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Old 12-08-2015, 09:34 AM   #21
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I think I know of few retirees who had money, overspent and now have little money. Just the circles I run in I guess.

OTOH, I know numerous retirees who LBYM and have a large stash. Most of them don't sacrifice much of anything... have traveled and keep nice but modest houses in good order... but can no longer travel or do a lot for health reasons.

My mom is also in the above category but I admit that the older she has become the harder it is for us to get her to spend money on keeping up the houses or on improvements that would make her life easier and more enjoyable. Everything is "good enough"... even if it is not functioning properly rather than fix it (or have it fixed) she just does without it or creates some workaround and I address it the next time I'm there. It drives me a bit nuts.
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Old 12-08-2015, 09:40 AM   #22
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What?! No obligatory YOLO?
Sorry, I do not understand what that is in reference to.
After my dad died, she made a couple of trips to NY to see my sis and kids, but that was about it.
She did not socialize with people in her condo complex.
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Old 12-08-2015, 09:58 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by pb4uski View Post
I think I know of few retirees who had money, overspent and now have little money. Just the circles I run in I guess.

OTOH, I know numerous retirees who LBYM and have a large stash. Most of them don't sacrifice much of anything... have traveled and keep nice but modest houses in good order... but can no longer travel or do a lot for health reasons.

My mom is also in the above category but I admit that the older she has become the harder it is for us to get her to spend money on keeping up the houses or on improvements that would make her life easier and more enjoyable. Everything is "good enough"... even if it is not functioning properly rather than fix it (or have it fixed) she just does without it or creates some workaround and I address it the next time I'm there. It drives me a bit nuts.
We are probably in the "good enough" camp. Getting estimates and riding herd on the people who improve something is a hassle - we should swap out the carpet in this house; we do so often on the rentals, but here we would have to move everything and then move it back - easier to just dim the lights and put furniture over the stains. This summer my faithful E39 BMW with over 325,000 miles needed replacing - all kinds of problems I was putting up with unrelated to it driving down the road. We went car shopping and it was a huge PITA. Ended up with a newer BMW wagon which is ok, but I'd have been much happier with the same (fully functional) car.

Souschef - I'm kinda prone to the non sequitur - was imagining youth of today reading this thread and shouting their rallying cry: YOLO!
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Old 12-08-2015, 10:36 AM   #24
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YOLO ?? I had to google it.....must already be an outdated term as I've never heard my teenagers use it.
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:02 AM   #25
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YOLO = You Only Live Once
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Scraping along to a short, but frugal retirement
Old 12-08-2015, 11:17 AM   #26
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Scraping along to a short, but frugal retirement

Not a case of not having enough or leaving too much on the table:

I grew up in a poor, but hard working family. Dad was a coal miner in PA until the mines shut down and he went in the Navy. I was an infant at the time and was living with Mom in a coal company house with grandma.

After he returned, we moved to CT as he found a job in a record factory making 78 LPs (he ran a press). Mom did not work at the time as I was small and a young sister was just born. The record factory shut down and we moved. Dad had a 3rd grade education but somehow got a decent job at a machine manufacturing plant running a large open side planer. Somehow he learned enough math in order to set up the steel castings that were to be machined.

Dad and mom had another child, my youngest sister, to qualify for entry into a housing project where rents were cheaper. We were there until Dad lost his job and somehow ended up working for the Post Office (maybe because he was a WWII combat veteran).

The only real message I got from him about the time I was entering high school was to go to a school where you can lean a trade, which I did. Connecticut had a Regional Technical High School system and I made it into one and specialized in mechanical drafting. That got me a good job right out of high school.

He retired at 62 with a small Post Office pension and he actually had bought a dilapidated three story house in Waterbury, CT, fixed it up, and rented out two floors. Between the government pension and the collected rent, they were actually doing OK. We children were on our own by then, and I had finished college (paid for by me). My sisters never went to college and married into similar situations. Both worked low paying jobs.

Dad got sick and passed away three years later and really did not have much retirement. Mom had a stroke about that time and moved in with one sister, Mom having to quit her low paying job. We kids sold the old house and gave the proceeds, about $25,000, to Sis to take care of Mom, which she did for 10 more years.

Neither of my parents had great lives or had a retirement of leisure. Of course, the funds weren't there and Dad had done all he could to raise us kids and give us the gift of LBYM and a solid work ethic. I fully believe the work ethic passed along to me from my parents has been instilled in my daughter as she has those same qualities.
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:44 AM   #27
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Wow! Great stories. Thanks for sharing.


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Old 12-08-2015, 12:34 PM   #28
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I've never really said much to them since it is their life choice but that's not living IMO. It's existing.
Perhaps there is a vivid and varied life going on inside their heads, and in the shared mental space they cohabit? Not for everyone though, that's for sure.
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Old 12-08-2015, 01:09 PM   #29
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So my story is fairly familiar. Dh and I saved and lbom's often putting stuff off to "retirement" or not spending because of worrying about what would happen when we turned 90.

He dies leaving me a widow at 50!!

I no longer give a rat's patooie about what is going to happen when I'm 90. I'm spending. I'm traveling, I'm splurging.
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Old 12-08-2015, 05:14 PM   #30
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So my story is fairly familiar. Dh and I saved and lbom's often putting stuff off to "retirement" or not spending because of worrying about what would happen when we turned 90.

He dies leaving me a widow at 50!!

I no longer give a rat's patooie about what is going to happen when I'm 90. I'm spending. I'm traveling, I'm splurging.
Sorry to hear that. But glad you are traveling and splurging - enjoying.


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Old 12-08-2015, 06:41 PM   #31
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Running_Man, thanks for sharing your dad's story. He might not have had a lot of money, but it sounds like he had a very full life. I'm sure many people missed him when he died. I agree that it is better to have more money than less, but also feel that one can have riches, without being wealthy.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:17 PM   #32
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Too much money, died too soon.

My parents were a LBYM couple having been born during the Great Depression. He was an engineer and she was a school teacher, with 4 children. We all lived frugally on her teacher's salary, and he invested his income. When they both retired, they both had pensions and an undisclosed amount of savings, a paid off home, and a half acre property in Kauai, HI.

Within 4 years of retirement, my father was diagnosed with colon cancer and passed a year later. My mother developed obvious signs of dementia during this time, so my brother stepped in. I feel sad that they had amassed what turned out to be $3.5 million in mutual fund savings which neither are able to enjoy today.

I do sense I spend significantly more than my brothers and sisters. But I want a better balance of enjoying the fruits of my labors vs future financial security.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:17 PM   #33
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I had a friend who died 3 years ago now, age 58, of liver disease (he had a liver transplant at the very end, but died before he was able to leave the hospital). This guy (who was single, never married) did not act like he had a lot of money, but I knew he was okay, as he had retired about 5 years before that, and devoted his time after that to causes he was passionate about (some of the same causes I am involved with, so we got pretty close). He told no one (that I know of, anyway) that his liver was failing, and I was very surprised to get a call when he was in the hospital, getting the liver transplant. He also never mentioned his finances to me, but after he died, two of the organizations we both belonged to received rather large bequests from his estate. Apparently he was not close to his family (he never spoke much about them to me), so he left essentially everything to the organizations he believed in. I often think about the guy.....not so much about the money he left to our organizations, but how it is so sad that his life was cut so short, when he had so much left to contribute. Considering what was left in his estate, he could have spent lavishly on himself for the last several years of his life (as he apparently knew his liver condition was serious), but he was not interested in doing that. To see him and talk to him, he was just a normal, middle-class type guy........did not spend his money on expensive houses, cars, or things like that. I don't think he had any interest in those kinds of material possessions.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:27 PM   #34
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YOLO = You Only Live Once

... which is why I am retiring at the end of this year at 1 day short of age 54. My motto similar to YOLO is LISTYD = "life is short then you die. "

A coworker passed away at age 60, another at similar age. They were still in the company database when they passed. I don't want to be that person.

I can live rich, and I can live poor. But I'd rather enjoy the savings I've accumulated than die being a multi-millionaire.
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Old 12-08-2015, 10:21 PM   #35
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At my former megacorp, they used to post funeral service info of workers who passed away. Sometimes, that was what I saw on Monday morning coming to work. Among friends, we asked each other if anyone knew that guy. And then, occasionally there was an ambulance rolling right into the work campus in the middle of the day; someone's ticker decided to stop.

Oh boy. What a motivation to get the hell outta there!
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:12 PM   #36
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My motto similar to YOLO is LISTYD = "life is short then you die. "
I can live rich, and I can live poor. But I'd rather enjoy the savings I've accumulated than die being a multi-millionaire.
+1
14 months left and then my wife and I are done at 50, many people working overseas here are saying we are crazy for leaving the extra 10 years (ER is available at 50 from the company but full retirement is at 60) of pension and 401K and salary on the table with the company (this equates to several million $'s) but once we have enough for ER then why would I want to give up the years in trade for the extra money that we probably would never spend anyways.
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:20 PM   #37
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So my story is fairly familiar. Dh and I saved and lbom's often putting stuff off to "retirement" or not spending because of worrying about what would happen when we turned 90.

He dies leaving me a widow at 50!!

I no longer give a rat's patooie about what is going to happen when I'm 90. I'm spending. I'm traveling, I'm splurging.
Sounds like fun !
Just be sure to keep enough so you won't be eating cat food at 80.
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:24 PM   #38
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I like bargain hunting and looking for ways to lower our overhead without lowering our lifestyle, so we think we live fairly well without having to spend a lot. We're okay leaving the rest to the kids and our favorite charities.

I have had time for a lot of navel gazing lately and I've used some of it to watch videos and read books on positive psychology, and for us at least I think the hedonic treadmill does hold true, at least in terms of additional spending on discretionary expenses at this point in our lives. I've been trying some of the ideas in the Tedtalk video link below on positive psychology action items that do permanently increase happiness levels, including meditation and keeping a gratitude journal:

https://www.ted.com/talks/shawn_acho...age=en#t-19174
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Old 12-08-2015, 11:49 PM   #39
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+1
14 months left and then my wife and I are done at 50, many people working overseas here are saying we are crazy for leaving the extra 10 years (ER is available at 50 from the company but full retirement is at 60) of pension and 401K and salary on the table with the company (this equates to several million $'s) but once we have enough for ER then why would I want to give up the years in trade for the extra money that we probably would never spend anyways.
This was the reason that finally stopped me from doing OMY.
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Running out of money vs. Too much money but couldn't enjoy it
Old 12-08-2015, 11:50 PM   #40
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Running out of money vs. Too much money but couldn't enjoy it

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My mother contracted lung cancer when she turned 66 and my father was 70, my father had taken a buyout of the pension and within the 5 years of being retired they went through all the money. After my mother passed my father lived on only social security and was $15,000 in debt from medical and burial bills.

He never complained about his lot in life and never would take any money. He kept his car in good shape and lived with my brother for a few years before renting an apartment near a very nice county park. Rent was low and he lived on the equivalent today of $1,600 a month. He spent his time walking 5 miles each day, talking with people in the park, always keeping a pack of dog treats with him to give to people walking their dogs and working to keep the walking paths clear for everyone else. He always walked with a foldable pruning saw and shears to trim any wayward vegetation.

He taught me having little money is nothing to fear, it is always possible to make do and enjoy life with what you have, but life is easier with more money that is for sure. Even a few hundred dollars a month would have made a huge difference to him. He died at age 87 with $4,000 in the bank and debt free. In my entire life I never once heard him complain about being poor nor about it being unfair that someone else had more money than he. Because I think he had little money he had much time for walking the 5 miles daily and enjoying the county park, this in turn kept him healthy and active throughout his retirement.

I hope I am able to experience the good parts of his retirement with at least a little more cushion to make it through the years.
Thank you for sharing your story. So much I could learn from your dad.



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