Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

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ad2007
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by ad2007 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:29 pm

I know the feeling. Burned out, hated my job, had physical symptoms and was about to bail - but was too scared.

Never been a touchy feely person, so I'm surprises I fixed my problems by going soft. Read a few of those self help books. I learned to ignored the irritants (this was really hard to do at first) and started being nice to everyone at work (this got easy real quick), and voila I don't hate coming to work. I'm able to put up with all the BS without getting all wigged out. It's crazy...

I think most type A people battle with this: getting burned out because we perceive we are carry the load for all the deadwood. But that's rarely the case, and even if it were, your perspective on the matter makes a huge impact of how you feel about it. I no longer get ticked off by the slackers - I simply ignore them, or if I can't, I laugh it off, what's the opposite of LOL? chuckle?

Five years later, in the same job (actually making more) and loving it. And just to brag, I've reached my FI number. YetI'm still working. I actually enjoy my work, well...for the most part. It wouldn't be called work otherwise.

Good luck with your decision.

HongKonger
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by HongKonger » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:31 pm

mouses wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:56 pm
HongKonger wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:40 am
Pilots wives become neurotic and riddled with jealousy - it takes a very special female to not go that route.
Why on earth would that happen?
Use your imagination.

Ron
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Ron » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:26 pm

HongKonger wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:31 pm
mouses wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:56 pm
HongKonger wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:40 am
Pilots wives become neurotic and riddled with jealousy - it takes a very special female to not go that route.
Why on earth would that happen?
Use your imagination.
Sometimes the wife faces the situation that Sara Demerest did :wink: ...

- Ron

Tal-
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Tal- » Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:23 pm

No. I'm sorry, but in my opinion, you can't afford to do it.

If you were willing to spend less, sure. But those numbers simply aren't strong enough to justify that lifestyle, this early in life, with that little income.

Sorry for voting in the no camp :(
Debt is to personal finance as a knife is to cooking.

Yukon
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Yukon » Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:06 pm

fast_and_curious wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 11:09 pm

1) Spouse is on board so long as the finances work out (i.e. we don't end up broke in retirement and don't have to make huge lifestyle/spending adjustments). I think my general dissatisfaction with work is also sometimes noticeable at home, unfortunately, so my being more fulfilled is viewed as a good thing, I think.
Is she willing to consider working herself so finances work out? What does she consider to be a huge lifestyle/spending adjustment? Who's the spendthrift of the marriage? This doesn't feel like 100% support.....
Don't Work Forever.

umk
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by umk » Sun Mar 11, 2018 1:11 am

I am almost in the same position, working as a Software developer and doing work that I don't enjoy at all. I am in the same position for last 15 years, never promoted even once. (I stopped asking long ago after I tried 2-3 times). No merit raise for last 5 years (due to bad days in the industry). Last year, I had a fight with my then-manager which resulted in "Needs development" rating and cost me almost $25K bonus. Luckily, she has moved on to new project, and current manager is more humane.

I can retire today if I wanted to. I casually mentioned to my colleague once that 1% change in stock market moves my portfolio 10 times the raise I would get. But I anticipate getting around $400K additional pension money after 5 more years. My wife does not work, my work commute is only 20 minutes and they pay me reasonably well (for my needs), so I decided to suck it up 5 more years.

Nowadays, I am contributing to open source software. Also learning Ruby and Rails just for fun, although it has nothing to do with my work. I am working on a software project in stealth mode and hope to be ready in next 3-5 years. And here is how I keep myself motivated. On the calendar, I have put a countdown timer of work-days remaining. Every day morning, I look at it. (I have 183 days more to go this year :) .) At home, I have a plaque in the bathroom which I see everyday morning. It reads: "Old enough to know better, wise enough not to care". (I wanted to take it to office, but didn't want to take that risk.)

I would suggest that please try to find happiness in other things you can do, while keeping the job a few more years, if you can.

gotester2000
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by gotester2000 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 3:14 am

umk,

Watch out - you are competing to be in the layoff list!
Last edited by gotester2000 on Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Watty
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Watty » Sun Mar 11, 2018 5:54 am

I looked back through this thread and here are a few more comments.

1) Getting health insurance for four people will be a big issue, not only for the cost but also figuring out what will be available a few years from now.

2) A job that pays $35K a year might not have good if any benefits. Don't underestimate the value of your current work provided life and disability insurance. You may have very little vacation time too.

3) The job burnout seems to be as big an issue as the desire to fly. Professional counseling might help with the burnout issues and to help work though any issues as a couple they might have with a big change like this.

4) Trying to do something you love as a job is often much different can often make it unenjoyable. If you love driving becoming truck driver will not automatically be a fun job.

5) In a follow up post the OP mentioned that for him to become a pilot his wife would need to give up her side business. That would basically negate his income as a pilot at least at first.

6) I did not see any mention of any costs to get his certification as a commercial pilot. I'm not sure how that works but if he would need to pay for six months of additional training then that would also need to be budgeted for.

mouses
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by mouses » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:30 am

Ron wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:26 pm
HongKonger wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:31 pm
mouses wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:56 pm
HongKonger wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:40 am
Pilots wives become neurotic and riddled with jealousy - it takes a very special female to not go that route.
Why on earth would that happen?
Use your imagination.
Sometimes the wife faces the situation that Sara Demerest did :wink: ...

- Ron
The web turns up no information about a Sara Demerest. My imagination says HongKonger is making a generalization perhaps from one wife married to a scum bucket to all wives.

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ClevrChico
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by ClevrChico » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:52 am

Have you thought about switching up MegaTech for a MegaCorp? I think you'd find the environment much less likely prone to burnout. MegaCorp doesn't mean boring necessarily, and it wouldn't be CrazyTown like MegaTech can be. You'd probably give up RSU's, but still maintain a good salary.

Nowizard
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Nowizard » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:15 am

Classic conflict of one's view of personal values and responsibility, life balance and choice of self or others when the choice impacts others as well as self. It would seem that the issue is posed as either/or........continuing to be miserable while earning a nice income or taking a job you would probably love that requires a sizeable lifestyle change for you and your family. Is there a middle-ground somewhere? Is the 35K job the "only" change you could make that would resolve the misery, or is it a metaphor that reflects there are jobs that may pay a reasonable salary and provide much more satisfaction?

Tim

Ron
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Ron » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:20 am

mouses wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:30 am
<snip...> The web turns up no information about a Sara Demerest. My imagination says HongKonger is making a generalization perhaps from one wife married to a scum bucket to all wives.
Here's a clue; a character in the original Airport flick 8-) ...

- Ron

jane1
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by jane1 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:38 am

Go for it. Your expenses will come down when kids finish college. In the unlikely event that things go south, you have lots of options - side gig, go back to work, wife work, inheritance, reduce expense. There is also a chance that you will not be passionate about the 35K job after a couple of years and may want to try something else. You will be surprised how easy it is to adjust your expenses if you have been a saver all your life (which sounds like you are). One thing to watch out for - make sure to continue living your current lifestyle. It is very tempting to say xyz (we don't need this 5K vacation, or can't afford lavish gift, don't need to eat out very week, etc), but you should continue doing things you enjoy, you have the money to maintain your lifestyle.
We did something similar 10 years back. No regrets.

stevew7
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by stevew7 » Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:26 am

How many flight hours and what ratings do you have? In order to be considered for a regional airline, you need ATP minimums:

- Commercial Certificate
- 14 CFR 61.160 = 1500 hours with 500 cross country, 100 night, 75 instrument, and 25 multi

If you happen to have a part 135/charter operation nearby, the minimums are:

- 14 CFR 135.243 = 1200 hours with 500 cross country, 25 night

If you can work out flexible hours or go part time at your current job, a way to get your feet wet might be to try to find a charter pilot position (part 135). Since the regional airlines are starting to pay a livable wage, a lot of the entry level part 135 jobs requiring 1200 hours are having trouble filling their pilot positions.

If you don't have 1200 hours of total time, then the most straightforward way to build more time is to get your CFI in order to build hours so you can get there. That lifestyle will likely be an annual paycheck of even less than $35k (with health insurance unlikely), which probably is a no-go with your annual 135k of spending.

I'd also recommend reviewing a pilot site like https://www.airlinepilotforums.com/regional/ where you can find out about the lifestyle of a regional pilot. A regional airline will definitely have comparable health insurance, so that shouldn't be a concern. The pay has climbed a little bit, so the $35k is a floor, and first year pay will definitely be higher with almost all the regionals as almost all of them are paying first year bonuses.

Are you sure your family supports you being away from home for multiple days and are you onboard with living in hotels and the travelling required? Are you sure you can give up all holidays & most weekends as you will be at the bottom of the seniority "scheduling" ladder when you start? Do you live near a major airport where a regional airline has a hub/base? If not, you'll need to start & end each of your "shifts" by travelling to your base.

Even better would be if you are still in touch with any of your flight instructors. Chances are good at least one of them now flies for a regional airline and they can give you the scoop.

I think one of the reasons so many here have been flashing a caution flag at you is you are in a very high paying (top 5% of america) position with a relatively commensurate spending level, and giving that up including lowering your spending to drop to the bottom half of income levels is likely a one-way trip. As you probably have seen, a senior software engineer that steps away for even a few years is going to have trouble transitioning back (not impossible, but hard) as technology changes so quickly.

So if you can have the best of both worlds (ie, drop to part time or flexible hours), pick up a part 135 gig or flight instruct on the side, cut your expenses, and then see how it goes for a year or two. Once that time has passed and all signs are still green, then jump full forward to a regional career, that reduces the risk of leaving a high paying job for one that might not work out (either due to the lower income or required lifestyle change).

Good luck in your decisions!
fast_and_curious wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:17 pm
I have the opportunity to pursue a completely different career track that I am passionate about, and would really enjoy, but that would pay roughly $35k to start, probably moving up to ~$65k within 5-6 years. Maybe higher after that, but maybe not.
<snip>
Our annual spending is roughly $135k, not including income tax or savings.
<snip>
Of course, we could reduce our expenditures -- $135k certainly has some room for frugality. But then, unknown tuitions, etc....

nova1968
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by nova1968 » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:08 am

I have a friend who quit a 200K a year job in a prestigious law firm to become a Priest, he says he fulfilled and happy to be away from the self absorbed corporate world.

hyperpigment26
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by hyperpigment26 » Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:09 am

What about negotiating a part-time gig with MegaCorp so that the idiosyncrasies don't become so irritating? I know that a move like this is not welcomed well necessarily, but if you're thinking about quitting anyway you have nothing to really lose by asking. If that's not possible, then what about a lateral move in the company or a more cushy project within it? I don't know the exact details and whether this is a concern, but the upside is that your options continue to vest.

But if you really hate the whole thing, then no amount of manipulation will make that pain go away and life is too short to mess around. Take a baller vacation, think about it, and resign - keeping as many bridges intact as possible.

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F150HD
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by F150HD » Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:10 am

fast_and_curious wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:17 pm
Can I quit my current job that pays roughly $275k (that I hate), to pursue a career that I'm passionate about but pays only ~ $35k?
If it were going from 60k to 35k.....maybe. Or 275k to 150k maybe....

But 275k to 35k?

Just no way no how. You must've liked something about software/job before you began doing it.



You must be a very clever guy to make the kind of dough that you do. I gotta think you must have employment options that would likely be more satisfying, perhaps making less, but still plenty....

Sure, you deserve to be happy (enough.) But choose 85% less money to get there? I would not.



+100

cherijoh
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by cherijoh » Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:33 pm

fast_and_curious wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:17 pm
Hi Bogleheads,

Synopsis: Can I quit my current job that pays roughly $275k (that I hate), to pursue a career that I'm passionate about but pays only ~ $35k?

Age: 45 (both my spouse and myself), assume spouse not working.
Retirement Accounts (401k, tIRAs): $920k, roughly 65/35 stock/bond
Taxable Accounts: $1.75M, again roughly 65/35 stock/bond
529 Accounts: $175k
House: ~$600k, paid off. But I'm not really counting this, as we have no plans to move.

So total investable, non-529, assets of about 2.7M.

Most everything is in a 3 fund portfolio, with a few Vanguard active funds in my taxable account that I'm holding only to avoid capital gains taxes. I can provide fund breakdown if necessary, but I don't think it really matters.

Our annual spending is roughly $135k, not including income tax or savings.

My own analysis:
Initially we'd need to draw $100k + taxes (spending of $135k - new salary of $35k), from our roughly 2.7M; that's like a 3.7+% drawdown. Pretty risky at our ages. But, after a few years, assuming my salary goes up to ~ $65k as expected, the drawdown would be more like $70k which is only 2.6% of our initial 2.7M nest egg. Less risky, IMHO.
No, the individual breakdown of your funds doesn't matter, but the amount of capital gains does matter since you will need to liquidate more funds to pay the taxes on the sales. Since index funds are very tax efficient you could have considerable embedded capital gains.

Because of the huge salary difference between your current job and the proposed one, your finances look more like someone retiring ultra early who takes a part-time lower paying job to make ends meet. IMO you are vulnerable to sequence of return risk - especially with your current allocation of 65/35. Your best bet is to cut back on spending to bring your withdrawal rate down below 3%.

bdpb
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by bdpb » Tue Mar 13, 2018 10:16 pm

mouses wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:58 pm
bdpb wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:52 pm
fast_and_curious wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:17 pm
Synopsis: Can I quit my current job that pays roughly $275k (that I hate), to pursue a career that I'm passionate about but pays only ~ $35k?

One minor consideration I almost hate to mention is that as it stands now, I would eventually receive a mid-seven-figure inheritance. However, I don't want to count on this since (a) my parents are both in good health and I'm not trying to be morbid! and (b) they could end up spending all their money on anything from an internet scam to long-term-care facilities. But, knowing that there's a decent chance of a sizable inheritance also makes me think I can afford to take a bit more risk.
You might consider a discussion with your parents. Do they know how you feel? Would they be willing to set aside some of their assets for your retirement to let you pursue something else now?
Uggh. Someone in his forties who makes $275K a year should not be mooching off his parents who probably have decades to live yet and unknown expenses ahead of them.
Who wrote anything about mooching off his parents? The OP wrote that it's likely there will be a sizeable inheritance. Many parents have no plans to spend every dollar they have, many plan to leave an inheritance. It seems a simple child/parent conversation about his desires may solve his problem. Maybe they'll tell him to pound sand. The OP and parents would be the only relevant opinions about whether it's considered mooching.

It would be sad if one stayed in this same state for ten years and then received an inheritance that marginally raises one's standard of living.

Fxbat
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Fxbat » Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:33 am

My .02
If I was in your situation, I would work a few more years until I was FI.
And then go buy a little airplane that I could enjoy with my family in my retirement.

That being said, this is possibly on of the best times in aviation to become a pilot. The requirements are high and the supply is low. The cost to entry is so high most young people opt out for other careers.
Pay and benefits across the board are improving. It is realistic to start at the regional level 50/60k for the first few years. With just the ATP requirements.
I would be surprised if it takes you more than 2yrs to move on to a LLC or Legacy carrier. 2yrs at that level should get you to 100k+ and I would expect between 4/6 yrs to upgrade and you would be at 250k as soon as you get your 4th stripe. Add in a 16% defined contribution, pick up trips, soft pay etc. it would put you in the 300k+ range in @ 8yrs.
But hears the catch, it is a time limited career, 65 and your out. Medical issues,your out. Fail a check ride, have an incident or a sketchy training history guess what. Your out.
Add in the risk of legally scheduled circadian rhythm issues, airborne toxins and a sedimentary lifestyle.
The commitment is huge, training is demanding and maintaining a high level of proficiency requires a lot of personal dedication. Your going to have to commute or move. Very very few are lucky enough to live in base over the course of their entire career. Google “flight crew crash pads”.
The dirvorce rates are staggering, it will take a toll on your family. Your going to miss a lot your children’s events. Holidays are only for senior pilots and forget about having summer vacations or weekends off for a long time.
I don’t want to scare you off, but you need to know it’s not exactly what’s portrayed by popular opinion. It is a high stress and demanding career where mistakes can and do cost lives.
Yes you can make extremely good money. But as with all things there are always hidden fees.

cherijoh
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by cherijoh » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:30 am

fast_and_curious wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 11:09 pm
1) Spouse is on board so long as the finances work out (i.e. we don't end up broke in retirement and don't have to make huge lifestyle/spending adjustments). I think my general dissatisfaction with work is also sometimes noticeable at home, unfortunately, so my being more fulfilled is viewed as a good thing, I think.
The problem is that the best way to ensure you don't "end up broke in retirement" is to cut back your spending to a more reasonable level which would mean lifestyle/spending adjustments. Do you currently ever think "Can we afford this?" In your new reality, you and your family will need to think about that all the time or run the risk that minor lifestyle creep could torpedo your retirement. Have you wrapped your head around the fact that you may never save another dollar in your lifetime? Many retirees find it hard to adjust from accumulating to spending down their nest egg.

With those qualifications, it doesn't sound to me that your spouse whole-heartedly is on board with this move. I definitely think you should do a dry run to figure out how much you could comfortably trim the budget without running into resistance about the budget being too tight.

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8foot7
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by 8foot7 » Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:33 am

Can you? Sure. Should you? Not until you cut your spending by at least a third.

Nowizard
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Nowizard » Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:47 am

Nova: I have three friends, one who was a priest, two who were nuns, that are now more satisfied after leaving the priesthood and their orders as nuns. Your comment just struck me as reflecting how both pragmatic decision making and personality interact in major decisions. The opinions in another thread on liberal arts education is a fascinating discussion in terms of the expressed opinions by posters.

Tim

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mhadden1
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by mhadden1 » Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:33 am

Anecdotallly, I seldom hear people say, "So glad that I":

-- did not quit smoking when I was 22.

-- gave up those darn piano lessons at age 11.

-- sought out a mid-career change to 80% travel that allowed me to spend much less time with my family.

Ok, ok, I know - no need to keep piling on....
Oh I can't, can I? That's what they said to Thomas Edison, mighty inventor, Thomas Lindberg, mighty flyer,and Thomas Shefsky, mighty like a rose.

jimmo
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by jimmo » Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:04 am

Well, first off, you have way too much FU money to feel you need to stay in a job/career you don't like. You've bought yourself options. Through your hard work and diligent saving, you are in a great position to make significant changes to your work life. I don't know if becoming a pilot is "it", but spend some real time exploring new options. And you don't necessarily need to quit your job cold turkey to do so.

If there are ways to pump the brakes at work in the short-term, start there. Drop down to 3-4 days a week and take a voluntary pay cut (you can afford it!) or ask to take an unpaid leave of absence to reset on your career/life goals (you can tell them you want to take some time with family). During this time you can explore new paths or this new career you are considering. The worst that happens is they say 'no', and then you end up quitting anyway. And if you are valuable to the company, which it sounds like you are, they will work something out with you. Maybe that will be good enough, or maybe it will open you up to something new you are actually excited to do.

Take control. Explore your options. You have the financial stability to do so. All the naysayers want you to follow their path of conservatism. With your nest-egg, you're in an enviable position to really make some serious changes that improve your job satisfaction / life happiness. You only get one go at this thing, right?

I have less than half your nest-egg, but took a first step a few years ago of transferring from our Megacorp HQ to a smaller regional office closer to the rest of our family. Work/life balance was immediately better, less stress, and I have actually enjoy my work again. In time, I may jump ship entirely and try something completely new.

Also, regarding potential family inheritance, ignore it. Don't make plans around. Don't ask your parents about it. It's poor form. If you get it, it's a cherry on top.

Chuck
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by Chuck » Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:14 am

If you work for 20 years at $35K, that's $700K. If you work 2.5 years at $275K that's $700K. So if changing jobs now is economically feasible, so is working for 2.5 years more and completely retiring.

rgs92
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by rgs92 » Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:31 am

This type of question comes up often with software/IT jobs, mainly in the corporate / private sector world. I know, I was there, so I offer my sympathies.

You just *need* to put a shell around yourself and accept that it's an inevitable characteristic of systems work these days. You can't care too much or you will drive yourself crazy. The jobs and tasks are sometimes just plain impossible.
But somehow you muddle through.

Failure is an option.
People stay in the job for years or decades with constant failure (and an occasional bright spot). It's often the best you can hope for.
But it's a job. It's work. That's why they call it work.
It's a matter of managing your expectations to what's realistic and achievable.

The goal should to get through each day. There is nothing wrong with this. Your job is not your life.

Good luck and peace.

fast_and_curious
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Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by fast_and_curious » Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:04 pm

OP here. Thanks again for all the replies - as usual I am humbled by the experience on this forum and grateful for the thoughtful responses. I'm not replying to all of them but am definitely reading them all.
Fxbat wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:33 am
And then go buy a little airplane that I could enjoy with my family in my retirement.
Several posts mentioned this. FWIW, I already have a "little airplane" - that's one reason my expenses are so high! :wink: - and enjoy it tremendously.
Fxbat wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:33 am
I would be surprised if it takes you more than 2yrs to move on to a LLC or Legacy carrier. 2yrs at that level should get you to 100k+ and I would expect between 4/6 yrs to upgrade and you would be at 250k as soon as you get your 4th stripe. Add in a 16% defined contribution, pick up trips, soft pay etc. it would put you in the 300k+ range in @ 8yrs.
Yes, I only mentioned the regional airline base pay since that would be in the immediate future. Certainly the salaries you mention are possible but it's also possible that the historic pilot shortage could subside within a few years too, leaving long upgrade times and high minimum requirements for the majors... But yes, my post outlined the worst possible outcome financially.
Fxbat wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 12:33 am
The commitment is huge, training is demanding and maintaining a high level of proficiency requires a lot of personal dedication. Your going to have to commute or move. Very very few are lucky enough to live in base over the course of their entire career. Google “flight crew crash pads”.
Two regionals have a low-seniority base where I live, so that's where I would look initially. After several years of that, who knows - once kids are off to college, relocating was already on the table for us, so likely possible to remain a non-commuter except for those times of low seniority.
Yukon wrote:Is she willing to consider working herself so finances work out? What does she consider to be a huge lifestyle/spending adjustment? Who's the spendthrift of the marriage? This doesn't feel like 100% support.....
Actually I feel that she (my wife) is 100% supportive - like me, she just wants to make sure this would not lead us down a road to ruin, financially. We are on the same page there! As for spendthrift, see my first comment above. :wink:
rgs92 wrote: You just *need* to put a shell around yourself and accept that it's an inevitable characteristic of systems work these days. You can't care too much or you will drive yourself crazy. The jobs and tasks are sometimes just plain impossible.
But somehow you muddle through.

Failure is an option.
People stay in the job for years or decades with constant failure (and an occasional bright spot). It's often the best you can hope for.
But it's a job. It's work.
Yes, that's part of the problem - my burnout is leading me down that path to not caring very much, which is not how I like to work!
Chuck wrote: If you work for 20 years at $35K, that's $700K. If you work 2.5 years at $275K that's $700K. So if changing jobs now is economically feasible, so is working for 2.5 years more and completely retiring.
So, my initial plans were in fact to work another 2-5 years and then retire completely (age 50 or earlier). But, not to get political, as I see the ACA get weakened, the ability to get affordable health insurance for the next 15 years seems iffy. That's actually what got me thinking along the lines of - well, if I could retire completely in 2-5 years at my current high salary, why can't I switch jobs now to a lower paying one that provides insurance, and consider it more of a second career rather than a retirement...
bdpd wrote: Who wrote anything about mooching off his parents? The OP wrote that it's likely there will be a sizeable inheritance. Many parents have no plans to spend every dollar they have, many plan to leave an inheritance.
jimmo wrote: Also, regarding potential family inheritance, ignore it. Don't make plans around. Don't ask your parents about it. It's poor form. If you get it, it's a cherry on top.
Like I said, I almost didn't even mention potential inheritance. I have no plans to ask about it, and am not really planning on it (as I shouldn't). I guess my thought was that this whole "game" is based on risks - what happens if the market drops, what happens if I have poor sequence of returns right after I pull the trigger, etc. - and having a high probability (not certainty) of a sizable inheritance may or may not be worth considering as part of the overall equation; that's the only reason I mentioned it.
stevew7 wrote: How many flight hours and what ratings do you have? In order to be considered for a regional airline, you need ATP minimums:

- Commercial Certificate
- 14 CFR 61.160 = 1500 hours with 500 cross country, 100 night, 75 instrument, and 25 multi
I have ~ 2500 hours total, and exceed all the other requirements except for the 25 multi.

Summary:

Thanks again for all the responses. I think I will stick to my current plan of OMYing it, re-evaluating in another year or so, getting my 25 multi in the meantime... I'm not ready to make the jump today, but I do think in maybe a year or two, if I am still feeling the same, it might be time.

golfCaddy
Posts: 704
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2018 10:02 pm

Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by golfCaddy » Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:02 pm

The 4% SWR is for a tax free 30 year withdrawal. For a 50 year time frame, after taxes, and taking into account today's historically low bond yields, even 2.6% seems risky.

eacurtis
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 5:11 am

Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by eacurtis » Thu Mar 15, 2018 5:56 am

I'm in the boat (er, plane) right next to yours... IT for mega-corp, 45 years old, mid 100k base plus bonuses, burned out and have been for some time despite doing four different jobs. Only differences are that I'm living on 100k/year, no kids, and less savings (1mm in tax advantaged accounts and 100k in non-advantaged). House and rentals paid off. No debt.

I'm also a commercially rated pilot with 1700 hours and only missing 180 x/c time for ATP (I'm fixing that over the next 12 months).

I will be making the jump to regional in June 2019. Flying is where I'm happy. Put me in the air and all stress and worry goes away. So what if I have to work an extra 3 years to retire beyond what I'm currently planning... I'm a pilot doing what I love. Maybe instead of retiring at 55 I'll go to 65 if I love the job.

To prepare I've lowered expenses to match an 80k yearly income. I've been researching flying life on the airlinepilot.life forums. I've verified pay scales and bonuses for my top three regionals. I've set up contingency plans for cash flow in case things don't pan out (eg, medical or furlough issues) including alternative job options and CD ladders. I have a solid 5 year budget based on unionized pay scales and promo to captain 1 year later than suggested. I'm chatting with some regional pilots I personally know and seeking out others to understand the industry and job. I've attended ATOP to see what it's like flying the big iron (going again in May... Wanna join me?). And I'm getting buy-in from my spouse on all these plans.

For me it's quality of life and enjoyment. I'm done with the 7x24x365 pager life, high work load and stress, rat race to promote, no time off due to oncall, middle of the night failures, occasional 48 hour work days, etc. I loved my career for many years. It's time to move on to my passion and love my next career. And the money? Money is only a tool for me to use to allow me to reach my dreams. And my dreams are in the air looking out over the curvature of the earth at 36000 feet.

"I have slipped the surly bonds of earth, And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings; Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth. Of sun-split clouds, --and done a hundred things. You have not dreamed of..."
Last edited by eacurtis on Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

TJTrader620
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2015 5:05 pm

Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

Post by TJTrader620 » Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:12 am

ad2007 wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:29 pm
...Read a few of those self help books...
Do you recall what books you read?

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