Greetings, all.I will wind up the long-term care series on Monday. It's time now to think of other topics.If anyone has ideas for future columns they would like to see, lemme hear 'em please. I can always write about whatever strikes my fancy, but I would prefer to write about what people want to hear.Regards..Pixy
PixyThe recent articles on Long Term Care have cause many of your readers to take a look at their net worth, to find out if they need to buy insurance. Perhaps some of the readers found out that they need to more estate planning.I know I doThanks,Jim
Individual health insurance policies. This is a major problem for someone going into early retirement.
Pixy I would like to suggest a topic I will call transitioning into retirement. For many people this may be a fairly short process. For my wife and I it will be a process of years. I suspect the issues I am wondering about are not specific to us.I have "retired" from 9 to 5 and earn a buck or two by on line investing (not day or week or even month trading). My wife still is in the 9 to 5 world, but plans to end that. Well there are a few issues like health insurance (until medicare kicks in for me, how to evaluate the various medigap policies, how to decide whether it is better to take IRA/401K money or to begin taking a pension early at a reduced rate, etc. Right now I am not sure what the "etc" is, but I suspect there are issues I have not thought about.
When, whether, and where to relocate in retirement, considering present ties to family and friends, cost of living and taxes, climate and recreation, cultural and medical facilities, crime rates and population density, transportation, and other such matters ad lib.(If you've already done that, I couldn't find the report.)Chips, giving up on his native Los Angeles and moving soon to an age-restricted active retirement community outside of Las Vegas
Yes, everything having to do with heathcare, e.g. Medicare, Medicare HMOs, Medigap.
<<Pixy I would like to suggest a topic I will call transitioning into retirement. For many people this may be a fairly short process.>>Indeed, Gordon! Some people get NO chance at transition at all! I got hurt on the job just before age 40 and was forcibly "retired" a year and a half later, with NO PREPARATIONS for a transition to such a state. Now in my mid 50s, I had to do a fair amount of struggling, including a bankruptcy, to make ends meet while only receiving a VA disability check. Of course, I still had to worry about my kids too! Most retirees don't have kids still in grade school! Well, my youngest son is 13 this year, while my eldest grandson is 9. We're hanging in there.Hindsight is 20/20 and though it's a little late to benefit from same, it would still be interesting to have this topic to see what I could have done, had there been the opportunity.Regards,GrumpySSG, US Army (Retired)http://www.geocities.com/highwaypoet/index.html
TMF Pixy wrote ....If anyone has ideas for future columns they would like to see, lemme hear 'em please. I can always write about whatever strikes my fancy, but I would prefer to write about what people want to hear. Enjoy ALL your writings and sage advice. Obviously, health care, insurance, etc. are a BIG concern to those of us in the "WINTER" of life; however,I feel that an overview of Estate Planning, etc. (with options to discuss with tax people and attorney) would be of keen interest to most (if not all) your readership. Keep up the good work. Dick
Chipsboss ...I have been having this discussion with myself for several years. I, too live in L.A., and considering where to live in retirement. I got the "Places Rated Almanac" which rates several hundred North American citieson ten issues (crime, education, cost of living, etc.) Ultimately not really helpful, as you must set your own priorities and make some decisions. There is also a retierment places almanac, same thing. If you want to live in a small town, close to fishing and low cost of living, then LA is not for you. If weather is important, cosmopolitan environment, plenty of entertainment, best health care, etc, then LA is the only choice. I think I'm stuck with LA. PV Peninsula is just too good. Too bad, as I could have a palace somewhere else for what I have here.I considered Santa Fe (no ocean, too cold), Seattle (too cold, dreary), San Antonio (Beautiful, affordable, but no ocean), Carmel (Expensive, even to us) and several other places. Much better subject than LTC, don't you think?
<<Ultimately not really helpful, as you must set your own priorities and make some decisions>>Well said, PVFOOL!In the end we all have quite different priorities. Some MUST be by the sea while others can't stand the heat! Indeed, I think that priorities in retirement locales would make an excellent topic.Grumpyhttp://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Village/7958/picture/alps1.jpg
I will soon be retiring at 50, and plan to live exclusively off of my investments. My budget says I can live comfortably withdrawing about 7% of my portfolio per year. Based on the recent performance of the stock market, it's easy to assume that a 7% withdrawal rate isn't a problem. Based on several books and articles I've read about the subject, 5%-6% withdrawal rate is where I should be. They also recommend a large portion (30-50%)of your holdings should be in bonds. 90% of my holdings are in stocks. My dilema is that I'm reluctant to move into bonds with the economy, (and stock market), doing so well. The last several years I've have between a 20-30% return, and the thought of the safe but sure 8% bond is not as appealing . I suspect I'm not alone in this problem and would like to hear other's opinions and experiences.
Frankly stockdum, I see no problem long term with your withdrawing 7%, say over the next 40 years. There will be some years where your portfolio is down 20 to 30% no doubt. And there will be some years that your portfolio is up 20 to 30%. Take your portfolio back 40 years and see what it would have done under the same scenario. I concur with you about bonds right now.Big Lon
Bonds Re often recommended as safe, sure returns. This is simply not true, at least as far as bond funds are concerned. As the yields go up, your investment shrinks. Buy only bonds themselves, not funds. The value will shrink if yields go up, but you can still depend on the bond itself.ps I am 100% in equities
For what it's worth, I fit both your categories. I MUST live by the sea, and I can't stand the heat.I apologize for being a bit pedantic.
--------and low humidity and sun, with real grass and trees-----is there really such a place? REALLY?
--------and low humidity and sun, with real grass and trees--Sorry. No real grass & trees. Maybe no real people.
Never hurts to dream does it? Regards, Mary
Perhaps if you allow yourself to adapt, you will find it much easier to "find" your perfect spot. I have lived on three different continents in quite diverse circumstances and have found that I could adapt to most environments. I grew up in a German seaport with 2 million inhabitants. Moved to a town of 2,500 in northern California where snow was rare in the winter. Spent a good number of years in a smaller town in France, where the countryside was beautiful but all the buildings gray. Spent a good portion of my life working in and living across the river from New York City. Spent yet another 10% of my life in the Far East, where I got to explore the countryside but also lived in a city of 11 million seouls. Spent many dreadful years in the Boston area to finally migrate to upstate New York, where the winters WILL kick your butt but the scenery is fantastic.It was all good! With the exception of Massachusetts, perhaps.I found myself able to adjust to many varying scenarios. I think if you'll give yourself half a chance to adapt, I think you'll be able to get by WITHOUT the ocean, or the mountains, or the dry, hot desert; you can't have it ALL! The one thing I learned early on in the Army is to be flexible, unless you have such funds to allow yourself to be able to establish residences in more than one location and thus have the best of both, or maybe more, worlds.Grumpyhttp://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Village/7958/Pix/mayor.jpg
Pixy, from one of your fans.Am within a month of retiring and have two people making very different recommendations as to what to hold and how to take distributions from my account.I know you've written quite a bit about this already, but I'd appreciate hearing much more.Possible Issues:Variable annuities?Fees for portfolio management (which I know would not be Foolish, but I may want to save time)Bonds vs. bond ladderingUtility funds (lo cost) as a surrogate for bonds?
The LTC series was right on. To enhance its value even more how's about rounding it out with an age-based comparative cost and rating chart that shows cost-efficiency for the A and AA rated LTC providers/
Pixy,I have just begun early retirement at age 52. I am now under COBRA coverage, but am daunted by what insurance package I should go with next. One alternative that I am considering for my wife and I is just getting coverage with a large deductible ($2500 per person) for major health issues and just pay for all the normal medical expenses that usually occur. I am sick and tired of all the time that we spend trying to get $100 to $200 reimbursements; it's such a waste of good ol' retirement time. I have been told that higher deductible coverage should be somewhere north of $100 per month but haven't done the research yet.Also my impression is that some physicians will give a discount on their pricing if they don't have to bother with the paperwork as well.Rozly
For a retirement of 40-50 years I plan on a heavy weighting of stocks (85%) and bonds(15%) plus cash for the next three years expenses. I treat the cash just like someone who keeps 6 months of income in savings in case he/she would lose their job. If interests rise or stocks slump, I use more of my cash for expenses; if the market is rising or rates are falling, then I'll sell more investments to fund my expenses and build back any reduction in my cash position.Cheers, Rozly
Hello Pixy , and hello fool retirees Pixy, you raise a great question.I am retiree ,I have more fun and new needs . Most of us go particularly for new activities ,like investing with the Fools . A friend of mine , former shiping specialist, is now singing in operas. Let us focus on new activities .We can extend ,or start new territories. It is fun to grow as a person , with others . Every tree that is alive wants to make new leaves , same thing for my wife and me .We adapt activities we always liked , as providing support to small businesses. We started coaching individuals ,and by doing so, WE are learning . Looking for some enriching experiences. Let's truly be foolish!
Colleges offer courses that cover one or two weeks and you can live on campus at a minimal cost. Might be an interesting way to travel to new areas and spend a little time in each at a low cost.
I am 70 and wish ti put part (20%) of my portfolio into preferred stocks. I'd like to see a series on the things investors should know about these.I'd also like to know where to go on the Net to find preferred stock data: call date, rating, cumulative or not cumulative, a comphrehensive list of the stocks with pertinent data. Thanks
Thanks for the invitation. I've greatly enjoyed your series on long term care and have printed and saved each column. How about turning your attention to ways to involve grandchildren in on-line options to learn interactive investment techniques? Could be educational both for grandparents and grandchildren. We need some Young Fools to join the Old Fools.
<<Might be an interesting way to travel to new areas and spend a little time in each at a low cost>>Interesting point, Bob!Being a military retiree, I have the added advantage of access to all military installations and their amenities. Two years ago, my two sons and I traveled to the Carolinas to visit and stay at Fort Jackson, SC and Fort Bragg, NC, two of the places where I had been stationed for training. Military bases usually have smimming pools as well as an Outdoor Recreation rental facility where one can rent, at minimal cost, things like tents, camping trailers, canoes, even bicycles. On our trip back to the Boston area we stopped at the half-way point in Washington DC. We stayed in a suite, equipped with digital climate control, VCR, full sized refrigerator and kitchenette with regular stove and microwave, kitchen utensils and dishes, and we were about 15 minutes from the White House! You know how much that would cost!We drove into Andrews AFB and I plopped down my ID and asked if they had room for us. They did. We stayed one night and paid $24. Staying at military bases gives one a great range of areas to explore. I didn't even mention the military-stand-by flights available!Any other military retirees out there?By the way, Bob, my son-in-law is named Melzer. Not that common a name, I think.Grumpyhttp://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Village/7958/picture/cdr1.jpg
After scanning the replies to-date, looks like the challenges of early retirement are a common concern. I'm about to retire at 49. Health care seems to be my biggest concern, and being currently employed abroad I don't even have access to the US-based COBRA option. I plan to retire in the US. Also of concern is working out that magic spend rate number, although I'm perhaps foolishly confident that I will have enough. Advice where the best retirement calculators are, especially that give good advise on the parameters to plug in, would be helpful. They all want to know, "What % of your current spending will you spend in retirement?" or "What annual amount will you spend in retirement?"-- "How long's a piece of string?" Until you get into the flow of a new lifestyle, how does one really know? On the other hand, there may be some good formulae to use as assumptions in this sort of exercise, or simply hearing from many of you experienced retirees, would be helpful. Looking forward to your articles, whatever the topic may be.Gary.
hi pixy, topics i(a pediatrician)am interested in having you discuss are private companies making medical care more available to all via companies like webmd healthon. also how to make prevention of gun violence happen. frankly i think the mothers of america should do battle with the gun industry to mandate trigger locks as well as child protection laws that punish gun owners whose weapons fall into the hands of children.did you know 30% of gun-owning households in the usa keep hand guns loaded and unlocked?
PVFOOL wrote:I considered Santa Fe (no ocean, too cold), Seattle (too cold, dreary), San Antonio (Beautiful, affordable, but no ocean), Carmel (Expensive, even to us) and several other places.Carmel is indeed outrageously expensive. But it's not the only great place to live on the Monterey Peninsula. It doesn't even have the best climate on the Monterey Peninsula (although it has arguably the best beach).I live 30 minutes from Carmel, have 2.5 acres on top of a hill with a view, in a 2400 sq ft house that costs less than 1/2 of what a much smaller house in Carmel would cost. As is the case in most areas, if you look outside the town/city limits at the rural areas, you can find great values.Bob H, aka Blues
I missed the long term care discussions - however I am very interested inthis care - is there any way I can get the info now?
Topic list:VEHICLES FOR GENERATING INCOME IN RETIREMENT - DIFFERENT STRATEGIES.
Thanks for a nice job on the recent series about long term care. Now here is a subject to think about. Theincreasing number of early retirees who have saved in the style of times past, been frugal, and have amassed a considerable IRA or 401k explosure, is posturing us to stuff the governments coffers with 39.6% income tax and 55% estate tax. That's most of our savings going to the government rather than our estates. Now we got into this position because we didn't spend everything we could, and that modus-oparandi will carry throughout retirement. So spending it is not an option. How do we protect these VERY large tax deferred savings from the tax man?
Greetings, Tackie, and welcome. You asked:<<I missed the long term care discussions - however I am very interested inthis care - is there any way I can get the info now?>>If you're looking for the weekly columns, those can be found in the archives at http://www.fool.com/retirement/retireeport/2000/retireeport2000.htm . The first was "The Spectre of Long-Term Care" on 1/31/00. The last of six ended today. The discussions were primarily on this board between 1/31 and today. Just look at the index of posts for the Retired Fools board, and you'll find a whole host of messages on the topic.Regards..Pixy
rjm1 wroteColleges offer courses that cover one or two weeks and you can live on campus at a minimal cost. Might be an interesting way to travel to new areas and spend a little time in each at a low cost.Do you have any examples or links to an internet site.Last year I heard Oxford was having a course on the internet, but final lecture and exam was on campus.The price was rather steap if I recall correctly.Thanks,Jim
The whole idea of an IRA was to establish a retirement nest egg not to avoid paying taxes! Most of my retirement is in a 403b and while I am not ecstatic about taxes I realize that I have been able to build it up by deferring (that is the operative word) taxes. True, I will do what I can to pass money on to the next generation but that will have to be within the existing laws.
I wonder if you have any information about a new law being presented that would allow longterm care to be deducted from our income tax.
TMF Pixy wrote: If anyone has ideas for future columns they would like to see, lemme hear 'em please.As a retiree (and a new Fool) I'd like to know more about investments for people in my age group (circa 70) so that this Fool and his money will not be soon parted>
I notice that retired Fools like too travel. The WEB is just full of help in making reservations. Travel sites or sub-sites are hooked into everything. Where are the best sites that are consistent in service and how should we judge them?It would seem that a very modest laptop and the ability to access the WEB from wherever would be useful on trips for both obtaining service and travel info, but also family communication. Are there lighter and smaller alternatives within the same expense range?Bill
Do you have any examples or links to an internet site. Last year I heard Oxford was having a course on the internet, but final lecture and exam was on campus. The price was rather steap if I recall correctly. Thanks, JimNoI have seen a site that list courses about a year ago but do not recall more than that.
I vote for Health insurance issues for early retirement.
<<also how to make prevention of gun violence happen. frankly i think the mothers of america should do battle with the gun industry to mandate trigger locks as well as child protection laws that punish gun owners whose weapons fall into the hands of children. did you know 30% of gun-owning households in the usa keep hand guns loaded and unlocked?>>Oh please, mblondy! I don't think our Retired Fools board is the right venue for this kind of liberal socialist victim disarmament gun-grabbing agenda!Here, this picture is for you.http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Village/7958/Pix/Mossy1.jpgIt is my youngest son loading one of our home defense systems. Education is the key to gun accident prevention.Grumpy
mblondy, I disagree with your position and feel that the guns aren't the problem, people and our society are. If the general public would wake up and realize that most of the terrible acts have been by persons on prescribed drugs, such as Prozac, and that no gun law in the world could have kept the guns out of the hands of the perpetrators; they would then go after the big drug companies and the DRs that prescribe these drugs. All you parents and grandparents out there need to be aware of the drug crisis in this country-and it is not from ILLEGAL drugs! This whole issue has hit home for me and my family; my nephew was put on a prescribed drug and within two weeks had a seizure. The kid didn't need drugs, he needed guidanace and vitamins...I know first hand as he lived with us for a year three years ago and did fine with our regimen and homeschooling. If our forefathers hadn't had weapons we would still be under British rule! Look at Australia and how their crime rate went up after folks turned in their weapons! We need to enforce the laws we have not make new ones! More people are killed by legal drugs and drunk drivers than by guns!
Gary, if you've been working overseas for a number of years, you may not have a good "feel" for what your needs will be. I'd recommend that you find a stateside job for at least a year until you know where you are moneywise. Also you may then have COBRA. Buying an individual health policy at your age is going to be a "sticker shock"...even if you are in good health. Even a really high deductable will be several hundred dollars a month. It will depend on where you live as well. Another thing you need to think about is if you are fully qualified under our Social Security. If you don't have a total of 40 quarters, the only way you can get Medicare at age 65 is to become a Voluntary Payee(over $350 a month, depending on how many quarters you have). Medicare is my area of expertise, but I have been an Insurance professional for over 20 years. There are a number of theories out there that financial planners use, but I don't personally think they are an accurate guideline. Sixty to seventy five percent of you prior income won't tell you much in your situation. Let me give you an example of how planning may be for naught..Medicare does not pay for most medications and many seniors are paying anywhere from $400 to $900 a month in medications out of their pockets. Personally from my seven years working with the Medicare counseling program in my state, I think most seniors are over medicated anyway, and would hate to see prescription drugs added to Medicare; My personal opinion and not the party line, mind you.
>"Gary, if you've been working overseas for a number of years..."<Thanks for your response. I am qualified for SS-- worked on a US payroll for > 15 years. But, I don't expect much from SS. Is that a common believe or at least prudent for planning purposes? I may try to get a part-time job with a family member, just to get on their health program, and then have access to COBRA, altho I understand that can also be an expensive option.Thanks again for your info.Gary.
Try analyzing Reverse Mortgages and investing for the next generation
for PVFoolPeninsula is just too goodIt would be hard indeed to leave Palos Verdes, but not too hard to leave North Hollywood, aka Hollywood del Norte. My family has been here in Los Angeles county for 95 years. Something in my head says "How can you leave Los Angeles?" and something else in my head says "Don't be silly; Los Angeles left you!"I've never lived far from the ocean (except when I was in the U.S. Navy!) so moving inland will certainly be a change. Maybe Lake Mead will do it for me. Wondering about the elections today. If that simple-majority issue passes, watch out for your property taxes!Chips, still packing
i am interested in setting up a revocable trust to take care of the needs of my grandkids and multiple charitiesalso maybe setting them up with stocks or funds now and adding to it as years go byi'm only 70 now and understand i could live to 120
Has anyone written a post about the cost of medical care in retirement? More specifically, the place in your budget for buying pharmaceuticals. If you are not fortunate enough to have a good civil service retirement package or a good corporate retirement package, the budget can really get dented. My wife is healthy enough to work. As long as she holds her job, her insurance covers her pharmaceutical costs. She is planning to cut back her hours to be a part timer. She can do that in this job, but she will loose her benefits. She has no choice because of her arthritis which is not getting better. Her pharmaceuticals cost almost $6000.00 per year. Planning for something like this is difficult. Ten years ago, when she was 55, we never dreamed we would have an expense like this. Medicare is useless when it comes to pharmaceuticals. Medigap plans cover half the cost of $2500-$3000 if you are prepared to have your premium increase almost 50% to include extended pharmaceutical coverage.If you are an optimist, and you are planning your retirement, try to consult with a pessimist.
you might consider an article focussing on "common pitfalls" of the novice investor.
Greetings Pixy,Many thanks for all the great & useful information youprovide. My choices for topic ideas are the following:> 10 year forward tax averaging> criteria/formula used for mandatory withdrawl at age 70 or 70 1/2 for IRA's & Deferred Compensation 457.An aside the 457 is the beloved of public schoolteachers. LOL (laughing on line). We wish, we could roll over or convert to an IRA but we can't. 457 is not a qualified plan! I'm grateful that teachers in a public school district in California put up a fight to prevent a district that was broke from confiscating their 457 funds. The district owned the funds although the teachers had contributed 100% to 457. IRS's has this written into the 457 Deferred Compensation interpertation of the law. IRS's rules were amended for teachers "only". Teachers now own their 457 Deferred Compensation funds. Stay with me as I explain what the word " only" means.457 Deferred Compensation was set up for non-profit organizations. How many people or loved ones do you knowwho have saved for retirement and would have it confiscated if the non-profit institution where they are employed went broke? So Pixy, what ever you can do to educate and inform will be appreciated. My best,Baara
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