We are now only nine months away from my husband retiring! This morning’s money meeting clinched the deal. Although the stock market has been taking a hit, and it seems like a disaster, there is a bright side! Interest rates for secure savings accounts are finally increasing!!
How will we manage our money?
For the first 5 years of retirement (just before taking social security), we will be utilizing laddered CDs for our living expenses. Fidelity has some high-yield laddering CDs, and I intend to take full advantage of the 5-year ladder plan within the next couple of months. We have recently taken advantage of I Bonds, which are presently yielding 9.62%. You can learn more about them here. I also moved some of our savings into other 12-month CDs that are getting 1.75% – 2%. (I know this isn’t keeping up with present inflation, but it’s much better than the .1% they had been offering). I’m keeping 9 months of living expenses in cash at Ally Bank which is finally earning at least 1%.
Why retire in 9 months and not now?
Although we could feasibly retire at any time, nine months will give us the time needed to get all of our accounts in order. During that time, my husband’s company will be adding 7.5% of his income into retirement investments, we will cap off our Health Savings Account and add more money to our liquid savings accounts. (Nothing wrong with some extra cash, right?) 🙂
It feels so much better knowing that we will have our living expenses in safe accounts, backed by the FDIC, and not holding our breath each month while the market takes its wild ride. (I’ve never been a fan of roller coasters. 😉 ) We can actually relax. We will still have a significant portion of our nest egg in investments, but since we won’t have to touch those for another 10 years, it will have the necessary time to grow.
11 thoughts on “Nine months and counting!!”
Hi Sharon, this is Chris. This is great that you have a light at the end of the tunnel for retirement. Glad for you. We will be behind you in 2024. 🙂
Congrats! Way to go. FYI I don’t know if you know this or how accurate this is. I’ll have to double check. But if a bank does go under it may take 4 months to get your insured money refunded. It’s good to keep at least six months expenses in cash Not under a mattress but in a safe place. Lol. Just another thing to consider.
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Sharon, BINGO! You just discovered what I found out years ago. You can not trust the stock market when it comes to retirement. We also have laddered CDs that were paying 3% to 2.5% and since we didn’t touch the monthly interest, those also compounded. True, you won’t get rich this way BUT you’ll never be broke and poor. That’s for sure! I can’t wait to see how high the interest rates are going to go. Back in the 70s, we were getting between 12% and 15%. Can you imagine? Great time to have cash and be totally out of debt. That’s the key. My money market is also starting to raise rates and pay very well. YAY! If I’m making 3% on my FDIC cash and getting 3% back on my reward cards, that’s 6% which offsets the 8% (and more) rate of inflation. As I said, we’ll never get rich but we will do just fine!
I still believe in the stock market, we’ve gained so much of our retirement from it. However, for the first 5 years, I want the guaranteed money. In one account we contributed a total of $100,000 and it is now $450,000, so it worked for us. We are taking that money and liquifying it to cash. We also have another account that we won’t touch for another 10 or more years. That should grow nicely.
But, yeah, no debt and having cash is a good thing right now.
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Hi Sharon, I am so happy you are closer to starting a new stage in your life. We did a portion of our savings in five year laddered CDs before we started our retirement and another portion in 6,25% 10 year CD three months before, because interest rates were falling and so was the stock market. We did monthly 72t distribution to supplement our pensions to match our pre-retirement monthly take home pay, so didn’t have to do any severe cutbacks. With The current rising interest rates I wouldn’t be rushing into locking all your money into CDs till closer to your retirement. I too believe in the stock market and have similar growth in the money I invested. Sincerely, Lara
We are holding tight for right now in our accounts. I’ve only sent a bit of money to CDs, as I agree they will probably rise. I did do the I Bonds, which ties up $20,000 for a year, but we are okay with that. The more money I can save while my husband is still working will be more of a help than anything else at this point. 🙂
You are so right socking cash away will allow you so much freedom to reduce your income taxes. Here’s a great tip I took advantage of. Since your DH is only planning on working three months of 2023 like my DH, we found we could change his W-4 in December and increase the number of dependents up to nine to accurately reflect what our federal and state tax bill was actually going to be for that year.Huge saving and didn’t have to wait for a refund for overpayment in the next year. Happy Fourth! Sincerely, Lara
GREAT IDEA!!! That would definitely put more money in our pockets and we won’t have to wait until 2024 to get it!
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