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Old 05-10-2015, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,744,100 times
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On the issue of dying right before or right after retirement being such a tragedy, I cannot go along with that except to the extent that anyone dying before their time is a tragedy, the younger the more tragic, e.g. during childhood or adolescence.

We do NOT start living and we do NOT start enjoying life only at the moment of retirement, unless there is something wrong with us. Of course it is normal to look forward to having additional free time better to pursue things that interest us - there is nothing wrong with that! But that is different from the concept that we have been cheated out of life if we die before, or at the moment of, retirement.

Before I retired at age 61, I had done the following:

1. Played the trumpet for pay in rodeo and circus bands while in college, although I did not pursue music as a profession.

2. Lived in Europe and travelled around Europe, partly by hitch-hiking. Mastered French and German.

3. Experienced the joy and excitement of learning to fly private air planes. My ex-wife and I owned one for about three years and flew it all over the place.

4. Experienced the joy of getting into excellent physical shape when we took up bicycling as a serious hobby. Once we rode from Seattle to Los Angeles, camping some and staying in motels some. It took us three weeks.

5. Learned motorcycling (another joy). Rode for about 15 years, including escorting funeral processions to the cemetery for pay.

6. Was able to mentor several young people, which seemed to make a difference in their lives.

If I had dropped dead ten years ago at age 61 the day after cleaning out my desk and attending my retirement luncheon, I would still have had a very full life. Of course I'm glad that didn't happen, because I have had an interesting time since then, but still, I never felt I was starting to live at that moment, but rather continuing to live, learn, and experience.
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Old 05-10-2015, 04:54 PM
 
Location: Grove City, Ohio
10,134 posts, read 12,390,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LivingDeadGirl View Post
I have one for you: I worked for a guy who had retirement all figured out. He retired, took his retirement in full, not opting for the spousal survivor's benefit because "our family is long lived". Well, he immediately is diagnosed with a brain tumor and dies 18 months after retirement. His wife has no benefits from his pension. Goes to show you never know.
Oh man.... this is the worst.

My wife and I will do very well together with an equivalent income of $1,200/week after taxes which is $5,200/month. After our Part B, Medicare supplements and dental insurance we're going to be left with about $4,500 That's slightly over $1,000/week spending money" which has always been my goal and we're about there.

But there is a problem in that $855/month payable to me does not have spousal survival. If my wife dies I will be cut by only $700/month which doesn't sound right but she has a pension where I have survivor benefits but as long as she is taking her pension her ss is offset by two thirds.

If something happens to her I will be let with around $4,500/month but if something happens to me she will be left with $2,800. Doesn't seem fair, does it?

So, we are planning not to spend any retirement savings because I want all of that to go to her should something happen to me.

Second thing I did was purchase life insurance which comes at a pretty hefty price at my age. Costs us $300/month but it is enough to add $600/month to her $2,800 should something happen to me first.

If something happens to her first I will drop that life insurance like yesterday's sour milk.

No, you never know.

I lost my best friend two weeks ago today from a sudden massive heart attack at the age of 67. He and his wife both made real good money, she worked as the only employee of a company he owned, and their plan was to put off collecting their benefits until age 70 at which time EACH would have received slightly over $3,500/month in social security benefits only. He never lived to collect a dime and has been hitting the max every year since 1985 that I know of.

I remember my friend and how his children would play with mine. His children are near 40 now but I remember the when youngest was still crawling and the first day of school for the oldest.

I am 6 months younger than he was when he died. Gives one pause, doesn't it?

I miss my friend.
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Old 05-11-2015, 06:37 AM
 
1,770 posts, read 2,443,971 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicet4 View Post
Oh man.... this is the worst.

My wife and I will do very well together with an equivalent income of $1,200/week after taxes which is $5,200/month. After our Part B, Medicare supplements and dental insurance we're going to be left with about $4,500 That's slightly over $1,000/week spending money" which has always been my goal and we're about there.

But there is a problem in that $855/month payable to me does not have spousal survival. If my wife dies I will be cut by only $700/month which doesn't sound right but she has a pension where I have survivor benefits but as long as she is taking her pension her ss is offset by two thirds.

If something happens to her I will be let with around $4,500/month but if something happens to me she will be left with $2,800. Doesn't seem fair, does it?

So, we are planning not to spend any retirement savings because I want all of that to go to her should something happen to me.

Second thing I did was purchase life insurance which comes at a pretty hefty price at my age. Costs us $300/month but it is enough to add $600/month to her $2,800 should something happen to me first.

If something happens to her first I will drop that life insurance like yesterday's sour milk.

No, you never know.

I lost my best friend two weeks ago today from a sudden massive heart attack at the age of 67. He and his wife both made real good money, she worked as the only employee of a company he owned, and their plan was to put off collecting their benefits until age 70 at which time EACH would have received slightly over $3,500/month in social security benefits only. He never lived to collect a dime and has been hitting the max every year since 1985 that I know of.

I remember my friend and how his children would play with mine. His children are near 40 now but I remember the when youngest was still crawling and the first day of school for the oldest.

I am 6 months younger than he was when he died. Gives one pause, doesn't it?

I miss my friend.

I am sorry for your loss of your friend. As I mentioned in another post, I've always been surrounded by death. My brother, a fire fighter, died an on duty death at the age of 57, only 2 years ago. He never saw retirement. Thankfully, his widow and son (who is in college) are adequately provided for. Again I say, as do many on this forum, do not wait to travel, etc. LIVE NOW.
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Old 05-11-2015, 07:23 AM
 
Location: RVA
2,167 posts, read 1,267,777 times
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DW and I talk about this kind of stuff all the time. My mother died you g at 68, predictably due to COPD from being a chain smoker. Her parents died a month apart, both at 89, though both came from shortlived families! He chose 50/50 pension, and she never saw a dime. They arent horor stories but more of the "you just never know".

Since DW is already retired (62) we decided that since, technically, I could retire and we would be fine, tomorrow, that we are not putting off what we want to do until I actually do retire. That may be anywhere from 60 to 63, but because neither of us wants to be on a continuous endless vacation, I will take advantage of my workplaces part time work policy and work 7 months a year with 5 months off, and still get years of service towards pension
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Old 05-11-2015, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Loudon, TN
5,788 posts, read 4,841,461 times
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It's so sad to hear of all these lives taken too soon. When you work your whole life thinking there will always be time in the future for all those "delayed gratification" things, and then there is no time, it seems such a crime and a shame. As they say, live everyday as if it were your last.

Sometimes when I hear the "he dropped dead of a sudden heart attack" stories, I wonder if they were having regular checkups and if they were aware of any bad cholesterol numbers, blood pressure issues, etc. I guess we all wonder "could this happen to me?". Of course we could always be hit by a truck too, so I guess it doesn't matter. It just makes me wonder if we think we are safe because our doctor tells us all is well, do they really have any idea at all?

With yesterday being Mother's Day, it had me thinking of my own mom, dead at 65. Is it any wonder I retired at 51? I will be enjoying retirement for the both of us.
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,587 posts, read 17,582,380 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheShadow View Post
It's so sad to hear of all these lives taken too soon. When you work your whole life thinking there will always be time in the future for all those "delayed gratification" things, and then there is no time, it seems such a crime and a shame. As they say, live everyday as if it were your last.

Sometimes when I hear the "he dropped dead of a sudden heart attack" stories, I wonder if they were having regular checkups and if they were aware of any bad cholesterol numbers, blood pressure issues, etc. I guess we all wonder "could this happen to me?". Of course we could always be hit by a truck too, so I guess it doesn't matter. It just makes me wonder if we think we are safe because our doctor tells us all is well, do they really have any idea at all?

With yesterday being Mother's Day, it had me thinking of my own mom, dead at 65. Is it any wonder I retired at 51? I will be enjoying retirement for the both of us.
Sometimes you just don't know. Obviously you want to take care of yourself and not overindulge in bad food, heavy alcohol usage, smoking, etc, but there are plenty of people who have done all this then died, and those who live like hell who seemingly just won't die. Sometimes I think you get what you get and the best way to go about life is to simply live each day to the fullest.
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:13 AM
 
761 posts, read 638,772 times
Reputation: 2229
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheShadow View Post
It's so sad to hear of all these lives taken too soon. When you work your whole life thinking there will always be time in the future for all those "delayed gratification" things, and then there is no time, it seems such a crime and a shame. As they say, live everyday as if it were your last.

Sometimes when I hear the "he dropped dead of a sudden heart attack" stories, I wonder if they were having regular checkups and if they were aware of any bad cholesterol numbers, blood pressure issues, etc. I guess we all wonder "could this happen to me?". Of course we could always be hit by a truck too, so I guess it doesn't matter. It just makes me wonder if we think we are safe because our doctor tells us all is well, do they really have any idea at all?

With yesterday being Mother's Day, it had me thinking of my own mom, dead at 65. Is it any wonder I retired at 51? I will be enjoying retirement for the both of us.
Glad to hear you are enjoying retirement!
I have plans to go out at 63, next year.

My father, who worked for the post office, never had much, retired at 63 and lived ok.
Not in a cardboard box under and overpass either.

My mother died at the age of 57 from debilitating RA.
Never got any relief from pain.
I was 23 at the time.
I knew my MIL for a lot longer.
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Old 05-12-2015, 06:17 AM
 
Location: Grove City, Ohio
10,134 posts, read 12,390,523 times
Reputation: 13984
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheShadow View Post
It's so sad to hear of all these lives taken too soon. When you work your whole life thinking there will always be time in the future for all those "delayed gratification" things, and then there is no time, it seems such a crime and a shame. As they say, live everyday as if it were your last.
Bingo, we have a winner!

While all of us should plan for eventual retirement I don't think it should be a focal point... we got life and you gotta live it.

I'll be 67 soon and I want to work at least two more years and if possible three to maximize my social security because I need it. I need it because I didn't save like I should have but I have no regrets at all. It's just what I gotta do to pay back for the things we did when we were younger.

Travel in retirement? Neither of us has a desire to travel because we've already done more travel than most people. Part of the reason I have to work longer is I had an airplane and for those that know airplanes make boats look cheap. But oh what fun!

We'd take trips and among our favorites was a small resort on Long Island in the Bahamas called Stella Maris. There wasn't any scheduled air carrier service so the way you got their was either by boat or fly in yourself... we flew in ourselves out of Fort Lauderdale.



Talk about an out of the way place this was it. Each cottage had its own private pool and on the eastern side of the island there was a beautiful beach about two miles long and nobody ever went there. Many times my wife and i would spend the afternoon sunning, with lots of sun screen, and wouldn't see another person for four hours. No crowded cruise ships for us.

To get around the island we'd rent mopeds.

California, Mexico, Canada and places in between we traveled and maybe I spent to much on my airplane, Piper Arrow PA28-200R runs about $100/hour for 200 hours/year so there was my retirement, I have no regrets. With a smile on my face I'll just work to 70 to "catch up". And in case you are wondering airplanes are not in my retirement planning.
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Old 05-12-2015, 10:11 AM
 
Location: Columbia SC
8,979 posts, read 7,749,631 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheShadow View Post
Solutions to this situation are easy to see, but people must be willing to make the necessary changes. Sell the house, move to a rental apt or buy a small condo. Sell the car with payments and use the money to buy a good used car for cash. Ta Da! Now they have more money every month and they can save some money for when one of them is gone. When that time comes, the other will have an easier time living on the SS and savings/insurance (no car pmts, smaller mortgage/rent). If their SS income is very small, they could qualify for SSI and/or subsidized housing. I know some cities have long waiting lists for section 8 senior housing, but others do not. I got my mom into subsidized housing in a matter of months based upon her disabilities.
They are aware of their situation but there are several problems. The main one is they are underwater with their mortgage so no money to be made there. They have talked about renting it and living in a less expensive apartment. I believe their joint income is in excess for any SSI or subsidized housing.

My wife (it is her sister) and I keep overall know the situation but we do not discuss it with them. My wife would help her sister out but not her BIL as she feels he is the main reason they are where they are. I agree but she did go along with his get rich schemes when she should have put her foot down, but another subject.

The point of my post was I believe there are quite a few in the same position. Together they get by, but eventually they will have to face the situation when one dies.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Idaho
1,455 posts, read 1,156,015 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicet4 View Post
Travel in retirement? Neither of us has a desire to travel because we've already done more travel than most people. Part of the reason I have to work longer is I had an airplane and for those that know airplanes make boats look cheap. But oh what fun!
.....
California, Mexico, Canada and places in between we traveled and maybe I spent to much on my airplane, Piper Arrow PA28-200R runs about $100/hour for 200 hours/year so there was my retirement, I have no regrets. With a smile on my face I'll just work to 70 to "catch up". And in case you are wondering airplanes are not in my retirement planning.
We have done some travelling (been to about 25 countries and in all US states except Alaska) mostly with commercial planes and some in small planes (South Africa self-fly safari in a C172, NZ self-fly trip in a PA-28, many 1000-2000nm trip from NY to various states in a C177B, and a 5500nm trip from NY to Puerto Rico & several Caribbean islands in our current 'home built' plane, a Glasair Sportsman).

I'm looking forward to retirement in the very near future so that we could travel more. We had long planned for a coast-to-coast plane camping trip but aborted the plan in 2013 due to unexpected delay in renewing my husband's medical. Now that he is healthy again, the trip will be on again and we can even do it at the same time with relocation. A flying trip to Alaska and many trips to all the majestic national parks are part of the reason we want to relocate in the northwest area.

Owning a plane is not cheap but we have found ways to reduce the cost. We can do our own annual inspection instead of paying the A&P few AMUs. With the engine monitor and the help of the Garmin EFIS, we can run LOP and only burn ~ 6-6.5gph on the Sportsman vs 8.5gph in our old Cardinal C177B. I was pleasantly surprised to see that we only need 24 gallons to fill up our tanks after 5 flights. With avgas at $4.15/galllons, it cost us less than $25/flight. To us, flying our Sportsman is a relatively cheap recreational activity and mental therapy at the same time.

We live quite frugally: hardly eating out, make our own breads/soups, cut our own hair, go to free or cheap concerts, wear cheap clothing for years, drive our cars to the ground, spend only $5/month for the 2 prepaid cellphones and will soon cancel the reduced satellite TV bill of $15/month and use only free TV through Roku. The plane's expense has been and will continue to be a big part of our budget. I plan to fly it a lot in our retirement. It may come to a day that we could no longer fly or I could drop dead the day after my retirement but since I have already lived my life to the fullest, it will not be a horror story ;-)
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