There was a great threadjack about retirement a few days ago, so we thought this would make a great open thread for today: when do YOU plan to retire? How much do you want to have banked; what are your plans for when you retire? (How close are you now?)
Some of you may have thought it about retirement issues a lot, and others, less so. Either way, do tell!
Here’s a few questions to get the conversation started:
1. When will you feel “ready” to retire, i.e., how much money would you be comfortable with at that point? (Do you have a savings target that will “tell” you when to retire?) Are you happy with where you are now regarding the amount you have in your retirement accounts?
2. What is your general strategy for saving for retirement? Are you practicing the FIRE method, perhaps? How do you balance cash savings vs. retirement savings — and if you’re contributing to a child’s 529, those funds as well? (Here are some 529 tips we shared over at CorporetteMoms.)
3. Will you stay where you live now, or do you have a particular retirement destination in mind?
4. Is there an activity you’re hoping to do more of when you retire, such as volunteering, joining a board, or traveling? Any other retirement hobbies or bucket-list hobbies you’re thinking of?
Do tell, readers!
Stock photo via Stencil.
DH and I plan on retiring around age 50 with our pensions. There’s no dollar amount we aspire to since we live in Canada and thus health care is not a consideration. We will stay in our house forever but shift our time to animal-related volunteering.
Same-ish. Also Canadian. We are both military and have defined benefit pensions. My husband is 40 and can retire with a full pension at 47 in 2027, with an annual income of at least 70k. I can retire in 2034 at age 56 with an income of 85k. We will have a couple hundred thousand of investments and about $1.15 million in paid off real estate. Kids are well set for uni etc. But I expect both of us, or at least one of us, will continue to work on our own terms. It really depends on where our kids are and what they are doing but we might sell up and move to place out east.
And we do actually retire we expect to spend six month a year in different cities an are fantasizing about buying a pied a terre in Nashville.
Ours are government too! No amount of money could make me sell my Victorian house in our shared city, but I could consider a warm pied a terre.
Glebite ? ?
American here, weeping at these Canadians retiring around 50. My retirement plan is to die at my desk, hopefully around 70 or so, or younger, if I’m not lucky.
I’m 32, have lived through two “once in a lifetime” economic downturns in my adult life, and have zero faith that I’ll be able to enjoy much of any kind of retirement at all. But who knows, maybe climate change will have killed us all by then anyway.
Also 32, same. Can’t help but laugh.
Yeah … 34 here and kinda feeling the same. Still shoveling money into a retirement acct. but some days I really wonder.
35 here and I doubt I will ever be able to retire.
Hear hear. Plus we chose to have a kiddo just over a year ago, so at 35 with a toddler, retiring is a distant, distant dream. Saving for retirement always seems to come last in the household budget, after student loans, mortgage, and now childcare (and future college expenses).
Please please please prioritize your retirement savings over future college savings. Seriously, your kid may not even want to go to college, may have scholarships available, school could be free in the future and even if none of that holds true, your kid can borrow money to go to college. You cannot borrow money to retire. Trust me when I say your kid would much rather have you fund your retirement and graduate with student loans than have to support you when you can no longer work because you didn’t save enough for yourself.
My husband’s father was a surgeon, so they earned plenty but managed it terribly. All retirement savings were exhausted by the time they were late 60s due to a combo of underfunding and series of terrible financial decisions. They now live off social security.
I was about to ask, as a joke, whether you’re the woman who married my ex-husband, but it’s really not a funny situation. It’s sad and frustrating.
This. We put a ton into a 529 for my son, who enlisted in the Army after High School and now has the GI Bill if/when he goes to college. We can roll the 529 to his sister, and we are fine for our retirement, but my point is you never know what a kid is going to want to do.
But I wish I could do it at 55 (20 years from now). Wishing that we had medicare-for-all-who-want-it so that this could be a reality…because but for the need of healthcare, we could probably do it (no kids, decent-for-us HHI, good savings/investment already).
I’m 43. I had always intended to work until my early 70s for various reasons. But my mom is literally a month away from retirement and is having some health issues that are “probably” cancer, according to the doctor who did the biopsy. Nothing official yet, and who knows what will happen, but it’s a cruel twist of fate that she might work so long and then have no leisure time before diving into a health crisis. So it’s making me question whether my plan is all that sound.
As far as where to live – I hate moving and have done enough of it in the past 10 years to last a lifetime. So if we never move again, I’d be fine with that. I’d consider moving to be near kiddo when he’s an adult, or downsizing if we need to, but that’s about it.
yup, my mom retired at 65 which perfectly coincided with the birth of her first two grandchildren (my kids)…unfortunately she was wheelchair bound due to a non-cancerous brain tumor and passed away less than 2 years after that. i inherited a large chunk of her retirement funds, but i would much rather have had her around to spend it. i dont know that it makes me want to retire sooner per se, but also makes me not want to wait to do everything like travel until retired
My mother also died right after retiring at 65 of cancer. She saved her whole life and it was her dream to travel. Never did.
I’m 40 and retirement still seems far, far away. I hope it includes travel. Lots of time with family. I would love to have a second vacation property on a tranquil lake somewhere. But I also hope to find some sort of purpose beyond sleeping in and relaxing, lovely as those things sound. I have learned a lot from watching people in my parents’ generation retire. Without some sort of purpose, people seem to get bored, lonely and stagnant. My own FIL wasn’t a Trump supporter until he was so bored that he started watching Fox Business every day. The people who are doing well keep busy and are involved in their community or with social groups/volunteer organizations. A lot of recent retirees in my workplace do extremely part-time consulting work — and that sounds utterly unappealing, although I realize it puts them in a better economic position.
Yes yes yes to this. I’ve witnessed the same. Also the people who retire with nothing to do seem to age approximately 4x faster than those I know who are the same age but didn’t retire or have some other structure in their life. One of the happiest “retired” person I know was a Walmart greeter pre covid who would work like 15 hours a week. He didn’t need the money but having that seemed to keep him young.
Small Law Partner
I’m early 40s and DH and I will retire in about 10 years. Goal is 2M in savings not counting home equity, although we are working on evaluating if we really “need” that much, so it might be less time. We also are in the process of moving to a lower cost of living environment (that we also like better!), so that may help too. Definitely been following FIRE, assuming early 50s is considered early retirement – we only spend about 10-15% of our take home and save the rest. Max out 401k, rest is index funds. Can’t do Roth, and HSA/FSA don’t make sense for us. No kids, so no 529. I have a ton of hobbies and interests outside of work, so just plan to do that full time.
I’m 42, got laid off twice in five years, and was out of work for 6 years. I strung together waitressing and freelance gigs to slow the bleeding, but it emptied my savings. My retirements accounts are pathetic for my age (about 275k).
As an overachieving college grad I had planned to FIRE through hard work and determination, but over time I learned that the job and stock markets don’t much care about either of those traits. At this point, I hope to retire before I’m 70.
Another obstacle is my husband’s health. He has multiple complicated disorders and diseases, and based on family history will probably develop early-onset Alzheimers. I no longer see a way to retire before we’re old enough for Medicare.
I don’t think your savings are pathetic and it sounds like you are doing a great job with the hand you’ve been dealt.
You are a rock star.
Hang in there.
It sounds like you’re doing great! I don’t think your amount is bad for your age — I know a lot of people that have retired on less.
Medical care in the years before Medicare is certainly an issue a lot of people are facing, I wish there was an easier solution.
I don’t think your retirement account balance is pathetic. I am 40 and only have about $38k in my retirement account. Keep going! You are doing great!
I’m 56. I’ve hit my retirement savings goals but I keep mentally moving the bar. I was laid off in March (Honestly, good riddance to a terrible job) and now I’m self employed. I put a lot of time, effort, and money into getting my LLC up and running – it’s a surprising amount of work.
I now work 1/3 – 2/3 time depending on what kind of contracts I’ve been able to generate, which is hard during COVID, but my plan is to just be able to pay living expenses without a lot of additional savings and let my retirement accounts hopefully grow in the meantime. I hope to be done by my early 60s but will keep doing it if I’m still having fun with the work, which I am right now.
It’s interesting to me that the entire focus of this post and the comments seem to assume that there is a direct line between achieving financial goals and retirement. I agree that one should be financially able to retire, but there are other factors that might cause a person to continue to work. For example, there are professional goals, a sense that there is to much of life remaining to “opt out” of a work experience that one enjoys, the ability to contribute financially to friends, charities and causes at a higher level that outweighs the value of non-financial contributions, the satisfaction of being “it” in one’s area of expertise, satisfying interpersonal relationships at work, etc.
I’m 54. I had planned to retire at 55, but one child still in college and fully supported. I choose to see that through, so now thinking 60 might be the goal if I don’t quit out of frustration before then. I think I’m financially set. My house will be paid off before I’m 70 if I stick to the current schedule and don’t make advance payments, which I might do. It’s not too bad to continue to work knowing I don’t have to. I don’t want to be one of those who retires too late, only to find that they aren’t healthy enough to enjoy the things they want to in retirement. On the other hand, I have no idea what I would do if I didn’t go to work.