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View Poll Results: $90k in todays dollars for retirement would be...
Way more than I would ever need 99 29.03%
I would be happy, it is a bit more than I need 110 32.26%
It is about what i am targeting as an income 70 20.53%
It would be disappointing for my targeted income 43 12.61%
I would be terribly disappointed with this income 22 6.45%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 341. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-03-2012, 06:07 PM   #61
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re SS - I say take them when you can get them... there is a chance that any means test will apply to NEW benefits.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:28 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by AWeinel View Post
re SS - I say take them when you can get them... there is a chance that any means test will apply to NEW benefits.
If they bring in mean testing or claw back through income tax, it will be applied to people who are already drawing benefits, but I agree that you should not delay for too long, and can at least enjoy the fuller benefits before the changes take effect.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:28 PM   #63
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(snip)On the other hand, as I have been a pedestrian all my life, I feel uneasy to even hire a house cleaner as it feels, well, just too imperialistic for lack of a better word. (snip)
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I'm drifting completely off-topic with this, but this is exactly the way I feel too. I know people of all income levels who hire cleaners - even at the very low end of the range, but I've always felt that if I make a mess, it's only right that I should clean it up. Somehow, I just can't bring myself to let anyone else clean up after me.

Glad I'm not the only person who feels that way.
Not to hijack the thread, but I'm a little bit that way too. I will hire someone to do things I don't have the skills or strength to do myself, but cleaning up the house isn't one of those things. Plus, I would be ashamed for the cleaners to see what my house usually looks like, because I'm such a slob. My mom uses a cleaning service, because this house is too big for her to keep up single-handed any more (and I'm not a whole lot of use in that department at the moment), but usually we go through the house and tidy up a bit the day before the cleaners come!

I am starting to loosen up a little, though. I went down to Lacey last Friday, and with the recent rainfall but continuing mild temperatures this fall, the grass is really growing like crazy. It's an 8000 square foot lot, almost all in lawn, and with normal WA winter weather, it's likely to stay too wet to mow for the next three or four months. I took one look at it and thought, if this keeps up, it will be knee high by the time I get moved in--and maybe still too wet to mow. Then too, I've been told it takes at least as long as you were in treatment to get back to your pre-chemo energy level, plus I will have at least 6 weeks of "no lifting, pushing or pulling over 5 pounds" following reconstructive surgery, which is scheduled for late next April. At that rate, it will be too tall for me to see over by the time it's a) dry and b) I am fit to cut it myself! My mom has offered to give me her old power mower (she also uses a lawn service, so she doesn't need it any more), but even though I probably could cut that much overgrown grass, I don't think I'm going to. Maybe there will be a neighborhood teenager who wants to make a little moolah.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:51 PM   #64
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$90K is twice of what we need. Thus, spending an extra $45K per year would definitely give us a lots of flexibility.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:56 PM   #65
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Is anyone else who is in the 90K area in the same boat? Most sources say you shouldn't have housing be more than 33% of your income. Even if you pay off your mortgage you will still have taxes, insurance, utilities and possible association fees.

So in sum, those fellow posters who answered above that 90K is cool, what percentage of your annual income will be housing and health? Those two categories may amount to 54% of our budget unless we move to a cheaper home and stay healthy. I'm 59 and will retire in two years and DW in five and she will have a pension with a 3% COLA. We live in a state capitol and the area is expensive.

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For us, housing + health + energy = 22% of before-tax spending

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I should have clarified, this would be for 2 people to live on.........

There are 2 of us
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:16 PM   #66
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Spent a little over $100K last year but hope to be closer to $90 this year. If push came to shave, I could move back to the midwest and live on half that with not too much difficulty. Still, health care can be really expensive. Fortunately, this year, we have had relatively small HC bills (though MC and INS) do add up quickly.

If the nest egg continues to grow, we may well spend more in the future. Can't see having personal servants, but wouldn't mind getting back into flying! That's one way to drain any excess you might find yourself wanting to spend. YMMV
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:20 PM   #67
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let's further state, this is for two people, mortgage paid off, assuming zero debt
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:30 PM   #68
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Sure. No car payments either. Children already through college too (I spend a lot more when they were in school).

So, I can even have two houses, pay for my health insurance, and still have money for air travel and to put gas into my motor home, and still spend less than $90K this year.

I would not be able to do that in places like SF, NYC, or Hawaii. However, I am not in a super low-cost area either.
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:00 PM   #69
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re SS - I say take them when you can get them... there is a chance that any means test will apply to NEW benefits.
If you mean new benefits only, I think this is very unlikely. The Medicare means tests do not care how long you have been on Medicare, only your income as they define it.

One possibility I see is that Roth withdrawals, while not taxable per se, will become part of adjusted--adjusted--adjusted--income for the purposes of any means testing done.

Ha
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:09 PM   #70
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Reading these posts, I gotta move to a cheaper part of the country.
+1. We live in the same part of the country.... I am just a bit closer to Boston.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:23 PM   #71
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I can't imagine spending over $8K a month. Okay, maybe I could but the fact is I've been planning for a monthly spend of $5000 during retirement with the full knowledge that many months would only be half that.

I suppose our lifestyle is pretty simple. And I clean my own house, do my own laundry, cook our own meals since we hardly eat out. I can fix a dishwasher or central heat/air and can wire anything electrical. I've laid tile, mixed and poured concrete (even own a 3cf drum mixer), change our own oil, replace our own brakes, repair most mechanical things.

I'm finding out those abilities save a lot of money over time. Our biggest annual travel expense is a week long trip to DisneyWorld. Luckily, we both have simple tastes and can have a blast there.

Most likely our biggest expense will be healthcare. Both of us are in decent health but it only takes that one disappointing diagnosis to start draining resources.

So my first reaction was that $90K per year would be much more than we'd need, until I realized that my $60K per year planned withdrawals supplemented with an anticipated $36K per year SS actually puts us over $90K. I'm sure we'll end up not drawing so much from personal funds and the excess will be on standby for any health related needs.

Or we'll buy another boat.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:29 PM   #72
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I don't want to speculate about the future, but I certainly have been living on much less than this amount. I don't pinch pennies, but neither do I make many decisions without reference to cost. Well, likely no decisions, to get down to reality.

As I have said before, I could easily spend more, but I do not have more, so I won't.

Ha
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:05 PM   #73
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I have never spent even half the $90K number per year my entire life, even including the cost of employer-paid healthcare when I was working, except the one year that I bought a new car (and amortizing that would have ended up being only around $2K per year over the life of the car). And I was a single guy living and renting in Silicon Valley and taking some international trips.

So I put way more than I would ever need.
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:15 PM   #74
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Could the poll be reworked to ask, "$90k for a couple or $45k for a single"? Even at $45k for a single, though, I would still answer it the same way. I live on under $30k so $45k is still more than I need.
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:21 PM   #75
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:22 PM   #76
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My answer was based on $90k /year for a couple.
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Old 12-04-2012, 12:05 AM   #77
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Not to hijack the thread, but I'm a little bit that way too. I will hire someone to do things I don't have the skills or strength to do myself, but cleaning up the house isn't one of those things. Plus, I would be ashamed for the cleaners to see what my house usually looks like, because I'm such a slob. My mom uses a cleaning service, because this house is too big for her to keep up single-handed any more (and I'm not a whole lot of use in that department at the moment), but usually we go through the house and tidy up a bit the day before the cleaners come!

I am starting to loosen up a little, though. I went down to Lacey last Friday, and with the recent rainfall but continuing mild temperatures this fall, the grass is really growing like crazy. It's an 8000 square foot lot, almost all in lawn, and with normal WA winter weather, it's likely to stay too wet to mow for the next three or four months. I took one look at it and thought, if this keeps up, it will be knee high by the time I get moved in--and maybe still too wet to mow. Then too, I've been told it takes at least as long as you were in treatment to get back to your pre-chemo energy level, plus I will have at least 6 weeks of "no lifting, pushing or pulling over 5 pounds" following reconstructive surgery, which is scheduled for late next April. At that rate, it will be too tall for me to see over by the time it's a) dry and b) I am fit to cut it myself! My mom has offered to give me her old power mower (she also uses a lawn service, so she doesn't need it any more), but even though I probably could cut that much overgrown grass, I don't think I'm going to. Maybe there will be a neighborhood teenager who wants to make a little moolah.
From your past posts, I remember that you are a DIY woman, and you even thought of building your own retirement home. However, with your current health condition, it's better to let someone else take care of the grass.

And as much as I like to do things myself, I know there are things that are unsafe for me to do, such as climbing up my big trees to trim the branches with a chain saw. Would not want to ruin my ER!
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Old 12-04-2012, 12:07 AM   #78
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Just eat at Commander's Palace (and the like) every night, you'll be well on your way to spending $90K...
No, go for lunch, when they have 25¢ martinis.
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:43 AM   #79
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We'd be ecstatic to have a $90k/year retirement income, all other things remaining the same. Except perhaps for the high-dollar cities I would think that would be very comfortable for anyone.
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Old 12-04-2012, 06:16 AM   #80
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+1. We live in the same part of the country.... I am just a bit closer to Boston.
When you factor in state income tax, other state taxes/fees, state mandated HCI and the general local COL, my guess is that $40K of that $90K goes toward the privilege of living in the great state of Mass.

Of course our weather is awesome, the roads are perfectly maintained and the people are the nicest in the country, so there's that.
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