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Old 08-12-2017, 09:48 AM
1 posts, read 586 times
Reputation: 10



I am retiring from a job I've had for 20 years. I plan to do this over 1-3 years (not sure yet) where each year is 1/2 of my normal work hours and 1/2 of my normal pay. I'm 65 and am not yet getting SS. I will need to supplement my 1/2 pay during these 1-3 years with $ from elsewhere.

My question, which would make most sense for me in terms of optimizing my retirement savings:

1. To withdraw the extra $ I need from my retirement savings? (It is not an IRA account, it is an account set up by my employer with the employer contributing a certain fixed % [up to 10%] of what I contribute from my pay check.)

2. To get the extra $ I need by contributing LESS to my retirement account (thus getting less matching $ from my employer)?

3. A combination of the two?

Thank you!

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Old 08-12-2017, 10:18 AM
Location: La Costa, California
904 posts, read 512,189 times
Reputation: 1949
My opinion : Certainly not #2 when you get a matching contribution that's the best deal ever.
And not #3 for the same reason, So definitely #1 if that's your only remaining choice but I would look at starting SS next year.
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:39 AM
Location: Idaho
4,621 posts, read 4,458,547 times
Reputation: 9035
Agree about starting SS benefits when you achieve your Full Retirement Age. In your case, probably 66.

However, if you enjoy your employment, I have to recommend you stick it out until you're ready to cut the ties once and for all. I remember coming onto this forum about three and a half years ago lamenting that I have three years to go before I retire, and how can I possibly stand the wait!

Many, many here were very supportive and said that those three years would pass very quickly. Now that I have retired back in March, I have to agree that those three years did go very, very fast. Probably too fast! I spent that time in researching my retirement location as well as working on the financial stuff.

The only regret I could have is that I didn't start to pack and downsize during those three years I was waiting to retire. Instead, I waited until after I retired to start packing. Big mistake. Here it is, six months later, and I'm still packing. Almost done, but it took way longer than I would have guessed.

So, if you can stand going into work everyday, try to stick it out on a full-time basis. However, if there are other issues involved, such as a health concern, then do what you must. Good luck.

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Old 08-12-2017, 10:05 PM
13,314 posts, read 25,546,272 times
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Volosong, if I remember, you are in extreme vigorous health and also really liked your job. That's certainly great but not so true for everyone else!

I am going to cut the cord four months before turning 65 and will apply for Soc. Sec. a year before my FRA of 66. I want a new life, not only not working but moving to my semi-dream spot. One more year would make more money, true, and so would two more or three more. How to draw the line? It's very subjective unless a) you really like your job and b) you truly cannot afford even a modest retirement.

How much is enough, and when? Subjective.

I started downsizing last year! Never upsized that much, so a lifetime of studio apartments (until age 42) and a maximum of 1250 sq.ft. house kept me on the lower end of accumulation. Still have to downsize stuff to 800 sq.ft. but it's mostly books. Those studio apartments were a real advantage!
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Old 08-13-2017, 01:15 PM
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,540 posts, read 39,914,033 times
Reputation: 23653
#1 & #4

Minimally draw from what ever acct has the minimal tax and
least opportunity costs...

Take those wise words of volosong and start selling /downsizing today. ( my most successful retiree coworkers PREPARED early. Downsized before they left the job).

1) Sell your stuff to add income!
2) Get a PT job in a new field, if you desire to work PT in retirement. Nice time to learn new skills and get paid while doing it.
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Old 08-14-2017, 02:29 PM
2,032 posts, read 858,396 times
Reputation: 5027
I worked until 62 and retired for good. My wife worked a 3 day instead of 5 day week for a couple of years before she retired at 59 and it worked out OK (but we didn't have a problem with the reduction in pay, as her employer continued to pay her most of her 5 day salary). Both situations worked out fine. The one thing I would be leery of is retiring without enough income, then having to make up the difference. In that situation I would just work full time until my retirement income would be adequate to live on. There's nothing wrong with downsizing. I didn't have a problem with finances because I planned ahead, and we spend less than we take in, don't use credit cards and have no debt. We just live within our means. For a few years before retiring I reduced my take home pay to what it would be in retirement, and put the rest in my 401K. We have been retired 10 years and we haven't needed to withdraw any savings to live on or to supplement our retirement income from SS and my pension.

Last edited by bobspez; 08-14-2017 at 02:38 PM..
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