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  • FIRST POST
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 5th Aug 18, 5:34 PM
    • 780Posts
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    crv1963
    50 something man seeking to save to retire before 60!
    • #1
    • 5th Aug 18, 5:34 PM
    50 something man seeking to save to retire before 60! 5th Aug 18 at 5:34 PM
    Hello,


    This thread is inspired by reading others journeys, and at the suggestion of ShyandRetiring. I have been a lurker and commentator on a number of the excellent threads on this Forum. I like the Pensions Board, this board and the Pet Board in particular. I have been given some excellent advice and had answers to many specific questions on them.


    Background:-


    I'm a 54 year old soon to be 55. Where did the years go? I'm an NHS worker and can take my pension unreduced at 55 due to having "special officer class" because of my particular area of work. I currently have "all my years in to get a full pension" each years contribution counts as 2 years from 20 years service, in March I had a total of 40 years or 40/80ths pensionable pay.


    I am- because of the way the scheme is calculated allowed to accrue a further 5 years or up to 45/80ths from the age of 55-58. I also am allowed if I work shifts to have any shift allowance calculated as part of my final pension.


    So far so good, Mrs CRV and I married later in life than was originally planned, we lived together many years ago but parted without rancour in 1992 because in part of my career ambition and her reluctance to leave the area she lived in. We both went on to marry others, finally get back in touch through Friends Reunited. Two divorces later (we ended up divorcing our respective spouses) we finally married each other. I have two sons from my first marriage who live in the South East, Mrs CRV never had children but she (now we) has two nieces whom she/we adore. We both work in healthcare same qualification, me NHS, Mrs CRV always private sector since qualifying.


    I had a brief career break when I moved in with Mrs CRV, so did have an NHS Pension break but re-joined in time to preserve my special class status. Last year I had a heart attack- fully recovered now thanks to excellent emergency care and treatment, but had an enforced 7 month break from my stressful current role. This led to my MSE addiction and our planning carefully our retirement. I say it as the "Royal We" as the whole topic is cold for Mrs CRV!


    Part of my personal journey was re-evaluating my current role and seeking to reduce my stress levels. My cardiologist suggested that I should seek to return to shifts as a means of getting additional days off from work. This in addition to feeling side lined at work even being labelled as too old for the job and rather unkindly a dinosaur by a colleague said in jest I'm sure but left me feeling undervalued and not part of the Team.


    So luckily for me the Trust I work for realised that they had got rid of all the experienced staff and the in-patient services it runs needs experienced staff to provide leadership, coaching and in some cases straightforward "you do it like this" support for younger qualified and inexperienced staff. I applied for one of the posts and got it, starting in September! Luckily for me and my pension it is all "out of hours" and unsocial hours work, so I'm swapping my M-F, 9-5 role for a post that is almost all night and weekend work. It is worth around 12k extra on my salary and of course around 6k pa on my pension when I get it. I'm going from 20 days every 4 weeks to 13 shifts every 4 weeks, so will be able to also work a few extra shifts boosting the coffers more, as currently I work 2-3 "extras" at weekends while doing my M-F role, so having only 4-5 days off every 4 week period.


    Mrs CRV isn't so well off with her pension planning, she has some SERPs pension pot, with nothing between that and her now auto-enrolment pot. So this is where we'll have to concentrate I think.


    We have some debts, a 90k mortgage at a fixed rate and I was forced to borrow 12k for a new car 2 months ago as mine was written off and I need a decent economical car for work and the commute.


    The purpose of this diary?

    To document my journey to retirement which I hope will be 18 months- 3 years time, 5 at an absolute push, I don't want to be the richest in the graveyard but want a decent comfortable retirement.


    I also hope others will see an ordinary man can have aspirations, share what goes well and help others learn from what goes wrong!


    To get some advice/ ideas that add to our plans. I already have picked up tips, one thing we do need to sort is wills, LPA and future proofing our home, in addition to Mrs CRVs pension planning. I'll hopefully get some ideas?


    We live in a large bungalow with a very large garden, isolated on a hill in the middle of town, a cat with thyroid problems, a diabetic border collie !!!!! and an old Labrador dog who has had to have major surgery for mouth cancer, a collection of hens, a collection of tropical marine fish tanks (Mrs CRV hobby I am only allowed to look at the Seahorses!), we have a collection of outbuildings- shed, summerhouse, air raid shelter and garage full of my junk aka "valued items" that need de-cluttering as well as a loft heaving with an assortment of junk including 9 old fish tanks!


    We worked our number out- current figures-


    Me DB 16.5k pa 48k TFLS or 13k pa 85k TFLS
    Old Equitable Life AVC 6k
    Full SP is forecast if contribute another 4 years


    Mrs CRV 24k SERPs pot (2004 valuation, updated one requested)
    5k Auto Enrolled pot
    Full SP if contribute another 4 years


    We think save into PP or SIPP for Mrs CRV, draw down at 8k pa or up to PA. We think 24k pa would be manageable, any extra would be a bonus. We are in the position that if we live long enough as we age we'll actually get an increasing level of income!


    Motivation for saving?

    We've seen too many struggle to "get by" on SP alone! We want to be able to run our cars, keep our pets/ hobbies and have some decent holidays- we're having our gap year(s) at the end of our careers. So a tour of China maybe to see the Great Wall etc, tour of SE Asia see the Temples, Tour of India, and I'd love to see Botswana, Bermuda and go to Moscow! All depends on a) finance and b) health.


    Thank you for reading my ramblings!


    Never look down on someone unless you're helping them up!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
Page 8
    • MrAPJI
    • By MrAPJI 7th Jan 19, 1:16 PM
    • 99 Posts
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    MrAPJI
    Did you hear much about 'Brexit' whilst in the Netherlands? Just curious about their take on the situation .
    • ManofLeisure
    • By ManofLeisure 7th Jan 19, 1:23 PM
    • 501 Posts
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    ManofLeisure
    Did you hear much about 'Brexit' whilst in the Netherlands? Just curious about their take on the situation .
    Originally posted by MrAPJI

    From what I gather they seem to think our politicians are as 'mad as a box of frogs' and should sort things out more promptly .
    Pleased to see you're recovering well.
    • Mr Costcutter
    • By Mr Costcutter 7th Jan 19, 5:26 PM
    • 368 Posts
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    Mr Costcutter
    From what I gather they seem to think our politicians are as 'mad as a box of frogs' and should sort things out more promptly .
    Originally posted by ManofLeisure
    They might be right
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 27th Jan 19, 1:49 PM
    • 780 Posts
    • 1,777 Thanks
    crv1963
    Hi

    Been a bit busy lately so here is my December payday update!

    Spending- My weakness! But kept myself in check after my overspending for Christmas presents. Stayed inside my overall budget this month for food, fuel and work expenses. Still a work in progress though as I know I can do better.

    We've agreed to start buying Christmas presents that are on special offer or in sales for next December, as most we buy for are into Gin and Spiced Rum we should manage okay.

    Cat needed dental work so best part of 800 gone west but at least she is comfortable now.

    Diabetic dog food and allergy food for the Lab means their combined food spend cat and dogs actually exceeds mine and Mrs CRVs!

    Saving- 50 put away and not touched. Not going to change the world but a drip to start the river of savings! Have reviewed our savings/ pensions etc and I have booked lots of overtime for my annual leave weeks as I have realised that with careful planning I can wangle 9 weeks leave a year and work 4 or 5 shifts extra in some of those weeks.

    The overtime can free money to pay down debt, buy presents and save into Mrs CRV pension. I'm going to post a question on the pensions board about the best way forward with Mrs CRV pension.

    Sorting- Kept the conservatory clear, the spare bedroom clear and the kitchen is still not a mess/ dumping ground! Have plans this week to do some gardening and start clearing the wardrobes out. I am sure I do not need 28 jumpers and 30 work shirts!

    I am going to clear some of the loft out, I have nice books up there but haven't looked at them for 10 years so they can go to the charity shop for someone else to store = oops enjoy!

    Other News- Been really busy with work- I've picked up a few extra shifts and with my nerdish interest in what is happening with Brexit and UK politics has cut down my ability to grab more than a brief time on here.

    I am on a fortnight holiday so taking this week off no shifts, the next week I am working 5 extras, taking me to a total of 8 extra in February and a further 8 booked for March. Not exactly a second income stream in the FIRE sense but I can't self earn through additional ideas the same income. I think that there is something to be said to staying in your skill set.

    Mrs CRV has decided to go the other way, from her next off duty she will drop 2 shifts over a 4 week period so she no longer has to work 3 nights in a row but has a total of 12 shifts over 4 weeks, this may seem odd as I am then taking extra shifts but I earn a lot more hourly and it means our priorities of building her pension up and our diabetic dog has someone with her as much as possible can be met.

    My mother is 80 on 1st February so we as a family have clubbed together for her present, my youngest is staying the full weekend with her, we're out for lunch on her birthday then for a meal on the evening the next day as a family- it would have been her 45th wedding anniversary so she is not alone with her thoughts that day.

    Simple Pleasure- Enjoyed a Malt Whisky when Mrs CRV went to work, have been told that a long drink of Lemon Cello with lemonade is a real pleasure so am going to get some next payday and try it out.

    Have a great day!

    CRV
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 28th Jan 19, 6:39 AM
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    crv1963
    Well I've truly set myself a challenge! I've requested to join the Mortgage Free in Three board with the aim of getting our mortgage down from 85k to 50k over three years and at the same time to try to build Mrs CRV pension pot by almost 1k per month.

    Going to have to tighten my belt and have a few years working/ saving hard with the long term aim of freedom to retire when Mrs CRV is 55 and I shall be 58 and a half!

    It will be slow going at first, hoping to get into serious saving from April payday, the same month as her birthday and the start of the new tax year.

    I've felt that I've drifted off track with my avid brexit watching, so I'm going to take a step back from that and look at things I can control rather than look at a bunch of wanabees playing games in Westminster.
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • MrAPJI
    • By MrAPJI 28th Jan 19, 8:20 AM
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    MrAPJI
    CRV, you are not alone - I've also been spending rather too much time following proceedings at Westminster - tomorrow will be interesting .....


    Staying focused to achieve one's goals isn't always easy, but keep plodding on as it will all be worth it .
    • ManofLeisure
    • By ManofLeisure 28th Jan 19, 11:41 AM
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    ManofLeisure
    Enjoy your time off CRV .
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 29th Jan 19, 6:53 AM
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    • 1,777 Thanks
    crv1963
    CRV, you are not alone - I've also been spending rather too much time following proceedings at Westminster - tomorrow will be interesting .....
    Originally posted by MrAPJI
    Yes I am going to be watching with interest todays events!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • bugslet
    • By bugslet 29th Jan 19, 9:21 AM
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    bugslet
    I'm not, I'd rather there was a news black out until they make their minds up and just let us know on March 29th what they've decided!

    Good luck with the challenges, it'll definitely keep you on the straight and narrow!

    As for feeding pets.....I'm sure I spend more on their food than I do on mine. I have the world's pickiest Giant Schnauzer - aaargh! And I might be getting a second hand Old EnglishSheepdog/ Newfoundland X at the weekend. I'm sure that will survive on crumbs
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 29th Jan 19, 10:43 AM
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    crv1963
    I'm not, I'd rather there was a news black out until they make their minds up and just let us know on March 29th what they've decided!

    Good luck with the challenges, it'll definitely keep you on the straight and narrow!

    As for feeding pets.....I'm sure I spend more on their food than I do on mine. I have the world's pickiest Giant Schnauzer - aaargh! And I might be getting a second hand Old EnglishSheepdog/ Newfoundland X at the weekend. I'm sure that will survive on crumbs
    Originally posted by bugslet
    Hi bugslet

    I think you're in the majority of the population with brexit, certainly Mrs CRV is firmly in your camp there!

    The point of the challenges is really to keep my from going too far off track, I did go off and buy a new hoover yesterday being fed up with the challenge of our old one vs Labrador dog hairs, the Collie doesn't do bad on hair but on mud.............

    Both of our dogs were secondhand, the cat arrived 12 years ago and still is here having first moved into the greenhouse and then the conservatory and now my lap. Since having her teeth out she refuses supermarket own brand food and will only eat either fresh prawns or premium luxury food that looks better than my cooking!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • bugslet
    • By bugslet 29th Jan 19, 7:27 PM
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    bugslet
    And like fools we pander to their every whim!

    I think it's good to set a challenge, otherwise we have no parameters. I have vinyl flooring and it's recommended that you don't Hoover, so I have a brush. Very cheap to run! Heidi the Spitz moults profusely, it's like tumbleweed blowing through the house
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 9th Feb 19, 8:30 AM
    • 780 Posts
    • 1,777 Thanks
    crv1963
    Hi

    I thought I'd better get my January payday update in before February ends.

    Spending- Kept myself in check this month. Did splurge a bit with Mums' 80th last weekend but within my salary so no overspend. Got my budget for food and fuel for work, so hopefully if no unforeseen expenses come our way in the next 3 weeks we'll stay on track.

    Have bought Mrs CRV a wedding anniversary present but I'd better keep that under wraps as I'm not sure if she reads this thread!

    Saving- 50 put away again, January pay was my basic one so no large amounts put away. Hopefully next pay will be better with a little overtime from January and mileage so will overpay some debt and bank a bit more.

    Sorting- Not a lot because I never managed to get in the loft and we've had youngest son up to stay. Have cleared my car out - a feat in itself!

    Have arranged some more overtime for March, having done 4 night shifts in a row and booked a dayshift for tomorrow all overtime so only 2 days off in my weeks holiday. I am well and truly worn out this week!

    Other News- Brexit- if it happens seems to be a mess! Have managed to stop myself slavishly following it all.

    Mrs CRV has got her reduced hours shifts, so happy wife, happy life!

    My mother was 80 on 1st February so I went to lunch on the day, then a concert with Mrs CRV in the evening and the next day we all as a family went out for dinner.

    Got to go to a market this morning to pick up the last of Mrs CRV Christmas Presents- ordered a frame for a poster, made to measure for her.

    Simple Pleasure- Enjoyed a LimonCello and lemonade, definitely nice but a summer drink I think for me! I did manage a couple of hours wandering around York with no particular purpose, cold but sunny.

    It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop. – Have a great day!

    CRV
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • MrAPJI
    • By MrAPJI 10th Feb 19, 1:24 PM
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    MrAPJI

    Brexit- Have managed to stop myself slavishly following it all
    Originally posted by crv1963

    Wish I could say the same . I think there will be fireworks next week



    Hope your mum enjoyed her birthday - 80 is a grand age
    • Clowance
    • By Clowance 11th Feb 19, 6:55 AM
    • 1,663 Posts
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    Clowance
    i realise you are saving up but working so much of your time off worries me - what if you don't have your health in retirement? Live a little today as well, none of us know what tomorrow will bring. Best wishes
    Don't forget quidco/topcashback - I do!
    • bugslet
    • By bugslet 11th Feb 19, 7:41 AM
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    bugslet
    I think going over budget for your Mum's 80th is a permissable extravagance. Belated Happy Birthday to her.
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 12th Feb 19, 4:40 PM
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    crv1963
    i realise you are saving up but working so much of your time off worries me - what if you don't have your health in retirement? Live a little today as well, none of us know what tomorrow will bring. Best wishes
    Originally posted by Clowance
    Hi Clowance, I do realise that too much working consistently would be bad for my health but am going to do this for a short burst only while the opportunity is there. Currently our Team is 5 staff down through vacancies without factoring in sickness and annual leave so expect this only to be available for a couple of months, then I expect I'll/ we'll be back to just the odd shift being available.

    It is therefore time limited, and in my view for our hourly rate well paid, I appreciate pay per hour is subjective, my view of what is a good rate may be someone elses' view of a poor rate or even a large rate.

    I do try to balance by making the most of my time off. Another downside of working overtime is of course time away from the Gorgeous One, aka Mrs CRV!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 12th Feb 19, 4:45 PM
    • 780 Posts
    • 1,777 Thanks
    crv1963
    I think going over budget for your Mum's 80th is a permissable extravagance. Belated Happy Birthday to her.
    Originally posted by bugslet
    Mum tells me she enjoyed her birthday and felt spoilt, which of course she was as this was the whole point of us all going that bit further for her.

    She now has been spending most days gardening while the weather is suitable for doing her hedges and planning a couple of new paths! Which she intends digging the base for when the ground softens!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • bugslett
    • By bugslett 15th Feb 19, 7:31 AM
    • 171 Posts
    • 616 Thanks
    bugslett
    Hi Clowance, I do realise that too much working consistently would be bad for my health but am going to do this for a short burst only while the opportunity is there. Currently our Team is 5 staff down through vacancies without factoring in sickness and annual leave so expect this only to be available for a couple of months, then I expect I'll/ we'll be back to just the odd shift being available.

    It is therefore time limited, and in my view for our hourly rate well paid, I appreciate pay per hour is subjective, my view of what is a good rate may be someone elses' view of a poor rate or even a large rate.

    I do try to balance by making the most of my time off. Another downside of working overtime is of course time away from the Gorgeous One, aka Mrs CRV!
    Originally posted by crv1963
    Part of my retirement date was set so that it coincided with the better weather. May as well do the overtime now and do less hours as the sun emerges.

    Mum tells me she enjoyed her birthday and felt spoilt, which of course she was as this was the whole point of us all going that bit further for her.

    She now has been spending most days gardening while the weather is suitable for doing her hedges and planning a couple of new paths! Which she intends digging the base for when the ground softens!
    Originally posted by crv1963

    That's lovely to hear.

    I've been pondering about buying another house - it's so unique and unusual and ticks so many boxes for me - but I've decided against it and ermine's post on the pension board confirmed what I had been thinking, that I need to give myself time between finishing work and really embarking on major changes. However, on another small forum I was debating this with the ladies and several of them said, 'oooh, I know you like gardening but think what it will be like in ten years when you are 65'. I am going to pop over there and tell them about your cool gardening mother.
    Yes I'm bugslet, I lost my original log in details and old e-mail address.
    • ManofLeisure
    • By ManofLeisure 15th Feb 19, 11:30 AM
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    ManofLeisure
    [QUOTE=bugslett; I know you like gardeningbut think what it will be like in ten years when you are 65'. [/QUOTE]


    Take no heed of them . I'll be 63 this year and can honestly say that gardening is less of a physical chore to me now, than it was when I retired 8 years ago .
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 15th Feb 19, 4:36 PM
    • 780 Posts
    • 1,777 Thanks
    crv1963
    Part of my retirement date was set so that it coincided with the better weather. May as well do the overtime now and do less hours as the sun emerges.




    That's lovely to hear.

    I've been pondering about buying another house - it's so unique and unusual and ticks so many boxes for me - but I've decided against it and ermine's post on the pension board confirmed what I had been thinking, that I need to give myself time between finishing work and really embarking on major changes. However, on another small forum I was debating this with the ladies and several of them said, 'oooh, I know you like gardening but think what it will be like in ten years when you are 65'. I am going to pop over there and tell them about your cool gardening mother.
    Originally posted by bugslett
    Bugslet as Man of Leisure also said, ignore them! They are wrong on so many levels. I as you know work in mental health, I was worried about my Mum doing too much, and had a good chat with one of my Consultant Psychiatrist colleagues about it - he has a mother around the same age.

    The relevant part of the discussion was never stop or try to stop anyone doing anything that they enjoy.

    Just help them do it safely. So I got Mum some step ladders with a platform for stability instead of the "normal" A frame ones so she can get up a height, hedge trimmer with a long arm for reach and a smaller electric lawn mower so not as heavy. I pay for a chap to come three times a year to do the tops of the hedges at just over six foot tall about 30-40 a time. I do the tip runs.

    One of the theories about lifespan of men vs women is to simplify it, men retire and do less, women retire and do the same or more. It is the doing- housework, gardening, the doing things, cooking, shopping, hobbies like crafts that make the mind work that helps. Also the social side of things, chatting to strangers in shops, having coffee with friends, exercising dogs, joining groups such as dancing, keep fit and the like that broaden social circle and keeping up with family that counts. These are all female dominated activities on the whole, men tend to treat retirement as a long holiday on the whole and lose the routine.

    The loss of a routine or purpose however loose and varied it is, is what leads to arm chair sitting and decline. Although there are exceptions that is what they are exceptions and of course the physical can interfere.

    So we encourage Mum when she says I'm going to try.......... She can be hard to catch when the weather is warm and around Christmas for all of he "do's and parties" she goes to as part of her activities. She has a far wider social circle now Dad has died because she can and does please herself.

    If you want to buy your ideal home do so, I love our home, on paper with what needs doing to it and the large garden we'd never take it on now- on paper if we were sensible we'd end up with a modern box, safe, little work but so dull in comparison, at least we have to think, plan and work on it. Plenty to keep us going for years!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
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