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Old 10-21-2020, 10:31 AM   #21
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I just retired on May 1 and had several colleagues ask me the same question. In mega-Corp our pension is a simple equation based on age, salary and years in the corporation.

Simple math with what I knew at the time says an additional six months would have added an additional $500/month to my pension.

But here’s the thing. I was in a high stress position, working long hours, overweight and in general not living a healthy lifestyle. I figure every day I continued to work was ultimately shortening my life span.

Pulled the plug, retired on May 1 and am on the path towards recovery the fitness I had as a younger man and trimming down to a reasonable weight. Hopefully these changes adds back years to my life so will be drawing a pension for a very long time.

And a post script, right after I retired mega-Corp handed out 10% pay reductions to all execs and managers, increased employee contribution to health care and employee pension contributions. A whole bunch of my cohorts retired on that news. My take home salary if I kept working would have gone down by $2k a month with these reductions and not have increased my pension after all.
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Old 10-21-2020, 11:50 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by pacergal View Post
OP--How often are you dealing with these soul draining topics?

What does Firecalc say about your finances/budget?
If you are good to go now, your time may be more valuable.
42 is fairly young, but many here on this forum have done it successfully.
The topics aren't necessarily soul draining. Its more conversations and actions related to mega-corp's politics that I don't care for. Just don't have the energy or interest to suck up and put on a happy face for another rung up the ladder. I'd say 4 of 5 days per week I end the day feeling annoyed at how I spent my time.

Firecalc gives 100% using the "vanilla" default settings. 42 is young - which is amazing! But it's also the very peak of my earning potential. I think comparing each 6 month period with the # of good years left is going to help my perspective here.
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Old 10-21-2020, 12:08 PM   #23
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OP can make some reasonable guesses as to the value of the vesting stock and then divide that over six months to see what it adds to the hourly rate, then decide if the hourly rate feels worth it. Maybe it would.

Or to make it feel less significant, take the value of the vesting stock and divide by 300 (Rule of 25 times 12 months per year) to see if that increase in monthly income for the rest of one's life is worth it. Probably not worth it looking at it this way.

...

Another thing to look at is your language - both written here and in your head. I see sort of three states that people end up in:

1. Questioning state. This is where OP is now. Is it worth it? Should I stay or should I go? These people end up eventually in one of the other two states below. After a re-read of the OP, it seems like they're leaning towards state #2, but more info would be needed.

2. Want to retire state. People will write things like "I'm pretty sure I have enough. If things turn south, I could turn on my pension or SS. Or get a job. Or cut expenses. We could figure it out. The job now pretty much blows."

3. Not ready to retire state. People will write things like "What if the market drops? What if the ACA gets overturned? What if I'm bored? I really don't mind my job that much."

Sometimes I think it is simple as paying attention to the language one uses to figure out what the right decision for that person is.

...

Final suggestion: When you do decide to leave, I'd recommend throwing away any paperwork and calculations regarding any unvested stock or options that you left on the table. Once you make it to that point in your career, there will always be money left on the table, and I think doing those calculations after you leave can just lead to largely pointless second guessing and regret. I know I left money on the table but I can't tell you how much, and that's made it easier for me to be happy with where I'm at.
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Old 10-21-2020, 02:53 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by second_act_at_42 View Post
The topics aren't necessarily soul draining. Its more conversations and actions related to mega-corp's politics that I don't care for. Just don't have the energy or interest to suck up and put on a happy face for another rung up the ladder. I'd say 4 of 5 days per week I end the day feeling annoyed at how I spent my time.

Firecalc gives 100% using the "vanilla" default settings. 42 is young - which is amazing! But it's also the very peak of my earning potential. I think comparing each 6 month period with the # of good years left is going to help my perspective here.
Be wary of using a time horizon in firecalc that is too long as well. If I remember correctly 30-35 years is required in order to include some lower performing periods in the more recent past.
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Old 10-21-2020, 02:58 PM   #25
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Be wary of using a time horizon in firecalc that is too long as well. If I remember correctly 30-35 years is required in order to include some lower performing periods in the more recent past.
Probably the worst starting year that could be included/excluded by time horizon would be 1973, which is well over 40 years ago now.

2000 or 2009 could conceivably be bad as well, but for a 42 year old looking at a 20 or 11 year timeframe is obviously too short.
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Old 10-21-2020, 03:04 PM   #26
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Updating the timeline in Firecalc to 30 yrs also yields 100% - just with different low-mean-max ending scenario(s).
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Old 10-21-2020, 03:23 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post

Or to make it feel less significant, take the value of the vesting stock and divide by 300 (Rule of 25 times 12 months per year) to see if that increase in monthly income for the rest of one's life is worth it. Probably not worth it looking at it this way.

...

Another thing to look at is your language - both written here and in your head. I see sort of three states that people end up in:

1. Questioning state. This is where OP is now. Is it worth it? Should I stay or should I go? These people end up eventually in one of the other two states below. After a re-read of the OP, it seems like they're leaning towards state #2, but more info would be needed.

2. Want to retire state. People will write things like "I'm pretty sure I have enough. If things turn south, I could turn on my pension or SS. Or get a job. Or cut expenses. We could figure it out. The job now pretty much blows."

3. Not ready to retire state. People will write things like "What if the market drops? What if the ACA gets overturned? What if I'm bored? I really don't mind my job that much."

Sometimes I think it is simple as paying attention to the language one uses to figure out what the right decision for that person is.
Great suggestion on $$/300 - that's good to keep in mind. There are also other considerations such as vacation home/rental or other non-market investments / purchases that we'd be able to forward above and beyond FI targets.

Your points about language are really helpful as well. Good to keep in mind. From your description - I do feel closer to the "ready to retire" mentality but am definitely questioning many things at the moment. I'm sure I'll look back on this and other replies in the coming weeks and months as DW and I make some decisions. Cheers.
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Old 10-21-2020, 03:28 PM   #28
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I often read about the concern of leaving money on the table. I was more concerned with leaving life on the table. Focus on projected healthy years that are left for sure but never forget there are no guarantees of having any year left. I was grateful I had something many of the forever working high net worth people never have - enough!
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Old 10-21-2020, 05:22 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by enjoyinglife102 View Post
I often read about the concern of leaving money on the table. I was more concerned with leaving life on the table. Focus on projected healthy years that are left for sure but never forget there are no guarantees of having any year left. I was grateful I had something many of the forever working high net worth people never have - enough!
+1 This January my sister in law had passed away at 52. She was healthy and worked for the Stanford, planned to retire at 55 but we never know what is around the corner.
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Old 10-21-2020, 05:26 PM   #30
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+1 This January my sister in law had passed away at 52. She was healthy and worked for the Stanford, planned to retire at 55 but we never know what is around the corner.
Exactly!
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Old 10-21-2020, 05:28 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by enjoyinglife102 View Post
I often read about the concern of leaving money on the table. I was more concerned with leaving life on the table. Focus on projected healthy years that are left for sure but never forget there are no guarantees of having any year left. I was grateful I had something many of the forever working high net worth people never have - enough!
+1

"Nothing lasts forever but the earth and sky
It slips away
And all your money won't another minute buy"

- - Kansas, Dust in the Wind

Or, another way of saying the same thing:
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Old 10-21-2020, 05:59 PM   #32
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When I joined this forum in 2012 and presented my numbers, the general feedback I received was that I was FI and could retire. Among my factors for working longer - which, as has been mentioned, are purely personal and do not apply to everyone - were the following:


- Though others said I was FI, I did not want to make assumptions that it would be smooth sailing and decided to keep working to build an additional buffer, I set a number for that buffer and was able to achieve that.


- Megacorp was laying off groups of people several times a year, seemingly at random. Though I knew my job was in good standing, I did not make assumptions. My thought was that if Megacorp did lay me off after 2012, that was fine with we, and i was mentally prepared for that. It did not happen.

- My job was not a burden to me, and still very enjoyable. Some aspect of job stress declined. For example, Even though we "officially" had to be in the office every day, I had wise management who let it be known that as long as we were meeting our objectives and could be reached in a timely matter, they would not be wasting their time tracking when we were in or out of the office. I still came in about 3 times a week. It was good prep for when our office closed and I began officially working from home for about 3 years before I retired.

- Also for work, I was able to implement my our personal "glide path" for my last 2 years at work, that saw me still meet my objectives but start transferring work and responsibility to others (and allowing others to get the associated "glory"), which also eased work stress.

- Though my pension was "frozen" based on salary, it still grew based on time, The growth curve of the pension flattened at age 60 and maxed out at 65. At 60 the pension reached a nice "target" number and I felt working for further growth beyond that was not worth it.

- I wanted to get some major, hopefully one time expenses out of the way and pay for them with my paycheck. Things like new roof, new driveway, renovated bathrooms, final tuition payments for youngest child, etc.

- I was not just thinking about myself, but DW, so wanted to make sure what I had would also mean she would not have to work in the event of me dying first. It was a balance, as she was afraid of me not enjoying what I had accumulated and leaving her too rich a widow.

In theory I could have retired at 54, but everything has lined up by 58 and my "glide path" took me to 60. I do not consider those 6 years "lost", as I was very much able to control much of my Megacorp workload for myself and my team, in ways that are still benefiting me now. Did I think about the value of time vs money? Yes, almost every day. I had one health scare during that time that turned out to be minor, and that factored in as well. But again, it is an individual decision on when one decides time is more valuable than money.
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Old 10-21-2020, 08:02 PM   #33
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Updating the timeline in Firecalc to 30 yrs also yields 100% - just with different low-mean-max ending scenario(s).
Have you tried running Firecalc where you calculate what annual spend gives you a 100% success rate? This can be really helpful. Traditionally you put in an annual spend, like $100K and ask Firecalc to tell you the percentage of success/failures. So it may tell you that at $100K/year you are at 100% success.

But if you run the calculation in reverse you may find that you could really spend up to $150K at 100% success. This helps give you perspective on how much cushion you have if you want to ratchet up your lifestyle and still be comfortable with having enough to live on.

My 100% number was three times what we typically spend each year. When I saw how much cushion we had I knew it was time, and that unless I wanted to triple my spending I was just working to have a bigger pot to leave to our beneficiaries when we are gone.
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Old 10-21-2020, 09:09 PM   #34
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My spouse and I are FI. I'm planning to retire in March, using these last few months to accumulate extra cash cushion from my salary plus bonus & stock to be paid in early 2021.

One of my dearest friends has stage 4 cancer, recently spread to a new organ. What is 6 months worth to her? Every second with her family and friends is priceless.

It's a difficult balance between securing extra security for you and your heirs and running up the score too high and running out of time with them.
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Old 10-21-2020, 10:51 PM   #35
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I was ready to go. But...I waited another 8-10 months for a package to come.

It meant pushing me over the magic age 55 mark which allowed full pension at 62, earlier for a 3 point reduction. Plus some benefits. But just under two years of salary and bonus plus two additional years towards my pension number was the real kicker. It was well worth the wait for me.

If it had been a straight six months and out with no package or little impact on pension I would not have worked an extra six months. But this is easy to say now, looking in the rear view mirror and realizing how valuable retirement time in good health really is
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Old 10-21-2020, 11:06 PM   #36
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I often read about the concern of leaving money on the table. I was more concerned with leaving life on the table.
This is me. So I don't have an equation for you.

But this pandemic is not much past 6 months and it has certainly felt "long" to most of us.

Slightly off topic but that feeling that I would rather not work forever is why I may retire the poorest person on this forum. But you know mom died at 56. So did grandma. . . .
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Old 10-22-2020, 05:37 AM   #37
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I am no where close to FI but I down-shifted 3 years ago to a job that offers me more free time with about 15% pay cut. The point is: only you can decide how much your time is worth to you. I have always believed in "time>money" equation. To me time is priceless.
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Old 10-22-2020, 06:25 AM   #38
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It comes down to more love for money or time. Six months more isn't a very long time to commit for the value you are going to receive in benefits.

I would not even consider 6 month more of pile on if I was miserable at work, if I already was FI.

I also beleive age is a huge factor in this decision.
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Old 10-22-2020, 07:43 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post
OP can make some reasonable guesses as to the value of the vesting stock and then divide that over six months to see what it adds to the hourly rate, then decide if the hourly rate feels worth it. Maybe it would.

Or to make it feel less significant, take the value of the vesting stock and divide by 300 (Rule of 25 times 12 months per year) to see if that increase in monthly income for the rest of one's life is worth it. Probably not worth it looking at it this way.

...

Another thing to look at is your language - both written here and in your head. I see sort of three states that people end up in:

1. Questioning state. This is where OP is now. Is it worth it? Should I stay or should I go? These people end up eventually in one of the other two states below. After a re-read of the OP, it seems like they're leaning towards state #2, but more info would be needed.

2. Want to retire state. People will write things like "I'm pretty sure I have enough. If things turn south, I could turn on my pension or SS. Or get a job. Or cut expenses. We could figure it out. The job now pretty much blows."

3. Not ready to retire state. People will write things like "What if the market drops? What if the ACA gets overturned? What if I'm bored? I really don't mind my job that much."

Sometimes I think it is simple as paying attention to the language one uses to figure out what the right decision for that person is.

...

Final suggestion: When you do decide to leave, I'd recommend throwing away any paperwork and calculations regarding any unvested stock or options that you left on the table. Once you make it to that point in your career, there will always be money left on the table, and I think doing those calculations after you leave can just lead to largely pointless second guessing and regret. I know I left money on the table but I can't tell you how much, and that's made it easier for me to be happy with where I'm at.

SecondCor521, your post would be a useful stand-alone string, perhaps with a friendly amendment requesting common post-FIRE states. After four months and a change of seasons from summer to winter, I’m moving past Sheer Bliss & Relief into some state of, “OK, what’s next?”
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Old 10-22-2020, 04:39 PM   #40
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I often read about the concern of leaving money on the table. I was more concerned with leaving life on the table. Focus on projected healthy years that are left for sure but never forget there are no guarantees of having any year left. I was grateful I had something many of the forever working high net worth people never have - enough!
Thanks for this! Such a good perspective to keep in mind. Really enjoying this community.
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