when you reach"your number"

Discuss all general (i.e. non-personal) investing questions and issues, investing news, and theory.

if you reached your number early

Poll ended at Mon Feb 03, 2014 12:53 am

Keep working, keep savings ,I like my job
59
19%
Keep working till SS and/ or pension are secure
38
13%
Quit the next day
41
14%
Work less , part time or a better job(one you like )
126
42%
Stop savings. Or save less but keep.Working
16
5%
Other, please explain
23
8%
 
Total votes: 303

User avatar
sperry8
Posts: 1573
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 9:25 pm
Location: Miami FL

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by sperry8 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 9:00 am

Caduceus wrote:Spend a few years traveling.
That's what I did. I quit and have been traveling ever since. 6+ years and counting. Never looked back :happy ok, except for one day in early 2009 when I thought I may have to work again :oops:
Humbling BH contest results: 2017: #516 of 647 | 2016: #121 of 610 | 2015: #18 of 552 | 2014: #225 of 503 | 2013: #383 of 433 | 2012: #366 of 410 | 2011: #113 of 369 | 2010: #53 of 282

MWCA
Posts: 2819
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2007 4:21 pm
Location: A wonderful place

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by MWCA » Fri Jan 10, 2014 12:51 pm

We had a number. My wife still enjoyed her work so she kept at it. Worked out for us we had more money and she ended her career as she wanted.
We are all worms. But I believe that I am a glow-worm.

User avatar
Aptenodytes
Posts: 3751
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:39 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Aptenodytes » Fri Jan 10, 2014 12:59 pm

I answered "other" based on the title of the thread, because I don't have a "number."

I see in the expanded version of the question that you are referring to "estimated goal." I do have such a goal, but the purpose of estimating the goal is to engage in broad planning, not to set hair triggers.

It seems that the only logical answer, if you take the question literally, is "do nothing." When you move from being one penny under the goal to having that extra penny in hand, there can't be any logical consequence of earning that one penny. Any other answer is to fetishize a number that has enormous fuzziness.

User avatar
vitaflo
Posts: 976
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2011 3:02 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by vitaflo » Fri Jan 10, 2014 1:38 pm

Might be good to define "you're number". I know a lot of people that have a number...for one specific retirement age. Hitting that number 5 years early does not mean that's your number any longer as you have 5 extra years you'll be spending that money. Obviously "your number" at that point should be higher.

I made a spreadsheet with every year of my life in it, and a corresponding number for that year. Whenever my age, number for that year and retirement savings match, that's when I retire. I'll know I can afford retirement then, even if I retire early. My guess is most people do not have something like this.

The Wizard
Posts: 12154
Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 1:45 pm
Location: Reading, MA

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by The Wizard » Fri Jan 10, 2014 2:06 pm

Aptenodytes wrote:I answered "other" based on the title of the thread, because I don't have a "number."

I see in the expanded version of the question that you are referring to "estimated goal." I do have such a goal, but the purpose of estimating the goal is to engage in broad planning, not to set hair triggers...
Perhaps successive approximations would be a better concept to use then?
Back when I was younger, I looked forward to achieving a $1M balance in my 403(b) investments. While that's a nice round number, it was never My Number for retirement.
The fact is that the needed amount of money for retirement is LOWER the longer you postpone it. So if I had retired at 56, like I once planned to, I would have needed a larger (inflation adjusted) nest egg than I had when I actually retired at age 63.

So eventually, one's increasing nest egg, in conjunction with one's increasing age, crosses into the Feasibility Zone for retirement. But especially if one has a fair percentage of stocks, an additional 20% or more is a good idea.
Eventually one runs out of excuses for delaying longer and declares The Heck With It, I'm Good.
So there's really no hair trigger involvement at all...
Attempted new signature...

Matin
Posts: 47
Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2011 4:20 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Matin » Fri Jan 10, 2014 4:10 pm

I have a number in mind. The number has been in my mind for a couple of decades. I still have a ways to go to reach that number. Luckily, I have a job I like a lot. I've recently returned to college to study art. My wife and I have decided to do some more ambitious traveling. I answered that I would stop saving, save less, and keep working. However, the real answer is probably that I would continue to save and work until I don't want to work any more. A little more savings would not hurt anything.

john94549
Posts: 4638
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:50 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by john94549 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 8:40 pm

Old habits die hard. I always thought when we hit our number, I'd stop peeking at my balances and the wife would retire. Well, the number hit quite some time ago, I still peek, and my wife loves her job. But, then, she has a one-minute commute, assuming a very slow walk from the bedroom to the dining room (her office).

tpm871
Posts: 149
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 10:58 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by tpm871 » Sat Jan 11, 2014 3:44 am

I voted "other". I guess you could sum up my answer as "worry less".

I was approaching my number a few years back. I don't like changing jobs, and had been at the same job for quite a while. But being close to my number gave me the comfort level to venture out and try for a better opportunity. I got a job at a much better company (my top choice; the only one I interviewed with). No need to worry about the possibility of failure in being outside of my comfort zone, since I could always just retire early if things didn't go well. I hit my number a little over a year later, and I am still working there.

The other part of "worry less" is to realize that I don't need to take as much risk in investing. I still remember how stressful 2008 was for me in seeing the market go south (I stayed the course, and actually poured money into the market even at the bottom, but it was hard to live through). Now everytime I see a "100% in US Equities" thread here, I think back to those days. Being more diversified, even though it has its opportunity costs sometimes (e.g., 2013), allows me to not stress. Being beyond my number buys me that peace of mind.

I still save very aggressively -- over 50% of my gross compensation.

I probably track my number differently than most people -- I don't target a dollar value. Instead, I look to minimize "annual spending / total value of investments". My "number" for that was 2.3%. Ending 2013, I was beyond that goal, at a little above 1.3%.

But despite this, retiring early seems risky due to uncertainty about the future (e.g., health care costs). Continuing to work still seems less stressful at the moment.

User avatar
wander
Posts: 2501
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:10 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by wander » Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:34 am

I would change to a bigger number. For example: I use to think I need $2,000 a month in retirement, now $4,000 makes sense. I use to hope for a Honda, now I can afford a BMW. In general, to upgrade my life style. :D

marcos123
Posts: 137
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2011 10:35 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by marcos123 » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:45 am

kramer wrote:Even though it was probably not the wisest thing to do, I pretty much quit the next day (at age 41). I was miserable and burned out in my job and so I either had to quit or change jobs, soldiering on was not an option. In fact, my final 6 months were a real struggle and it was all I could do to even soldier on that long, but I forced myself to do it.

Now, almost 7 years later, I think I was taking more risk than I realized but everything has turned out fine, better than I could have hoped (financially and otherwise).

At the time, I planned to work part-time teaching English abroad but later decided I didn't want to do that and so I have not worked since retiring.
My situation is very much the same as kramer's. Quitting the next day and Early Retiring at 40 a decade ago. Competely burned out in a corporate job, I moved to press the button to pursue other life interests, and never looked back. In retrospect, I probably also underestimated some risk factors, but also underestimated the reward possibilities, both financial and otherwise, and came out ahead. I'm just grateful for a past decade of life adventures instead of one agonizing over a necessarily incomplete spreadsheet (and wondering what could have been). The hardest thing about the last ten years was definitely just summoning up the nerve on Day One to cut the cord.

User avatar
obgyn65
Posts: 770
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 9:11 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by obgyn65 » Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:20 am

Yes. My 2014 spreadsheet says I can withdraw $15,000-$20,000 more every year in retirement until age 95 when compared to last year's spreadsheet. Others may disagree but in my opinion $15k-$20k more per year until I die was worth the wait.

The problem is : when to stop? Easier said that done. I turn 49 this year.
wander wrote:I would change to a bigger number. For example: I use to think I need $2,000 a month in retirement, now $4,000 makes sense. I use to hope for a Honda, now I can afford a BMW. In general, to upgrade my life style. :D
"The two most important days in someone's life are the day that they are born and the day they discover why." -John Maxwell

Dave C.
Posts: 279
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:18 pm
Location: Mesa, AZ

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Dave C. » Sat Jan 11, 2014 5:59 pm

sans souliers wrote:Considering that investing for retirement is a 30 - 40 year endeavor, I guess you could say I quit the next day, although in reality it's been about a year since the number was reached. My last day arrives in about two months.

2 months and out for me also. I'm retiring at 62, actually a couple years past reaching my number. I timed my exit to my largest Lump Sum/pension annuity.....witch happens on my 62nd birthday. The funding of our pensions was halted 3 years ago. I don't understand why my "high-water" mark hits at 62, but it drops a bit yearly from that point on.

It's been a great job and I make lots on money....but I have reached my number. I am almost excited about what's ahead. Admittedly, we are savers, planners, and are as prepared as far as we can tell. So as of April 1st....I will try to figure out for myself what to do everyday....thank you very much. 8-)
Easy does it/Live & Let Live/One day at a time. Thanks Bill.

User avatar
6miths
Posts: 687
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 1:55 pm
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by 6miths » Sat Jan 11, 2014 6:11 pm

I put other. We hit our 'number' a few years ago. Kept working and saving not really because I liked my job in total but more that it seemed a bit early to retire and it was hard to reduce hours although I did do this to some degree. Now it seems reasonable to retire as changes at work have made it easier to go. I'll still be getting paid working in a different capacity but at a token amount.
'It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so!' Mark Twain

User avatar
sans souliers
Posts: 177
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2012 1:38 pm
Location: By the Quinnipiac

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by sans souliers » Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:06 pm

Once you've reached your number, it's enough. Let the next generation work on theirs.

Congratulations to the Class of 2014!

You've made it this far, now on to the victory lap and the winner's circle. Nicely done!
Sometimes pessimism leaves me pretty well prepared for when things don't go my way, and pleasantly surprised when they do.

twindad57
Posts: 123
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 3:30 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by twindad57 » Sat Jan 18, 2014 9:40 pm

Interesting topic. In our situation, we believe we need to make it to my minimum retirement age (MRA) of 57 even if we reach our number early. The main reason is healthcare. If I work for the federal government until my MRA then I have access to healthcare at essentially the same rates I would have as an employee. Of course, if healthcare costs drop significantly in the coming years our perspective may change.

Sagenick48
Posts: 338
Joined: Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:22 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Sagenick48 » Sun Jan 19, 2014 8:00 am

I reached my number at 55. Started to cut back hours at work and take Every Friday off. Then my spouse of 28 years went goofy (it is more complicated than that --- but) and I was divorced two years later. So I was only half way to my number and had to start over. My point is that you don't know what curve balls life will throw you and you shouldn't give up your ability to earn money or assume that your number is enough. Err on the side of caution, diversify, keep your options open.
The market goes up, the market goes down.

User avatar
ofcmetz
Posts: 2312
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Louisiana

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by ofcmetz » Sun Jan 19, 2014 8:23 am

For me, I would scale back on the overtime and save less. Going from 60 hour weeks to 40 hour weeks would probably feel like a semi retirement. Although, I'm much closer to hitting the pension eligibility than I am hitting our number.
Never underestimate the power of the force of low cost index funds.

sesq
Posts: 566
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:24 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by sesq » Sun Jan 19, 2014 9:05 am

techcrium wrote:it shouldn't be a discrete amount and discrete time.

IT should be like this:

You reach $300K networth...you worry less about job loss and things like that

You reach $500K networth...you worry less about promotions/salary increases and things like that

You reach $1mil networth...you worry less about having enough to retire. Spend more time on vacation; self actualization activities

You reach $2mil networth...You scale back your hours

etc
I like this and should live this way.

I think the trouble with this is as you hit the bigger numbers you will likely have progressed in your responsibility at work. Its hard to shed the yoke when the load is heavier. I am closing in on stage 3 (a bit past stage 2 in financial assets), my spreadsheets tell me I can stop saving and there will be plenty at retirement, but since I am well paid I keep pulling hard hoping to reach the finish line faster.

This kind of reminds me of a website my wife and I found where teenage girls would write up their fantasy grown-up life. One young gal wrote something along "its great that my husband is an executive, since he is the boss he can come home when he wants and has more time with the family."

KlangFool
Posts: 9937
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by KlangFool » Sun Jan 19, 2014 9:57 am

sesq wrote:
techcrium wrote:it shouldn't be a discrete amount and discrete time.

IT should be like this:

You reach $300K networth...you worry less about job loss and things like that

You reach $500K networth...you worry less about promotions/salary increases and things like that

You reach $1mil networth...you worry less about having enough to retire. Spend more time on vacation; self actualization activities

You reach $2mil networth...You scale back your hours

etc
I like this and should live this way.

I think the trouble with this is as you hit the bigger numbers you will likely have progressed in your responsibility at work. Its hard to shed the yoke when the load is heavier. I am closing in on stage 3 (a bit past stage 2 in financial assets), my spreadsheets tell me I can stop saving and there will be plenty at retirement, but since I am well paid I keep pulling hard hoping to reach the finish line faster.

This kind of reminds me of a website my wife and I found where teenage girls would write up their fantasy grown-up life. One young gal wrote something along "its great that my husband is an executive, since he is the boss he can come home when he wants and has more time with the family."
sesq,

<<I think the trouble with this is as you hit the bigger numbers you will likely have progressed in your responsibility at work.>>

I am not quite sure what you mean?? But, as a technical person in a big company, my exposure might be different. Basically, as I become more senior and secured, I work on more interesting technical stuff and stay away from more mundane technical stuff. Greater responsibility = yes. But, timeline to solve problem is getting longer and I do not get caught up with day to day chaos. As for workload, it is about the same since I can say no to stuff that I do not want to do. And, I want to spend more time with my family.

In my honest opinion, a person can CHOOSE to manage their work load. As for responsibility, my responsibility to my family is more important than any job. Especially when I no longer need the paycheck as much.

KlangFool

User avatar
SteveNet
Posts: 288
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:06 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by SteveNet » Sun Jan 19, 2014 10:32 am

Never had a "Number" just did the best I could and whatever the "Number" is...well it is.
A Number implies a "Goal" most people see reaching a Goal as some sort of Plateau or Peak.

When the offer came to retire @50 9 yrs ago I reviewed my then portfolio Number and retired. Since then My "Number has grown by 61%.
Looking back, I wouldn't have changed a thing. :sharebeer
Being frugal is hard to learn, but once learned is hard to stop.

User avatar
4nursebee
Posts: 1039
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2012 7:56 am
Location: US

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by 4nursebee » Sun Jan 19, 2014 11:30 am

No vote here, really not sure. Any of the answers are possible.
We are getting close and here is what I am doing.
Jan 30 meet with retirement folks at job and talk over actual quit date and run over many scenarios.
After tax season, sit with CPA to run over how things could work, listen to what he says.
Obamacare=10-15K per year for us, intimidating! Drugs =6K per year at retail.
We are working harder on paying down mortgage as this is the biggest fixed expense limiting retiring.
Stick with investment plans.
Chew over the cud a few times before making any decisions.
The better that investments do, the easier the decision will be.
4nursebee

The Wizard
Posts: 12154
Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 1:45 pm
Location: Reading, MA

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by The Wizard » Sun Jan 19, 2014 11:35 am

4nursebee wrote: ...The better that investments do, the easier the decision will be.
Yes, but how nervous are you that a downturn in those investments the year after you retire could derail your retirement?
Attempted new signature...

Silverado
Posts: 168
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 6:07 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Silverado » Sun Jan 19, 2014 11:38 am

I voted the work less / different, more enjoyable job. Though we don't have a specific number, that is still the choice I would do if I had one. Really like techcrium's break down, as that is how I really view things.

User avatar
4nursebee
Posts: 1039
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2012 7:56 am
Location: US

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by 4nursebee » Sun Jan 19, 2014 12:53 pm

I am 45 years old, have no nervousness about a downturn. I have enough to make a go of things now, just not Kiss my hiney kind of money
4nursebee

User avatar
goodenyou
Posts: 1320
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:57 pm
Location: Skating to Where the Puck is Going to Be..or on the golf course

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by goodenyou » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:26 pm

When I come close to my number, I will enter into "flex retirement". Work becomes much more pleasant when you know you don't have to do it and you can quit anytime. Having young children in your 40-50s is a game-changer. Because more people depend on me, it is harder to get "my number". If it were my wife and me only, I would be there by a long shot.

User avatar
Ged
Posts: 3576
Joined: Mon May 13, 2013 1:48 pm
Location: Roke

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Ged » Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:27 pm

I never had a fixed number in my mind, but in 2013 it became apparent I had enough to retire comfortably, so I was reducing risk in my investments over the latter part of the year.

I was pretty happy with my job and the people I was working with, and didn't plan to retire for a couple of years.

Then the job blew up. The people I worked with quit over some bad decisions by the CEO and moved en masse to a different company. I could have gone with them but it would have meant going back to commuting for a while at least instead of going into the office maybe once a month.

It's a 45 min drive in NJ traffic. So I retired instead.

We still get together for lunch once in a while. They still ask me if I'm bored yet. I do miss working with these guys. I think what I really need is to develop a social life in retirement as a replacement. It's time to get on with the rest of my life.

cme
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2009 4:32 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by cme » Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:49 pm

Since there is a high probability that I would hit my number early due to an asset bubble, I would likely continue working until I had reached the originally planned age. And extra funds wouldn't be the worst thing in the world - they could be donated or spent in myriad ways.

User avatar
FrugalInvestor
Posts: 4848
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:20 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by FrugalInvestor » Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:58 pm

Once I reached my number I continued working for a year or so while I got my affairs in order, built my (first) retirement home and accumulated a bit of a financial cushion. I then gave notice and retired just a few months later. Retirement has been as good or better than I ever expected and with the help of Bogleheads my wife and I feel financially secure.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

MP173
Posts: 1913
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:03 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by MP173 » Thu Jan 23, 2014 2:42 pm

Great discussion with outstanding input.

Age 58/57 and we have "probably" hit our number, but who knows? Obviously we have not quantified an exact number. It is easy, post March 2009 when the market was at intermediate lows to have this discussion. There are a number of factors in play for us:
1. Neither of us have pensions, only personal savings/qualified retirement plans.
2. Health insurance coverage is an issue. Now it is employer plan, who knows about in the future.
3. Overall health - so far it has been excellent for me, pretty good for my wife.
4. Enjoyment of the careers/jobs. I love mine, not so much for my wife.
5. The next market correction/downturn. How deep will it be?
6. Personal debts are gone so there is a level of freedom with that.
7. Grandchildren....the big issue! The first one is just 2 months out. That will probably effect my wife's decision more than me.
8. Transition plans...just what the heck will we do, other than #7 above? I enjoy my career probably as much as leisure time (great balance at this time), so why quit?

Great discussion, it made me think about these things.

Ed

vested1
Posts: 1549
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2012 4:20 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by vested1 » Thu Jan 23, 2014 4:41 pm

Reached my modest goal early last year and reset to another one. It only makes a secure future even more secure and creates options you never thought you'd have. Life is good.

Dave C.
Posts: 279
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:18 pm
Location: Mesa, AZ

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Dave C. » Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:58 pm

The Wizard wrote:
4nursebee wrote: ...The better that investments do, the easier the decision will be.
Yes, but how nervous are you that a downturn in those investments the year after you retire could derail your retirement?

The question "what if" is in all of our minds. We are a cautious group and have kept our eye on the ball our entire working lives. These questions help me focus:

1. Isn't a "downturn" always possible?
2. Must I have 5-times my number to be comfortable with retiring?
3. If my calculations say I am holding all the aces....why am I hesitant to call the game?

I believe it has a lot to do with the fact I have spent well over 40 years (3/4's of my life) accumulating for all the reasons we all have. Now going from "all ahead FULL" to "Stop and start spending it" takes some getting used to.

Someone earlier used the line....just do it! I've done my due diligence, so now it's time for me to call life's poker game. Remember, I already said I have four aces, a royal flush would beat me.....but I'll take that chance.

I'm pulling the plug April 1st.
Easy does it/Live & Let Live/One day at a time. Thanks Bill.

Johm221122
Posts: 5072
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 6:27 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Johm221122 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:27 am

Dave C. wrote:
The Wizard wrote:
4nursebee wrote: ...The better that investments do, the easier the decision will be.
Yes, but how nervous are you that a downturn in those investments the year after you retire could derail your retirement?

The question "what if" is in all of our minds. We are a cautious group and have kept our eye on the ball our entire working lives. These questions help me focus:

1. Isn't a "downturn" always possible?
2. Must I have 5-times my number to be comfortable with retiring?
3. If my calculations say I am holding all the aces....why am I hesitant to call the game?

I believe it has a lot to do with the fact I have spent well over 40 years (3/4's of my life) accumulating for all the reasons we all have. Now going from "all ahead FULL" to "Stop and start spending it" takes some getting used to.

Someone earlier used the line....just do it! I've done my due diligence, so now it's time for me to call life's poker game. Remember, I already said I have four aces, a royal flush would beat me.....but I'll take that chance.

I'm pulling the plug April 1st.
Congratulations :sharebeer
John

Wricha
Posts: 308
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:33 am

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by Wricha » Fri Jan 24, 2014 3:30 am

For me it was in phases:
Phase one (around 40) get out of debt.
Phase two I bought my first bunch of muni bonds (30 year) dividend $2,400/yr I thought Wow, my electric bill is paid for the next 30 years. So I paid down my expense through muni bonds. My perspective of financial independence.
Phase three "the number" became a series of round numbers changing each time I hit them. I probably could have gotten out 6 or 7 years ago (looking back).
Phase four I am self employed so it will be a very short board when I get out this year.
When you are employed (W-2) I think one is more likely to have a definitive get out date after hitting number.
Self employed/business owner less likely to have definitive date probably because others are more dependent on ones decision or a bigger ego (it can't run without me).

ikubak
Posts: 22
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 12:00 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by ikubak » Sat Jan 25, 2014 8:09 am

I reached my number about a year ago. I changed jobs with my employer to do something less stressful and am plugging along (14 months to go) for some pension money. Coworkers thought I was crazy for taking a 50% pay cut for less stress. Don't know what they will think when I retire next year at 52.

downshiftme
Posts: 1039
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2007 6:11 pm

Re: when you reach"your number"

Post by downshiftme » Sat Jan 25, 2014 11:07 am

I didn't answer the poll, because I have several numbers. Ultimately, I plan to retire when my youngest child is safely graduated from college. I was given the gift of a debt-free college education and I intend to give that to my children as well. So that gives me a date to plan retirement around.

On the other hand, I know if I reach $1 Million in investments, I can use SWR calculations to project how much I have to spend based on that portfolio. Which turns out to be just about enough that with a little belt tightening, I could live without working.

But there's a slightly higher number that would let me live off the portfolio at more or less my current lifestyle and no belt tightening.

And there's still another higher number that allows me to live my current lifestyle, plus a few things (travel and hobby) that I'm curious about and interested in trying, but probably never would if it put my basic retirement in jeopardy.

And there are lots more even higher numbers that could allow more generous support for programs and ideas I believe in, more exotic adventures I would like to try, and maybe even some frivolous spending just for fun.

I've hit that lowest "number" that could allow a frugal retirement. And on bad work days, I think about it. But so far I've simply stayed working and living my pretty good life as it is, while continuing to save for the next higher number. I expect I'll get very slightly above the basic no-belt-tightening number by the time I'm 60 and kids are graduated, so that's likely when I'll retire. But so far reaching a number hasn't been the key that makes me take action. In the very unlikely even that some windfall pushed me unexpectedly to a much higher number, my plan might change. But in general I plan to do nothing special at all upon reaching any of these numbers.

Post Reply