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Anyone Comfortably Retired With Retirement Savings Under the Million Mark?
Old 10-31-2019, 08:41 PM   #1
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Anyone Comfortably Retired With Retirement Savings Under the Million Mark?

When reading these boards, so many people have retirement savings in the millions.
We have less than 500K - we will have a pension, social security, dividends and some withdrawal from IRA - but not what I read on here.

Have any of you been able to make it without loads of savings?
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Old 10-31-2019, 08:58 PM   #2
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How long is a string?

None of this makes any sense w/o context. If someone had pension/SS to meet their expenses, they wouldn't need a single penny in savings. Heck, they could be deep in debt and still be just fine if their income covered it.

You gotta look big picture - expenses, inflation, versus income and realistic draws from a portfolio. Put those numbers together for yourself (ask for help if you need it). Those are your numbers.

Someone else's numbers probably won't apply to you, so their answers might lead you astray.

-ERD50
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:06 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
How long is a string?

None of this makes any sense w/o context. If someone had pension/SS to meet their expenses, they wouldn't need a single penny in savings. Heck, they could be deep in debt and still be just fine if their income covered it.

You gotta look big picture - expenses, inflation, versus income and realistic draws from a portfolio. Put those numbers together for yourself (ask for help if you need it). Those are your numbers.

Someone else's numbers probably won't apply to you, so their answers might lead you astray.

-ERD50
+1 DM & DD retired with no savings, but COL'd pension, SS and Health Insurance that paid everything. Plus paid for house and car. What more could you want?
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:14 PM   #4
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+1 DM & DD retired with no savings, but COL'd pension, SS and Health Insurance that paid everything. Plus paid for house and car. What more could you want?
+1! If one has these things, lives within their means, and retires at an age when you can collect, then, they would be fine!

But most of us here don't have pensions (COLA'd or not), and most of us here strive to RE. This necessitates saving a lot more than $500K for most of us. As with most of life, it's about budget/spending, and income!
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:20 PM   #5
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Whats a million? Never had it never will.
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:34 PM   #6
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Whats a million? Never had it never will.
Yep, just retired this year, so we'll see how it works. But I will never see my stash hit $1 million. And I don't have a pension (unless you count $119 / month as a pension). I'm pretty sure I will make it fine.
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:45 PM   #7
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A 40 k pension is equal to a million in savings.
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Old 10-31-2019, 10:53 PM   #8
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It'd be best to present your entire situation, but as a very approximate very rough very simple guide, take your annual expenses, subtract your SS, subtract your pension, then multiply the remaining amount by 25 and that's what you should have in savings.

In a LCOL area with a modest lifestyle and with decent SS and pension, less than $1M or even less than $500K could still be quite reasonable.
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Old 11-01-2019, 06:06 AM   #9
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My pension is only going to amount to about $1300 a month...so about $15K+ a year, throw in 2 SS payments, a paid off house/cars, about $500K in 401K, and another $100K in Roth. I will be just fine retiring at 64, and paying for health care for a full year.

It really helps when you LBYM in a rural LCOL area, I don't know how those in big cities do it.
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Old 11-01-2019, 06:06 AM   #10
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How long is a string?

Someone else's numbers probably won't apply to you, so their answers might lead you astray.

-ERD50
+1.

The equation is pretty simple: income (from all sources) minus expenses (all).

There is a cabal out there (mostly of FA's and there ilk) that say crap like, "You need 25X of this," or "You need 80-100% of that." That rhetoric is just horse sh!t.

FWIW - we have a modest IRA. Well under a mil. But also a couple of pensions, SS, and quality, LC health care. Now retired a couple of years, we are enjoying a slightly better standard of living than when I was w*rking. I wake up every day, pinch myself to make sure its real. Then, I offer a prayer of thanks for the life that we've been blessed with.
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Old 11-01-2019, 06:51 AM   #11
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Rathgar "The OP" Simply asked if anyone else has ER'd with only $500k of (IRA?) savings, a pension and SS, a fair question. I think they are looking for some re-assurance that they are not alone, and if not how do others in a similar position manage.

If I were doing the math for myself and family, I would ask a few more questions for clarification, but these would be in addition to the OP's original quest.

1) Is your home paid for?
2) How much estimated is Pension and SS?, Does the pension trigger SS WEP?
3) Are you in a HCOL area (SFO) or a LCOL area (Some place in Alabama or Louisiana)
4) How Old are you?
5) With your current or proposed retirement expenses, will Pension + SS + IRA Annual withdrawals las approximately 25 years (Guessing you are ~60)

That is where I would start doing the math. Then I would Ask FireCalc what it thinks.

And I would plug those numbers into here, I particularly like this calculator:

https://www.money-zine.com/calculato...al-calculator/
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Old 11-01-2019, 07:08 AM   #12
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When I (comfortably) retired 11 years ago, it was while the markets were crashing. At the time, I had only $608k in taxable and $243k in a rollover IRA I lacked unfettered access to. That means I have been living on the investment income from the $608k for the last 11 years although that $608k has risen to $956k despite not having added any outside money to it. Meanwhile, the IRA's value has more than doubled. I didn't pierce the $1M mark overall until 2010.


Starting in about 3 years from now, I will gain unfettered access to the IRA, the first of my 3 "reinforcements," with the other 2 being my small, frozen pension and Social Security a few years into my 60s (I am 56 now).
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Old 11-01-2019, 08:55 AM   #13
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It's based on your lifestyle. There are posters here who's yearly expenses @ $30K. Even though you can, according to various calculators, spend more, many don't. It's not all about what you can afford but what you choose to afford. I hate the thought of debt b/c of family history. We went into a little debt to get a better deal on a car, but that will be gone soon.
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Old 11-01-2019, 09:02 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post
It'd be best to present your entire situation, but as a very approximate very rough very simple guide, take your annual expenses, subtract your SS, subtract your pension, then multiply the remaining amount by 25 and that's what you should have in savings.

In a LCOL area with a modest lifestyle and with decent SS and pension, less than $1M or even less than $500K could still be quite reasonable.
Do this ^. I will say every life/person is different but I can tell you that many retire/retired on less then what you have given in your numbers. Absolutely it is possible.
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Old 11-01-2019, 09:36 AM   #15
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The amount of your pensions, social security, the age of your retirement, and the expected expenses in retirement determine what is enough.
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Old 11-01-2019, 09:47 AM   #16
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Some people get great pensions, almost as much as their former salary. With SS added, who needs savings?
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Old 11-01-2019, 12:51 PM   #17
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I could live somewhat comfortably with just pension, SS, and a paid off home. But getting my pension to that level meant that I had to forego early retirement and work to age 62 to increase the pension multiplier and high 3 year salary. Actually I made it to $1M in savings (barely) because the market did so well the last 3 years that I worked. But if I had not worked those extra years and the market had not done well (I expected another recession), it might have been a different story.
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Old 11-01-2019, 01:23 PM   #18
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Even not-so-great pensions help.

I have a close relative who retired 25 years ago on a pension that started under $2,000/month with around $50,000 total saved.

However, pension is COLA, mortgage was already paid off, & their retiree health care was essentially free...they complained when they had to start paying Medicare Part B premiums, even though their retiree health care converted into a nearly free Medicare supplement plan, plus they've gotten expensive medications free through the VA.
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Old 11-01-2019, 01:29 PM   #19
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66yo now. Stopped working 12 years ago. Took ss at 62. Paid for house. Way less than a million! Although I’m closer than when I started Live in fly northern flyover state like it here few wants. Have to work at spending
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Old 11-01-2019, 02:58 PM   #20
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My guess is that the vast majority of people with DB pensions have retired with less than $1Mil in savings. They do not need it.

Therein lies the pension crisis. DB plans are disappearing, DC plans are less generous, the number of workplaces without pensions is increasing. Consumer debt is increasing.
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