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Old 08-21-2020, 06:33 PM   #41
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around here we just toss everything into a big bucket and when the tax man comes around we just pay the taxes and live off whats left...
so if I look at it a little harder it seems my SS check is used to pay the tax man and I have to add a bit more at the end of the year... so the IRS just seems to like my SS check better than I do.... at least somehow my taxes are getting paid... but it takes around $100K/yr to play as hard as we play....
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Old 08-21-2020, 06:33 PM   #42
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Im a newbee and just read and follow online. Question what is DW?
DW = Dear Wife
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Old 08-21-2020, 06:36 PM   #43
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Im a newbee and just read and follow online. Question what is DW?
Dear Wife
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Old 08-21-2020, 06:41 PM   #44
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Thanks to all for the thoughtful replies. I think we will wait until at least FRA for my DW and as far as Roth conversions go I am just not sure,It seems a good strategy might be to take the hit in taxes up to the 22 percent window each year until we run out of funds in our IRA's?
One note, I did a spreadsheet to show IRA conversions each year and projected a 6% return on remaining IRA balance, it took a while with the annual 6% top up to get it all converted. Might want to rain some numbers to see where it leaves you after 2025 and at the year you face RMDs.
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Old 08-21-2020, 06:48 PM   #45
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On the great Social Security question, I plan to split the difference and take it at 65. I will reevaluate when I get there.
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Old 08-21-2020, 07:52 PM   #46
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Me at 62, DW at 70.
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Old 08-21-2020, 07:57 PM   #47
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I did base the estimated pension amount on his reference to his tax bracket. If his pension is not that high, then it's even worse for his spouse.
I' sure what you did makes some sense but honestly I couldn't follow it. What I can see (and I consider a fatal flaw) is you took 8 years of "stashing" and subtracted it from the million. It's fine to ignore inflation (sort of) but you have provided no return on assets when the social security is taken early. That is you have compared the return that social security gives you for delaying to no return at all. Invest the early social security for a 4% return (after inflation; I've learned my lesson) and you get much different results.
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Old 08-21-2020, 10:34 PM   #48
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Thanks to all for the thoughtful replies. I think we will wait until at least FRA for my DW and as far as Roth conversions go I am just not sure,It seems a good strategy might be to take the hit in taxes up to the 22 percent window each year until we run out of funds in our IRA's?
I feel there is always value in leaving some money in the IRA, for the reason that late in life a person can have large medical expenses.

Once the expenses get large enough they generate a large deduction, which can be used to offset the taxes for taking a big chunk of money, example $20K out of the IRA, making that withdrawal tax free.

For that reason, I'd personally leave up to $250K in an IRA rather than drain it dry, unless I could drain it for no taxes or a low tax rate.
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Old 08-21-2020, 11:02 PM   #49
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Im a newbee and just read and follow online. Question what is DW?
Wife, as in Dear Wife.

Given that, you can probably figure out DH.

DS is ambiguous, because it could be spouse or son.

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Old 08-21-2020, 11:29 PM   #50
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I took mine at 62 but we had a few other reasons. My wife is only eligible to get half mine as she is short of the 40 quarters but she is also 5 years older than I am so was 67 when I turned 62. She receives half of my full pension as if I were her age. Weird but this is what we are getting. Given the political pressures constantly talking about getting rid of SSA benefits, means testing, or trimming, I felt it prudent to take what I could at the earliest time possible. With national debt exceeding $30 trillion and if interest rates go up at all the government cannot pay the interest let alone the debt on the massive debt which continues to grow. Only austerity is left as a tool unused by the government to try and reign in this insane spending. Austerity will begin with SSA and Medicare and it is only a matter of when not if as both political parties are saying similar things. The payroll tax rollback is a direct attack on both SSA and Medicare designed to force failure and early changes. I don't trust either party to keep the interests of the people in mind so I expect the worst. Working for the government for 40 years taught me that as well. I was very adept at forecasting doom and gloom in the military through dark times (post-Vietnam) and later when funding shifted towards buying expensive toys (F-35, etc.) and/or expensive personnel training programs (SOF). Left understated are the Veteran's benefits and programs which are woeful and extremely neglected yet are becoming massive problems with permanent disabilities, especially mental health which isn't cheap. All of that is woefully underfunded so more debt is coming. The same for the COVID-19 relief. The toll on the economy is still forthcoming and will affect benefits at some point. It has to.

Additionally, I spent part of my career working on a project in the early -70's looking at longevity of retired military and it is bad. Back then in 1972 the mean age of death was 47 for a military retiree. It has; of course, gone up since due to massive lifestyle and training changes but the military life still takes a huge toll on longevity. That actuarial program actually was the driving force behind the big changes in the military lifestyle but I already see many rolling back to the way it was before a sour operational tempo doesn't permit the luxury of nice easy training. Now soldiers have back to back combat tours and it is "normal" now to have 6 or more years of combat before retiring. I think each year of combat reduces your life expectancy by as much as 10 years depending on injuries and experiences. There is probably an upper limit t the damage but it is huge. We have never seen soldiers before with this many years of combat stress so it is a whole new ball game. But, even training itself takes a huge toll which is hard to estimate. Having spent my entire adult life in the military with several years in combat zones AND having been exposed to the data, I am fully aware of the statistical issues. I was also Special Forces for several years as well as being a helicopter pilot before becoming a microbiologist and my work with high consequence biothreat agents in ABSL-4 conditions sure doesn't help. On top of all of that no male in my family has lived past age 82 and my father and my grandfather on my father's side both died at age 76. On my mother's side they do a bit better but 82 is the max there. The women, on the other hand, often live to be 100 and my mother died this year at age 95. So, given our genetics and lifestyle paybacks you have to factor that in as well. The government runs these numbers and is pretty good at minimizing financial liability. This affects how they set up programs and is in part the driving force behind efforts to reduce benefits or change retirement age. So, given I have an arguably poor chance of living past age 76 and the program itself is always in constant jeopardy we decided to take it as soon as possible. You situation is different as is everyone's.

The other things which was very unexpected to me is our entire financial plan for retirement turned out to be amazingly wrong. We live entirely on our pensions and even then can't spend it all. We saved and have over $500k in cash sitting idle. We have $850k in various IRA's and equity accounts which my wife Day Trades with. She is earning roughly $90k a year just Day Trading and all of it is sitting in the accounts. Because we retired to Hungary which has excellent and cheap medical care our medical expenses are lower than what we would be paying for our Part B premiums which I declined so have lost my military retiree medical coverage which is useless overseas anyways. Hungary also has no property or death taxes. Our living expenses are more or less constant and under $3k a month including a full time employee. So, we could have waited and received more money but it isn't a real factor as it turned out. Things may change though and I am somewhat apprehensive that all of my pensions could disappear should the US go bankrupt and implement the Great Reset thus cancelling the entire debt by closing the Federal Reserve and it's 5 private banks making the debt magically go away except all those treasuries everyone bought will become valueless. It would be a disaster to the world's economy and explains why so many countries are stepping away from using American dollars. If they decide to do something like that then all other programs will be reset as well. Will it happen? I doubt it but I am fearful it might. Fearful enough to start moving all our cash into Swiss Franc accounts here in Europe.
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Old 08-21-2020, 11:35 PM   #51
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I would add having a Russian wife who went through the Reset in the Russian economy where all back accounts were depreciated by over 90% and the New Ruble implemented so everyone with savings lost everything. The US is looking very similar these days to Russia in 1992. So, that is more food for thought. COVID-19 is just accelerating the process.
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Old 08-22-2020, 04:04 AM   #52
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but I don't want to leave anything on the table.
I hear people say that a lot but why does it matter? At your last moments are you gonna be thinking “Man I should’ve taken Social Security earlier“. If your married, I would do what’s best for your wife.
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Old 08-22-2020, 04:09 AM   #53
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Wife, as in Dear Wife.

Given that, you can probably figure out DH.

DS is ambiguous, because it could be spouse or son.

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Old 08-22-2020, 06:11 AM   #54
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I hear people say that a lot but why does it matter? At your last moments are you gonna be thinking “Man I should’ve taken Social Security earlier“. If your married, I would do what’s best for your wife.
Note that at the title in that post (a field that most of us never fill in) he writes "Just to maximize inheritance for kids". That's a good reason to take SS early if you really don't think you'll make the breakeven point.
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Old 08-22-2020, 06:18 AM   #55
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I feel there is always value in leaving some money in the IRA, for the reason that late in life a person can have large medical expenses. ....
Also, after we turn 70 1/2 we'll do all of our charitable giving from the IRA... why pay tax to get it out to then just give some of it away when I can give it away from the IRA and avoid the tax.
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Old 08-22-2020, 06:34 AM   #56
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When I ran my SS calculations my break even was about 77. There are so many unkowns regarding my health, the world at that time and the ability for the government to make the payments. My experience with 80 family accounts I managed for several years was their spending was heavy just after retirement and slowed substantially in their mid seventies. Most folks had already traveled, renovated or down sized and really just wanted to enjoy time with family and friends. There is also the ability if you take SS now to leave your retirement funds to grow or in some cases recover. Converting to a ROTH will ward off the evil RMD. For myself I felt the income was more valuable to me now in my active years so I took SS at 62.
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Old 08-22-2020, 06:53 AM   #57
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When I ran my SS calculations my break even was about 77. There are so many unkowns regarding my health, the world at that time and the ability for the government to make the payments. My experience with 80 family accounts I managed for several years was their spending was heavy just after retirement and slowed substantially in their mid seventies. Most folks had already traveled, renovated or down sized and really just wanted to enjoy time with family and friends. There is also the ability if you take SS now to leave your retirement funds to grow or in some cases recover. Converting to a ROTH will ward off the evil RMD. For myself I felt the income was more valuable to me now in my active years so I took SS at 62.
This makes sense.
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Old 08-22-2020, 07:20 AM   #58
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I am taking mine when I turn 62. next year. I just want it.
Lot's of us do, even when we don't need it... After all, it's your money, you earned it, use it when you want.

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Just expressing my opinion. I have read countless posts with arguments both ways. Unless you know when you are going to die......so I just shared my opinion. I usually keep quiet on here but I don't appreciate your emoji.
I suspect there are is a good number of forum members that keep quiet on many topics, because it's counter to the tone of the specific thread. I learned a long time ago, just because it's the loudest voice(s) in the room doesn't mean it's right... From my perspective, if I'm interested in the topic, I'll read most of the posters comments, consider the "discussion" and make my own decisions. Sometimes I'll comment, sometimes not.


Thanks for posting your opinion.
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Old 08-22-2020, 07:26 AM   #59
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Between now and age 90, you will receive roughly the same amount of money whether you start collecting now or at age 68. Do you want slightly smaller checks from now on, or larger checks starting at age 68? We chose to start early so we can use the money while we're healthy enough to travel.
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Old 08-22-2020, 07:42 AM   #60
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Is there a DXW or DXH? (X = “ex”)
Are there any eX's that are "dear"? Just askin'.
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