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Author: FoolinSC Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 83  
Subject: Retirement choices arn't clear--need advice Date: 5/6/2007 9:08 PM
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Hi all. I'm considering my retirement options and trying to ascertain a couple of scenarios. As I've read on this forum, I'm with FERS and understand that I can retire with twenty two years and have no penalty in order to get my annuity at 22 years. I will be 55 at that time in year 2013. I'm 49 now am contributing 6% to my TSP.

As a Contract Specialist it seems that my specialty is highly desired in the private sector and I'm working on my MA in Acquisition and Procurement and will have it completed by next year at this time. I am prior military and bought back nine years of time. I retired out of the Navy Reserves so I will get a retirement check from them once I'm 60. I have 9 years active duty and 11 reserves. Your retirement pay is based on the amount of points you earned during those years.

I'm not clear how all this will calculate out for me at all or how to attempt to figure it out!.. As I see it, I could end up with a Navy reserve retirement when I'm 60 a Social security benefit kick in when I'm 62 (or wait till later) a retirement annuity from FERS when I'm either 55 or older. The scenarios are many depending on if I stay in civil service or if I choose to leave after 22 years and I'm not sure which would end up in my favor. I did do a retirement calculation based on a "best guess" of what my final salary will be in the year 2013 but it was a best guess. How do you calculate what you'll be making years from now?

Using a figure that is roughly $10K more than what my salary is now, I came up with roughly an $1,179 a month annuity if I were to retire at 55. This also accounts for health and life insurance.

My question is, how do I calculate the opportunity cost or perhaps a breakeven analysis of whether or not I should retire at 55, take a higher paying job or not- and stick it out until I get 30 years in taking into account that I'll get my Navy retirement, social security benefit, more time in TSP and more of an annuity or whether it would be more to my financial advantage to take a private sector position knowing that it'll probably pay me more for those years and I can transfer my TSP to either an IRA or a 401K? I could use some guidance here as I want to maximize my earnings as much as possible before I have to retire for good. I guess it hit me the other day that once I finally retire with 30 years at age 62-63, I'm thinking companies may be hard pressed to hire someone at that age. I feel very inadequate not knowing how to calculate what my financial future holds should I choose one road over the other. It would be nice to see some different scenarios that will show me "this is what you'll end up with if you do "A" and this is what you'll end up with if you do "B", therefore (insert letter) is your better option.

Thanks for any guidance you can offer.
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Author: kdewalt Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 50 of 83
Subject: Re: Retirement choices arn't clear--need advice Date: 5/7/2007 8:08 AM
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My suggestion is to go to a retirement planner and get help. They will generate a bunch of different scenarios based on investment returns and inflation and calculate when you can retire, how much you can withdrawl for living, and how long you will have until your money runs out.

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Author: rfmjbs Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 51 of 83
Subject: Re: Retirement choices arn't clear--need advice Date: 5/8/2007 11:41 AM
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If you're a USAA member, you can give them a call and ask to talk to one of the free financial advisors too. I've received retirement planning advice from them before, and I've mostly been happy with them. I don't know how in depth the free service will go, but it never hurts to ask.

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Author: bthomas15 Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52 of 83
Subject: Re: Retirement choices arn't clear--need advice Date: 5/18/2007 9:20 AM
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In my city, there are retirement seminars several times a year for employees under FERS and CSRS (held separately of course, because the situations are quite different). Here in St. Louis, they are held in the Federal Building downtown and the people in attendance were from many different agencies.

I don't remember the name of the company who conducts these seminars, but the woman was very good and very thorough. If you have the opportunity to attend one, I highly recommend it.



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