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Old 20-07-2014, 09:36   #46
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

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...In the USA the top 5% have 95% of the wealth...
Not quite...total wealth held by the top 5 percent is more like 70 percent...and for the top 10 percent about 80 percent. And the wealth gap between high earners and low earners is widening primarily because of the effect of QE on market investments...which is a bubble that will burst at some point. So is it even "real" money?

My advice regarding investing to cruise is to invest what you can in the boat and non-electronic equipment you need to cruise in today's dollars...sail in the "off time" you have in the summer...and build the skills you need to be as self sufficient as possible when you head out. Your dollars will likely never be worth more than they are right now. Anchors/chain/standing and running rigging/sails/tools/spares/bilge pumps and other equipment are very expensive and have long useful lives. Invest now to avoid higher costs later.

At your target date you both will still be young and if healthy enough to cruise (or live aboard) will be healthy enough to work...if you have marketable skills.
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Old 20-07-2014, 09:39   #47
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

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Yes you are. There's no 'nice' way to call someone a lazy mooch. (mooch is my word) You made a snap judgment based on a small piece of information and ran with it. y.
Then don't bother calling in to the Suze Orman show... my wife watches her all the time for retirement advice... you won't like her either. She dishes out "tough love," something you're obviously not used to. Good luck.

Ken
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Old 20-07-2014, 12:53   #48
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

This Forum has a great thread about making a living on the go and it's also a chapter in my book Living Aboard Your RV, 4th Edition. Endless possibilities. Take a look at travelswithkevinandruth.com They are a Canadian couple who manage a campground in Canada for four months in summer, which feeds the kitty. They live all year on $1,000 a month and even manage a fly-in vacation to couch surf some exotic locale once a year. Don't lose sight of an exit strategy. No matter how much you love living aboard, stuff happens. When it does and you have nothing left but memories and a greatly depreciated boat, it can be very difficult to go back to "real life".
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Old 21-07-2014, 06:41   #49
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

Very interesting thread. A nice mix of politics, vitriol and some good, solid answers to a legitimate question. I applaud the OP for having a thick skin and reading through it all to pick out the gems of good advice.

The only thing I can add is my own experience with so-called retirement planning professionals. With some notable exceptions (one is a personal friend) they are almost all glorified insurance salesmen.

In your situation, like mine, insurance really doesn't make a lot of sense. Oh, they have other names for them, like various annuities, but any time you give a company money now, with a promise of returns later, it's an insurance product. The salesman gets a very handsome commission, the insurance company always makes a nice profit, and the odds are always against you.

With a higher net worth, an annuity can be a very useful tool, especially as a hedge, but only if it's balanced with other instruments. You're not there.

You can pay a "real" financial planner who will do the homework for you, but it sounds like you'd do just as well in "DIY" mode. You've got a good start, and a lot to think about.

Oh, and don't expect 12% return on ANY stock over the long term. Your ESOP sounds very risky to me. The more you can diversify, the better. An IRA is a very good idea. Anything you can do to earn and save now, will pay off later. But now I'm just repeating what others have said here.
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Old 21-07-2014, 07:09   #50
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

To the OP... First off, stop arguing with Kenomac. That's a waste of time.

Second, you really need to check the details on your ESOP. I have never heard of any ESOP where you were not able to touch any of the shares for as long as you are saying. You've been there fifteen years, and you still can't get to any of it for another seven!?! And then you can only get 10%? That just doesn't sound right to me. Not saying that I'm sure you're wrong, but saying that I think you need to be absolutely certain that you are understanding all the rules correctly.

Third, as soon as possible you need to DIVERSIFY! You have all of your retirement in one company. If that company goes belly-up then every penny of your retirement savings turns to dust. It's gone. And given the rules of your ESOP, it probably disappears before you have any chance to do anything about it. You MUST understand what a seriously BAD situation this is for you!

Good luck.
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Old 21-07-2014, 14:08   #51
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

Denverdon, its possible he is correct about his esop. They are not as closely regulated as other investments, particularly in this case where the company is contributing all the money, if I understand the op correctly. Like you say, he really needs to start doing some serious research. He apparently has a lot of free time for at least part of year and that would be time well spent.

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Old 21-07-2014, 15:06   #52
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

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Get off your ass and get a FULL TIME job and start saving. It's not rocket science to figure it out.

Only in the US.
And your full time job is .....................
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Old 21-07-2014, 15:17   #53
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

BTW - I have an ESOP with my current company. Unless the ESOP plan decides to buy me out I can not get that money till 65. ESOPs are basically a delayed profit sharing plan.

In my cruising kitty cals I have enough money once I hit a certain age so I can collect my social security and 401Ks without penalty, and small pension from another old job. So most of my extra cash is currently going into things I can get to sooner (like cash and regular stocks etc).

The first thing really for the OP is to determine their cruising budget
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Old 21-07-2014, 15:53   #54
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

This is indeed an interesting thread. As to Kenomac, your vitriol is directed to the wrong party. The OP is taking advantage of what the benefits the law grants her. I will never criticize someone for doing so, whether I agree or disagree with the law being taken advantage of. Nor will I ever advise someone to voluntarily choose to forego any benefit to which they are legally entitled. As a tax attorney, I routinely help clients take advantage of many provisions of the Tax Code with which I (and they in some cases) disagree. But as long as it is the law, they are entitled to it.

As self-righteous as you come across, I am sure that during your many years of self-employment you were absolutely scrupulous about your tax situation and never allowed any non-business item or expense to snea kthrough as a deduction, or a cash income item to fail to be declared as income.

If you disagree with the law, buy your own legislator and get it changed, but do not expect people affected by it not to take advantage of it.
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Old 21-07-2014, 15:55   #55
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

Maybe we should merge this with the Rebel Heart Lawsuit thread.

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Old 21-07-2014, 17:26   #56
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

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Maybe we should merge this with the Rebel Heart Lawsuit thread.





I don't understand why you would say that. Can you explain?
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Old 21-07-2014, 17:45   #57
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

OK, I've bitten my tongue from the first post. As a person that goes to work every work day and has two weeks off a year to enjoy, I have to agree with Kenomac.
From my understanding these people have over 100K that has been saved towards their retirement, and ALL of that has been put into a retirement plan by their part time employer? I think they owe their employer a huge thank you, because without him putting money back for them, how much have they saved for retirement?
They enjoy a four month vacation every year, I might add what keeps them from having a second job for this four months?
Myself, I would love a four month vacation, I could really cruise in a four month span of time.

No, they chose their living, their lifestyle, it wasn't forced upon them. I see the as being extremely lucky, I'd kill for that four months
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Old 21-07-2014, 18:57   #58
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

If that company goes under, as a lot do, you'll be two grown people living in a double wide trailer making 25 grand a year each. Putting the ESOP completely aside you've got to get that income up. Do you have your own equipment, or is it company supplied? I know the outfit that shoots photos of the kids here charges a damn fortune, and he sucks!!

Sure weddings, and all the other stuff are done in the summer months. People shoot in the winter, too. I have a friend who loves her photography job. Paid 40 grand to go to The Art Institutes. Makes $9.50 an hour shooting jewelery.

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Old 21-07-2014, 18:59   #59
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

Get Dave Ramsey's book The Total Money Makeover. That will help you tremendously.

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Old 21-07-2014, 19:03   #60
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Re: Retirement Planning: Help me sort this out

If you own the equipment get out there and shoot. Sunrises, sunsets, sailboats, the ooh - aah landscapes people will plunk down 5 bucks a postcard for. Get your work copywritten. You can make a whole lot of money with a camera. It takes a ton of work.

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