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  • FIRST POST
    • ShyAndRetiring
    • By ShyAndRetiring 16th Jul 18, 4:42 AM
    • 81Posts
    • 206Thanks
    ShyAndRetiring
    Future Finances: Time vs Money
    • #1
    • 16th Jul 18, 4:42 AM
    Future Finances: Time vs Money 16th Jul 18 at 4:42 AM
    Hello

    I'm a long time user of MSE and used to have a diary on the MFW board (different user name). These boards are just such an incredible source of advice, information, support and inspiration that now we're moving into the next phase of our lives, I find myself returning more and more and really feel the urge to reconnect with a new diary to help keep us focused and clued up in what we're doing: looking towards early retirement.

    I know there's a pensions and retirement board, but I do find the numbers on there to be quite intimidating. I'm not knocking anyone else's choices and lifestyle needs, each to their own, but do feel that the numbers I'm looking at are in a different league to those on the main pensions board (far less involved) and as we're risk averse and thinking more about money-saving rather than investment per-se, I feel more comfortable over here, if that's OK with everyone?

    So, the background:
    * OH is now 60. 2016-2017 was a horrible time for him, reaching an age where he was sidelined professionally (extremely common practice in his profession, so much so that the union advised him to take a 3 month settlement to leave as they'd "seen it all before and it's the best you can do, no point in fighting it").
    'Fortunately' for us, the writing appearing on the wall coincided with the youngest dependent flying the nest, so we sold our house and downsized. It didn't leave much of a pot for us, but we did become mortgage-free ... something that wouldn't have been possible but for the support and focus on paying down the mortgage via the MFW boards on here. The 'pot' we did achieve was mostly used to get our new place and garden suited to our (existing and future) needs. It also kept us afloat once OH finished work, as he didn't want to claim any benefits but needed a period of not working so he could recover from a stress-related health issue which arose largely thanks to the awful politics of his work situation.
    Turning 60 earlier this year means OH accessed his lump sum (50k) and a pension of around 6.5 k a year. For the last 7 months, he's been working part-time in the warehouse for a local retailer, minimum wage, anti-social hours (very early morning) but he's happy to be earning and useful again.
    As he lived and worked abroad for a long time before we knew each other, he does not have full NI contributions, so another reason for his part-time job is to help build up his contributions before SP age.

    * I'm 52.
    I had to give up my main professional, full-time role due to a long-term medical condition (auto-immune). I took up self-employment instead, working freelance for myself in order to manage my recovery and balance my health - this vastly impacted on my earning capacity and pension planning. I did have 'full' SP contributions but thanks to recent changes, now have to make another 5 years to get back to full contribution.
    Last year one of my freelance clients asked me to work for him exclusively (and permanently) so I now work part time for his company, working remotely from home. I can access my Occupational Pension (from professional role) once I'm 60 and I currently use NEST pension for building up another pension pot as I earn approx 10,500 from my part-time work.

    The plans / point of this diary:
    * We'd really love to be in the position to retire together when OH reaches SP age - I'd be 58 then. So at the very least, this diary's likely to be my place for accountability for our actions (big or small) towards trying to achieve this.
    * That said, if there's the chance to do this sooner, that would be so much the better! We didn't meet each other until a bit later on in life (it's a 2nd marriage for each of us) and with the slight age difference between us, we'd rather have time together than lots of money to spend. For us it's about living simply and wanting what we have, rather than spending money on 'wants'. I'm hopeful that this particular focus will help to get us to the finish line a bit sooner, so I'm sure some of this will creep into the diary too, especially as I'm about on the boards a bit more (I'm very at home on the frugal threads)!
    * I spend lots of time on the spreadsheets and our numbers just about work for us retiring together when OH reaches SP age, but I can't make them work for doing it any earlier. However, we benefited so much from the focus our MFW diary gave us (to the point that we could become MF when the fan started up and poop started flying) that I can't help but think a little of that focus again would help us to position ourselves a bit better for the next phase in our lives.
    * I also like setting myself cheeky goals and challenges, so having a diary's also a good way of recording my monthly goals and helping me stick to the actions needed to achieve them - especially as the mini goals would all be towards that main prize at the end - time together!

    I'm sure I'll share more thoughts and numbers down the line, but I'll stop there for the moment. Thanks for letting me settle into this new spot and if anyone would like to stop by from time to time, it would be lovely to meet you.
    Last edited by ShyAndRetiring; 16-07-2018 at 4:55 AM.
Page 8
    • thriftytracey
    • By thriftytracey 11th Aug 18, 9:54 AM
    • 94 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    thriftytracey
    S&R - where are you? Hope you are well. Missing your blog!
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 11th Aug 18, 10:14 AM
    • 481 Posts
    • 1,054 Thanks
    crv1963
    Great advice! My biggest waste of money- smoking- has been addressed mainly because if I don't it will kill me eventually, not something I thought about when I was an immortal teenager and first started, after all 30 was old and over the hill lol, fast forward to 50 something and actually 30 is still young and I don't feel ready for stopping living just yet. My 79 year old mother tells me she feels 18, just has to go a bit slower!


    I also am recycling a lot more, demolished hen pen, put the wood away for future use, not take it down the tip or hire a skip. Most days I take a packed lunch- must make it everyday!


    I take cuttings and divide lots of plants around the garden, give away most but often get given stuff in return that I haven't got. As the garden is my main hobby I'm always on the look out for new (to me) plants and free is definitely better!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 11th Aug 18, 10:30 AM
    • 10,595 Posts
    • 67,417 Thanks
    lessonlearned
    Well done on the smoking.....more money, stronger lungs, healthierbody....win, win, win.

    Your mum is right, age really is just a number. I'm 67 going on 16. yes I've got a dodgy knee and a few mysterious aches and pains but I too don't "feel" any different, still a silly schoolgirl at heart.

    I am just reading a lovely book.....bought for 0.01 off Amazon of course, it's called "Ikigai, The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life". Studying the people of Okinawa, the healthiest and longest lived people on earth. It mentions gardening.....so you are on the right track......

    Apparently there are 5 Blue Zones in the world, where people live to a great age and enjoy exceptionally good health, (the U.K. isn't one of them) Top of the list is Okinawa.

    Anyway that will be today's reading whilst I enjoy my morning coffee in the sun.......

    Hope you all have a great weekend.
    Last edited by lessonlearned; 11-08-2018 at 10:32 AM.
    • sukysue
    • By sukysue 11th Aug 18, 5:04 PM
    • 1,761 Posts
    • 2,281 Thanks
    sukysue
    We have maxed out on the premium bonds , 50 k each.
    All our winnings are free of tax which we are really trying to avoid. We usually make equivalent to the interest rate so are happy with that. Also we absolutely love it every month when we check the bonds for our win lol, we are like big kids, so we may lose a little over the time but so far so good but we get such enjoyment from it .
    xXx-Sukysue-xXx
    • sukysue
    • By sukysue 11th Aug 18, 5:09 PM
    • 1,761 Posts
    • 2,281 Thanks
    sukysue
    While l am here l am wondering about just doing our own wills on a piece of paper and getting them witnessed and dated by some ppl not related to us or going to benefit from our death. I also wondered if the witnesses die before we do is the will still legal? Will just be mirror wills to each other tbh. It all seems very simple and will save a fortune . What does everyone think?
    xXx-Sukysue-xXx
    • ShyAndRetiring
    • By ShyAndRetiring 11th Aug 18, 5:10 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 206 Thanks
    ShyAndRetiring


    Gosh, lovely visitors, so sorry to have been AWOL, monster worky week with lots of family birthdays at the end of it so been a bit pulled in lots of directions.

    Hope you're all having a good one. Just pausing for breath before taking dogs out, day has been dominated so far with more birthday preps, housework and of course the Bored Meeting.

    OH wants to go out for a 'two of us' walk once we're back from dog walk so doubt if I'll get back on here to update tonight but will pop back asap to update on progress and reply to comments etc.

    In fact, I may start that shortly as Mr.Let's-Go-For-Two-Walks is now napping on the sofa! Hmmm, perhaps that'll be a simple pleasure for today, a little P & Q!
    ~ * ~ "A goal without a plan is just a wish" Antoine de Saint Expuery ~ * ~
    • ShyAndRetiring
    • By ShyAndRetiring 11th Aug 18, 5:14 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 206 Thanks
    ShyAndRetiring
    I actually managed to sit at a table and have a sandwich, then in the garden in the evening have a glass of wine watching the Hens go to bed. It was so peaceful.
    Originally posted by crv1963
    Aww CRV I'm so with you on this. We used to keep hens and I used to love watching them settle at night. In fact *hushed voice* when they were settling in with us I used to sing to them at bedtime to stop them from being all pecky with each other! Their favourite lullaby was "train-a-whistle-blowing" .... goodness knows what the neighbours thought!
    ~ * ~ "A goal without a plan is just a wish" Antoine de Saint Expuery ~ * ~
    • ShyAndRetiring
    • By ShyAndRetiring 11th Aug 18, 5:16 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 206 Thanks
    ShyAndRetiring
    Simple pleasures, I've had a bowl of strawberries for breakfast. Sweet and juicy.
    Originally posted by humptydumptybits
    Hmmm, strawberries! Sounds lovely Humpty.
    Our blueberry bushes are just about finished and I'm missing just grabbing a handful of fresh berries in the morning.
    ~ * ~ "A goal without a plan is just a wish" Antoine de Saint Expuery ~ * ~
    • ShyAndRetiring
    • By ShyAndRetiring 11th Aug 18, 5:26 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 206 Thanks
    ShyAndRetiring
    I switched bank account yesterday to the Nationwide FlexDirect. It was the most trouble free on-line switch yet (although I do have an existing Flexaccount with them).

    Oooh ThriftyTracey that sounds like the one we've just opened, the 5% for a year one? Seems like a good deal even if it is just for a year.

    I am also looking for an account where I can squirrel away holiday savings that pays a decent rate and is easy to transfer money to. I've got a small regular savings account with Birmingham Midshires but it is not very flexible. We have ISA's however that is for the unexpected or large capital purchases. We also have a Santandar bank account for DD's and Standing Orders and 2nd level savings, then we have a Nationwide Bank account for savings towards regular expenditure such as vehicle/caravan services and maintenance together with house maintenance. I just want an old-fashioned account where I can pay bits of cash/cheques in, easily transfer small sums electronically and pays a half way "decent" interest. I must admit I am nostalgic for the old books that were printed up every time money was deposited. I remember saving in the Abbey National for our first house deposit that way. It was most satisfying! Actually typing this I just thought about the Post Office. Must do some research.

    ThriftyTracey, our main accounts are with T*sco Bank, their current account pays 3% up to 3k and you can open two of the accounts. This % is more than most savings accounts and you get all the convenience of online banking, easy transfers and use of debit card when you want to draw cash out for your holibobs!
    Oh and you can also align it with your loyalty card and gain a few points each month for using it. Worth looking into?



    Anyone else do this?
    Originally posted by thriftytracey
    We're also using the PO one year lock-in account, they do seem to have lots of variations so also an option? And to answer your other question, I still have my old Girobank account book, from when the PO started doing that kind of banking, so yes, I'm with you on the satisfaction of watching the numbers grow in a book! I've just had to get used to watching the numbers grow on screen instead.

    I'm looking for something as I'm saving for DDs wedding next year. I'm not getting very far but I will certainly post if I find something good.
    Originally posted by humptydumptybits

    As above Humpty, maybe look at the T*cso current account, as you get the 3% interest but also the convenience of being able to pay for things easily ... something likely to be needed for wedding spends!
    ~ * ~ "A goal without a plan is just a wish" Antoine de Saint Expuery ~ * ~
    • ShyAndRetiring
    • By ShyAndRetiring 11th Aug 18, 5:38 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 206 Thanks
    ShyAndRetiring
    Interesting post thrifty..........

    I need to have a money sort out after I have moved.

    Yes, always a good thing to do after the dust settles on moving, have you got a date yet LL?

    TBH I am getting heartily sick of having to keep monitoring interest rates and switching banks just to try and get a decent savings rate. I think savers have been punished long enough. half the time we are not even keeping pace with inflation.

    I do the "recycling trick", ie using linked accounts that allow you to filter money into a regular savings account paying around 5%. Again these are only for 12 months but better than nothing. I have now had three consecutive HSBC ones. As one finishes I just start Another. I'm also going to do a Santander one.

    I have dabbled in Stocks and Shares ISAs this year. Well my son did it all ....bless him. So far I have earned just over 10 per cent return in 10 months, which of course beats the banks hands down. I know over on the investment board they would probably laugh at that saying it's small potatoes but I am happy. I would be too nervous about going high risk. It's very tricky.......trying to get decent returns but not opening up to high risk.

    Sounds like a good result LL and no matter if small potatoes by comparison, if it's an investment and return you're comfortable with then all power to you!

    I have no idea what effect Brexit will have on the stock market and anyway I do need to have some instant access funds for house renovations so I have just cashed in some of my S&S holdings and will transfer them to Santander for the time being, reducing my exposure to the whims of the stock market. At least for now.

    I know the stock market is probably best for long term savings and investments but as I am now 67 I don't feel comfortable taking too many chances. Different if like my son you are in your 30s but my age it isn't so easy to ride out the lows.

    If any one has any better ideas, please share.
    Originally posted by lessonlearned

    I think you sound entirely sensible about the whole thing LL. The riding out of lows is always an issue and you do have to ensure you don't need access to the money invested. We always err on the side of caution as accessing funds could well be a likelihood if the situation with my mum's (or our own) health changes and priorities shift. Good luck with it all!
    ~ * ~ "A goal without a plan is just a wish" Antoine de Saint Expuery ~ * ~
    • Savvy_Sue
    • By Savvy_Sue 11th Aug 18, 5:52 PM
    • 39,058 Posts
    • 35,948 Thanks
    Savvy_Sue
    While l am here l am wondering about just doing our own wills on a piece of paper and getting them witnessed and dated by some ppl not related to us or going to benefit from our death. I also wondered if the witnesses die before we do is the will still legal? Will just be mirror wills to each other tbh. It all seems very simple and will save a fortune . What does everyone think?
    Originally posted by sukysue
    The will remains valid even if the witnesses die before you, but honestly? I'd go to a solicitor. Wait for free wills month and make a donation to charity if you like. but if your wills are simple it won't cost a fortune.

    However, I'd be prepared to lay money that your simple mirror wills are not quite as simple as you think. who are you choosing as executors? Each other, obviously, but after the first death, who does that leave for the second death? Likewise, who benefits on the second death? What if you both die before the second can alter their will?

    A good solicitor will ask these 'what if' questions and more importantly make sure that your wills say what you intend, no room for mistakes or slips in witnessing etc. Remember, someone will have to sort the problems out if you get something wrong.

    Also do use a proper solicitor, not a 'we'll visit you at home and store your will' will-writing company. Much better VFM.
    Still knitting!
    Completed: 1 adult cardigan, 3 baby jumpers, 3 shawls, 1 sweat band, 3 pairs baby bootees,
    1 Wise Man Knitivity figure + 1 sheep, 2 pairs socks, 2 hats 2 balaclavas for seamen, 1 balaclava for myself ...
    Current projects: Poppies, mohair cardigan pattern arrived and going strong!
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 11th Aug 18, 6:02 PM
    • 10,595 Posts
    • 67,417 Thanks
    lessonlearned
    I am in total agreement with this,

    I am of the opinion that good professional advice and service is worth paying for. It can save you money, stress and heartache.

    And in the grand scheme of things, wills are not expensive.

    My sister managed to get her hands on the lions share of our parents estate, leaving me with a substantial shortfall. All because my father was too mean to pay for a new updated will after my mother had died. I guess he trusted my sister to do the honourable thing. She didn't. The solicitor said whilst it was grossly unfair there was nothing in law they could do to force her hand.
    Last edited by lessonlearned; 11-08-2018 at 6:14 PM.
    • sukysue
    • By sukysue 11th Aug 18, 8:15 PM
    • 1,761 Posts
    • 2,281 Thanks
    sukysue
    I have listened to you and agree l will go to a solicitor and get it drawn up, thank you for making me think again and see sense .
    xXx-Sukysue-xXx
    • thriftytracey
    • By thriftytracey 11th Aug 18, 10:21 PM
    • 94 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    thriftytracey
    Suky Sue


    I bought the will form from W H Smith initially thinking - oh just mirror wills, easy peasy. After researching DIY wills and dire warnings we did the "November" will via solicitors and I am glad we did. Another question is what if both of you die together? Who gets the estate then? DIY wills can also be overturned - it is best to go to a solicitor. They keep the will and the Deeds to the house FOC.
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 12th Aug 18, 7:01 AM
    • 481 Posts
    • 1,054 Thanks
    crv1963
    Making wills is something near the top of our list too!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 12th Aug 18, 7:32 AM
    • 10,595 Posts
    • 67,417 Thanks
    lessonlearned
    I know thinking about wills and POAS isn't exactly fun but honestly just do it. Once it's done it's done, you can relax then, forget about it and get on with your lives.....

    Raining here, so good day to be sorting and packing, ready for moving. Surrounded by boxes and the house is a tip. So glad I'm managing to do this move in the summer, much easier than the depths of winter.

    Onwards and upwards.
    • crv1963
    • By crv1963 12th Aug 18, 8:01 AM
    • 481 Posts
    • 1,054 Thanks
    crv1963
    Pouring here to LL, glad I loaded the car for the tip run last night. At least your sorting and packing is in on a rainy day- you wont be yearning to be outside!


    Happy packing!
    CRV1963- Light bulb moment Sept 15- Planning the great escape- aka retirement!
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 12th Aug 18, 9:16 AM
    • 16,875 Posts
    • 46,589 Thanks
    moneyistooshorttomention
    Another vote for getting wills done "properly". Though I'm single and childless - so I don't have to worry about anyone else's welfare - I still think it's worth it.

    I had a will anyway - but changed it after moving here - and it cost me 100 if I remember aright. It's a very basic simple Will and other peoples might cost a bit more for being a bit more complicated - but I can't think it would be a vast amount.

    In my case it was done not so much to look after peoples welfare (with that not being applicable) but to ensure the person that would probably count as my "next of kin" at the time doesnt get anything. That being my brother - we're on "polite" terms whilst my parents are still alive and I strongly suspect "that'll be the end of that" when my parents die (as I know what my brother is like - ie grabby etc).

    So very necessary still to have one even in my circumstances imo - or I know him well enough to know he'd cheerfully take everything of mine, even if he'd already helped himself to as much as he could from my parents direction (which I already know he's after a lions share there).

    I confess I shall be "sitting up on a cloud" after I'm dead and watching where my money is going with interest - ie how the charity it's been left to is spending it.
    ****************
    • thriftytracey
    • By thriftytracey 12th Aug 18, 9:52 AM
    • 94 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    thriftytracey
    Simple Pleasure: Deep Clean of the kitchen which was well overdue, in fact ashamed to say first time! This involved, cleaning all cupboards, washing down the walls and removing all cobwebs and dust from ceiling, skirting boards, doors, tiles, removing (hands and knees) all pet hair from carpet that vacuum does not find, washing all crockery on welsh dresser and cleaning same etc etc. A joint effort too. Most satisfying and a real visual improvement. Repeat each room. This way when I retire next year (fingers crossed) new house. Next job: getting downstairs loo replastered and 2 walls one in hall and one in living room.


    Not a simple pleasure: coming down this morning and finding that Molly has had a "tummy upset" in the night......
    • lindez
    • By lindez 12th Aug 18, 9:55 AM
    • 319 Posts
    • 1,119 Thanks
    lindez
    Hi SAR,
    just found your diary and have been reading all the comments, very useful information on here.
    I am semi-retired just work 3 days a week now since January. I still have a mortgage and things but at 59 and working full time for years I thought about time over money. Very little savings and things so I am just going to be a little frugal and stop spending on things I don't need.
    I completed a will and trust fund earlier this year wow looking at the prices on here that people have paid for wills I paid above and beyond that. Mine was 1200.00 pounds though like I said I have put mine into a trust fund with my two children. Not that there is much there it just I wanted to make sure my home went to them.
    I lost my husband 2 years ago and it was a second marriage for both of us. We had wills set up then and both of our wills anything we had went to our children respectively. So my late husbands estate went all to his daughter and nothing to me. And I would like to believe that if it had happen the other way around he would have respected my wishes as I did his. A lot of people thought we were mad for doing it the way we did, but he had a lot more than I did so I agreed.
    I have subscribed to the thread and look forward to reading. x
    Payment A Day Chapter 18:
    MFWB#44
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