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View Poll Results: What Pre-Retirement Salary Do You Live On?
100% + 17 17.53%
90%-99% 6 6.19%
80%-89% 6 6.19%
70%-79% 9 9.28%
60%-69% 13 13.40%
50%-59% 12 12.37%
Under 50% 34 35.05%
Voters: 97. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-30-2008, 02:53 AM   #21
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we will spend about 20% less because health insurance is almost 25% -30% of our total fixed expenses
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Old 05-30-2008, 05:13 AM   #22
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Easily under 50%. But I'm a COB.
Retired 3/31/2007@52
Investing style: Full time wuss.
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Old 05-30-2008, 06:17 AM   #23
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I am also RE but waiting for DW to retire in 19 months with full medical coverage. Expect to cut expenses by 10% but maybe we will take the cats on a vacation or two. As our financial planner says, when our you ever going to spend something, if never your income will just keep increasing. Nice problem to have.
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Old 05-30-2008, 07:08 AM   #24
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I've been retired a year so I'll give you an answer based upon my expenses, not income.

They are about 105% of my expenses at this time last year. These are due to:

- Increased vehicle costs. Before retirement, we had 3 vehicles (between my wife/me). Now we have four (won't go into the reasons).

- Upgraded from basic TV cable service to satallite, with additional services. We're on our second HDTV over the last 5 years, but our cable company still could not get us HD service. I really don't watch that much TV (in retirement) but I just got "fed up" with the cable service, which increased my cost. No, I don't have any preimum channels, but my basic subscription cost increased, albit with a great increase in service.

- Of course, fuel costs increased. Even though I drive much less these days (volunteer work 2x week) the cost increased. BTW, just returned from the Netherlands this month, where the price (converted from liters/euro) came out to slightly more than $9/gal.

- Monthly electric bill has gone up slightly ($25/mo) due to my being home and having more "stuff" on during the day. My pups did not use the computer during the day - however I do ....

- Medical insurance (I get it from my former employeer) increased by $4 (2x$2) this year. Ok, I'm lucky (this year) however it was an increase over last year.

- Spent a bit more on the homestead, since now I have time to apply more weed killer, plant a garden, etc. Nothing of note, but it all adds up.

- Travel remains the same. Did a Danube cruise last fall, did our Benelux trip earlier this month, off for a west coast trip in October (we're on the east coast), and are doing the planning for Australia next June. Believe it or not, these are just "normal expenses". Unlike many others, we've been traveling (international/US) the last 12+ years, so this is just a "fixed cost " for us. My wife (not me - did too much when I wor*ed) has a "passion" for travel and says we need to do it while we (physically) can.

For those who forecast that they will spend less, the only comment I have to say is plan on 100% of your current expense payout (if you are still employed). If you find you don't spend as much, you will be much better off. However, if you decide to retire (or RE) and then find out that you can't live the life you planned (due to lack of $$$) you will be quite disappointed in your "life". We've been a bit "consertative" in our planning, and luckly this has been in our favor.

- Ron
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Old 05-30-2008, 09:55 AM   #25
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I am not yet retired, but as I approach retirement (about a year), I am saving as much as possible towards it. I max out my 457 and make regular payroll savings. When retired, these "expenses" will go away. In addition I pay toward a retirement pension (government job), and this will also disappear in retirement. Essentially, I am already living on only 66% of my current level of income, and obviously, my tax rate will come down in retirement. The need to plan for a high percentage of income in retirement seems to be directly related to BOTH your spending and savings rate immediately before retirement.
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Old 05-30-2008, 10:32 AM   #26
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How do we count kids?

I'm currently looking for a new job, but based on my current situation my total current spending rate is roughly 60% of my annual income. As my kids grow up and my kid related and mortgage interest expenses drop off, I calculate that I could live on about 15% of my annual income. (Yes, my kids, mortgage interest and taxes on my pre-retirement income represent approximately 75% of my current spending level.)

"At times the world can seem an unfriendly and sinister place, but believe us when we say there is much more good in it than bad. All you have to do is look hard enough, and what might seem to be a series of unfortunate events, may in fact be the first steps of a journey." Violet Baudelaire.
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:54 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by rs0460a View Post

...the only comment I have to say is plan on 100% of your current expense payout (if you are still employed). If you find you don't spend as much, you will be much better off. However, if you decide to retire (or RE) and then find out that you can't live the life you planned (due to lack of $$$) you will be quite disappointed in your "life". We've been a bit "consertative" in our planning, and luckly this has been in our favor.

- Ron
That's sort of my plan, to use the top of the monthly expense range (rather than the average) and add a rounded up insurance premium (from $522 to $600). I still feel insecure. Do I dare jump in September?
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Old 05-30-2008, 04:23 PM   #28
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I selected 90%-99%, but that is a bit misleading. I ERd a few years ago (ok, I was fired) but I have a couple of DB plans as well as ample IRA $ but DW was still working for the local school district. Our goal was to not tap into any retirement money and just live on the net school teacher pay. We did pretty well for a couple of years of living on her net pay and did not have to tap our retirement savings/pensions.

This happened to be a good test of our LBYM limits so we knew that we could live at that rather low level and be ok. DW retired in July and one of my DB plans is now paying off as well as her DB plan from the school district.

Our current income totals are just about what they were prior to her retirement and I have yet to activate most of my retirement benefits.

So we are living on less than 100% of what we were taking home for the last 3-4 years.
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