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Old 10-04-2018, 09:36 AM   #1
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Crossroads- Retirement and cruise or continue to work?

I know this has been discussed in multiple ways but I think as I struggle with this important decision I wanted to get fresh opinions and feedback from the Forum members-that I believe understand and that I have a connection to— even though I may not have met many of you I feel connected in a way that I can not describe to the non- boating world- so yes I value your honest and thoughtful opinions.

I have a job that pays tons of money with great benefits-kids basically grown-currently both wife and I have relatively great health, we own a beautiful new trawler, I am in early 60’s , she late 50’s,- want to do loop,Caribbean, Alaska, etc. and we can walk away from our jobs and financially be ok- still keep land home and Trawler—would have to tighten our belts and fine tune our budget. Won’t be anything left for the kids though-

She says let’s do it ! She by the way loves the boat and cruising as much or more than me— I am a very lucky man for sure!! We don’t know what the future holds and if we work and accumulate more $, we may be stronger financially but I feel we will miss an opportunity at this wonderful stage of our lives. Going to be a struggle to continue to work mentally when our hearts are focused on the world of boating, diving,fishing, exploring, meeting new friends!

Should we continue to work and take the safe route financially or should we go for it and pursue our dreams??? Your thoughts are most welcome
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Old 10-04-2018, 09:41 AM   #2
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On your last day alive, banked memories will be worth more than banked monies or material assets.

Go boating!
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Old 10-04-2018, 09:41 AM   #3
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Go for it. If you died tomorrow you would only have memories of work.
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Old 10-04-2018, 09:48 AM   #4
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—would have to tighten our belts and fine tune our budget. Won’t be anything left for the kids though-

My parents are a little older than you. I tell the all the time to enjoy themselves and spend it all so there will nothing left to fight over when they are gone.
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Old 10-04-2018, 09:52 AM   #5
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I would go for it and cannot wait to be in your same situation. However I have no kid what makes my decision easier.

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Old 10-04-2018, 09:57 AM   #6
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Crossroads- Retirement and cruise or continue to work?

If you are going to be spending down a stock portfolio (as opposed to a “secure” pension or an annuity) make sure you understand that possible future poor returns over the next decade or so could cause significant sequence risk as early withdrawals could hurt the long-term viability of the portfolio. Maybe have significant cash reserves to cover the first 10 years to insure against this?

But even saying all that, I still think you should go for it. You can never be 100% sure your money will last, and if you see the portfolio taking big hits you could stop the bleeding by reducing expenses (stop the cruise, sell/donate the boat, etc). Plus, imo your health is as important (or more important?) as the size and durability of your portfolio, so now is probably the time to cast off.



Disclosure: I’m kind of in the same stage of life as you but don’t have a wife who is as excited as yours about living aboard, so don’t underestimate the interesting opportunity you have right now.
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:02 AM   #7
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How good is your health? If good, I'd work a few more years and bank additional bigger or current vessel support funds. To do a Bristol job of boating and covering miles many $ required. Far more than you've estimated I betcha. Also, do not enter retirement with any loans on boat or house.

BTW, what kind of vessel do you currently own?
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:08 AM   #8
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How good is your health? If good, I'd work a few more years and bank additional bigger or current vessel support funds. To do a Bristol job of boating and covering miles many $ required. Far more than you've estimated I betcha. Also, do not enter retirement with any loans on boat or house.

BTW, what kind of vessel do you currently own?
What he said .My health is not perfect but still able to work. I plan on working as long as I can and enjoy the boat as much as possible . The boat is paid for and the house is getting close to being paid off . After that who knows. My health would probably get worse if I went into retirement with a monkey on my back.
There’s no portfolio for the Pack Mule that I know of.
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:13 AM   #9
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Greetings,
Mr. g. Like what has been posted thus far...You're not getting any younger nor is your health likely to improve. The ONLY "benefit" of continuing along your current path is $$ for you or your heirs. So, it all depends on how much above the other things you mention (...boating, diving,fishing, exploring, meeting new friends!) you value the $$.

I can fully appreciate the desire to be financially stable BUT, how much is enough? Only you can decide.


Just for S&G, ask your kids what you should do letting them know, if they don't already, that IF you do pursue your dreams, they may be left with little to nothing for their futures other than the memories of happy parents...


The time is fast approaching where I will be unable to boat anymore...
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:13 AM   #10
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We owe our kids nothing. An inheritance does not drive any of our decisions.
We are in perfect health. Perfect health at 70 is a lot different than perfect health at 60. Takes longer for the hands to unwind in the AM. Knees don't like hours on the deck sanding or painting. I need to pay a little closer attention when going from swim platform to dinghy. I am not as strong or as agile as I think I am.

I don't think anyone on their deathbed ever said "I wish I worked more"
Go for it.
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:16 AM   #11
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I just retired at the end of 2016. I had planned going a year earlier but the retirement boat cost me a couple of hundred thousand more than I had planned. So I just worked another year and still retired at 59. That way I topped up what I spent and still retired on financial plan, without using any of my investments.
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:19 AM   #12
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I would advise you to sit down with a financial planner and map out two courses of action. Your financial picture spending the next 10 years cruising and one where you cruise for 1 year. Include all the potential health costs and the need to transfer to a retirement center in your 80’s. With that info you can make a comfortable decision.
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:31 AM   #13
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Went through the same dilemma you are facing as I wanted to work a couple more years to build up retirement funds. My wife wanted to retire as she was getting burned out with a pretty high stress job. As I look back I am glad she won that discussion. We retired at ages 63 and 61 and cruised out under the Golden Gate bridge 14 days after my last day at work and made a left turn. We spent the next 10 years on the boat cruising Mexico and Central America. One happenstance that significantly affected my decision was that during the time of our retirement discussions I attended a funeral service for a long time friend and colleague who was a former college classmate. He was in apparent good health but 9 months after retiring his wife found him dead - really made me think about the fact that there are no guarantees on tomorrow.

We were lucky enough to have the assets in place to take action without more than minimal belt tightening. It has now been 15 years since we pulled the plug and there are no regrets. As one poster said, when you are on your death bed memories are worth far more than $$.
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:32 AM   #14
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Greetings,
Mr. g. Like what has been posted thus far...You're not getting any younger nor is your health likely to improve. The ONLY "benefit" of continuing along your current path is $$ for you or your heirs. So, it all depends on how much above the other things you mention (...boating, diving,fishing, exploring, meeting new friends!) you value the $$.

I can fully appreciate the desire to be financially stable BUT, how much is enough? Only you can decide.


Just for S&G, ask your kids what you should do letting them know, if they don't already, that IF you do pursue your dreams, they may be left with little to nothing for their futures other than the memories of happy parents...


The time is fast approaching where I will be unable to boat anymore...
This is good also
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Old 10-04-2018, 10:40 AM   #15
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I would advise you to sit down with a financial planner and map out two courses of action. Your financial picture spending the next 10 years cruising and one where you cruise for 1 year. Include all the potential health costs and the need to transfer to a retirement center in your 80’s. With that info you can make a comfortable decision.

I second the idea of sitting down with a good financial planner (unless of course that is your profession) and having them run a Monte Carlo on your retirement plans. That will give you a good idea of how much confidence you will have in your future financial security. My wife and I are essentially the same age as you are. My wife retired a year ago. We aren’t in the same financial situation as you are, but many of the questions you are asking are the ones we asked when trying to decide if we could afford to have my wife retire. Could we accomplish our future goals if she retired? With professional help, we decided we could provided I kept working.

I am a conservative guy. Financial security is important to me. Personally, I’d rather err on the side of being overly cautious than running the risk of running out of money. I’d have much preferred my wife worked another 4 years. If she had, I could have retired 4 years sooner and our financial situation would have been more solid. The personal costs weren’t worth it however.

If I work for as long as I anticipate, AND my retirement investment performance is “best case” I will end up leaving $1-2 million to my kids. If I can’t work as long and my retirement investment performance is “worst case”, I’ll end up having to move in with my kids to survive. Neither scenario is very likely, but I really want to avoid the latter. I don’t have enough personal wealth to worry about leaving anything to my kids. I am fortunate in that they are perfectly capable of taking care of themselves.

On the flip side, my Dad died suddenly at age 74 while on his sailboat. He was still working and my folks were in the first week of an anticipated 6 week cruise. My Mom was left financially secure but I imagine she would have traded away a few thousand dollars in the bank in exchange for a few more long trips on the boat with my Dad.

So, while most will say “just do it”, I would council reasonable caution. If you really can afford it and leave your financial security intact, then go for it.
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Old 10-04-2018, 11:05 AM   #16
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Very well said David. What I was trying to say, but just not as well.
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Old 10-04-2018, 11:27 AM   #17
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I did essentially the same thing as you propose: quit my boring job at the age of 62 and went cruising for a while. Although I don't regret that decision, there are several factors that could have swayed it back to continuing working for a while longer:

!. How much do you like your job? I was ok, but not thrilled with mine and prospects for something better were slim.

2. Health. I too was/am now in good health. I could have cruised full time well into my 70s if I so desired. After that, age creeps up and the hard work of full time cruising would have gotten to me. I am now 72.

3. Financial- In my case we were living in a very high cost area- SoCal, our lifestyle was good, not extravagent, but good. But we were not improving our financial situation significantly. Taxes were a killer, although we did contribute the max to our 401Ks. So we were not improving our financial situation at a great rate. We did have enough retirement investments to be comfortable in a lower cost area after finishing cruising.

4. How long do you expect to cruise. I realize that this one is essentially unknowable. You don't know how it will work out until you do it. But I suspect that most only full time cruise for a few years before they go back to a more normal lifestyle.

5. How interested in cruising is your wife. It is my experience (one data point) that wives want more stability and comfort in life the older they get. Mine was all for full time cruising in her early 50s, less so ten years later.

So you have to put all of these things together to make your decision. I could have easily worked another 3-5 years before retiring. We would have a bit more money to retire on then. And at a late 60s age, I would have had plenty of time to enjoy full time cruising for a few years.

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Old 10-04-2018, 11:31 AM   #18
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My wife and I are in the same situation, more or less. I am retired, she is winding down and taking less work. Go fast boat for sale and looking for a LRC to do extended cruising. When we are all said and done, there may even be some money left over for the kids. One defining moment in our decision making process was that I had a heart attack at 59, came out of the blue with no indication that I had any heart disease. Guess you have to ask yourself, did you two work all those years just so you could leave all that money for your kids or...?
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Old 10-04-2018, 11:42 AM   #19
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Do it now while you're healthy. I'm 70 and put a lot of friends in the ground that thought they had more time. Health can change in an instant.
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Old 10-04-2018, 11:45 AM   #20
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Keep working - but start planning now.

You don't say if you have a boat now. If you start looking at the boatyards and yachtworld, it'll take yo,u a year to get one. I say that as you have to find a model that suits you and spouse, do some extensive research of problems with the model on the blogs, find one for sale, take a look at it to determine if your research on the layout and handling was correct, make an offer, get a survey, then close.

In the meantime you will be working.

Once you have the survey, you will have a list of things to fix. This list will turn out to be not complete. Get the boat to a yard close to you and have the work done. This might take a year. In the meantime you will be working and you will actually be ahead financially after the repairs are done.

Get a slip for the season and try the boat out on weekends and perhaps a few weekends. This will give you a new list.

After three years the boat will be ready for the loop trip and you will decide you really don't like boating (lol)
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