Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

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Topic Author
Aena1
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Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:44 pm

Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

Long time reader - first time posting.

I am in the unfortunate position of being laid off from a tech job. I was making decent money but am finding it difficult to land a new job even though it has been 3 months. Severance will last for a few more weeks, but am feeling disillusioned by the no responses and ghosting from recruiters. Wife works with around 50K per year salary - no benefits job. I am 53, wife is 48

We have around 4MM net worth not including primary home and cars. No debt, but still on the hook for kids college which might total to 400K all said and done in about 8 years. They will Take some loans but want to pay what we can and feel 10% of our net worth is reasonable

Questions

Is the tech market so bad even with 3% unemployment? Is it age discrimination or something else ? Can I retire now or do I need to do gig jobs ?
Last edited by Aena1 on Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
chassis
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Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:28 pm

Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advice

Post by chassis »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:55 pm Long time reader - first time posting.

I am in the unfortunate position of being laid off from a tech job. I was making decent money but am finding it difficult to land a new job even though it has been 3 months. Severance will last for a few more weeks, but am feeling disillusioned by the no responses and ghosting from recruiters. Wife works with around 50K per year salary - no benefits job. I am 53, wife is 48

We have around 4MM net worth not including primary home and cars. No debt, but still on the hook for kids college which might total to 400K all said and done in about 8 years. They will Take some loans but want to pay what we can and feel 10% of our net worth is reasonable

Questions

Is the tech market so bad even with 3% unemployment? Is it age discrimination or something else ? Can I retire now or do I need to do gig jobs ?
It takes 12 months or more to replace a high income.

Ageism is real.

Keep up the search. Work at it as your job four hours per day. Enjoy the rest of the day(s)!
Topic Author
Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advice

Post by Aena1 »

chassis wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:47 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:55 pm Long time reader - first time posting.

I am in the unfortunate position of being laid off from a tech job. I was making decent money but am finding it difficult to land a new job even though it has been 3 months. Severance will last for a few more weeks, but am feeling disillusioned by the no responses and ghosting from recruiters. Wife works with around 50K per year salary - no benefits job. I am 53, wife is 48

We have around 4MM net worth not including primary home and cars. No debt, but still on the hook for kids college which might total to 400K all said and done in about 8 years. They will Take some loans but want to pay what we can and feel 10% of our net worth is reasonable

Questions

Is the tech market so bad even with 3% unemployment? Is it age discrimination or something else ? Can I retire now or do I need to do gig jobs ?
It takes 12 months or more to replace a high income.

Ageism is real.

Keep up the search. Work at it as your job four hours per day. Enjoy the rest of the day(s)!
That’s the thing. I have all the time to enjoy my favorite pastimes but feel guilty and don’t feel I can enjoy.

Also feel guilty of thinking about early retirement, but am getting a feeling I might not have a choice. I am open to lower paying junior level jobs but get the feeling that companies feel I won’t stick around and therefore would not
Want to hire me

Am I giving up too early ? If not, am I in a ok position with around 120K of annual expenses ? I have about 65% of my net worth in retirement accounts so will not be able to use that till age 59
lazynovice
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by lazynovice »

Is the $120,000 including taxes and healthcare?

Does the $4 million net worth include the house?
delamer
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advice

Post by delamer »

With your wife earning $50K and a net worth of $3.6 million after college expenses, you’ll be OK without paid work.

If you were my spouse and I was working while you enjoyed your favorite pastimes at age 53, I wouldn’t be happy. So I can see why you feel guilty.
One thing that humbles me deeply is to see that human genius has its limits while human stupidity does not. - Alexandre Dumas, fils
Topic Author
Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

lazynovice wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:00 pm Is the $120,000 including taxes and healthcare?

Does the $4 million net worth include the house?
Not including taxes, but taxes come into play only with income. Not planning to use my retirement accounts so don’t anticipate much taxes
The 120K does include healthcare as I anticipate ACA subsidies to kick in
Tom_T
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Tom_T »

It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
realclemsongrad
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by realclemsongrad »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:55 pm Long time reader - first time posting.

I am in the unfortunate position of being laid off from a tech job. I was making decent money but am finding it difficult to land a new job even though it has been 3 months. Severance will last for a few more weeks, but am feeling disillusioned by the no responses and ghosting from recruiters. Wife works with around 50K per year salary - no benefits job. I am 53, wife is 48

We have around 4MM net worth not including primary home and cars. No debt, but still on the hook for kids college which might total to 400K all said and done in about 8 years. They will Take some loans but want to pay what we can and feel 10% of our net worth is reasonable

Questions

Is the tech market so bad even with 3% unemployment? Is it age discrimination or something else ? Can I retire now or do I need to do gig jobs ?
Sorry to hear about your struggle. I have been there and I know how it feels. Discrimination against older workers in tech is real. I felt past 50 it gets harder. Perhaps we should plan to retire by then :)
Topic Author
Aena1
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Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:44 pm

Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

Tom_T wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:06 pm It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
simas
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by simas »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:55 pm
Questions

Is the tech market so bad even with 3% unemployment? Is it age discrimination or something else ? Can I retire now or do I need to do gig jobs ?
depends on the salary level you are looking for.
as for whether you can retire
- what are you expenses?
- out of 4 million , how much is liquid net worth (not real estate, etc)

if your expenses are under 4% of 3.6 million (4 million - 400k college expenses) , you are good.
backpacker61
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by backpacker61 »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:55 pm I am in the unfortunate position of being laid off from a tech job. I was making decent money but am finding it difficult to land a new job even though it has been 3 months. Severance will last for a few more weeks, but am feeling disillusioned by the no responses and ghosting from recruiters.
While you can probably retire, I wouldn't give up.

It took me 18 months to find another position when I was out of work during the global financial crisis.
I've been continuously employed again (since 2010), so I'm glad I persisted at it, though it was quite discouraging at the time.

The work since then has allowed me to add meaningfully to my retirement savings, for which I'm thankful.
“Now shall I walk or shall I ride? | 'Ride,' Pleasure said; | 'Walk,' Joy replied.” | | ― W.H. Davies
MDivision
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by MDivision »

Losing your job could be unfortunate, or it could be the best thing to happen to you. Get your head in the game and look at the whole field, all options for your family.

And Yes you can get at your retirement accounts before age 59.5.
chassis
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by chassis »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:19 pm
Tom_T wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:06 pm It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
4% rule says you are good to go.
madbrain
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Location: San Jose, California

Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by madbrain »

I planned to retire at 50 due to known ageism in tech. I only have a $2.45M investment portfolio, and the same $120k expenses as you do.
In 2022 I was unemployed a full year. It took that long to find a job, and it was very depressing. Currently 47 and on disability, and may never work again.

With your portfolio size, you are more than set for life. I would not waste my time with a job search if I were in your shoes.
kenai
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by kenai »

While I think you’re good for early retirement I don’t think you are mentally ready. So I’d suggest you keep looking for a job content in knowing you can survive without a paycheck for a long while even indefinitely.
Topic Author
Aena1
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Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2024 4:44 pm

Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

chassis wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:22 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:19 pm
Tom_T wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:06 pm It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
4% rule says you are good to go.
Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
pm5987
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by pm5987 »

What does your heart (or subconscious) want to do?

It sounds like your conscious & logical mind thinks it should be ok, and would like to retire?
Is there any guilt associated with retiring while your spouse is working?
Topic Author
Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

pm5987 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:47 pm What does your heart (or subconscious) want to do?

It sounds like your conscious & logical mind thinks it should be ok, and would like to retire?
Is there any guilt associated with retiring while your spouse is working?
Yes, plus the fear of falling short. Markets have gone up so much that there might be only 3-4% average growth this decade ( from what my friend told me ). Social security cannot be trusted as well.
Maybe I can overcome my guilt, but Is my fear without basis ?
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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:46 pm Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
I think the point might be that if you spend $120,000 and wife brings in $50,000 of that, you have a $70,000 year shortfall of income.

If you were to pull $70,000 a year from your $4 million that's a withdrawal rate of just 1.75% per year. You're well below the 4% rule and basically you'd be drawing mostly dividends, not principal so your portfolio would survive for longer than 30 years.

That being said you want to pull 10% out for college for kiddos. So that leaves 1.6 million.

Looking at it that way, $70,000 / $1.6 mil = 4.375% withdrawal rate.

That could be cutting it close, but I guess it's assumed you could bring in some income so your withdrawals would be lower, or you could fund less of college, etc.

Sounds like you could get a job paying $70,000 a year at least to fill in the shortfall right? Then you don't have to draw any assets down and can meet expenses. The only downside is taking a huge paycut.
It's hard to accept the truth when the lies were exactly what you wanted to hear. Investing is simple, but not easy. Buy, hold & rebalance low cost index funds & manage taxable events. Asking Portfolio Questions | Wiki
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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:51 pm
pm5987 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:47 pm What does your heart (or subconscious) want to do?

It sounds like your conscious & logical mind thinks it should be ok, and would like to retire?
Is there any guilt associated with retiring while your spouse is working?
Yes, plus the fear of falling short. Markets have gone up so much that there might be only 3-4% average growth this decade ( from what my friend told me ). Social security cannot be trusted as well.
Maybe I can overcome my guilt, but Is my fear without basis ?
there are experts who say 10 year future returns could well be lower because when we start with higher valuations it means lower future returns. When we go into a recession and stocks tank, it means higher future expected returns. So yeah, you could temper expectations and is the 3%-4% nominal or Real returns? Makes a difference.

saying social security cannot be trusted is silly. We can't discuss stuff like that and even if there are changes, they likely won't affect you because you don't have time to make up for any such changes. Most likely that system would have changes affecting younger people (higher retirement age, contribution amount, etc, means testing or some other ideas). No sense in catastophizing over something that may not happen.
It's hard to accept the truth when the lies were exactly what you wanted to hear. Investing is simple, but not easy. Buy, hold & rebalance low cost index funds & manage taxable events. Asking Portfolio Questions | Wiki
Topic Author
Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

arcticpineapplecorp. wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:57 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:46 pm Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
I think the point might be that if you spend $120,000 and wife brings in $50,000 of that, you have a $70,000 year shortfall of income.

If you were to pull $70,000 a year from your $4 million that's a withdrawal rate of just 1.75% per year. You're well below the 4% rule and basically you'd be drawing mostly dividends, not principal so your portfolio would survive for longer than 30 years.

That being said you want to pull 10% out for college for kiddos. So that leaves 1.6 million.

Looking at it that way, $70,000 / $1.6 mil = 4.375% withdrawal rate.

That could be cutting it close, but I guess it's assumed you could bring in some income so your withdrawals would be lower, or you could fund less of college, etc.

Sounds like you could get a job paying $70,000 a year at least to fill in the shortfall right? Then you don't have to draw any assets down and can meet expenses. The only downside is taking a huge paycut.

How did you get to 1.6 M ? 10% from 4M leaves 3.6M, I think. Don’t stress me out more than I already am 🙂
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Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

arcticpineapplecorp. wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:01 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:51 pm
pm5987 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:47 pm What does your heart (or subconscious) want to do?

It sounds like your conscious & logical mind thinks it should be ok, and would like to retire?
Is there any guilt associated with retiring while your spouse is working?
Yes, plus the fear of falling short. Markets have gone up so much that there might be only 3-4% average growth this decade ( from what my friend told me ). Social security cannot be trusted as well.
Maybe I can overcome my guilt, but Is my fear without basis ?
there are experts who say 10 year future returns could well be lower because when we start with higher valuations it means lower future returns. When we go into a recession and stocks tank, it means higher future expected returns. So yeah, you could temper expectations and is the 3%-4% nominal or Real returns? Makes a difference.

saying social security cannot be trusted is silly. We can't discuss stuff like that and even if there are changes, they likely won't affect you because you don't have time to make up for any such changes. Most likely that system would have changes affecting younger people (higher retirement age, contribution amount, etc, means testing or some other ideas). No sense in catastophizing over something that may not happen.
Ok, that puts my mind at ease somewhat
madbrain
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by madbrain »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:02 pm How did you get to 1.6 M ? 10% from 4M leaves 3.6M, I think. Don’t stress me out more than I already am 🙂
With $120k spending and your spouse not working, that's still only a 3.33% withdrawal rate.
Firecalc gives 100% odds for a 40 years retirement, and 96% for 50 years.
You are good to go, IMO. Both of you can FIRE now.
frugalor
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by frugalor »

Looks like you spend less than 4% of your investment portfolio, you have a good probability of successful early retirement -- especially if your social security benefits are close to the max.

Frugality is a skill. You can improve that skill to lower your expenses. That will increase your early retirement success rate.

On the other hand, you can always hone your tech skills to be ready to get a higher paying tech job. A year or two ago I saw on blind that someone in their 50's (I think 56) landed a job at google making a lot more money than his previous job.

I am also a laid-off tech worker, a software engineer. I know I need to leetcode and study design systems to get through the next interview -- but they are so boring lol. I am still trying but not totally desperate. Before the big tech layoffs, I would get interviews after resume submission, but I haven't heard anything back in these past couple months. To be honest, I don't know if I could pass these hard interviews at this point, lol.

You have 4 million, that's a lot. You are in good shape regardless. Hope your wife is ok with you not making the big bucks for a little while. Focus on health first. Then choose to hone your tech skills or just discover new things to do. Best of luck!
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by madbrain »

frugalor wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:09 pm Before the big tech layoffs, I would get interviews after resume submission, but I haven't heard anything back in these past couple months. To be honest, I don't know if I could pass these hard interviews at this point, lol.
Also SWE here. I used to get a lot of interviews. The problem was passing them. Now, the job market has slowed down considerably vs what it was a couple years ago. My Linkedin gets only about 1-2 solicitations a week, and they are usually contract jobs with no or terrible benefits, and much lower pay than in the past. This is not a good time to be looking for a job. I did pass the interview and ended up working at two FAANGS, one long before the term had been coined.
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SB1234
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by SB1234 »

Hello OP,
Healthcare will be a challenge but will be manageable with ACA . And college could be a big chunk of expense as well. Having said that, You most likely will be fine if you decide to hang up.
But do you really want to? If you haven't been planning for it, retirement can become a drag quickly.
I would say keep trying to land another job, it may not happen in the same exact field but could be close enough. Some tech adjacent fields like medical tech are more age friendly and pay well but maybe not as much as traditional tech. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
superstition: belief that market will one day come around to your concept of fair value
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ichee_marone
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by ichee_marone »

Strong cash position can allow you to minimize your taxable income and get subsidized ACA health coverage.
Topic Author
Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

SB1234 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:33 pm Hello OP,
Healthcare will be a challenge but will be manageable with ACA . And college could be a big chunk of expense as well. Having said that, You most likely will be fine if you decide to hang up.
But do you really want to? If you haven't been planning for it, retirement can become a drag quickly.
I would say keep trying to land another job, it may not happen in the same exact field but could be close enough. Some tech adjacent fields like medical tech are more age friendly and pay well but maybe not as much as traditional tech. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

No I don’t want to - would like to work till my late 50s or early 60s if I can. I was thinking that with my decent NW, I have the luxury to be choosy and can be employed on lesser stressful jobs - but now that 3 months have gone by, I am not sure I have that luxury.
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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:02 pm
arcticpineapplecorp. wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:57 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:46 pm Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
I think the point might be that if you spend $120,000 and wife brings in $50,000 of that, you have a $70,000 year shortfall of income.

If you were to pull $70,000 a year from your $4 million that's a withdrawal rate of just 1.75% per year. You're well below the 4% rule and basically you'd be drawing mostly dividends, not principal so your portfolio would survive for longer than 30 years.

That being said you want to pull 10% out for college for kiddos. So that leaves 1.6 million.

Looking at it that way, $70,000 / $1.6 mil = 4.375% withdrawal rate.

That could be cutting it close, but I guess it's assumed you could bring in some income so your withdrawals would be lower, or you could fund less of college, etc.

Sounds like you could get a job paying $70,000 a year at least to fill in the shortfall right? Then you don't have to draw any assets down and can meet expenses. The only downside is taking a huge paycut.

How did you get to 1.6 M ? 10% from 4M leaves 3.6M, I think. Don’t stress me out more than I already am 🙂
yep, totally botched that. no excuse, just tired i guess.

sorry. So $70,000 / $3.6 mil is 1.9% withdrawal, so you're still good.

nothing to fret about.
It's hard to accept the truth when the lies were exactly what you wanted to hear. Investing is simple, but not easy. Buy, hold & rebalance low cost index funds & manage taxable events. Asking Portfolio Questions | Wiki
chassis
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Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:28 pm

Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by chassis »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:46 pm
chassis wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:22 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:19 pm
Tom_T wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:06 pm It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
4% rule says you are good to go.
Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
The answer is in the eye of the beholder. Some would answer yes to your question. Those would be people on this site who are afraid to retire when they have 50x expenses at age 70, excluding $3m in real estate, pension and Social Security.
rich126
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by rich126 »

Depending on where you live you can always check into government jobs. Pay is often less but hours are better, vacation is very good and if it is a fed job you might be able to qualify for health insurance in retirement. Maybe it has changed now but generally young people were leaving government jobs due to low pay so they were desperate (at least at some agencies) for tech workers.
----------------------------- | If you think something is important and it doesn't involve the health of someone, think again. Life goes too fast, enjoy it and be nice.
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Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

rich126 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 8:40 pm Depending on where you live you can always check into government jobs. Pay is often less but hours are better, vacation is very good and if it is a fed job you might be able to qualify for health insurance in retirement. Maybe it has changed now but generally young people were leaving government jobs due to low pay so they were desperate (at least at some agencies) for tech workers.
Tried applying to a couple and the competition is fierce on those as well it seems. Word seems to have gotten out that these are stable , decent paying jobs with great benefits 🙂
Topic Author
Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

chassis wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 8:37 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:46 pm
chassis wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:22 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:19 pm
Tom_T wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:06 pm It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
4% rule says you are good to go.
Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
The answer is in the eye of the beholder. Some would answer yes to your question. Those would be people on this site who are afraid to retire when they have 50x expenses at age 70, excluding $3m in real estate, pension and Social Security.
That’s a good one 😀
KlangFool
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advice

Post by KlangFool »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:53 pm
I have about 65% of my net worth in retirement accounts so will not be able to use that till age 59
Aena1,

This statement is false.

Please check out the following URL.

https://www.madfientist.com/how-to-acce ... nds-early/

KlangFool
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by KlangFool »

OP,

1) When was the last time that you were job hunting?

2) Do you update your LinkedIn profile to be as complete as your resume?

3) People hire people. At your level, the best way to find a job is through your social network/contact.

4) 3 months is not a long time to find a new job. I have been unemployed for more than 1 year a few times.

KlangFool
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LCX2000
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by LCX2000 »

I am one of those who feels I will never have enough saved, though the rational side of me, and everything from online calculators to our FA says we have plenty. So keep that in mind. At 120K of expenses, I would try networking to find something else. Can you consult? When you're older, people are willing to hire consultants, if not employees, and sometimes those jobs turn into full-time work.

Whatever the case, I would work up different scenarios on what your ACA expense and income taxes will be. If your wife is still working and you have any investment income on your brokerage account, you are going to have some income tax to pay. And there will also be some expense for ACA. Once you get a better handle on that, then run your numbers through something like FireCalc. Go to SS, create an account and find out what your payouts are projected to be at different ages. Plug those numbers into FireCalc.

I'd also make sure you know what your wife feels you should do, if you haven't already. You don't want to throw in the towel on job search and she grows unhappy when she's the only one working.

Good luck!
Boglecurious
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Boglecurious »

How old are your kids? We've got two graduating in May (twins) and one already graduated and I can say from experience that it's not just the tuition/room/board you'll need to pay for. Kids are expensive until they are earning on their own.

Can your wife get a job with benefits? At 48, depending on her field, she may be able to. As a 65-year-old woman, still working at a job with benefits, I can say that my family depends on them. And though I am not in your field I have definitely experienced ageism in the workplace. But in the last four years I've interviewed for and landed several jobs! Try looking at universities, which have good benefits and can also come with tuition benefits, something I have also contributed to my family's situation.

Best of luck!
Olemiss540
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Olemiss540 »

You will find the right fit eventually. You have plenty of money to do whatever you want. Relax.
I hold index funds because I do not overestimate my ability to pick stocks OR stock pickers.
madbrain
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by madbrain »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:19 pm High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
It's really hard for me to imagine a scenario where you can't both retire right now, given this portfolio. The only concern would be tax optimization issues, like staying below 400% FPL taxable income to qualify for subsidies. I think you will have zero problem doing it, though.
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Aena1
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Aena1 »

Boglecurious wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 9:41 pm How old are your kids? We've got two graduating in May (twins) and one already graduated and I can say from experience that it's not just the tuition/room/board you'll need to pay for. Kids are expensive until they are earning on their own.

Can your wife get a job with benefits? At 48, depending on her field, she may be able to. As a 65-year-old woman, still working at a job with benefits, I can say that my family depends on them. And though I am not in your field I have definitely experienced ageism in the workplace. But in the last four years I've interviewed for and landed several jobs! Try looking at universities, which have good benefits and can also come with tuition benefits, something I have also contributed to my family's situation.

Best of luck!
One is a sophomore in college with plans for MBA , the other is senior in high school with plans for med school.. hope the 400K ( plus loans ) is enough for them to be able to stand on their own feet and for both of us to officially retire
Dottie57
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Dottie57 »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:46 pm
chassis wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:22 pm
Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:19 pm
Tom_T wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:06 pm It would help if we knew exactly what your savings/investments are, since net worth doesn't pay the bills. :)
High level numbers

1.9 MM 401K IRA
300K Roth
100K HSA

1.3MM regular taxable brokerage
350K cash
4% rule says you are good to go.
Isn’t the 4% rule only applicable from age 65 onwards for 30 years of retirement?
H
That is my understanding.
Wannaretireearly
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Wannaretireearly »

You look in solid position. Sorry about the job loss.
I think you can make it with early retirement now if you want to.
Try to relax and enjoy the next season of life.
Reality is you’ll get some additional income from somewhere. Hopefully from a fun activity.

With low total income, could this help y’all get lower college tuition down the road?
“At some point you are trading time you will never get back for money you will never spend.“ | “How do you want to spend the best remaining year of your life?“
Paullmas
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Paullmas »

I would not retire only due to unpredictable nature of healthcare costs. Find an enjoyable position with benefits even if the pay is "low" 60k. A potential employer will need to be assured over and over that you are no longer looking for a high-paying position. They do not want to to sink 10-20k in employment hiring costs only to have you bolt when you find a better position.
Just say no to international.
Atomsplitter
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by Atomsplitter »

Maybe look for that position that will allow you a chance to roll the 401k into the new job then in ~2 years if your not happy you can plug the plug and tap the 401k and off you go :sharebeer
KlangFool
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by KlangFool »

Paullmas wrote: Wed Apr 03, 2024 5:33 am I would not retire only due to unpredictable nature of healthcare costs. Find an enjoyable position with benefits even if the pay is "low" 60k. A potential employer will need to be assured over and over that you are no longer looking for a high-paying position. They do not want to to sink 10-20k in employment hiring costs only to have you bolt when you find a better position.
I was unemployed for more than 1 year a few times. I was on ACA insurance a few times. The health care cost is not as unpredictable as you believe. In my case, I assume 20K per year for a household of two.

In my experience, it is easier to find high paying contract work than low paying job. I could not get any offer at $40 per hour. But, I had contract work at $65 to $100 per hour.

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KlangFool
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by KlangFool »

OP,

I don't know your background and when was the last time that you were job hunting. Please note that it is possible you are looking for the wrong job. You may not qualify for what you are currently looking. But, you could qualify for something much more.

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mrmass
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by mrmass »

Have you looked deeper into your expenses? How much that $120K is accurate. Also what are you doing for health care now? COBRA? What state are you in?
kd2008
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by kd2008 »

Sorry about the job loss. All your questions are fear based. It is understandable given the situation.

You are highly discounting the positives. $4MM portfolio. Spouse has job. You need only $70K/yr after spouse's income.

Forget the 4% rule. Create cash flow understanding about various income streams starting and stopping to truly understand how much you need. We can all say you are good to go. But until you do the math and numbers and convince yourself, nothing will change for you. You will still have fear based outlook and you won't lean into your financial strengths to create the life you want.
Catalina25
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advice

Post by Catalina25 »

Aena1 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:53 pm I have about 65% of my net worth in retirement accounts so will not be able to use that till age 59
Maybe you could...A former co-worker utilized the Rule of 72(t) to access his retirement accounts penalty free prior to age 59 1/2.

https://www.investopedia.com/terms/r/rule72t.asp

(From the link)

Example of Withdrawing Money Early

As an example, assume a 53-year-old woman who has an IRA earning 1.5% annually with a balance of $250,000 wishes to withdraw money early under rule 72(t). Using the amortization method, the woman would receive approximately $10,042 in yearly payments. With the minimum distribution method, she would receive around $7,962 annually over a five-year period. Using the annuitization method, approximately $9,976 would be her annual payment amount.
CoAndy
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Re: Laid off and Contemplating early retirement - pls advise

Post by CoAndy »

pm5987 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:47 pm What does your heart (or subconscious) want to do?

It sounds like your conscious & logical mind thinks it should be ok, and would like to retire?
Is there any guilt associated with retiring while your spouse is working?
Keep in mind he is 5 years older than his wife so him retiring before her does make some kind of sense.
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