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In the home stretch but seeking advice or comments
Old 04-10-2015, 10:28 PM   #1
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In the home stretch but seeking advice or comments

Currently approaching the home stretch in my quest to retire early. After 25 years at the same company, I plan to give notice in early January 2016 when I return from my 2 week Christmas vacation. I will be 55 .The notice will be anywhere from 3 weeks to 3 months at the company’s option. My plan is to have $1,200,000 in non tax sheltered funds and $450,000 in a 401K. I am within 93% of achieving this goal. Wife retired 3 years ago with a $60,000 a year pension. I plan on doing some financial consulting or part time work on a very limited basis with the goal of earning $30,000 per year. At least until I am 60. Most of my money is in mutual funds so I feel comfortable in drawing $2,500 per month from investment earnings of the after tax fund. No plans to touch the 401K money til I am 68 so hopefully it can grow during that time. No debt at retirement but may buy a new home in the future using the equity in our current home to fund at least 60 percent of any new home. Our plans are to travel the U.S. for a couple of months at a time in our Motor Home or SUV. We would also like to do a few trips abroad. When home, I would like maintain my lifetime fitness routine as well as take a few classes in electronics and the sciences at the local community college. I feel things are on track but would appreciate any comments or critique from this most esteemed group.

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Old 04-11-2015, 05:50 AM   #2
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Why part-time work? If you have enough, which it would seem you do but not enough information to assess, why not retire rather than downshift? I retired at 56 and sort of planned to do some consulting work and enjoyed my freedom from work so much that I just didn't go looking for it and it didn't chase me and I like it that way.

Have you used Firecalc? $30k a year from a $1.2 million portfolio is very conservative.

If you end up not working you might want to take a look at doing Roth conversions to the top of the 15% tax bracket from when you retire/stop working until you start collecting SS to reduce the tax bite after you turn 70 and RMDs kick in.

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Old 04-11-2015, 06:57 AM   #3
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Once you announce in most company cultures, you are a dead man walking, so delay as long as possible.

I retired at age 54 and thought I'd work part time, too, but soon came to treasure my own free time. So don't lock yourself into anything. You may be surprised at how heavy the yoke was once you shake it off.

If you haven't done a detailed budget, you may be surprised at how little you'll spend in retirement, especially with not paying FICA and lower income taxes. I've been reinvesting a portion of my pension for the last 8 years.
Yes, I have achieved work / life balance.
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Old 04-11-2015, 07:11 AM   #4
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Looks good to me (although the light blue italic is pretty hard for me to read). Does your wife's pension have a survivor benefit? Her $60k plus your expected $30k from the non-tax sheltered funds = $90k--is that your budget and the part-time income would be gravy? Will you get Social Security?

Agree to the above about not working part-time.

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Old 04-11-2015, 08:25 AM   #5
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You have a lot more assets and retirement income than I did when I retired last year. So my gut says you're good to go.

That said - you haven't mentioned your spending. If you are a high spender, then it might be an issue.

Have you run Firecalc?
Have you looked at health insurance (or do you have that covered along with your wife's pension?)
Is the pension COLAd?

I thought I'd pick up a part time job, perhaps, after I retired... I found I don't want to now that I am retired. If you *need* the part time income to make your plan work it might be worth sucking it up for a year or two to avoid having to work in "retirement". (Although many would argue that working in retirement is not truly being retired.)

Welcome to the forum. I look forward to hearing more from you.
Retired June 2014. No longer an enginerd - now I'm just a nerd.
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