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Old 10-15-2018, 09:43 PM
 
14 posts, read 4,693 times
Reputation: 20

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I'm seeking advice from neutral folks about my situation. My wife and I have discussed the idea of her quitting her job. Our income would be cut in half. Her job is high stress and requires being away from home for 3-4 days a week. We are on the fence about it, but family and friends have strongly advised against it.

We've run the numbers, and wonder if we aren't considering angles that have our family and friends adamant that she stay in the position. They don't give specifics about why they think she should stay other than feeling that a person mid-career shouldn't walk away mid-career.

Our household income is 220K. Without her income, it would be reduced to 140K. Living off of 140K gross, would provide 10K in savings after retirement savings. So instead of saving 50K a year, it would be 10K a year. This doesn't sound reckless to me. This sounds average, if not above average compared to others.

Please share any advice or insight you have.
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Old 10-15-2018, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Florida -
8,763 posts, read 10,837,755 times
Reputation: 16632
People often get 'trapped' into high stress/travel situations by high income and spending.

As you are deciding, there is more to life than making more money, particularly if one is stressed and unhappy with what they must sacrifice to keep doing that.

We took a 50-percent income cut many years ago for similar reasons. It wasn't easy, but, we made the adjustment and gained a sense of freedom I didn't have before. With 26-years remaining to work, the sacrifice was worth it and I never regretted the move.

I then got into a career I enjoyed more and which kept me home. It wasn't that difficult to get the earnings back-up, but, even without that, it would have been worth the move.

This is your decision and responsibility, not your "adamant" family and friends. Frankly, it sounds a little presumptuous that they are taking that position ... Are they helping to support you or do you owe them money?? Is your retirement near? Do you have some major college loans or health expenses? -- Otherwise, it doesn't make sense to give that much weight to the opinions of others in this personal decision.
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Old 10-16-2018, 01:04 AM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
7,628 posts, read 4,693,202 times
Reputation: 27916
Quote:
Originally Posted by jghorton View Post
Otherwise, it doesn't make sense to give that much weight to the opinions of others in this personal decision.

So, instead of asking people who are familiar with his situation, he should ask complete strangers?

It may be that the friends and family are concerned about the wife being out of the workforce so long that she may not be able to start working again when or if she needs to. You can say, "Stop the merry-go-round, I want to get off" but then the world moves on without you.
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Old 10-16-2018, 01:11 AM
Status: "Excited to move to Vegas!" (set 28 days ago)
 
Location: Beaverton, OR
5,545 posts, read 5,907,052 times
Reputation: 6341
Is there perhaps a middle ground that involves her working part time something she would enjoy more and thus not having the high stress but still not hurting your savings as much?
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Old 10-16-2018, 02:17 AM
 
145 posts, read 66,701 times
Reputation: 390
Quote:
Originally Posted by fluffythewondercat View Post
So, instead of asking people who are familiar with his situation, he should ask complete strangers?
Isnít that exactly what heís doing here?
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Old 10-16-2018, 03:02 AM
 
145 posts, read 66,701 times
Reputation: 390
If your wife does decide to quit (and it is YOUR decion as a couple to make - no one else’s), your income will be reduced, as you said. On the upside, though, some costs will go down, such as the cost of her transportation to and from work, the cost of maintaining a work-ready wardrobe, the costs associated with all the travel (meaning the ones not reimbursed by her company).

Also on the upside is the increase in convenience for you both. If she isn’t working she may be available to accept deliveries, to see to situations that require someone to be home (such as having the plumber or the cable person come in), to be home when you are home (often a luxury in today’s world).

You already know the downside, the main part being the loss of her income and benefits (which may or may not have an impact on your wallet). Another is the uncertainty of getting another job of equal or greater status/income should she decide to go back to work down the road. Associated with that would be the arduous and unappealing chores of creating a resume and going out to interviews. Finally, there is the loss of independence she has with having her own job.

If she is inclined to leave, she could first have a talk with her boss about the fact that she doesn’t want to stay on the grinding schedule with all the travel. Maybe her employer would be amenable to her staying on in a different role, one that would not be so demanding. She could even offer to accept a lower wage (as she is thinking about quitting anyway). No harm in asking.

I think what it boils down to is the age-old conflict about time and money. If you can meet your financial needs to survive as a young couple in your level of society and even still save money on your salary alone, then the question for you both is this: what is more important for you both, her time or her income? There is an old saying that you can always make more money, but you can’t make more time.

It’s a tough choice, but it’s yours to make. Good luck to you both regardless of what you decide.
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Old 10-16-2018, 03:14 AM
Status: "Gaining Stability." (set 9 days ago)
 
5,684 posts, read 5,932,384 times
Reputation: 4432
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogstar82 View Post
I'm seeking advice from neutral folks about my situation. My wife and I have discussed the idea of her quitting her job. Our income would be cut in half. Her job is high stress and requires being away from home for 3-4 days a week. We are on the fence about it, but family and friends have strongly advised against it.

We've run the numbers, and wonder if we aren't considering angles that have our family and friends adamant that she stay in the position. They don't give specifics about why they think she should stay other than feeling that a person mid-career shouldn't walk away mid-career.

Our household income is 220K. Without her income, it would be reduced to 140K. Living off of 140K gross, would provide 10K in savings after retirement savings. So instead of saving 50K a year, it would be 10K a year. This doesn't sound reckless to me. This sounds average, if not above average compared to others.

Please share any advice or insight you have.
The only opinion that matters belongs to you. It appears you are onboard which is nice. I do not think an extra 40K is worth your wife's well being. Allow her time to relax a little bit and search for a less stressful job when she is ready.
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Old 10-16-2018, 03:44 AM
bUU
 
Location: Georgia
11,881 posts, read 8,658,776 times
Reputation: 8401
Quote:
Originally Posted by fluffythewondercat View Post
So, instead of asking people who are familiar with his situation, he should ask complete strangers?
There's a reason why you don't invest your money with your stockbroker-Uncle Frank. I'm not sure the Internet is a prime venue for such advice, but you're not going to get an assuredly balanced view from family and friends.

Having said that, it's interesting that the family is advocating staying with the job. In terms of the bias I would expect from them that's counter-intuitive. That makes me think that there is a lot of critically important information that the OP hasn't shared about this situation.

Why hasn't the wife already found another, less stressful job?

What is the situation vis a vis children, either current or anticipated in the future?

What makes the OP think that "average" retirement savings is "sufficient"? This is really the most concerning part of the OP's comments... The OP's math regarding reduced income seemed to reduce savings much more so than expenses. That's almost surely the wrong approach. When I took a 35% pay cut to leave a stressful job, my spouse and I re-budgeted. Savings did go down but only in proportion to how much we cut our expenses. Your retirement savings should be a reflection of your expenses, not a reflection of how much is left after you subtract expenses from income, and you probably need to reduce expenses to make that work.
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Old 10-16-2018, 05:43 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,493 posts, read 62,136,122 times
Reputation: 32163
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogstar82 View Post
My wife and I have discussed the idea of her quitting her job.
Our (current) household income is 220K. Without her income, it would be reduced to 140K.
Living off of 140K gross, would provide 10K in savings after retirement savings.
Can you afford the mortgage and other commitments on the $140,000?
LOTS will manage just fine.
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Old 10-16-2018, 06:28 AM
 
18,852 posts, read 13,601,877 times
Reputation: 14271
What does your current cash flow/budget look like? What about your current savings? Ages?
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