I’m 66, we have over $2 million, all I want to do is golf – can I retire? -Dlight News

I'm 66, we have over $2 million, all I want to do is golf - can I retire?

I am 66 years and 4 months old. My social security payments start next month at $3,300 a month. I currently work part-time, three days a week, as a professional engineer at $95/hour for my longtime regular full-time employer of 28 years. (I intend to leave this position sooner or later.) I currently have about $1.6 million in retirement accounts. My wife (age 60) has about $600,000 in various regular and retirement accounts. We have a 16-year-old daughter at home who attends a dual enrollment program in high school and college. If she stays with the program, she will graduate at age 19. He takes college classes while he’s in high school and we don’t pay any tuition while he’s in high school. Our monthly expenses are around $9,000-10,000 per month, including health insurance for my wife and daughter. We own our modest single-family home with no mortgage. Taxes and insurance are currently about $6,000 per year. We currently have no debt other than American Express and Visa which we pay each month. I am on Medicare. I wallop for double premium for Part “B” as I am a high wage earner. Both of us are in fair/normal health for a few old farts. I want to throw in the towel on May 5th and play more golf. Can we do it? See: We’re in our 60s and have lost $250,000 in our 401(k) plans – can we still retire? Congratulations, dear reader, on saving so much for your retirement. That alone is an amazing achievement! Because I don’t have all of your finances in front of me, nor am I a financial planner making a comprehensive plan for your retirement, I can’t say for sure whether you can retire or not. However, it obviously sounds like you’re doing well and you’re planning. Rather than telling you whether you should go for it or not, I’m going to offer some things to consider before you choose your middle iron. Over $2 million (your and your spouse’s savings combined) is a lot of money – I’m not suggesting otherwise – but when it comes to retirement, that doesn’t mean you’re automatically good to go once you hit the million-dollar mark. There are many factors, some of which you mentioned like healthcare and debt, as well as savings and spending. I put a lot of emphasis on cost analysis but for me, it is very important when deciding if and how to retire. Why? Because this is something you can mostly control. It’s a pretty powerful feeling. So my first suggestion: review those AMEX and Visa statements, as well as the money coming out of any checking accounts, and make sure you’re spending the way you want and need to. When you retire, you won’t have that part-time income anymore, and while you may be itching to get on the green, you’ll still be stressed if you don’t have enough greens in a decade or two. You’ve told me what your Social Security benefits will be and what your average monthly expenses are, but I’d suggest really looking at your expenses and assessing how comfortable you’ll be if you continue to spend this way in retirement. Check out Marketwatch’s column “Retirement Hacks” For advice on taking steps for your own retirement savings journey That’s another part of the analysis, which is how much money you want to withdraw from your retirement account. I’m not sure if your wife is still working, but regardless, the more money you take out of those accounts each month, the less will be available to grow over time. Taxes also play a part here, depending on whether you’re withdrawing from a traditional or Roth-style account. Those taxes can take a big chunk out of your spending money, as well as potentially give you a heftier tax bill at tax time. Think about this when your daughter goes to college. She probably won’t be there long if she continues with her hybrid high school and college courses (which is awesome), but do you plan on paying for her tuition, and if so, where is that money coming from? Advisors tell me all the time: You can take out a loan for college, but you can’t take out a loan for retirement. If you don’t already have a college savings account like one of those or a 529 plan, it can be beneficial to have a separate education savings account so you don’t have to drain your retirement account for tuition bills. . One last bit about that – plan for the unexpected. What would you do if a major expense were incurred? Will that money also come from a retirement account, or do you have an emergency account to cover it? Saving a lot of money for retirement is great, but it’s not the only task that individuals need to manage… Coming up with a Plan B, and maybe a Plan C and a Plan D is also necessary. See also: Are you planning for retirement all wrong? Next, before retiring, check how your money is invested. How is your asset allocation and does it need to change? Don’t make change just to make it – and certainly don’t make it because you read that the markets weren’t so hot back in the day – but keep in mind that this money doesn’t have to grow for decades to support you and your wife. , so you will need to strike that balance. Consulting a qualified financial professional, such as a certified financial planner, can help you figure out what the best investment mix is, but at a minimum, log into your account or call the firm where your accounts are located and check. or asset allocation. Also, you mentioned that you are already on Medicare. I suggest taking the time now — before open enrollment — to review your current and expected future health costs and then assess how well your current coverage is working for you. I know you mentioned that you and your wife are in good health, but if you think you might need an operation or services in the next year, it’s worth reviewing which plans offer you the best coverage for your situation. It’s better to start out so that you pay more out of pocket than you need to. It’s an exercise you don’t need to do right away, but it will definitely help you feel more prepared later in the year when it’s time to keep your current plan or switch to something else. As an aside, you will ultimately pay less in Medicare Part B premiums when your modified adjusted gross income decreases. That premium is based on your tax returns for the previous two years. You feel like you’re on the right track, which is awesome. I would just caution you to tie up a few loose ends before resigning so you can work without worry. Readers: Do you have suggestions for this reader? Add them in the comments below. Have a question about your own retirement savings? Email us HelpMeRetire@marketwatch.com

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