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View Poll Results: For retired posters only, (anonymously) how much $ do you currently have?
< $1 million 51 35.92%
$1-$2 million 48 33.80%
$2-$3 million 20 14.08%
$3-$4 million 8 5.63%
> $4 million 15 10.56%
Voters: 142. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-13-2010, 05:53 PM   #21
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I don't mean to step on this poll's/thread's intent, but many of the responses seem to go towards a question I've always been interested in knowing. I've been curious about the composition of the current members of this forum, but more along the lines of knowing how many are (or are going to be) primarily pensioners, or are (or going to be) relying pretty much on investments in retirement. I would offer the following category selections for what I would like to know (and maybe others here):

Are you primarily (or going to be) a retired (early) Pensioner, or a retired (early) Investor?


Retirement Income Stream (income source ranked largest to smallest for Investor and Pensioner)
  1. Investor - Investments only
  2. Investor - Investments + pension
  3. Investor - Investments + SS
  4. Investor - SS + Investments
  5. Investor - SS + Investments + Pensions
  6. Investor - Investments + SS + Pensions
  7. Investor - Investments + Pensions + SS
  8. Pensioner - Pensions + Investments
  9. Pensioner - SS + Pensions + Investments
  10. Pensioner - Pensions + SS + Investments
  11. Pensioner - Pensions + Investments + SS
Based on the above:

Investor #1 __, #2 __

(retired) #3 __, #4 __, #5 __, #6 __, #7 __


Pensioner #8 __

(retired) #9 __, #10 __, #11 __


Hopefully I've accounted for all categories of retirement income stream. It would give (me) good insight as to the general make up of this forum - how many are retired, and the percentages of those who plan to, or are retired as pensioners - or were unfortunate enough not to have a pension (but fortunate enough to figure out how to still make retirement happen w/o one, or maybe just a small one). If this has been done already - please point me in the right direction.
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Old 06-13-2010, 06:12 PM   #22
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If you use the Search function for past polls, I think you will find some of your questions answered. Or start your own poll. You may need a pre-poll (like you have sort-of done) in order to appease the persnickety.
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Old 06-13-2010, 09:46 PM   #23
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I apologize for stirring things up with my poll. I see it was not the best formed poll. But I am only a dryer sheet wannabe. In the future, I will try and do better. Having said that, I did assume that since the forum is called FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early), that most people on the site would not qualify yet for a pension or SS since they retired early after receiving financial independence. Otherwise the site may have been called Financially Able to Retire Tomorrow. Although that may not make for the best acronym. Anyway, thanks to those that did answer the poll. I still found the results very interesting and informative.
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Old 06-13-2010, 09:57 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Earl E Retyre View Post
I did assume that since the forum is called FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early), that most people on the site would not qualify yet for a pension or SS since they retired early after receiving financial independence.
You didn't consider many of us here may have retied in our 30's, 40's or 50's and actually lived long enough to be eligible for SS? Or were in the military and became eligible for pensions in our 40's? Or worked for state or municipal govts where retiring with full pensions at age 55 might be commonplace?

There are many roads to FIRE and assumptions should be tempered with reality.
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:00 PM   #25
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Those are good points, REWahoo. Anyway, I was just asking a simple question regarding how much money people had ... and did not mean to stir things up too much. I did like the dialog and again appreciate the responses.
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:02 PM   #26
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And hey, as a bonus to my lessons learned, I am now a dryer sheet aficionada. Yeah!
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:06 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Earl E Retyre View Post
And hey, as a bonus to my lessons learned, I am now a dryer sheet aficionada. Yeah!
And you've got the scars to prove it!
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:12 PM   #28
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Fritz

I think there are possibly some other options or maybe it just depends on how you look at it. Also things may change over time. I recently semi-retired (working about one day a week). I don't have SS yet (not old enough), have a 401(k) that I can't yet access (not being fully retired).

DH is retired later this month. He has a 401(k) (I guess that is investments in your poll), could take a non-COLA Pension, and will take SS. In his case he will take his pension as a lump sum. So, are we investments + SS or since a large part of the investments is from a pension lump sum are we considers pensioners?

Also right now, since I'm not eligible for SS more of our income is from investments while later it the combined SS income of DH and me may (or may not) end up being more than investment income.
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:40 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by LOL! View Post
If you use the Search function for past polls, I think you will find some of your questions answered. Or start your own poll. You may need a pre-poll (like you have sort-of done) in order to appease the persnickety.
I didn't find any polls that allowed forum members to classify themselves by suggested classes of retirement methods. Would give everyone a snapshot of current members' status (anonymously). Has this forum ever approached allowing members to publicly self classify by current status (i.e. retired, not retired), and not just newcomer status (Dryer sheet aficionado)? Might be kind of nice to know how to answer a thread with the poster's current status in mind (not everyone fills out the profile section).
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Old 06-14-2010, 12:03 AM   #30
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...frankly I do not see the difference between having a $40,000 pension or a million dollars to invest they both give you to same amount to spend.
To my mind, I would rather have the cash equivalent of a pension any day of the week. With the principal under my control I can tap into the capital rather than be subject to yearly payouts. Put another way, you can spend the "million dollars".

I suppose you could monetize a pension through incurring debt, but that is far from an efficient approach.

Obviously the best case is to have a nice pension AND a boat load of cash.
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Old 06-14-2010, 05:59 AM   #31
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Interesting to know, but the amount of $ you need to retire early is still a function of personal lifestyle, investment risk/return, and your defintion of early.
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Old 06-14-2010, 06:33 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Earl E Retyre View Post
Anyway, I was just asking a simple question regarding how much money people had ... .
That's how I took it an answered the poll accordingly. No problem here.
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Old 06-14-2010, 07:14 AM   #33
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I only read the OP before voting. I added a net present value of my pension since it provides about half of our yearly budget. Clearly, a poll needs to be very explicit to avoid ambiguous results.
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Old 06-14-2010, 07:20 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Earl E Retyre View Post
I apologize for stirring things up with my poll. I see it was not the best formed poll. But I am only a dryer sheet wannabe. In the future, I will try and do better. Having said that, I did assume that since the forum is called FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early), that most people on the site would not qualify yet for a pension or SS since they retired early after receiving financial independence. Otherwise the site may have been called Financially Able to Retire Tomorrow. Although that may not make for the best acronym. Anyway, thanks to those that did answer the poll. I still found the results very interesting and informative.
From my earlier post, I assumed you were asking what you just wrote here (no SS or pension). When I first joined this forum, I was not aware of the large variety of early retirees and those who had not yet gotten there but were working on it and needed advice on how to plan for it.

BTW I like your screen name and the alternate acronym and your ability to find humor even as you were subject to some mild criticism.
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Old 06-14-2010, 07:49 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
You didn't consider many of us here may have retied in our 30's, 40's or 50's and actually lived long enough to be eligible for SS? Or were in the military and became eligible for pensions in our 40's? Or worked for state or municipal govts where retiring with full pensions at age 55 might be commonplace?

There are many roads to FIRE and assumptions should be tempered with reality.

and I'll add one more twist . A few us have survivor pensions as we were young widows .
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Old 06-14-2010, 08:25 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Earl E Retyre View Post
And hey, as a bonus to my lessons learned, I am now a dryer sheet aficionada. Yeah!
And people are voting in your poll. I answered for one person; some may be responding for larger households.
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:24 AM   #37
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I only read the OP before voting. I added a net present value of my pension since it provides about half of our yearly budget. Clearly, a poll needs to be very explicit to avoid ambiguous results.
It wouldn't matter if OP were James Carville. People would be bitching all day anyway. It's how we keep our minds sharp. I did a poll on where do we live. Some were oh so offended that it featured Washington and the West Coast. Oh, the shame!

Over on the Too Hot thread people are so upset that "she isn't really hot", Ya shure, you betcha! And salt isn't really salty, or sugar really sweet.

Ha
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:35 AM   #38
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I didn't.
I'm not retired yet, so I answered for you!
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:50 AM   #39
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This thread proves there are no such things as simple questions and answers on this forum.....

How many forum members. . .

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Old 06-14-2010, 10:55 AM   #40
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Fritz

I think there are possibly some other options or maybe it just depends on how you look at it. Also things may change over time. I recently semi-retired (working about one day a week). I don't have SS yet (not old enough), have a 401(k) that I can't yet access (not being fully retired).

DH is retired later this month. He has a 401(k) (I guess that is investments in your poll), could take a non-COLA Pension, and will take SS. In his case he will take his pension as a lump sum. So, are we investments + SS or since a large part of the investments is from a pension lump sum are we considers pensioners?

Also right now, since I'm not eligible for SS more of our income is from investments while later it the combined SS income of DH and me may (or may not) end up being more than investment income.
I pretty much leave it up to the individual to rank their retirement income stream - B/4 social security, and after. For selecting "Retired" (either pensioner or investor) - used receiving SS as my benchmark for "govt. recognized " retirement status (not related to SS start age) . The selections B/4 SS were for those not yet retired, or in early retirement - w/o the benefit of SS.

As for converting a pension to a lump sum - I would see that as you took on investment risk/responsibility - waiving pension guaranteed benefits. This would re-classify it as an investment, and would rank it according to where it fell related to dollar amount of current total available retirement assets. I also did this with a small pension - had no intention of allowing the company to roll it into an annuity. Felt I could do better on my own, controlling investments in retirement. FYI - I rolled it out at first eligibility to a roll over IRA, to allow it more growth time with it as a pure investment and not as a immediate retirement income stream.

Would agree that things will change over time. I was interested in the "current" make up of the organization's members (where is everyone now). I'm new to the group, but it would be nice to know (given the name of the organization), how members are grouped as to early or pre-retirement goals/paths (pensioner or investor), and also post-retirement with SS status (pensioner or investor). I believe it would have given Earl an answer more along the line he was seeking.
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