It's been a while since I posted another update on retirement. Here's what has happened since the 2014 post.
Mrs. HHD and I flew all three grandkids to Orlando last summer for a week at Disney World. Very enjoyable, but horribly hot and humid - one afternoon even the grandkids pooped out early and went back to the lodge to lounge around the pool. I'm sure the kids will remember that trip long after Grandma and Grandpa are gone.
I did pick up a "retirement pointer" worth passing on to you. As time passes, Mrs. HHD and I have accumulated enough little irritating health problems - nothing major, but accumulated irritants - that travel is becoming less attractive. I had been advised (when I retired) by an older friend to take advantage of early retirement years for the trips, since health will limit the travel opportunities later in life. Worth considering...
Also, as I stated in an earlier post to this thread, keep in mind the magic age of 70-1/2 - you must start taking withdrawals from your IRA (and paying taxes at the ordinary income marginal rate). I didn't need the money, so my financial advisor created another investment account for me. Once a year he calculates the RMD, takes enough stocks out of my IRA to meet the RMD, cashes enough to make a 25% withholding payment, then moves the rest into my individual account. My IRA produces essentially enough dividend and gain income to meet the RMD, leaving the principal basically the same (not exact, but pretty close). Meanwhile, my individual account grows by (a) the stocks transferred into it when making the RMD and (b) any outside money I bring in from consulting.
Also watch your checking account balance. We're getting essentially zero interest on checking these days, so any balance beyond a couple of months expenses should be put to work in investments.
I do have a grandkid trip planned for this summer - but driving this time instead of flying. TSA is getting to be a real pain in the neck, and the airlines are not real big on customer service or comfort. I'll drive them to Colorado for a week right after school lets out for the summer. Mrs. HHD is aboard with this plan. She has grown to hate the airlines even more than I do.
All you folks that are nearing retirement, do your planning - with a competent financial advisor. When the time is right, pull the plug and go for it! Your imagination is not good enough to foresee how good retirement can be!
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Last edited: Mar 15, 2016