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Author: SoftSimp Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 5084  
Subject: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 6:56 PM
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FoolMeOnce suggested:

It might be premature to pronounce a board dead after only a half-dozen threads. Perhaps instead of giving up so soon, you would like to posit a nice on-topic post?

Regards,
FMO


So, here's what I'd like to know:

1. How much do you need in order to declare yourself financially independent?

2. How do you plan to get there?

3. How close are you (years from goal and % of money you still need)?

1. My magic number is probably lower than most people's. Based on our current situation, I believe we'll be fine with about $500,000-$600,000 in savings/investments (this is for both DH and me). In addition, we'll have one investment property and our home. I'm assuming that both of these are completely mortgage free at that time.

The income on that figure, combined with the income we would be getting from the investment property, should be more than enough to sustain our standard of living. I'm figuring on an inflation rate of about 3% and an income averaging 8% annually.

2. Between now and then, I'd like to purchase more investment properties. I've found the return on that investment to be much more predictable and stable than stocks or bonds, while still providing a good return. The more investment properties we have, the lower that final savings figure will need to be.

3. We have a looong way to go, partially because I sort of declared financial independence a bit early. I'm self-employed and I'm not working as many hours as I can/should. I'm working on that issue. It's a matter of motivation. Right now our non-mortgage debt and our savings/investments are about equal. I'm working to agressively reduce the debt figure. Fortunately, we're only paying 4% at the moment, but that will increase as interest rates creep back up.

So while we have equity in both our home and the investment property, if I don't count that we are basically starting from zero. In addition, we have 3 kids to put through college, ages 18, 6 and 2. So for the next 4 years, I think we'll be doing very well if we manage to continue reducing debt and socking away about 25% each year toward investments.

So, I have no idea how many years away we are, but we have about 100% to go.

SS

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Author: FoolMeOnce Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 82 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 7:11 PM
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SoftSimp writes:

How much do you need in order to declare yourself financially independent?

This is a very personal decision which to me is controlled more by your lifestyle than anything else. You have to be brutally honest about estimating the cost of the lifestyle which you desire. The rest is just math.


How do you plan to get there?

I suppose I am a little different than most folks. Being conservatice by nature, I opted for a career in the federal government. I expect to retire in about 5 years or so with an inflation-adjusted federal pension which is more than sufficient to fund my liferstyle. I have savings on the side as well, probably more than I need, but who knows what the future holds?


My magic number is probably lower than most people's. Based on our current situation, I believe we'll be fine with about $500,000-$600,000 in savings/investments (this is for both DH and me). In addition, we'll have one investment property and our home.

I think holding investment propertie(s) is vitally important for many early retirees. They provide a high, generally inflation-adjusted income. Good for you.


So while we have equity in both our home and the investment property, if I don't count that we are basically starting from zero. In addition, we have 3 kids to put through college, ages 18, 6 and 2.

You might find this post of mine interesting (particularly as regards the younger children). http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=16401505&sort=username

Welcome back! Good message boards don't just happen. They require effort. Eventually really good message boards are so useful and fun, participating seems almost effortless. I look forward to hearing more from you.

Regards,
FMO

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Author: rosietomato Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 89 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 8:01 PM
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Ooooh, good question!

Looking at my own 'reality'. I'm working the 'job-to-die-for', highly creative, fun, envelope-pushing, VERY well paid creative job that I CAN'T BELIEVE THEIR PAYING ME TO DO!!!!!. BUT.....1) I commute between two major cities by air, 2) only see my DH every OTHER weekend, 3) the lifestyle that I love is NOT where I work (we own an historic plantation complete with livestock and a very large historic house and I live in a small anticeptic basement apartment during the week in my jobs' city.) After a year and a half of this my 'magic number' now is a 'retirement' job -- retiring redefined into working a job that is stimulatng making much less money but allows me to live with my DH in the lifestyle--old house owners--that we enjoy TOGETHER a LOT earlier than 'retirement-retirement' where we don't have to work at all. In reality neither of us consider 'not working' a primary component of our retirement. Being creative in our jobs (which includes taking risk which can't be done if one HAS to work!) is KEY.

Even at a lower salary, we are such LBYM folks that the lower salary won't cramp our style (our plantation is almost paid for and the value has quadupled). It will just allow us to be MORE creative in our ability to support our lifestyle.

Life BEGINS after 50! But if you want life to begin after X, I say GO FOR IT!

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Author: Dilmatz Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 90 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 8:04 PM
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I want to know where to START.

I'd like to get more info on rental properties and how to make that work. Do I need to save for the down payment on those or can I/should I borrow against my house?

I don't even know if I COULD be FI and RE. I'd like to be, but I need a place to start. So, please respond to SS's question -- I'd love to see where you started...Daniel

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Author: FoolMeOnce Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 92 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 8:12 PM
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Dilmatz writes:

I'd like to get more info on rental properties and how to make that work.

I have been buying and leasing single family homes for about 25 years now. I will be happy to attempt to answer any specific questions you might have.

Do I need to save for the down payment on those or can I/should I borrow against my house?

Nothing-down deals are possible through a variety of techniques. I don't advise purchasing properties unless you have a sufficient amount of funds in reserve (in addition to any down payment) to handle unexpected events. Borrowing finds from your house to provide a down payment is feasable, but always be attentive to the true cost of using other people's money. Don't do anything like this unless you have sufficient financial depth or stable job expectations that you don't risk getting yourself in trouble.R

egards,
FMO

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Author: mazske Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 95 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 8:25 PM
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Short answer is my magic number is 14 years and 7 months. That's when I'll have exactly 20 years on my job and I'm eligible for early retirement. Since I'm in the process of buying 4 more years of military time that will count towards my pension, I should get a pension for 24 years of service, which is very close to the full retirement pension of 25 years.

Whoops, one other thing I forgot to mention in my previous post is that after 20 years on the job, we also get what's called the law enforcement supplement which is currently about $9,000 a year on top of our pension. This supplement will be paid until such a time that we start drawing Social Security.

Since Social Security, along with all of my possible defined pension plans are subject to change, I'll keep plugging away with my savings and investments.

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Author: tdxUVA Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 97 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 8:41 PM
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1. I haven't done an assesment of this yet. I think that could be something this board could help me with. Just by estimating, I'd say about 2 million.

2. Indexing. But I also plan to start my own business. While this may not be the best way to become FI, I'd rather make less money working for myself than more working for someone else. That's just the way I've been raised.

3. A long time, and close to 0%. I havent graduated college yet though, so I've got time on my side. I'll be starting a Vanguard account hopefully by next month. That will put me officially on the road to FIRE.

As you can tell, I've got alot of questions that need answering, but can also provide a unique point of view on other issues. I look forward to participating in this board!

-tdx

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Author: FoolNBlue Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 102 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 9:22 PM
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tdx,

I have to ask; why $2M from from a current student?! You need 80K to live in Charlotte?! Shocking coming from a student before "lifestyle creep" becomes a factor. Of course, I understand you may have a desired standard of living but 80K sounds high to me as a baseline.

Still looking at FL for a place to live? If you get down to the Tampa Bay area the first beer is on me. I'd be glad to answer any questions about the area if you email me offline.

FoolNBlue (Who would retire and buy a boat with $2M!)


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Author: FoolMeOnce Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 105 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/6/2003 9:39 PM
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FoolNBlue writes:

I have to ask; why $2M from from a current student?! You need 80K to live in Charlotte

Didn't specify whether or not the $2M would be adjusted for inflation. By the time $2M is accumulated, $80K may not go as far as it does now.

Regards,
FMO

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Author: Dilmatz Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 144 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 11:23 AM
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FMO,

Thanks for your response. Truth is, I don't even know where to start on my road to FIRE. Well, that's not entirely true, but I'm still in the getting-out-of-debt and build-up-the-efund stage of things. Honestly, once that's done, I'm not sure what the next step will/should be.

One thing I like about this board -- or at least what I assume this board will be about -- is getting people like me to even think about this kind of thing. I figure that even if I don't make it (RE), I'll at least retire in a better financial situation than if I didn't think about it.

So, I don't have specific questions. It intrigues me that people can/will buy a property to generate income. My brother has done this and he's not even out of debt yet, but it's working for him. Me, I'm too scared to go out on that limb, at least right now.

Did you get into rental properties before doing other investments or after? (Assuming, of course, that you have other investments.)

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Author: mazske Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 152 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:00 PM
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Dilmatz,

Truth is, I don't even know where to start on my road to FIRE. Well, that's not entirely true, but I'm still in the getting-out-of-debt and build-up-the-efund stage of things. Honestly, once that's done, I'm not sure what the next step will/should be.

Here's an idea for you. Start a new thread that tells us a little bit about your debt and your plan for paying it off. Tell us a little about your budget and if possible break it down as to how much is coming in and how much is going out.

As far as building an e-fund up, tell us a little about your current situation as in are you married, kids, living with parents, going to school etc. Depending on your situation would make a difference to me in how much of an e-fund you build up.

Once you are out of debt and you have an e-fund, or maybe even before the e-fund is fully funded, I would look at starting an automatic investment into some sort of index fund, such as Vanguard's Total Stock Market Index Fund.

If you care to tell us a little more about your budget and current situation, I'm sure myself or someone else will give us our opinions on what you can do.




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Author: Dilmatz Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 153 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:03 PM
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Hmm, I don't think I've ever done that. But should it go on another board? I don't want to get too OT with my personal situation. Do you think it would help others with this board?

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Author: LaughingLogic Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 155 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:12 PM
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But should it go on another board? I don't want to get too OT with my personal situation.

Personal does not equal off-topic. In fact, I commonly use the Fool boards as a source of information, advice, and support. Often, people who are interested enough in a particular topic to read a TMF board devoted to it actually enjoy sharing their knowledge and experience. :)

¤ Daniel ¤

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Author: mazske Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 156 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:16 PM
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Hmm, I don't think I've ever done that. But should it go on another board? I don't want to get too OT with my personal situation. Do you think it would help others with this board?

I don't think you would be getting too OT with talking about your personal situation. This board is for the folks who are still working and want to FIRE. What better way to learn how to save more money, reduce expenses etc than by letting us Wannabees study your budget.

This is not a budgeting board, but if by posting a budget it helps yourself or someone else learn something which gets them closer to their personal FIRE date, then all the better.

The concept behind the FIRE Wannabee board was to have a watercooler type discussion board where everything is game, but anything like flaming, totally OT stuff, arguements, criticism etc were off limits.

The way to FIRE is easy. Save as much money as possible and/or have enough non-working type income coming in. When you have enough to pay your bills and enough to last the rest of your life, you can retire.

However, the discussion about ways to save more money, where to save it at, what kind of hobbies to have, where to live etc. are great ways to prepare all of us for FIRE.


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Author: Dilmatz Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 157 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:29 PM
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OK, I'll start another thread. I wonder how long it will take me to summarize my situation. I hope it's not too long... :-)

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Author: phantomdiver Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 159 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:32 PM
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Truth is, I don't even know where to start on my road to FIRE.

Maybe this will help. I've been on the Retire Early Home Page board for quite a while and think that a 3.5% or 4% withdrawal from my assets will work for me. This is known over there as the SWR: safe withdrawal rate. So I figure what my yearly expenses are and then add and subtract as necessary. Fewer kids then, so less food cost etc. Fewer vehicles, because fewer kids. No mortgage, because I'll trade my house in for something I can buy outright. No social security tax. No savings cost!

Add a fudge factor amount and multiply the whole shebang by 25 to 30. That's what I'll need. Then I'll withdraw 3.5% to 4% from that amount the first year. In subsequent years, I'll multiply the yearly amount by the inflation figures for the past year.

I estimate that inflation will run at 3.5%. Therefore, I multiply the amount that I would need for a year if I retired today by 3.5% for every year that I project figures out. I have a lovely spreadsheet that helps me with all this.

Does that help?

I figure that even if I don't make it (RE), I'll at least retire in a better financial situation than if I didn't think about it.

You got that right!

phantomdiver

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Author: FoolMeOnce Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 160 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:32 PM
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Dilmatz writes:

Thanks for your response. Truth is, I don't even know where to start on my road to FIRE. Well, that's not entirely true, but I'm still in the getting-out-of-debt and build-up-the-efund stage of things. Honestly, once that's done, I'm not sure what the next step will/should be.

You have already started the next step; education. While you are living below your means, paying off debts and saving money you can be getting smarter and preparing to take more ambitious steps toward eventual financial independence.


One thing I like about this board -- or at least what I assume this board will be about -- is getting people like me to even think about this kind of thing. I figure that even if I don't make it (RE), I'll at least retire in a better financial situation than if I didn't think about it.

I agree totally. It is clear to me that you already see through the fog of consumerism which ensnares too may of the unenlightened. You already realize that economic virtue is its own reward.


So, I don't have specific questions. It intrigues me that people can/will buy a property to generate income. My brother has done this and he's not even out of debt yet, but it's working for him. Me, I'm too scared to go out on that limb, at least right now.

Fear of the unknown is healthy. Show me a person who is unafraid of losing money and I will show you a person who loses money. All investors need to have a healthy understanding and appreciation of the role that risk plays in their investing.


Did you get into rental properties before doing other investments or after? (Assuming, of course, that you have other investments.)

I do have other investments. My portfolio is composed of about 60% directly held real estate, 20% fixed-income and 20% equities. My very first investment was a personal dwelling. I call it my first investment because I only lived there a short while before moving out and converting it into a rental property. I purchased the house with nothing down from a retiree who needed income. He held the note. My total cost to get into the property that cost $40K was about $700 to pay the attorney and miscellaneous settlement costs. I moved 1200 miles away with a job transfer. Five or so years later I returned to discover that the property was now worth $95K. The note balance had been reduced to $35K. In a little over five years I turned $700 into $60K of equity. I was hooked. I made it my business from that point on to learn as much about real estate investing as I could. Since then, I have never been without a few rental properties.

This deal taught me a number of things: It's damned hard to lose money when you by an appreciating asset with little of your own money, especially when the asset pays for itself. It seemed magical to me that I could buy a valuable, appreciating asset using mostly other people's money and that someone was willing to live-in, take care of and basically pay off the note for me. I thought that this was better than sliced bread. I still do.

I didn't invest any money in the stock market until about ten years ago. My IRA and 401K had grown large enough that I felt obligated to more actively manage them. If it weren't for these vehicles, I probably would have never ventured into the equities markets. It's probably a good thing simply for diversification purposes. I have no desire to analyze individual stocks. I have severe reservations about both the efficacy of this activity and the amount of time it would require, so I am an indexer.


Regards,
FMO


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Author: IndecisiveFool Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 162 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 2:45 PM
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1. How much do you need in order to declare yourself financially independent?

I have relatively expensive tastes when it comes to activities. Such activities as golf, fishing, skiing, and travel will require a sum of money. In retirement, I expect I'll need at least $50k if not more in current dollars.

2. How do you plan to get there?

Investing through stocks and mutual funds. Currently I do not have the time or desire to own my own investment property.

3. How close are you (years from goal and % of money you still need)?

That's difficult to say. I plan on paying for my kids' college education so it's hard to project what that will cost. Also our lives have changed so much over the years. Everytime I project a goal, I find my estimates to be way off. For example, I estimated an income goal which would take 5 years to obtain. It took only two. That's the good part. I also estimated the size of our retirement accounts. With the decline of the stock market, it's below that goal right now. Not so great.

Therefore, I'll keep trying to save more, spend less, and reevaluate my goals as time goes on.

IF


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Author: FoolNBlue Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 165 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 4:20 PM
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Didn't specify whether or not the $2M would be adjusted for inflation. By the time $2M is accumulated, $80K may not go as far as it does now.

Regards,
FMO


Yes, but if we are not talking current dollars then the question has absolutely no meaning. $25K might be enough if I'm talking 1850 dollars. I stand by my assumption as the question, "How much" means nothing without some assumption of commonality. I also assumed US Dollars.

FoolNBlue (Assuming constant current year dollars unless otherwise specified)

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Author: Xenonax Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 167 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 4:59 PM
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1. How much do you need in order to declare yourself financially independent?

I've determined that $2.5 Mil would be about right for me and mine as that would give me $100,000 annually with a 4% withdrawal rate. By the time that I can enjoy retirement, this amount will probably be about the equivalent of $30,000 annually in today's money.

2. How do you plan to get there?

Investing in my401k (which is matched with company stock up to 3% of my gross), investing in my Roth IRA and starting the same for me soon-to-be bride, and participating in my company's (UPS) discounted stock purchase program for as long as I am an employee there. Additionally, I hope to build other investments such as rent houses and the like.

3. How close are you (years from goal and % of money you still need)?

I am 23 years old, and currently have about $15,000 invested. I have had to slow down my investing as of late as I have purchased a home, and am getting married in late September. But, when I can pick it all up again, I anticipate being able to retire by age 55. So, that is 32 years down the road. Though, it is completely possible that my circumstances may change and retirement may come sooner. It is simply dependent on how much I can invest at any given time (particularly here in the earlier years) which is dictated by how well I manage my incomes and outflows.

--Xenonax

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Author: tdxUVA Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 183 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 8:51 PM
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I have to ask; why $2M from from a current student?! You need 80K to live in Charlotte?! Shocking coming from a student before "lifestyle creep" becomes a factor. Of course, I understand you may have a desired standard of living but 80K sounds high to me as a baseline.

FNB,

I said 2M b/c, as I stated, I'm not really sure how much Im gonna need. I've never done an analysis of how much I'll need, so Im hoping this board can help me out on this.

Still looking at FL for a place to live? If you get down to the Tampa Bay area the first beer is on me. I'd be glad to answer any questions about the area if you email me offline.

Yes I am, and I will e-mail you. Thanks, and hoepfully we'll have that beer.

-tdx

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Author: SoftSimp Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 186 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 10:15 PM
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after 20 years on the job, we also get what's called the law enforcement supplement which is currently about $9,000 a year on top of our pension. This supplement will be paid until such a time that we start drawing Social Security.

Is this the DROP program? My aunt is a police officer and she's constantly emailing me about that. She seems quite pleased with how her retirement is looking - she's got about 4 years until then, but anticipates being able to "work" a good portion of those years using accumulated vacation time.

SS

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Author: mazske Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 189 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/7/2003 11:45 PM
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Is this the DROP program? My aunt is a police officer and she's constantly emailing me about that.

I've heard of the DROP program somewhere, but we don't have it here. Is you aunt in FL by anychance? I had to do 5 extradtions to FL during the past year and I think that's where I heard Officers talking about that program.

The supplement program that we have is open to police officers, firefighters and correction officers. It's being fazed out for new hires, but hopefully they'll keep it for us old guys.

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Author: SoftSimp Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 190 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/8/2003 7:45 AM
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I've heard of the DROP program somewhere, but we don't have it here. Is you aunt in FL by anychance?

No, she's in Ohio. But it seems to me that no matter where you are, public servants are pretty well taken care of in retirement. Which is as it should be, IMO.

SS

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Author: phantomdiver Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 235 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/8/2003 5:59 PM
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Yes, but if we are not talking current dollars then the question has absolutely no meaning.

Oh, I disagree. I have to use future dollars or I'll get confused.

My spreadsheet has everything laid out in years. I'd need much more if I retired this year than in ten years, because I still have kids at home and want to live in Fairfax County until they graduate, so that they won't have to switch schools.

I don't assume that I'll spend less when each kid leaves the nest, though I am pretty sure that will be true. I'm going to watch exactly what we spend much more closely once #3 leaves and even more closely when #4 leaves. Then I will be able to make better calculations than I can now, and maybe I'll even be able to retire earlier than I'd expected.

My spreadsheet has a sheet estimating how much income (and thus how much in assets) I'd need here in Fairfax County and also in Shenandoah County. If for some horrible reason DH and I need to retire in Fairfax County, I'll have to work longer to finance that.

I find it all very interesting. I love fiddling with numbers like this.

phantomdiver

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Author: FoolStreet Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 242 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/8/2003 7:40 PM
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I want to know where to START.

I'd like to get more info on rental properties and how to make that work. Do I need to save for the down payment on those or can I/should I borrow against my house?

I don't even know if I COULD be FI and RE. I'd like to be, but I need a place to start. So, please respond to SS's question -- I'd love to see where you started...Daniel


I think it starts w/ creativity and thinking outside the box. Realizing that you are not bound by preconceived expectations about who you are or what you can achieve. about what other people expect out of you or where they place you in their world view.

aside from that, there are many ways to accomplish your dreams and goals - some of them being achievements and some of them being the walk itself

but you really want to know where to start? well...

I read this article a while back, it said the Microsoft employs more millionaire secretaries than any other company in the world. they chose stock options over Christmas bonuses. It was a good move. I remember there was this photo of one of the groundskeepers standing next to his Ferrari. You see shit lke this, and you just can't see. Makes you think its possible even easy. And you turn on the TV and there's just more of it. The 87 million dollar lottery winner. That kid actor who just made 20 million on his last movie. The Internet stock that shot through the roof. You could have made millions off it if you just got in early. And that's exactly what I wanted to do. Get in. I didn't want to be an innovator. I just wanted to make the quick, easy buck. I just wanted in. The Notorious BIG put it best. "Your either slingin crack rock, or you got a wicked jump shot." Nobody wants to work for it anymore. There's no honor in taking that after-school job at Mickey-Dee's. The honor's in the dollar kid. So in the whiteboy way of slingin crack rock, I became a stockbroker.




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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 567 of 5084
Subject: Re: What's your magic number? Date: 8/23/2003 11:25 PM
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<<FMO,

Thanks for your response. Truth is, I don't even know where to start on my road to FIRE. Well, that's not entirely true, but I'm still in the getting-out-of-debt and build-up-the-efund stage of things. Honestly, once that's done, I'm not sure what the next step will/should be.
>>


I think this is a very common problem.


Rather commonly people have very little ability to plan their finaces and even their lives intelligently. A lot of smart people get out of college, get a good job and then start spending up a storm by going into debt.


The second stage is when those people discover that that is a financial plan that leads to disaster, or at least goes no where. Usually, people begin to make better plans with what they would like to do with their life --- buying a house, providing for children, early retirement and such. Those goals lead to a reconsideration of the kind of spending that leads to increasing debt.


The third stage is where you apparently are now ---paying off that debt. That's a fine accomplishment when achieved, but it just leads to a new financial stage which must be learned.


The fourth stage is asset building. Learning to save money and invest it in ways that will cause it to grow. There are lots of ways to do that, from starting a small business, investing in stocks and bonds, or buying and managing real estate, among many others.


Of course, some people get stuck in stage one for life. Others go on to stage four and stages beyond that. Sounds like you are making good progress in your plans for life.



Seattle Pioneer

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