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Old 06-01-2017, 12:45 AM   #201
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Except NO inflation?? really is that feasible over 17 years to live with zero inflation? Again I repeat, not doable...and your still not making up that extra $400/month at the start.
600k @2% (4%-2%inflation)=42k/year for 16 years

As far as medical care goes : income needs go down as we age, the median income for people 65 plus is 34,000 so there will be extra room in his budget.

If someone retires healthy at age 50 does that mean they will never earn another dime, will they watch tv all day? Why don't we assume that they will continue to be productive but on their own terms? If some budget buster came along couldn't the poster work for extra money doing something they love?

Also, no one has mentioned that americans can live like kings and queens in many other countries around the world,for 2000/mth or less. Heck, the median income in many areas of europe is less than 40k. Italy, anyone?

Inflexible,rigid, scared thinking is the biggest detriment to a successful retirement. Death=rigor mortis. Life= flexible. Be flexible, mentally and physically, and you can handle anything life throws your way
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:09 AM   #202
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Originally Posted by 1-31-18 View Post
Bingo!

So the OP wants to ER in 13 years and draw down on a $600K port, exhausting it just in time to start drawing on SS at age 67.

Here is a short list of things that can go wrong with that plan over the first 17 years, never mind 30 or 60:
-- inflation (a certainty, not a risk, over that period)
-- entitlement reform (highly likely over 30 years)
-- special snowflake children
-- boomerang children (1 in 3 return home)
-- divorce (ending more than 1 in 3 marriages)

Given these risks and others I'm skipping for brevity, is it "possible" that $600K will bridge 17 years starting in 13 years and that SS will fully fund up to 30 years (or more) for OP and DW beyond that? Yes, just as it is "possible" that a man on a motorcycle can jump 16 cars and not crash on landing, at least sometimes.

But I'm not Evil Knievel, so I wouldn't take the risk of falling short or landing hard, nor would I expose my DW to those risks. Not if I were 50 years old and in good health, or even fair health.
By that logic someone will never have enough money to retire. And you left off the other 9463 things we need to prepare for. Work till you drop, i guess.
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Old 06-01-2017, 05:47 AM   #203
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Old 06-01-2017, 06:42 AM   #204
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The retirement industry loves people who think they'll need 80-100% of their pre retirement income.


We created a detailed budget prior to ER and compared it to records I kept of detailed actual spending. We expect to spend about 10% more in retirement pre-tax since we will have more time to travel and entertain ourselves. So far we're on track with that. However we are no longer contributing to our portfolio, and our tax bill should be much lower. IMO, those % rules of thumb aren't worth much. Detailed budgets based on real spending data are much more helpful.
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Old 06-01-2017, 06:47 AM   #205
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It all hinges on your expenses on whether 600k is enough. I'm in the ERE camp right now, my base expenses are $12.5k a year. 46k - 12.5k would give me 33.5k for any contingency, which is plenty.

I could stay bare bones for the front years and spend more in the later years if I was super concerned about things.

It all depends on what you are used to. I have been on minimalist spending for as long as I can remember, so for me it is not a big deal to continue that way.
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Old 06-01-2017, 10:20 AM   #206
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Dear ole Mom (76) lives on $1361/mo ( combined SS and CSRS survivor benefit pension )
This is net after health/dental premium ($270) and medicare premium
Home is paid off ( +55 community )
Federal Employee Health care working in tandem with Medicare
Energy Assistance pays most of Electricity....
Prop Tax limited due to Age/income....
Small 30K emergency fund
Older Buick will probably not be replaced when it dies.... will just use Free Senior Transportation that comes around a few times a week
Her Emergency Fund has seemed to be growing month to month
She does not seem to be dissatisfied with the amount of money available to live on
Eats out every other day at a modest restaurant and has Cable TV and Internet

I think it helps immensely to retire in an area that has a support network (transportation, local/close amenities) of course debt free and medical paid for.

Before my Father passed last year the two of them lived on a little more but also had higher (family) health premiums, and some Rx expenses tied to Dad. Certainly they lived off of less than $1700/mo net for the last 20 years from age 55-75
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:18 PM   #207
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one of my 72 year old wife's meds is near $4000/month, but she can only take it for two years.
I think the quote about would call for a separate thread, but I gotta ask: Is this amount OOP cash you pay each month?!? If so, then it's totally scary because I imagined that Medicare Plan D (I think that's the one for drugs, right?) would take care of the cost and all you pay is the premium for Plan D and perhaps a small copay. Or is this some type of Donut hole situations or a drug not covered by MC and no alternative drug that could be covered?

Sometimes free-market economics re healthcare stuff frighten me in this country. I guess MC cannot or is not allowed to negotiate prices on behalf of retirees like other countries do?
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Old 06-01-2017, 01:18 PM   #208
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We don't want to just exist but like to go out, travel etc. Can't do that on such a small amount of $.
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Old 06-01-2017, 02:18 PM   #209
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We don't want to just exist but like to go out, travel etc. Can't do that on such a small amount of $.
Millions of people somehow manage to live well and travel on $3900 (a month) every single day. And a lot of them do it on even on less than that...
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Old 06-01-2017, 02:38 PM   #210
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Millions of people somehow manage to live well and travel on $3900 (a month) every single day. And a lot of them do it on even on less than that...


Leaving aside all the "extras" they are missing, what do these retirees do when hit by the need for long-term care (because they can no longer take care of themselves) or by catastrophic, uninsured medical costs? Do they simply capitulate and die? Do they burden their adult children (if they have any who will sacrifice their own security for parents)? Or do these things only happen to richer retirees?

These are not snarky questions (well, maybe the last one was), but sincere ones. I can live humbly within a rational health care cost framework, but feel I might need a million or more to pay for these costs for myself and/or DW. I'd like to understand better how end-of-life dignity and care are preserved with such limited means, in case I'm being too cautious.
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Old 06-01-2017, 02:49 PM   #211
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One of our relatives saves money living on Social Security and used to slow travel at least a couple months of the year. Usually one month was to visit family and the other a discount package to some place warm for the winter.

With a paid for, good MPG car and mortgage free, furnished, small condo, bus line and shopping close by, he just doesn't have a lot of expenses.
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Old 06-01-2017, 03:00 PM   #212
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Originally Posted by 1-31-18 View Post
Leaving aside all the "extras" they are missing, what do these retirees do when hit by the need for long-term care (because they can no longer take care of themselves) or by catastrophic, uninsured medical costs? Do they simply capitulate and die? Do they burden their adult children (if they have any who will sacrifice their own security for parents)? Or do these things only happen to richer retirees?

These are not snarky questions (well, maybe the last one was), but sincere ones. I can live humbly within a rational health care cost framework, but feel I might need a million or more to pay for these costs for myself and/or DW. I'd like to understand better how end-of-life dignity and care are preserved with such limited means, in case I'm being too cautious.
No, they do what they can or what millions of retirees have been doing for decades. most don't sit around wondering what will happen if something catastrophic happens to them. I'm certainly not going to work until I'm 70 because I may contract dementia and need long term care (I don't have and have no plans on buying ltc insurance).

I have retiree healthcare and I'll have medicaid. if i have a whopperbof uninsured cost then I'll owe someone money when I die.
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Old 06-01-2017, 03:38 PM   #213
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Originally Posted by abirdinthehand View Post
600k @2% (4%-2%inflation)=42k/year for 16 years

As far as medical care goes : income needs go down as we age, the median income for people 65 plus is 34,000 so there will be extra room in his budget.

If someone retires healthy at age 50 does that mean they will never earn another dime, will they watch tv all day? Why don't we assume that they will continue to be productive but on their own terms? If some budget buster came along couldn't the poster work for extra money doing something they love?

Also, no one has mentioned that americans can live like kings and queens in many other countries around the world,for 2000/mth or less. Heck, the median income in many areas of europe is less than 40k. Italy, anyone?

Inflexible,rigid, scared thinking is the biggest detriment to a successful retirement. Death=rigor mortis. Life= flexible. Be flexible, mentally and physically, and you can handle anything life throws your way
Agile, Mobile and Hostile!

Layed off at 50. My elaborate plan was supposed to start at 63. Looking back the last 23 yrs of ER a few items not included:

About a year total of really good paying temp work.

Tornado taking off the roof and being homeless-the neighbors living room for 6 wks.

Selling and consuming capital from a rental duplex.

Living unbelievably cheap in our Camp(vacation cabin) on Lake Pontchartrain.

Katrina.

Moving 1000 miles inland - on a hill. A high hill.

Getting married at age 70.

heh heh heh - by all means have a plan but remember you can't control the future. Whining and Curmudgeonism is good clean fun as long as I don't take myself too seriously.
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Old 06-01-2017, 03:47 PM   #214
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These are not snarky questions (well, maybe the last one was), but sincere ones. I can live humbly within a rational health care cost framework, but feel I might need a million or more to pay for these costs for myself and/or DW. I'd like to understand better how end-of-life dignity and care are preserved with such limited means, in case I'm being too cautious.
I guess there will be 150 million undignified people in the USA at the end of their life because there is no way they are going to cover a million dollar LTC nut.
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Old 06-01-2017, 04:01 PM   #215
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I think this entire thread would have read very differently if the OP said "All I need is ~ $600k" instead of "All you need is ~ $600k" etc.

It seems that many of the responses are related to the arrogance of assuming that a complete stranger knows what each and every one of us needs. But then again, I speak only for myself.
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Old 06-01-2017, 04:02 PM   #216
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I don't know about other towns but where I live the unemployment rate is much lower than the national average. Yet there are more panhandlers stationed at the intersections near Walmart Home depot & fast foods restaurants. The cardboard signs say stranded need gas or hungry need money for food & other messages. Most often children or dogs are on display which increases donations I'm sure. It is people are not physically disabled or mentally deficient. They can count & have command of the English language. They know how to budget their income because they have money for beer cigarettes cell phones some have cars that appear to be more consistent with a middle class income level. The businesses around where they panhandle are desperate for w*rkers as they consistently have hiring signs displayed. I've heard reports they donations of dog food. They don't want you to put gas in their car. I was having a street taco at one of the many taco trucks in our area & one of the panhandlers was eating too. I asked him if he was on lunch. No I'm homeless & unemployed. He had a j*b for little while but he didn't like the commute. He had cigars & offered me a beer. Truth is anyone who isn't really doesn't want to. He gets his medical his dental & there's no alarm clocks in his world. He can't get financially wiped out by a catastrophic illness since there's no accounts or property to pilfer. Is it ideal? No. But it has its advantages. He didn't look skinny & had lots of energy. He didn't smell. Needed a shave but so did I. I'm off in the weeds I know. But since we're waxing philosophical. I think his magic number was $60.
Hard to read without breaking into paragraphs, but that's OK, I get the message.

When I lived and worked in L.A., street beggars hawked for pocket change (1980's) and were believed to make a decent living only having to do this for a few hours a day. The more aggressive ones would purse snatch; all this during daylight hours.

On topic, or something in that direction, we have members of our blended family over 60, still working at a minimum wage job and living in Section 8 (low income) housing. We are sure these members have no savings, only ACA type medical insurance coverage, and are expecting their children to "step up" when they get old and sick. There is no Pot of Gold in their 401k's as they were previously drained to pay bills.
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Old 06-01-2017, 04:21 PM   #217
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Very interesting thread. I thought OP's question was a good one (perhaps worded poorly), but it sounds like $800K is a better answer. Mostly, lots of opinions as to whether $3.9K/mo syncs up with each poster's vision of what it means to be retired early.

I'll just add this...

DW and I have friends from high school and college that will never see $600K unless they win the lottery. To them, it's an unfathomable number, like me thinking about the edge of the universe. They'll work until they can't, and then survive on SS and side hustles.

I have other friends still employed at Megacorp who spend $600K in a year, all VPs and SVPs. They've built an identity and a lifestyle that's difficult to maintain post-Megacorp. So they keep going like the Energizer bunny, accumulating more stock options, but without a real exit strategy or vision for life after Megacorp.

Then there's DW and myself. Retired at 52. According to FIRECalc @ 95%, we can safely spend almost 3X the $3.9K that's been bantered about. We actually spend more like 2X, but I harbor some doubts about SS and some fear about LTC and other irrational things, so 2X suits us fine for now. I suppose our lifestyle would be characterized as upper middle class, but the only hint you'd get of that is our house, which is slated for downsizing at some point.

So there you have it. Within my rather small but diverse circle of friends, I have a perspective on this question that allows me to relate quite readily to whatever opinion is offered. As for us, we retired when the numbers "worked" for the lifestyle we had planned. Simple as that. I can easily envision a different sequence of events that could have led us to either of the other extremes, or any point in between. But we're relatively happy with the way things played out.
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Old 06-01-2017, 04:33 PM   #218
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On topic, or something in that direction, we have members of our blended family over 60, still working at a minimum wage job and living in Section 8 (low income) housing. We are sure these members have no savings, only ACA type medical insurance coverage, and are expecting their children to "step up" when they get old and sick. There is no Pot of Gold in their 401k's as they were previously drained to pay bills.


Me, too. How do you feel about that, and what will you do? I know I won't be compromising DW's comfort or security, or mine, when my ne'er-do-well relatives develop "needs" later in life that they could have financed themselves by working earlier, longer and harder but instead decided to roll the dice and stick someone else with the bill (like maybe me) when the dice only too predictably come up "snake eyes."

And by the way I don't expect to pay $1 million for LTC or extraordinary medical costs. I expect to pay about half that for the two of us, like most studies suggest. But it could be a million or more, just as one or both of us could live to age 95 or even 100. I plan to be prepared to be an exception. Doing less than that when I can do that much might leave my DW in a hard place late in life. I love her too much to risk that. And I want to pass away with dignity myself if possible.

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Old 06-01-2017, 04:40 PM   #219
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It's safe to say we can agree on one thing & that's we can't agree on what the precise sum should be. But we can agree we need some sort of sum which for some will be a different sum for some but most likely a different sum for some & a greater sum in some cases & a lesser sum in other cases. So you see we can't please all of the people all of the time but we can please some of the people some of the time. So after 200 posts I think this about sums it up. Though some may agree & some may not.
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Old 06-01-2017, 04:42 PM   #220
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It was the opposite for us. I love my DW too much to want to be separated from her for 10 hours a day for the years between 50 and 65. (actually with the horrible Seattle commutes it was more like 12 hours a day)

If cutting back a little bit on the expenditures means we get to spend more time together and neither has to sit in 2 to 4 hours of traffic some work days, then risking possible LTC issues is a risk worth taking.

But for all I know some people may want to work to get away from their spouse.
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