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Old 03-16-2021, 12:23 PM   #21
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Holy cow, Corn18! I think you're getting a lot for that $35K. Personally, I take joy in a beautiful yard, always have. It's in many ways more interesting than the inside of the house.

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They are doing quite a bit including lighting, gas fire pit and hardscaping. I think it's way cool and we would use it a lot.
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:23 PM   #22
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I would focus on 2 things, 1) are you planning on spending enough time at that house that you will enjoy the new landscaping and 2) (although for some in retirement, including me, this isn't the end all/be-all criteria for anything) will the investment improve the value of your home by that same amount roughly.

And lastly, I'll add, "new landscaping" often mean "new landscaping maintenance"... beware.

Good luck and congrats on the recent "win" of retiring....
We moved here last year to retire, so we don't plan to move. But who knows?

This will not increase the value of the home by $35k.
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:25 PM   #23
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Three quotes. Have the one for $35k so far. Maybe the other two will be less.
Good job. Once you have the details broken down you can compare costs and ideas; maybe an amalgam of the proposals will be the best course.
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:32 PM   #24
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Looks nice-now that you are retired you'll get to enjoy it. $35k is a days fluctuation in the market at your invested assets I think.
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:40 PM   #25
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I knew she wanted to do some landscaping, but not $35k of it. I guess I am just trying to adjust to spending rather than saving. My severance was a lot larger than I planned and covers this expense easily (as pointed out by DW). There will be more unplanned spending, I'm sure.
Sounds like you and your wife could benefit from a budget for discretionary expenses, assuming most of the landscaping falls into that category. Spend no more than <X> dollars every <Y> years on big ticket discretionary items, with adjustments for inflation.

This is probably why I don't have a family. I sleep better knowing that I don't have to compromise with somebody else on spending. Good luck in fighting that battle!
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:46 PM   #26
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just say DW no more clothes for YOU !!!! ;-)
She's been awesome about clothes lately. She's only spent $272 so far this year on clothes. That's crazy awesome!
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Old 03-16-2021, 12:47 PM   #27
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Sounds like you and your wife could benefit from a budget for discretionary expenses, assuming most of the landscaping falls into that category. Spend no more than <X> dollars every <Y> years on big ticket discretionary items, with adjustments for inflation.

This is probably why I don't have a family. I sleep better knowing that I don't have to compromise with somebody else on spending. Good luck in fighting that battle!
We did agree on $25k / year for pure discretionary a long while ago. But she knows that we are in much better shape than that because I tell her. We can spend $50k / year.
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:13 PM   #28
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Plan looks great! Estimate looks great too for all that work. And you said you'll use it a lot.

So do it and enjoy it!
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:21 PM   #29
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My plan was always pretty simple: 100% Probability of Success (Ps) with $25k / year of discretionary spending. We far exceeded that and we now have $400k more than we need for 100% Ps. Ok, great. Let's just keep that as an insurance policy for unknown unknowns.
Looks like you just hit your first unknown unknown .

Seriously, though, don't worry, be happy. $35K is less than 10% of your "excess". I would not sweat over it. The long term benefits are worth it.

Perhaps the real issue is you being uncomfortable with the amount your wife is choosing to spend, and fearful this trend may continue in retirement? Just asking.
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:24 PM   #30
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We were worried about SORR when we retired. Accordingly, early on we were a little more careful with spending. Seven years in, the stash has grown considerably and we are older (fewer years of retirement to fund and closer to pensions and SS). So, we are much more likely to blow that dough.
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:28 PM   #31
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We did agree on $25k / year for pure discretionary a long while ago. But she knows that we are in much better shape than that because I tell her. We can spend $50k / year.
Sure, but there's ups and downs in your investments. You can say you can afford it now, but what happens if the market drops by 40% like it did in 2008?

The surplus funds I am collecting now in this Bull Market will help me sleep better knowing of the eventual Bear market to come.

But if I was forced to compromise with somebody else on spending, then I feel like a specific budget limit will lead to fewer surprises/arguments and better sleep.
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:36 PM   #32
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She's been awesome about clothes lately. She's only spent $272 so far this year on clothes. That's crazy awesome!
YOU just bit yourself in azz ;-)) I see a spending spree coming....

We're out on the Italian boat right now....
https://www.f-16.net/forum/viewtopic...4829&start=120
go to page 8, some great video at bottom !!!!

Don't miss this part of life at anymore, enjoys it !!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:39 PM   #33
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Sure, but there's ups and downs in your investments. You can say you can afford it now, but what happens if the market drops by 40% like it did in 2008?

The surplus funds I am collecting now in this Bull Market will help me sleep better knowing of the eventual Bear market to come.

But if I was forced to compromise with somebody else on spending, then I feel like a specific budget limit will lead to fewer surprises/arguments and better sleep.
Isn't that what 100% in firecalc means? That I can handle any 30 year sequence of returns that has happened in the last 115 years? As it sits right now, we can handle the worst ever and have $400k left over. 2008 was a cakewalk for new retirees compared to 1969.
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:55 PM   #34
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Our experience has been that very few of our upgrades and improvements ever increased a property's sale value, other than to make it a bit more sellable.

I think it depends on where one lives and when one decides to sell, which is hard to predict.

So, when it comes to improvements, I focus on personal enjoyment.

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This will not increase the value of the home by $35k.
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Old 03-16-2021, 01:57 PM   #35
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That design looks beautiful. I don’t see any lighting mentioned though. Is lighting included in the $35k?

As far as your actual question goes, of course you can afford it.
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Old 03-16-2021, 02:13 PM   #36
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You clearly can afford it and I would not do the labor yourself either. An injury will put a lot more of a damper on ER than spending the extra money.
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Old 03-16-2021, 02:14 PM   #37
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That design looks beautiful. I don’t see any lighting mentioned though. Is lighting included in the $35k?

As far as your actual question goes, of course you can afford it.
Full lighting including up lights for the front of the house are included.
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Old 03-16-2021, 02:30 PM   #38
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Plan looks great! Estimate looks great too for all that work. And you said you'll use it a lot.

So do it and enjoy it!
I agree. Plan is great. And there are a lot of plants and paver work there. $35k sounds like a good price.

Do it - you only live once.
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Old 03-16-2021, 02:53 PM   #39
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I agree that the plan is beautiful, but I agree with the others who struggle with the fact that you didn't see this coming.

FWIW, we plan our capital improvements way in advance and build them into our budget. We spend a fairly big amount every year but research the heck out if it in advance, including obtaining plans if necessary and getting 3 bids, checking references, etc. So the expenditure is in the budget, and we've sat on it and it has matured for many months.

We always both reach consensus on the expenditure. We then thoroughly enjoy each of these improvements.
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Old 03-16-2021, 02:54 PM   #40
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Just follow this maxim and all problems will disappear: Happy wife, happy life!
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