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View Poll Results: How much is too much to walk away from?
$100k/year 2 1.60%
$200k/year 10 8.00%
$400k/year 29 23.20%
$800k/year 18 14.40%
1.2M/year 7 5.60%
1.6M/year 2 1.60%
2M/year 10 8.00%
3M/year 0 0%
4M/year 4 3.20%
no amount is/would have been too large to keep me from my FIRE dream 43 34.40%
Voters: 125. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-24-2017, 02:03 PM   #61
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For years I received stock options from megacrop #2. They were always worth something by the time they were vested and exercised but some weren't worth very much at all. About 6 or 8 years before I retired, my company started issuing restricted stock instead if options.... Turned out much better.
The company I worked for more than doubled in value 3 of the first 5 years I worked there, and had high double digit returns the other 2 years. They switched to RSUs later too, which were better then since the stock was pretty flat, but in those high flying years, options were fantastic.
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Old 07-24-2017, 02:05 PM   #62
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I had three surgeries in my final year of work and that was enough for me. I'm done, enjoying my retirement and no amount of money could lure me back to my cubist period.
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Old 07-24-2017, 02:57 PM   #63
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I voted for $400k in the poll, but my real number is probably a bit higher. I think I'd go back for one year at $500k if a job offer like that magically fell into my lap.
I also voted $400K but it is probably higher than that. I thought about this before RE because there is a lot of motion in the VP ranks of my industry right now and jobs that I am perfectly qualified for have been posted. To go back full time I would need to see ~$500K/yr plus benefits, for up to two years. But I have not put my hat in the ring so maybe it is not a priority.

Two or 3 years from now there would be no amount.
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:04 PM   #64
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I saw it a couple times; A great point was made about the income relative to our existing NW. None of the options would be particularly enticing if our NW was 100 million (which sadly it is not).

This year's income will be about 8% of our NW after tax if it was all saved. That's quite a bit, however we are FI with what we have at our projected retirement spending rate (which we have calculated as much more than our current spending rate due to extra time off to spend).

So what's the problem then? Well there are a lot of unknowns over the next four decades, and who knows how our tastes might change. Perhaps a larger buffer is a good idea. And it just seems like so much money to walk away from.

Also one of life's greatest pleasures is giving to others. We give a lot of money and time to charity right now, but we could put ourselves in a position to use a large amount of money to make a substantial difference in many people's lives, something much grander than anything we have done before. It's hard to know where such endeavours might take us or what kind of money might be required.

On the other hand, life is short. We have so many things we love to do and want to do, and we are eager to have time as our own rather than tied to work.

It's not an easy call.

Thanks for all the replies. Some very insightful thoughts.
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Poll:How much is too much to walk away from?
Old 07-24-2017, 08:24 PM   #65
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Poll:How much is too much to walk away from?

Interesting thread and raises a question I evaluate often. As savings grow and pension value locks in, I've weight whether it'd be worth it for me to stay longer on active duty.

At 20, I lock in $53000/yr pension with COLA at ~CPI plus health care.

I could stay four more years, likely earn another promotion that would increase my pay by roughly 15%. The pension would increase by about 25% annual pay.

But those figures relative to our net worth at that point, and how long it'd take me to increase savings and replace that income is about the same if I get a decent job after... it's an easy decision. I can get any decent job for four years, continue saving, and have enough, rather than working and separating from family for four more years and having more than enough.

So I guess the question is, what is enough?
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Old 07-24-2017, 10:01 PM   #66
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I walked away from 40% of my salary to go part time and I'll walk away for the other 60% as soon as I'm comfortable that I can live the life I want in retirement. So, I'm not sure there is any amount I wouldn't walk away from. At some point, it's either that or work until you die.
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Old 07-24-2017, 10:23 PM   #67
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While there has been the occasional moment when I have thought to myself that "If had stayed for a bit longer we could have afforded X" those thought have been been quickly quashed by the knowledge that we I would have to sacrifice the much greater benefits of ER.

I've found that a small amount of consulting work is enjoyable but the money is something of an irrelevancy.
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Old 07-24-2017, 10:28 PM   #68
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When I resigned, my boss asked me to think about what it would take for me to stay another 6 months. He indicated working from home all the time and/or additional comp could be on the table. I decided I wouldn't have given my notice if I weren't comfortable that we had enough, and time together while we're in our 50's in good health was really important to DH & me. I graciously thanked him for the opportunity and declined. So far it's been a great decision.
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Old 07-25-2017, 12:08 AM   #69
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Ironically, they wouldn't have had to pay me a dime more to stay - all they would have had to do was not change my j*b. Once they did change it, I left immediately.

I suppose had they offered me a ton of money to stay I might have, but that would not have happened since megacorp was shedding w*rkers as fast as possible at the time. YMMV
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Old 07-25-2017, 12:35 AM   #70
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Haven't read the whole thread, but one way of seeing this is the OMY syndrome trigger-point. I was making on the low point of the responses (100-200k) before retiring--the salary was far more than I ever expected to earn, but I did keep going another 2.5 years after figuring we could FIRE.
I'm still working parttime online with my own hours and probably for another 3 years, but working another two years could have allowed me to avoid that.
But working 50-60 hours at high stress versus working 15 hours/week at about 35% made the parttime pay look really good. I like working 10-20 hours/week a lot and didn't like working 60 very much despite the pay but was willing to plug on for a while to increase quality of retirement and shorten DW's FIRE (she's considerably younger).

I think it's more of a question of quality of life/margin of error in the last few years before you finally pull the trigger, particularly if you have a high-end job. I'm lucky--I'm working more as a hobby and haven't had to pull anything from the 403b yet.
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Old 07-25-2017, 12:44 AM   #71
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Well, this is why I was never a good employee.

How much would I actually have to work if I went back?
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Old 07-25-2017, 05:06 AM   #72
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When I read the question my first thought was another way it could be rephrased - Can you be bought?

Cheers!
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Old 07-25-2017, 06:06 AM   #73
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I walked away from 40% of my salary to go part time and I'll walk away for the other 60% as soon as I'm comfortable that I can live the life I want in retirement. So, I'm not sure there is any amount I wouldn't walk away from. At some point, it's either that or work until you die.
This is a lot like my glide path to ER between 2001 and 2008. In 2001, I walked away from 40% of my after-tax salary to work part-time. The remaining 60% I walked away from in 2 steps. The first step was in 2007 when I made my second reduction in weekly hours worked, from 20 to 12, leaving me with about 1/3 of my original, full-time, after-tax pay. But 17 months after that, in late 2008, I could not stand working even 12 hours a week, as the 2-days-a-week commute was too much. I was able to walk away from that and have been happily retired since then.

Had I still been working full-time, besides being majorly depressed, I would be earning nearly $100k a year (before taxes) back in late 2008, and about 20% more today (assuming minimal raises). And my company stock would be worth more than 4x it was when I left (it grew by a factor of 30 in the 11 years it was around while I worked there). Yes, I walked away from a lot.
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Old 07-25-2017, 06:11 AM   #74
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I am not voting on this the way it is phrased. So many more things factor into the issue in addition to the money, although it is A factor. Age, health, stress, savings, security level, responsibilities, etc.
Word for word what I was thinking.
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Old 07-25-2017, 06:44 AM   #75
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I voted $2m a year, but it would have to be doing something I liked and only 40 hrs a week.
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Old 07-25-2017, 08:42 AM   #76
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While I didn't vote, in our best years we socked away over 180k in taxable after maxing out our 401k's -- so since we did retire it's gotta be at least 400+. However, megacorp was shedding workers and as expected the tall grass gets cut; that and we could see that they were starting to bring in the bigger BS trucks to dump on us and our buckets we're pretty full--- with us already FI, it was time
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Old 07-25-2017, 05:13 PM   #77
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Because you are still young I would probably keep working for awhile. If you were late 50's I would say go.
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Old 07-25-2017, 05:38 PM   #78
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When I read the question my first thought was another way it could be rephrased - Can you be bought?

Cheers!
Yes and no. And by that I mean sort of, but not really. That question sounds like the beginning of a moral dilemma for debate in an ethics seminar.

More accurate, IMO, might be to ask "How much is your time worth?"

We are lucky to ask ourselves such a question as many unemployed would be delighted to give their time for almost any sort of pay.
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Old 07-25-2017, 09:29 PM   #79
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We saw Alice Cooper, who is around 70, last year and he is still working but if I had a job where people applauded and involved adoring crowds night after night I probably wouldn't retire either for even $1 a year.

I don't have an answer for you on your poll because it would depend on the job. But you may find the link below of interest. It is a series of cartoons made by a woman who quit a high powered law firm to become a starving artist. The web site is blank now but the cartoons live on forever in the Internet Archives:

https://web.archive.org/web/20140808...rturememo.com/
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Old 07-25-2017, 10:52 PM   #80
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There is some logical inconsistency here. As I'm reading the results, 36% voted "no amount is/would have been too large to keep me from my FIRE dream." To this 36%, when are you going to/did you retire? If no amount is too large, why isn't/wasn't it one year sooner? Is it because if it's one year sooner you don't feel you have enough? And therefore lack of that amount would/actually did keep you from the dream?
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