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View Poll Results: Select the % that is closest to your situation
>110% 3 4.62%
100% 8 12.31%
90% 2 3.08%
80% 4 6.15%
70% 5 7.69%
60% 7 10.77%
50% 9 13.85%
40% 15 23.08%
30% 7 10.77%
20% 4 6.15%
10% 1 1.54%
Voters: 65. You may not vote on this poll

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Retirees - Retirement Income and Lifestyle
Old 07-01-2007, 03:58 PM   #1
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Retirees - Retirement Income and Lifestyle

How much money did you need in retirement as a percent of the last year of your pre-retirement income. For example: if your family income was $100k during the last year of work and your retirement income was $50k, it would be 50%.


Please post comments and discuss whether your lifestyle was upgraded or downgraded in terms of buying things... What I mean by that is are you are spending more or less in retirement on things you enjoy... when compared to back when you were working.

For example: We get by on less in retirement, but because of getting rid of work related expenses, we can afford to travel much more. We have the same amount of spending in retirement and lifestyle is about the same because we have increased medical expenses.
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Old 07-01-2007, 04:35 PM   #2
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Interesting question but Ill give a try.

I've been RE for exactly one month so it may not be too accurate. As far as income goes, FireCalc says we can withdraw 140% of final income at 95% success, so I guess >110% works for the income part (if needed).

We spent about 350% of our usual monthly expenses. However, a lot of that was not likely to repeat (home upgrades, trip with DD), or annual stuff spent this month (house taxes). If I look at day to day stuff, I'm down about 20% from the days of w*rk.
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Old 07-01-2007, 04:51 PM   #3
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12% to 89%. In my 14th yr of ER need to settle down and get a grip.

12% in the early 1990's - she threatened to murdalize me. A lot of 18 to 24% early on and then let it jump during some remodeling years. Last year was a 89% remodeling year.

Probably settle in a 60% cause I can afford it - time in the market and all.

Note $ and % are identical for me - cause in 1992 his and hers equaled 100k.

Still love Dory's old post - 33% That's My Story - cause that's what got me to sign up back in 03.

Could I live on 12k/yr again?? - now THAT would be chewy!!!

heh heh heh Party on!
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Old 07-01-2007, 05:16 PM   #4
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I budgeted for 100% because I pay for extra care for my Mom and I travel quite a bit .Remember I'm an RN so my salary was not that high to begin with .
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:04 PM   #5
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I answered 40% because my last year prior to full retirement I was already drawing my CSRS pension and was working part time as a consultant to NASA. DW was also in her last year of work so our income that year was close to $200K. We saved nearly half of that. Now in our 4th year of full retirement we will spend on the order of $90K. This is in line with the pre-retirement planning I did.

We are being a lot less cautious in buying things we enjoy. In May I bought DW her first new car since 1993, a top of the line Accord (V6, leather, nav system, etc.). Last week we bought a 42" LCD HD TV. We have been doing quite a bit of expensive travel (cruise to Italy and Greece last year, Panama Canal the year before and Alaska the year before that).

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Old 07-01-2007, 11:20 PM   #6
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I didn't vote since in our first year of retirement, we bought many luxury toys that won't be repeated. 2 luxury automobiles, big screen HDTV, furniture, etc. Probably a total exceeding $120k for the toys.

With those now out of the way, we expect our annual expenses (not including income tax) to be about the same level forward as they were pre-retirement..... which just happened to be somewhat less than 50% of my pre-retirement gross income.
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Old 07-02-2007, 08:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaco View Post
How much money did you need in retirement as a percent of the last year of your pre-retirement income. For example: if your family income was $100k during the last year of work and your retirement income was $50k, it would be 50%.
hmmmm. i'm not sure if i'm on or off your chart. by your question i have as much as i need--which was what i had--so that would be about 100%? but by your example i have more than i need because with inheritance i now have more than i earned (not that my inheritance was completely unearned; i took out the garbage and raked the leaves as a kid, ya know.) so i guess by example it would be a negative 10 to 20%.

as i'm spending about the same as i used to i actually have more than 10-20% spendable now then when i worked and as i intend to sell the house and vagabond it in a few years in developing countries i'll be spending even less so having even more. none of which makes any sense to me.

but don't think my niece/nephews will be any happier for that confusion as i intend to splurge big time with the excess later on if i'm still around for that.
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Old 07-02-2007, 10:42 AM   #8
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My net income (from a cola'd DB pension) after Fed tax, is 87.6% of what my net pay was while I was w*rking. And my monthly expenses are pretty much unchanged from what they were while employed.....about 40-50% of my net. Of the remaining 50-60%, about 30% is going toward investments and the remainder is being banked for emergencies or any other unexpected things that may pop up.

The only deductions taken from my pension are Fed tax and health ins premiums. Of course no Medicare or SS taxes, also no Union dues, or State income tax (my pension is exempt from IL tax). Those all save me a big chunk of change!

My vote BTW was 90%. Starting next year with the cola and an additional check in July...called the "13th check"....I'll be at about 92% of what my w*rking net would have been for this year.
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Old 07-02-2007, 02:01 PM   #9
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I only need about 40% of my pre-retirement income mainly because I no longer have a house payment. It also helps to move to an area which has a much lower cost of living. Would I do it again..... YOU BETCHA!!
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Old 07-02-2007, 02:48 PM   #10
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Since we live on 33% of our total income right now, when we retire we need that amount and the tax amount to cover it. Or about 50% of our current income. It is much more how much you spend than how much you earn. Been tracking income and enpenses for over 20 years.
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Old 07-03-2007, 12:01 AM   #11
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We're living on 50% of our pre-retirement income. I agree with Life_is_Good in that it's advantageous not to have a house payment coupled with relocating to a lower cost of living area.
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Old 07-03-2007, 04:45 AM   #12
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Since we live on 33% of our total income right now, when we retire we need that amount and the tax amount to cover it. Or about 50% of our current income. It is much more how much you spend than how much you earn. Been tracking income and enpenses for over 20 years.

Sounds like you are in a similar situation to us. We have two incomes right now. We spend about 40% with a mortgage. We are targeting 60% which is substantially higher than our yearly spend today. Plus, we will not have a mortgage.


My reason for posting the thread is to do a sanity check on whether or not my target is too high. Am I anticipating spending more than we actually will spend?

So far approximately 45% indicated that they needed more than 50% of their income. I guess a follow-up question for those that need more than 50% is: Is your % based on a single income or two incomes (you and spouse)?
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Old 07-03-2007, 07:00 AM   #13
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single but i plan to marry up.
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Old 07-03-2007, 10:09 AM   #14
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30 to 35% is our number. We have been retired a year now, and I don't see any material change in our lifestyle. I think the reason was we were living well below our means while working, and now we are living within our means.
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Old 07-03-2007, 02:05 PM   #15
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Quote:
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30 to 35% is our number. We have been retired a year now, and I don't see any material change in our lifestyle. I think the reason was we were living well below our means while working, and now we are living within our means.
Practically the same here. About 35% overall, although DW unintentionally preceded me by a couple three years, which began the power down, getting used to living on less. I would say the difference is we tended to NOT live well below our means near the end, more like the knowledge that we would be existing with less "extra" disposable income, we went a bit nuts with our acquisition of long-term non-perishable "stuff". The upside was had good timing with the Mortgage as our House became fully OURS just a couple months after FIRE.
Makes a big diff!
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Old 07-04-2007, 08:46 PM   #16
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Lets see, 60% of my pre-retirement gross income and 115% of my net pre- retirement income. I don't know which one to vote for but I know which one I like better.
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Old 07-05-2007, 04:23 AM   #17
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Lets see, 60% of my pre-retirement gross income and 115% of my net pre- retirement income. I don't know which one to vote for but I know which one I like better.
Good question. I am talking gross... But I cannot edit my poll description because of the new rule.

On the net side... seems like an impossibility... unless you are factoring in things other than taxes on the net side or if you had work related expenses you had to pay for (i.e., non-personal/family expenses).

Are you self employed?
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Old 07-05-2007, 04:25 AM   #18
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Quick note: If the poll results are flipped on their side... I see a little bit of a bi-modal histogram going on. I wonder if part of that pattern is due to 1 income versus 2 income households?
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Old 07-05-2007, 05:40 AM   #19
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We live on a 10% or less of my yearly income from last few years of working...but that was true even when I worked...several years of high income and frugal spending habits (relative to income anyway) is what made it possible to er in the first place.
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Old 07-05-2007, 10:39 AM   #20
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I'm not fully retired yet, but plan on living on about 35% of our last years two incomes. I have been tracking our expenses for the last 3 years and this should be plenty. It's what we are living on now and we are still growing our savings.

As our salary's increased we increased our savings, paid off the house, and paid for our kids college. So its not like we are changing our standard of living.
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