Author Topic: Just beginning the early opt out option. Need some input  (Read 3237 times)


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Just beginning the early opt out option. Need some input
« on: August 27, 2018, 08:49:18 PM »
Brief synopsis of situation:

Children - 3 boys (32, 22, 18) - one completely self-sufficient, other two in college but 529s are stuffed. Last one will be moving out in less than 6 months.

Brief finances: Completely debt-free including mortgage. Recently left work with ~ $40k in the bank and $1.8M in IRA. Most in pre-tax, about 40k in ROTH.
Current situation: I chose to get out of the rat race for good this time. I HAD to get out at 44 due to health issues. I was given 2 years of disability by my company as I was very sick. Anyway, I was out of work for ~ 4.5 years with the last 2.5 being funded completely by my IRA. I worked diligently to build my IRA as well as to get myself healthy again while out of work.

After several years, I was able to start moving around again. Short version, I did recover and chose to return to work in order to allow the cash I had in my IRAs to grow without my having to touch them. I went into financial advising after having spent 20 years as an electrical engineer. I'm now a licensed broker (Series 6, 7, 63 and 65 as well as insurance license)  but the only thing I use the license for is information. I tried the FA route 6 months and realized it's more a sales job than an advisors job anyway, so I got back into engineering until I had enough and could handle no more. I've been out for a couple of months now but haven't determined which direction to take yet.

Bride and I have considered getting the RV/5th-wheel and traveling the country, but we're wrestling with whether to sell the house and live out of our RV, sell and move where we want but still do the RV thing, sell and do the RV thing until we choose where we want, ..... So many choices. One of the things money can actually buy you is jus that: Options. We don't have enough money to live like royalty, but I am certain that we can survive comfortably with what we have, especially considering the kids' college is paid for and they are close to being out on their own.

Question to the community: How did you make the transition into semi/full-retirement? How did you choose the lifestyle you were going to live in retirement? How did you choose where you were going to live? Would you live in a single place or move regularly, especially with the seasons? How did you choose if/when to sell your home? What resources would you suggest I utilize to get started?

I don't know what I don't know, so any words of wisdom would be appreciated. Not to get too macabre, but I'm an only-child and the life expectancy average of my grandfathers was 62. One died of a massive heart attack at work at 56 and the other died on the operating table with a massive aortic aneurism they were trying to repair when he was 68. Point is, I may live to 100 but I would prefer to make certain my bride and I enjoy some quality time together after all of these years of hard work and sacrifice (been married 29+ years) we've put in. We have put off doing for ourselves ever since we have had children, but the time has come.

Any/all suggestions welcomed and appreciated.




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Re: Just beginning the early opt out option. Need some input
« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2018, 04:18:22 PM »
Hi FrugalMcDougall

Welcome. I think you have hit the nail on the head, FI provide options. What each person does with those options is as unique as the individual. None of the choices on where to live, when to stop working, to own a home or rent, whether to be nomadic or stay in place.... none of them are permanent.

My cliche opinion is to do that which you believe will make you happiest. Maybe that is an RV until it isn't anymore. The approach I took was to identify the life I wanted to live, find others who had already done it, and then google and read to figure out how to make that happen. There are a lot of RV life blogs, for example.

Connecting this with your blog comment... after age 59.5 you have unrestricted access to your IRAs. A few years later you will have his/her SS benefits and Medicare. You could do 72t distributions to bridge the gap between today and 59.5. Be sure to understand how this impacts the cost of health insurance.

Happy to answer any questions you have.