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Author: JLC Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 77204  
Subject: Re: Retiring @ 55 Date: 10/14/2013 11:05 AM
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You've already received some good thoughts. I'll just re-enforce a few things.

You definitely need to know where you're spending you money. If you have no idea of what your needs (utilities, food, mortgage) and wants (travel, clothes, dinning out) are then you can't even begin to plan. Use Quicken or something to keep track of things. At a minimum you need a year's data, 3 is better.

Save, save, save. If your 401k's have matches, put in what gives you the max match. Max out IRAs. If money left over, can be a toss up about paying down the mortgage vs. regular brokerage account. Plus side: after mortgage is paid, the rent money is all yours. Debt free is good heading into retirement. Down side: tying up money in an illiquid asset and you could potentially do better than a 4% return with good dividend paying stocks.

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