Now that one rental house is sold, I technically have enough money in the bank to retire with a $2,000/month allowance until I am old enough to access my 401K. There are a few things that make me hesitate to take the plunge though.
1) My job has been work-from-home since Nov. 2019. I really like the convenience and so do my dogs.
2) Inflation. Now doesn't seem like a good time to stop adding to my savings.
3) The wobbly stock market. Very hard to watch the dips but I am still investing new money.
4) Health insurance. I am in the process of getting a tooth replaced. Can a handle a big medical/dental bill if I stop working? Plus, my nephew is on my health insurance for another 3 years.
5) My propensity to spend money on new hobbies and habits. I bought a lottery scratcher ticket for the first time. Spent $10, won $10. I should probably stop while I've broken even. The local horseback riding business has a "buy 6 rides, get 1 ride free". That's a goal I would like to reach but at $50/hr. I probably shouldn't. On the other hand, if I can't afford a "fun money" category in my budget, I don't think I should retire yet.
And there are a few things that make me want to quit the full time job now.
1) Time is not unlimited.
2) Both of my parents died from dementia related issues after years of ill health in their 70's.
3) How much money do I really need? Is it worth the trade-off?
4) Peer pressure from my friends in the 55+ community where I live even though I am only 50.
For now, I will keep working and do a few little things like weekend trips. First trip: Lockhart, Texas to visit my sister. She visits me twice a year (ok, so my house is kind of on the way to her vacation destinations) and I have never seen her house or met her dog. I am also stopping in Houston and dragging my college roommate with me. I haven't seen her in over 5 years and it is my turn to visit. It will be just like old times only a little grayer, with reading glasses.
After that, I want to go to Spokane, Sacramento, Portland, maybe Cincinnati, and Hungary. I am lucky that my nephew is willing to be my house and dog sitter. Hopefully he won't have too much trouble although all of my dogs are old, half blind, and prefer if someone accompanies them out to the yard.
|One of my old dogs barking at the road runner who was pecking the glass.|
It's even more fun to make plans now that I am closer to my goals. My dad retired at 55. I definitely need to retire before that! Maybe 54.