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Old 08-16-2012, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
11,871 posts, read 26,865,861 times
Reputation: 4554

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My husband and I are in our early 40's. We have yet to start saving for retirement. Although, we don't have much debt and make all of our bills, we haven't been able to build our nest egg. It's very frustrating because I am frugal but there is nothing ever left to be put away. It seems once you get a little saved it used to catch up when work is slow. I don't want to be working forever but in this economy it seems like we will.

My DH is always reminding me to be grateful for what we have, there are many less fortunate people out there. I am grateful but on the other hand, I'm frustrated that we are unable to save for our retirement. We are able to enjoy ourselves now but what about the future.

Does anyone else feel this way? I'm constantly trying to figure out ways to downsize to get ahead. I'd like to start with trying to get a smaller house that is paid off and take if from there.
No mortgage=savings for retirement.
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Old 08-16-2012, 05:58 PM
 
5,432 posts, read 3,468,547 times
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You can live on the combination of your social security and your husband's social security when you hit age 62 or older, plus a little savings..

It can be done. No need to worry.
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:04 PM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
11,871 posts, read 26,865,861 times
Reputation: 4554
Quote:
Originally Posted by matisse12 View Post
You can live on the combination of your social security and your husband's social security when you hit age 62 or older, plus a little savings..

It can be done. No need to worry.
Thanks for the reassurance.
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:24 PM
 
5,090 posts, read 13,566,440 times
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It is good to plan but you can become too obsessive. You really do not know what to expect in the future. You doing one thing that others fail to do and that is practice frugality. For learning to live simply takes years of exercise to develop the stamina to live with simple needs, wants and desires. It cannot be learned quickly. Some people always had money and spend and spend all they earned. All of sudden because of illness, loss of a job and retirement at a lesser income, they are left with flabby habits of managing their monies and do not know how to live a simple livestyle. That is part of the reason why many people have lost their homes.

I know from hard experience. I had a good job and good salary. Suddenly on a business trip, I got ill. Consequently I lost my job (I needed a medical clearance) and I was forced to live on much less, eventually on Social Security Disability because my condition was serious when I was in my forties. However, I was always frugal and spend much less than what I made so it was easier for me to have to live on less.

Now I am in my sixties and I still live below even what I make on my limited income. I have exercised my muscles of frugality that I am fit to face to face life happily and simply.

Livecontent

Last edited by livecontent; 08-16-2012 at 07:00 PM..
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:26 PM
 
29,882 posts, read 34,936,573 times
Reputation: 11793
Quote:
Originally Posted by beckycat View Post
My husband and I are in our early 40's. We have yet to start saving for retirement. Although, we don't have much debt and make all of our bills, we haven't been able to build our nest egg. It's very frustrating because I am frugal but there is nothing ever left to be put away. It seems once you get a little saved it used to catch up when work is slow. I don't want to be working forever but in this economy it seems like we will.

My DH is always reminding me to be grateful for what we have, there are many less fortunate people out there. I am grateful but on the other hand, I'm frustrated that we are unable to save for our retirement. We are able to enjoy ourselves now but what about the future.

Does anyone else feel this way? I'm constantly trying to figure out ways to downsize to get ahead. I'd like to start with trying to get a smaller house that is paid off and take if from there.
No mortgage=savings for retirement.
I understand your challenge and yes it is a challenge and we have some structural issues that are making it worse.
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:56 PM
 
10,824 posts, read 8,090,324 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beckycat View Post
My husband and I are in our early 40's. We have yet to start saving for retirement. Although, we don't have much debt and make all of our bills, we haven't been able to build our nest egg. It's very frustrating because I am frugal but there is nothing ever left to be put away.
Of course, there's nothing left. You spend it all.
The only way to build a nest egg is to make it a priority equal to your other expenditures. Do it via direct deposit or payroll deduction if you can. If not, make a deposit as soon as you get your paycheck.

Yes, it's hard at first but over time it becomes a habit. I started my first full-time job when I was 17 years old because I had to support my mom and my little brother. The job paid slightly above minimum wage. Starting with my 3rd paycheck, I had $3 deducted from my bi-weekly paychecks directly into savings. The amount and target account varied widely over the years but I kept this savings-first habit up for 45 years, even when I was self-employed and working part-time.
I married a man who had already developed the same habit, starting when he was working to pay his own way through college.

In today's climate, you won't be able to earn any interest. But you'd be on the right path and you'll eventually have enough saved to make some financial choices such as - at some point, you might decide to use the nest egg to pay down or pay off your mortgage, and the interest you save by doing that will be a bump up the ladder, plus you'd then have the equity in your house as a nest egg.
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Old 08-16-2012, 07:17 PM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,542,742 times
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Simplistically, pay yourselves (savings) first. After a very short while you won't miss it at all.
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Old 08-16-2012, 07:56 PM
 
5,090 posts, read 13,566,440 times
Reputation: 6928
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Simplistically, pay yourselves (savings) first. After a very short while you won't miss it at all.

I really like what you have said, "pay yourself". I have always viewed the working person as a business enterprise and should be run as such. If nothing is left, after you pay your expenses of living, then you are a losing enterprise with no profit.

A person who makes $25,000 a year and has a $1000 in saving at the end of the year is more successful in the business of a personal life than one who makes $120,000 a year; has no savings at the end of the year and may even have gone into debt.

Of course, it involves satisfying and managing your needs, wants and desires. The trick in simplicity is to be happy with basic needs and not make just desires convert more wants into what you perceive as basic needs. Some people desire cable TV and make that a basic need. Others believe seeing a moving picture show, every week, is a basic need. They then go out and dine, often, in restaurants and it goes on to covert more to basic needs, then they cannot escape to simplicity.

Of course, as society becomes more complex some wants do, as a necessity, become a basic need. I now need computer access to manage finances, bills, communications, information and with news and entertainment; that for me has supplanted the basic need for TV, though I never had cable or satellite, and the daily newspaper. A cell phone is now for me, a basic need, just as a home telephone converted from a luxury to a basic need in the past. Yet in the past where a car was for me a basic need, it is will be, in the future, converted to a want and a desire; I may no longer have this capital asset.

The problem with today society is that we can readily see what the affluent have in their lives. The idea of equality goes to a ridiculous belief of entitlement for equality. There will always be people who have more and can afford to buy more. We should then be satisfied without going into debt to create this false idea of equality.

Livecontent

Last edited by livecontent; 08-16-2012 at 08:17 PM..
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Old 08-16-2012, 08:46 PM
 
1,328 posts, read 2,457,712 times
Reputation: 1389
Yes, retirement still exists. My dad retired back in 2003 after 40 years in the investment industry and hasn't lifted a finger since. All he does is watch CNBC all day, keep tabs on his investment porfolio, and does some shopping once or twice a week.

However, the real way to get ahead and get to the point where you no longer work is usually by starting your own business and making it as successful as possible. That way, one day your business will be established enough that you'll barely have to work much (or at all) while still making a large income. I don't know about you, but I'd much rather spend 5-10 years building a business with some staying power than trying to work for someone else for 30-40 years with the hopes of saving enough for retirement.
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:20 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,779,038 times
Reputation: 32309
To the OP (Beckycat): I find it hard to answer your post because you haven't given us very much to go on in terms of the details of your situation - and that is your perfect right of course. We all reveal as much or as little about ourselves here as we feel comfortable doing.

But if we knew if you and your husband had salaried jobs or hourly jobs that would make a difference. Also, I concluded that you do not have 401k's at work. You seem to imply an unwillingness to give up any of your current spending to save - I would bet that you could cut some of that spending without living like a novice in a nunnery, but I don't know that for sure because I don't know your income and what you are spending it on.

That leaves us with vague generalities - not the best planning for retirement.
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