If you're retired or thinking of retiring, we invite you to chat here with others in the same phase of their life. Enjoy this forum, and please remember the no-politics rule at DG!
Welcome to our newest forum!
I've been waiting for this, and am excited to see it!
As in death and taxes . . . retirement will come someday and it seems that a lot of us baby boomers haven't prepared enough. This will be a good forum.
Thanks as I am one of those boomers a bit ill prepared and unadvised here!
Well, retirement is to alot us is FAR off a long way away.....but often time, it happens, if we're blessed to reach the destination. When I was working full time, I elected to save on 401K (for the rainy days), besides what my employer could provide. Little saving added onto every biweekly paychecks adds up. Although the money isn't available for everyday mundane's wants and needs. We can fall back into the safety nest, that'd built when the time comes.
Many young people need to know this, it's vitally important.
We're about 7 years from retirement but wish we had invested more when we were in our 20s and not been quite so self-indulgent. .
Boy, do I know that feeling June! I keep telling my kids that, but they think they need to use all of the money they earn now. I can see their dilemma though, because when you're young you aren't earning as much money and it seems like you have more expenses with raising families, house payments/rent, car payments, insurance, etc. Anything left over is used for food and retirement seems a long way off and not an immediate issue.
I'm in the "wish I'd saved" more boat myself. I just started an IRA when I was already 65. Had to take early Social Security. I have a very small pension, did I mention small?? that doesn't go far enough. With SS and my pension I could pay my rent if anything happened to DH. But that's about it. He's committed financially to first wife and all life insurance, pension benefits, health insurance goes to her. My ex took "forced" early retirement and doesn't get enough to help me out. I do have health insurance, but only a small life insurance policy if he dies first. I'm a realtor, so do make money. Unfortunately it's been tough lately, and I'm in the hole again waiting for commissions to show up. So no contributions to my small IRA. I'm just worried about this month.
Sorry me for venting in such detail.
Vent all you want! Its your forum.
Thanks Terry and dave for making this possible!
Dave and Terry, thanks so much! You'll see topics sprouting like weeds in here! LOL
Wow, that was fast. Thanks for the forum Dave, Terry et al.
Congratulations guys! I have been following the request thread and I think it's a great idea. Have fun with it!
Thanks, Terry and Dave! This will be a great place to share info and experiences with each other.
Thank You!!! It will be so nice to communicate with other seniors. I just turned 65 so I am sure I will be looking for ideas and answers to alot of questions. Meem
Sooooo....how many weeks (or are we down to counting the days now???)
This should be an interesting forum for all us "seniors". A lot of us are in the same boat---wish we had done a better job of preparing for retirement!
Actually it is interesting to us not-yet-seniors who are looking ahead. It is no longer as easy to save and invest. Just gasoline prices alone are seriously affecting our budget, not to mention the rising costs of anything related to gasoline, which is just about everything. We haven't decreased our savings and investments, but are finding it more of a challenge.
I'm a serious saver and I keep wondering if I shouldn't be splurging
more on the here & now. I think how nice it would be to redo the
kitchen or have a really cool new car. But I have no idea how long
I'll be able to keep my job and how long I will live. So I just keep saving
just about everything I can. (We did go for a wonderful vacation this
summer but it was our first in 5yrs).
Tammy, there is one thing for sure--you can't take it with you! LOL However, there has to be a "happy medium" somewhere between being someone who hoards their money (not referring to you as a serious saver) and someone who gives no thought at all to "tomorrow". We all need to learn to strike a balance somewhere. That balance probably is different for each of us.
As my dad would say : Live a little and save a little.....
Great forum! Lily-Love referred me here. Thanks, Lily-Love.
I have been retired for two years. My advice to you baby boomers: you are never too old to save. Tam, I can understand your situation and why you save, and you definitely have a valid incentive to save. Planning for your retirement is not hoarding. As for relaxation and entertainment, what could be better than gardening? I know stress melts away when I am digging in a flower bed. And it costs next to nothing. There are endless other diversions out there.
For those who have already met their retirement needs, then you can afford a vacation or rennovation to your kitchen. Go for it! For those who do not have a nest egg, immediately start an IRA and join any 401(k) available to you. Saving something is better than saving nothing.
I was in my late 40's before I started saving, though scantily, in a savings account. By the time I reached 50, it dawned on me I was not immortal! I became leery about the future I was facing. Actually, I was scared! It was then I knew I had to do something.
I decided on a definite amount I could stretch out of my paycheck without bankrupting myself. I had that amount automatically drawn from my checking account each month to prevent me from cheating. I knew I had to live on what was left, and that was that. BBers, do not spend what is not in your monthly bank account. If necessary, cut up your credit cards. I learned the hard way, they are tools for cheating.
The good news is you will be surprised how quickly the dollars ring up. You will be so proud of yourself, but more than that, you will begin to feel more secure. You have done all you can. The rest is up to God!
I hope this posting will inspire someone.
My DH is officially retiring February 29,2008. I retired at 50 and am not 62 till November of this year. It is very scary. We saved some,but DH always thought he would die young so we lived it up most of the time. Now here we are with the price of everything tripled and we are struggling on $29000 net income a year. It seems as though we could live comfortably on that amount,but we aren't doing very well. Now they cut his medical benefits and we have to pay more for less coverage and it just keeps getting worse. Our overhead went sky high last year and then a State of The Art new High School that was just built has raised our taxes another $1000 this year.
If it keeps going up I will have to go back to work. I don't feel all that well physically and the idea of going back to work exhausts me just thinking about it. I have been out of the work force so many years now, I can't imagine what it is like out there in the day to day grind. It was dog eat dog when I retired.
Posyblossom, you may be able to find some relief with your health insurance premiums. Certain approved insurance companies administer Medicare plans for each state. These types of plans are called Medicare Advantage Plans, and there are different types to choose from. Medicare puts out a handbook for each state explaining the plan choices.
I chose a Private Fee-for-Service (PFFS) Plan administered by Humana Insurance Co. (offered in Mississippi), meaning I can choose my own doctor, hospital, etc. I pay Humana $19 per month, and $96.40 to Medicare. The plan covers medical insurance AND prescription drugs.
For medical, there is NO yearly deductible. Hospital stay is $625 for each Medicare covered stay. NO copay for additional hospital days and NO limit to the number of days each benefit period.
Diagnostic tests, x-rays, and lab services are 20% coinsurance. Emergency room: 20% up to $50. Regular doctor visits are $15; specialty doctors are $30 per visit.
There are FREE preventive services: Bone mass measurement; colorectal screening exams; flu, Hepatitis B. and peumonia vaccines, mammograms, pap smears and pelvic exams, prostrate cancer screening exams.
There is NO deductible for prescription drug coverage. For the first $2,510 in drug costs, you pay ZERO DOLLARS copay for generics for a 3-month supply (mail order). Of course, you pay more for brand names. There is a gap in prescription drug coverage after $2,510 during which you pay 100% of drugs costs until you reach $4,050. After that, you pay next to nothing for generics.
There are many more benefits, but I have covered the basics. I hope this can be an option for you. $19 + $96.40 to Medicare (which you will pay anyway). That's not bad at all.
Here is what happened on the Insurance. I won't be eligible for Medicare till 65. So in order for me to have even 80 percent coverage and 80 percent coverage for prescriptions for us both, we took a company offer from Aetna for $152 per mo. and DH paying for Medicare. That will be approx. $252. per mo. for about 80% coverage for both of us till I can start getting Medicare. The sticky point is trying to get me covered too. Then, unless we are completely broke,we might find an insurance such as the one you describe. I researched all the options out there and got so confused about this supplement and that supplement, plus the fact of he on Medicare and me not, I threw in the towel and took the Company offer for retirees which is what just about everyone else who is retiring from there did.
We were informed because of his amount of Soc. Sec. and Pension, we would not be eligible for any State Funded Medical Programs.
Your Insurance sounds like a great deal,but I have not been able to find anything comparable in Pennsylvania unless our income was half what it is going to be at retirement.
Then there is the 401K to deal with,which further complicates getting a break on Insurance. What a mess that is for tax liability unless you roll it over.
Thanks for your info though. I made a note of the name and will recheck again if I stay sane enough,long enough, to see if Pa. offers something similar that I missed or misunderstood.
Thanks Martha for the time and energy you gave to explain your wonderful insurance,
This message was edited Jan 17, 2008 6:44 AM
Lucille, you may be correct that you, too, have to be on Medicare to get a Medicare Advantage Plans. I don't know whether you could be included under husband's coverage. If not, you are probably better off with the supplemental you have.
BTW, your income has nothing to do with the plans I'm referring to. I have a pension, IRA, and 401(k) invested from which I draw a monthly income. I also have investments from other sources. So, I know income has nothing to do with it unless you seek a state-funded insurance.
I know exactly what you mean about doing a tiring and exhaustive study to find a good affordable policy. All the retirees from my firm also went with our firm's supplemental plan for retirees. And, that is what I did for a few months, until a friend mentioned the Advantage Plans to me.
Here is everything about Medicare Advantage Plans. Go to page 19. There is a toll-free telephone number to call to inquire for information for your particular state. Humana may not be offered in PA, but something comparable will be. You can also find out if you would qualify for coverage under your husband's plan.
Thanks Martha☺ It sounds as though I gave up too soon,but there was a kind of understood threat from the Company, either get this plan now or pay a higher amount later or lose out completely on the offer. I even thought of getting just the Supplement for Jim so he would have full coverage and risk being completely uninsured till I reach 65,but I chickened out as I had Thyroid Cancer, not that they do much about that either this day and age. It just makes me feel crappy and worn out,but won't kill me☺
In the past,Ingersoll Rand looked out for their employees. Jim had full coverage for both of us. When he had open heart surgery a number of years ago, the hospital and and doctor fees were to the tune of $40,000 and completely covered by Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Wilkes-Barre,PA. Then the Company dropped this coverage and went to a National Blue Cross/Blue Shield and it has been a down hill slide ever after.. All we paid was $6 for the Cable TV in his room. My how things have changed.
☺I must say though.... we are enjoying the countdown till he retires. As he went out the door to go to work this morning he called back to me, "only 11 more working days and I will never have to put these steel toed shoes on again!" His last official day is Feb.29th,but he is taking the last 4 weeks of Feb. as vacation. It is an exciting and wonderful time after 42 years of working to finally be able to retire☺
There are good things happening too! As of March 15th, we will be completely debt-free and he will have a brand new truck to start his brand new life with. So, Life is good and we are glad, by the grace of God, to be alive☺☺
Congratulations to you and your DH ,who is doing his countdown, Lucille! We were there just a little over a year ago. My DH and I retired on the same day, and for us it was a great decision. All the years of saving and working so hard have given us options, and we are very comfortable with our decision. I am 60 now and my DH is 66. As you said, Life Is Good! Yay, Retirement!!
Congrats to you and your DH too ! Even though Jim tried to stick it out till 66, his legs are bothering him so, even though he had to take another cut in Soc.Sec. of $117 per month,we are not second guessing that decision. He needs to be home and have a little R&R.
It is great to hear you are doing well and that is another positive reinforcement we are making the right decision☺
Yay, Retirement says it all☺