Originally Posted by Mack44
I am new to the forum and I am looking for advice. I am a 46 year old Police officer with a pension plan. I am eligible to retire after 20 years of service at 50% of my salary. My pension plan includes a 3% compounded COLA for life. I estimate my 1st year pension payment to be around $33,000. I have 15 years in and would to retire as soon as possible. I have the option of using one year of my accrued sick time to effectively stop working after 19 years. I would receive a weekly paycheck using my sick time for the 20th year. I also have the option of working the 20th year and receiving a lump sum of the accrued sick time which I estimate to be $66,000. I also receive family health care until age 65 with a Medicare supplement after that. I am leaning to retiring after 19 years as I will be 50 years old and I have had enough. I believe that I will have enough in my 457 plan to supplement my pension and enjoy the same standard of living without all of the headaches. With a 50% pension with a compounded COLA, I only need to replace about 30% of my pay as I no longer will have to pay SS, pension contributions, healthcare co-shares or union dues. I realize that I may be leaving 66,000 before taxes on the table and could defer about $35,000 using the 457 catch up provision to add to my retirement portfolio. In summary, I would like to hear some thoughts if it is worth it to leave a year early or would I be better taking my accrued sick time in a lump sum after my 20th year. Any advice or thoughts are appreciated.
You're not mentioning expenses. Got everything paid for? House, cars, etc. What's your expectation for expenses in retirement? If you have kids, are they fully launched in life, or are there college or other expenses for them? Just do the math.
(It was really hard for me to stay on once I had the idea I could retire in my head. I told myself "if i have just three bad days in a row
" .... well, it didn't take but six months for that
to happen. Still, I managed to make it 30 years, but I started young. Fortunately I had been reading ER Forum & a few other things for several years which helped get me ready.)