%
$75,000-$100,000 30 16.13%
$100,000 - $125,000 28 15.05%
$125,000+ 95 51.08%
Voters: 186. You may not vote on this poll

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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 10:45 AM   #41
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

I voted in the poll but I am not technically ER at this time. But I did ER from my previous company at age 50 and I used that salary in the poll. My current salary is just now where I was prior to my retirement 4 years ago. I left a TON of money on the table and all my stock options (6 years of them) are either below water, expired below water or are just barely starting to suck in some air but will most likely expire before they are worth the trouble to exercise due to the tax hit.

Current income is now down 50% from last year due to DW disability. My count-down timer is clicking away and this is the year I will ER for good. The accounts are squared away. The funds have been allocated. We are selling off some realestate we don't use or need and we are cleaning out closets and drawers. Debt is only mortgage related. So, I am ready once the cabin sells and they find a replacement for my boss (currently doing his job on an interim basis---with interim bosses paycheck ).

Considering where I was financially 15 years ago (deep in debt from wife #1, divorced, single parent, alimony, child support and debt payments) I feel like a millon bucks today...maybe even a few more. and without a CFB-like income.

Slow and steady wins the race.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 03:04 PM   #42
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

I'm surprised you all did all that work to calculate your average income. Checking income for every year since you were 15 years old, adjusting for inflation, dividing by the number of years...
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 05:04 PM   #43
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

I'm not ER's and currently make low six-figures (W-2), and I do technical training and consulting work that generally puts me in the highest category for your poll.

I averaged my last 10 years (most of my ‘professional' career) and it came out to about 75k.

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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 05:11 PM   #44
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

I am amazed at the number of people on this board who have accumulated a 7 figure portfolio at relatively young age of 50 or so with a modest income.

The question that always comes to mind is it a gamble to live frugally and cheaply to save for a retirement that you may never live long to enjoy?
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 05:13 PM   #45
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddy the Turbo Beagle
hmm, big 6 figure income and couldnt pay a 30 dollar bill to amex?
http://early-retirement.org/forums/i...?topic=11660.0
Wouldnt pay fifty cents I didnt owe.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 05:21 PM   #46
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Corporateburnout
I am amazed at the number of people on this board who have accumulated a 7 figure portfolio at relatively young age of 50 or so with a modest income.

The question that always comes to mind is it a gamble to live frugally and cheaply to save for a retirement that you may never live long to enjoy?
The answer is "it depends."

It depends on how deep you cut into being able to truly enjoy life while you save for a future retirement. If you are truly happy with your life and can be content with having fewer material things but a larger asset account then it might work well to save until you bleed. Others will not be able to do this and will either have to find other sources of income, live on less income in retirement or work longer to fund the nest egg until they can fund the lifestyle they want and can afford.

Living long enough to enjoy anything is a gamble. You could die tomorrow or in 50 years. Most of will never know when so we plan like we will live to a nice old age. If we don't then we don't. I would rather have to give up a little now to assure I won't be poor when I am 85. It is a tradeoff unless you are lucky and have a huge trust fund or other means of support. Do what works for you.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 06:27 PM   #47
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
The answer is "it depends."

It depends on how deep you cut into being able to truly enjoy life while you save for a future retirement. If you are truly happy with your life and can be content with having fewer material things but a larger asset account then it might work well to save until you bleed. Others will not be able to do this and will either have to find other sources of income, live on less income in retirement or work longer to fund the nest egg until they can fund the lifestyle they want and can afford.

Living long enough to enjoy anything is a gamble. You could die tomorrow or in 50 years. Most of will never know when so we plan like we will live to a nice old age. If we don't then we don't. I would rather have to give up a little now to assure I won't be poor when I am 85. It is a tradeoff unless you are lucky and have a huge trust fund or other means of support. Do what works for you.
Unless the market tanks for the next ten or so years, I'll probably hit 1M in my 40's.

I've been on five cruises, the longest being 12 nights. I've vacationed in Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland, and Israel. I own a 2005, 37' Motorhome (which I admit was a mistake, but I've also had a lot of fun with it), and drive a 2003 Chevy S-10. I live in a 2000 sf house with an in-ground pool and finished basement. I also eat out way too much.

On the flip side, I make pretty good money (six-figures) and put about 40k/year in various retirement accounts. I don't own a big-screen TV, unless you count 27" as big screen. I shop at Kohls for my cloths and Walmart for just about everything else. My wife is also a professional and we don't have any kids (on purpose).

I wouldn't say I've given up anything. I just don't want all the junk other people want. Once you can get past "keeping up with the Jones' ", it's really not that hard. I just value saving money more than collecting 'stuff'. Could I be more thrifty? Sure I could. Would it accelerate my time to FIRE? Probably. Am I going to kill myself to retire a few years earlier? Not at all....



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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-17-2007, 09:37 PM   #48
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Warthog

I wouldn't say I've given up anything. I just don't want all the junk other people want. Once you can get past "keeping up with the Jones' ", it's really not that hard. I just value saving money more than collecting 'stuff'. Could I be more thrifty? Sure I could. Would it accelerate my time to FIRE? Probably. Am I going to kill myself to retire a few years earlier? Not at all....
Warthog - That last paragraph...couldn't have said it better myself.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-18-2007, 01:10 PM   #49
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddy the Turbo Beagle
hmm, big 6 figure income and couldnt pay a 30 dollar bill to amex?
http://early-retirement.org/forums/i...?topic=11660.0
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute 'n Fuzzy Bunny
Wouldnt pay fifty cents I didnt owe.
Hey, it's not the principal-- it's the principle!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
I'm surprised you all did all that work to calculate your average income. Checking income for every year since you were 15 years old, adjusting for inflation, dividing by the number of years...
Are you trying to say that you didn't already have the spreadsheet built?!?
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-18-2007, 08:05 PM   #50
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moemg
Goonie,
The square inch of property was in the Yukon territory .Courtesy of Sqt.Preston of the Yukon mounted Police .We got them in Puffed wheat cereal.I think I own about a square foot .
If I ever find that certificate, maybe I'll go up there and set up a tent.......stake......on it!
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-25-2007, 06:52 AM   #51
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

like most on this sight ... i make a lot, but live on a lot less! i thank God for making me a "simple person.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-25-2007, 07:02 AM   #52
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Wouldnt pay fifty cents I didnt owe.
CFB, I share your sentiment exactly.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 01:00 AM   #53
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
I'm surprised you all did all that work to calculate your average income. Checking income for every year since you were 15 years old, adjusting for inflation, dividing by the number of years...
That's kinda what I was thinking. Average over what time frame? When I was in high school, I worked Summers and had some years with no more than a few hundred dollars income. The last several years were significantly more than that.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 01:04 AM   #54
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Wouldnt pay fifty cents I didnt owe.
Hmmmm. I'm not that stubborn. I would gladly pay $0.50 to avoid hours of stress . . . even if I really didn't owe it.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 03:56 AM   #55
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
That's kinda what I was thinking. Average over what time frame? When I was in high school, I worked Summers and had some years with no more than a few hundred dollars income. The last several years were significantly more than that.
I read the title as average income for the board. I answered this question, "What was your income level before FIRE? "

I just wasn't sure if it meant individual or household income.

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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 10:02 AM   #56
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
Hmmmm. I'm not that stubborn. I would gladly pay $0.50 to avoid hours of stress . . . even if I really didn't owe it.
Whats that old saying? A soldier dies but once, a coward dies a thousand deaths?

Thinking about paying someone elses bill because a big company didnt want to do the right thing? Would have irritated me for the rest of my life.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 10:34 AM   #57
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

You guys who did it on modest incomes are inspiration to all...........
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 11:35 AM   #58
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Whats that old saying? A soldier dies but once, a coward dies a thousand deaths?
"Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once." -- William Shakespeare (or Francis Bacon)

But I prefer:
"No dumb son of a bitch ever won a war by dying for his country. Your job is to make the other poor dumb bastard die for his." -- General George S. Patton
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 11:56 AM   #59
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

I own a 2005, 37' Motorhome (which I admit was a mistake, but I've also had a lot of fun with it)

I think the most important thing here is that you've gotten a lot of fun and enjoyment out of the motorhome. So even if it was a large expense, it might have still been a worthwhile one.
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE
Old 01-26-2007, 02:22 PM   #60
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Re: Poll: Average Income Before FIRE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Whats that old saying? A soldier dies but once, a coward dies a thousand deaths?
Quote:
Nords: "Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once." -- William Shakespeare (or Francis Bacon)

But I prefer:
"No dumb son of a bitch ever won a war by dying for his country. Your job is to make the other poor dumb bastard die for his." -- General George S. Patton
Yikes. What's all this talk about death. I was talking about two quarters.
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