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View Poll Results: How much for a middle class couple to retire comfortably?
$1,000 to $1,500 2 1.50%
$1,501 to $1,800 2 1.50%
$1,801 to $2,300 5 3.76%
$2,301 to $2,800 8 6.02%
$2,801 to $3,300 7 5.26%
$3,301 to $3,800 13 9.77%
$3,801 to $4,300 14 10.53%
$4,301 to $4,800 13 9.77%
$4,801 to $5,300 19 14.29%
$5,301 to $5,800 14 10.53%
$5,801 to $6,300 7 5.26%
More than $6,300 29 21.80%
Voters: 133. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-02-2015, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Grove City, Ohio
10,133 posts, read 12,381,010 times
Reputation: 13956

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In your opinion how much of monthly income would be sufficient for a married couple to afford a comfortable and secure retirement?

I am not asking how much you are might need to retire but how much you think an average middle class couple in your area might need.

Assume the following:

1. They do not have any debts.

2. Their home is fully paid for.

3. They must pay for their Medicare Part B and any supplements/advantage plans they might want.

4. Both are in reasonably good health.

5. They enjoy doing things together such as dining out twice a month, a movie once a month, they have a wedding to go to once a year and while not bitten by the travel bug they like to visit relatives and children several times a year. Most trips are day long car trips. Every two or three years maybe a 4 or 5 day cruise or a trip to Las Vegas to see lights and squander $300 in the casino.

6. House is in good shape but sometimes the plumbing is a problem or the air conditioner goes out. Repair bills but nothing major.

Yeah, we could all live comfortably on $10 million a month but we know that, what we are looking for is something reasonable.
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Old 01-02-2015, 02:36 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,777 posts, read 54,424,430 times
Reputation: 31073
Just a few days go I calculated what we will be getting and it turned out to be about $4,000/month, based on that we should be able to manage here. We really plan to sell and pay cash for a smaller home in a lower cost area, though.
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:22 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
21,536 posts, read 43,992,643 times
Reputation: 15135
Two people on $4k a month, even with no debt, and do traveling to boot? I don't think so. Not around here.

$6,000 - Property taxes
$7,000 - home maintenance/repair (sooner or later new roof, htg plt, etc.)
..............Or pay rent of $1,000/mo. (low, low)

$2,000 - insurance - ho/auto (two vehicles)
$1,800 - gasoline/auto maintenance
$5 400 - Medigaps & Part D (not including Part B)
$2,500 - drug copays ?? (guessing at this)
$3,000 - heat/light/water
$2,400 - phone/cable/internet (assume smartphones)
$9,600 - (based on my spending of $400/mo for 1 person)
$2,400 - dining out 2xmo. at a reasonably decent place - $100/x2 (low)
$2.500 - gifts, entertainment
$3,000 - miscellaneous

Total - $48,000

Then add traveling expense - $5000.

Total $53,000/12 = $4,416.

$4k is a bit tight, imo.
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:43 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,971,705 times
Reputation: 15649
With all due respect, these kinds of questions usually lead nowhere because there are just too many variables. No one counts in the cost of vets for their pets ($$$), eyeglasses for each in the household, hearing aid (thousands $), major car dent sustained in a parking lot ($$$), having to travel to a funeral of family member on opposite side of country ($$$), sewer line burst in back yard (my son just spent thousands), septic tank problem ($$$), and on and on, all of which can and does happen to any of us and isn't figured in to the retirement budget. Any figured budget should be multiplied by 2 or 3.
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:47 PM
 
71,517 posts, read 71,694,121 times
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they are kind of silly. most of the time all they reflect is the amount of money folks have to live on whether they like it or not.

they get used to it ,they adapt and then that becomes the reference they judge others on who say they need more.

we all earn different incomes and live different lifetstyles when working but suddenly in retirement you hear anyone who needs more than xxxx is wasting money.
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:47 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,971,705 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariadne22 View Post
Two people on $4k a month, even with no debt, and do traveling to boot? I don't think so. Not around here.

$6,000 - Property taxes
$7,000 - home maintenance/repair (sooner or later new roof, htg plt, etc.)
..............Or pay rent of $1,000/mo. (low, low)

$2,000 - insurance - ho/auto (two vehicles)
$1,800 - gasoline/auto maintenance
$5 400 - Medigaps & Part D (not including Part B)
$2,500 - drug copays ?? (guessing at this)
$3,000 - heat/light/water
$2,400 - phone/cable/internet (assume smartphones)
$9,600 - (based on my spending of $400/mo for 1 person)
$2,400 - dining out 2xmo. at a reasonably decent place - $100/x2 (low)
$2.500 - gifts, entertainment
$3,000 - miscellaneous

Total - $48,000

Then add traveling expense - $5000.

Total $53,000/12 = $4,416.

$4k is a bit tight, imo.
This only reflects today, not even 5 years down the road...especially the cost of prop tax , insurances, and food....at the annual % rate that each is climbing now. One can dispense with some things, but clearly not others. Have you projected costs for 5 and 10 years from now?
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:50 PM
 
Location: SoCal desert
8,093 posts, read 13,229,344 times
Reputation: 14870
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariadne22 View Post
Two people on $4k a month, even with no debt, and do traveling to boot? I don't think so. Not around here.
which is why the OP said
Quote:
an average middle class couple in your area might need.
I can look at some of your costs (prop tax, dining out, utilities, gifts) and shiver.
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:53 PM
 
71,517 posts, read 71,694,121 times
Reputation: 49094
just some of the things we got hit with this past year not in the origonal plans like a wedding ,new dental implants for me ,marilyns dental, new paper work from the estate attorney and the 7900.00 premium for the ltc policy are more than that entire years budget listed above..

when you have descretionary income like water it will seek its own level and in some cases can be as much as all the bills you figured added up.

we set our budget by adding up all the non descretionary bills we could think of. then we x2 that amount and that is our budget now including decretionary spending.

with all the things on our wish list i could easily utilize 3x or 4x the budget amount. a true middle class life in manhattan can run 160-200k . we don't live in manhattan but if we could afford it i sure would love it.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/20/re...anted=all&_r=0
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Old 01-02-2015, 04:06 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,679 posts, read 49,437,227 times
Reputation: 19129
In my area the average household gross income varies somewhere between $20k and $25k, and it we have families with one to three children, along with a few retirees like myself.

We have retired neighbors who do reasonably well on less than $1,000/month.

My pension is roughly equal to minimum-wage.
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Old 01-02-2015, 04:06 PM
 
12,825 posts, read 20,135,648 times
Reputation: 10910
Over 6K / month here. You have to be rich to retire here. And therefore, "middle class" and retiring here is an oxymoron.
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