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Old 12-27-2009, 10:15 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,943,432 times
Reputation: 18050

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Quote:
Originally Posted by marylee54 View Post
We have an appointment tomorrow with Fidelity to fine tune our investments (yes, indeed, we really do have investments!). Time to re balance our portfolio for the time frame. Also, although we have wills and POA's, also have an appt with an attorney to fine tune them.

We've had a tough past few years. We both had jobs with 401k and pension, then were both laid off, had contract positions, but Cobra ate through a lot of our savings (and we still have a lot left, so give us credit for over saving). Now we both have new jobs, with excellent benefits, however, we need to re plan our path with the new benefits, etc. Guess you could say we're still on the same route, just switched trains!

I'm giving myself a big atta girl for NOT overdoing it for Christmas. We had a budget and stuck with it, that's it, we each exchanged one gift, and got our kids 3 gifts each, no more of the overbuying just for the sake of having something to wrap up. We did have one extravagence, a new kitty, but he was in a shelter, long story, we were volunteering and I spied a kitty on death row, well.........another mouth to feed! But he's my sweetie, keeps me warm on cold nights (he's a Maine Coon!)

I really like the suggestion of figuring our projected retirement income, then trying to live on it. We've already cut out a lot of fluff, and quality of life hasn't changed one bit, actually, we're happier with a simpler lifestyle!
Be sure to compensate for the changes in expenses as you get older.Cats are really not much of a expense and maine coon cats are really loveable pets.Ours is called Dixie because she is a southern lady my any measure.
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Old 12-27-2009, 10:22 PM
 
454 posts, read 1,244,234 times
Reputation: 297
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tightwad View Post
You don't already have a will and medical powers of attorney?

And even more unbelievable is you don't fully understand your pension plan!

Don't look now but you are waaaaaaaaaaaaaay behind the curve!!!!!!!
you should not give people advice! you are absolutely terrible at it. instead of encouragement, you provide fear, stress, and negative feelings to pretty much everyone you reply to (yes, i've read your other negative posts!).

OP, you are doing the right thing by planning ahead. get the ball rolling and you will be fine.
Just a suggestion: make sure you are aware of the 'fees' that are involved with someone/a company "managing" your 401k.

cheers.
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Old 12-28-2009, 12:41 AM
 
Location: At the Lake (in Texas)
2,070 posts, read 2,035,824 times
Reputation: 5032
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tightwad View Post
You don't already have a will and medical powers of attorney?

And even more unbelievable is you don't fully understand your pension plan!

Don't look now but you are waaaaaaaaaaaaaay behind the curve!!!!!!!
You know, I'm beginning to think some posters just LOOK for threads where they can inject hateful comments...this woman asked for help and suggestions, NOT harsh criticism.
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Old 12-28-2009, 12:53 AM
 
1,450 posts, read 3,789,121 times
Reputation: 968
Quote:
Originally Posted by MagnoliaThunder View Post
You know, I'm beginning to think some posters just LOOK for threads where they can inject hateful comments...this woman asked for help and suggestions, NOT harsh criticism.
Thanks

What I'm looking for is a general checklist, sort of like things one should do 5 years prior to retirement, that type of thing. financial and other advice appreciated, such as downsizing your home, geting rid of clutter, changing lifestyles, such as hobbies, second job, just general suggestions.

No one can actually plan another's retirement without knowing that person inside and out!
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Old 12-28-2009, 05:05 AM
 
Location: UK
296 posts, read 730,343 times
Reputation: 316
My suggestion:

I would NOT bother with a financial planner. I suggest that you spend time over the next few years and learn for yourself how to wisely invest your own money.
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Old 12-28-2009, 06:29 AM
 
454 posts, read 1,244,234 times
Reputation: 297
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plain Jane 3953 View Post
My suggestion:

I would NOT bother with a financial planner. I suggest that you spend time over the next few years and learn for yourself how to wisely invest your own money.
ditto.
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Old 12-28-2009, 08:20 AM
 
6,254 posts, read 4,734,369 times
Reputation: 12845
I also made the rounds of dealing with financial planners. Do not trust them. They are not independent. They do no work exclusively in your interest. Most of them seem to want to sell you annuities for other investment products.

I did find a somewhat acceptable level of help. Based on an old job and 401k plan, I continue to qualify for TIAA/CREF. The feds removed their nonprofit status, but TIAA/CREF continues to operate much like a co-op. I have received some financial planning help and it seems reliable.
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Old 12-28-2009, 09:39 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,515,954 times
Reputation: 27565
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrkliny View Post
I also made the rounds of dealing with financial planners. Do not trust them. They are not independent. They do no work exclusively in your interest. Most of them seem to want to sell you annuities for other investment products.

I did find a somewhat acceptable level of help. Based on an old job and 401k plan, I continue to qualify for TIAA/CREF. The feds removed their nonprofit status, but TIAA/CREF continues to operate much like a co-op. I have received some financial planning help and it seems reliable.
There are two types of planners. You dealt with one.

There is another type that is independent. They charge a fee and you pay.
They will look over your entire portfolio and analyze and give you recommendations. That's it. Then you walk away and you do the work.

If you are not astute in financial planning I would advise that you pay the fee and get an analysis done. The advisor will go over everything with you and answer questions and give advice but is not affiliated with any financial company where selling their goods to you is how he makes his money. These are fee based independent financial planners.
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Old 12-28-2009, 11:08 AM
 
Location: SoCal desert
8,093 posts, read 13,234,579 times
Reputation: 14870
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tightwad View Post
You don't already have a will and medical powers of attorney?

And even more unbelievable is you don't fully understand your pension plan!

Don't look now but you are waaaaaaaaaaaaaay behind the curve!!!!!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kleenex View Post
you should not give people advice! you are absolutely terrible at it. instead of encouragement, you provide fear, stress, and negative feelings to pretty much everyone you reply to (yes, i've read your other negative posts!).

OP, you are doing the right thing by planning ahead. get the ball rolling and you will be fine.
Just a suggestion: make sure you are aware of the 'fees' that are involved with someone/a company "managing" your 401k.

cheers.
Playing devil's advocate here.
Yes, there are negative posts all over C-D by several posters. I usually want to reach through the monitor and strangle them.
BUT.
In the original post, it said "Get a will" and "check out our pension plan". It wasn't mentioned until several posts later that the OP meant to write "Update our wills" and "check out our new-to-us pension plan".

OK, back on topic ...
marylee54, if you're not comfortable making your own excel spreadsheets - there is an easy family budget planner at Google templates. Fill it out the best you can to get the annual figures, copy it, and on the copy pretend you're retired. Subtract/add income/expenses. Then compare the 2. Makes it easy to see if you'll be OK, or if you really need to start that consulting business
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Old 12-28-2009, 11:49 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,515,954 times
Reputation: 27565
I go even easier than a software spreadsheet. I have a 12 column pad. The sheet is good for 1 year.
I record expenses each month and paychecks and savings. I jot down weekly cash spending on Fridays and leave the paper on my desk in a basket along with receipts and such. The first weekend of each month I sit down with a cup of coffee and do my "work" and then compare to the previous month to see how I'm doing.

I have the full year available right in front of me at all times. There are enough rows on this sheet to account for everything for me, including those emergency repair bills.
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