Monday, February 29, 2016

Auntie Em #2

Dear  Auntie Em,

What do you think is the right age for retirement?

AmIthere Yet

Dear Ms. Yet,

This is indeed a question for the ages. I think that one would hope one can retire while one is still vertical.

There is some discussion as to who should retire first--husband or wife? (This is, of course, assuming that they are living in the same household AND both working.) This question has an easy answer: husband. PARTICULARLY if he has no known hobbies, which many do not because they are always working. (Of course there's always the consideration of unknown hobbies, which could come to potentially embarrassing light once he retires---but that's another column for another day.)

The reason husband should retire first (if both spouses are working) is because husbands without hobbies have no idea what to do with themselves if they don't have a job. They just kind of mill about, aimlessly, and check to see what you are doing every fifteen minutes or so. It can be like having a toddler all over again. Unfortunately, many hobbies for older men are rather expensive, like golf, and one can drop thousands of dollars on the proper equipment and fees and such. Chances are, your husband is not independently wealthy and he cannot pay a zillion dollars for golf or European River Cruises or whatever it is that old guys with cash do. Hence, the annoying behavior. (If you have a yard, I suggest putting together a list of chores, even if they are silly ones, like picking up sticks. That should keep him busy for a week. After that? You are on your own. Thank goodness for adult coloring books. "Here, sweetie! Here are the crayons.") If husband retires first, then he learns to find things to do on his own. He gets into a groove and then you retire and he already has his pattern set; he won't be bothering you!

If it's just you to consider, retirement is a personal choice. Obviously you want to retire while you "can still do things." (I don't know about you, but the thought of being able to "still do things" is something I never thought I would be saying. It seems akin to "before my body craps out and they cart me off to the home." But there you have it. Still do things. Sheesh. What's next? Waving my cane and telling kids to get off my lawn?)

Here's what I suggest: take a couple of months and keep a detailed accounting of everything you spend. At the end of that time, go through and see what things are critical (electricity, car, wine, etc.) and which are not (things from the dollar section at Target, where they entice you with pastels and twine) and figure out just how much money you will need each month. Then go to your retirement specialist at work (everyone has them--they are sometimes your lone HR person and sometimes they have someone who's sole responsibility is to figure out when employees can retire--I can imagine that they are bitter as heck every time someone walks in) and figure out what your retirement check will be each month. If you don't have someone at work, I hope you have some type of account where you've been socking money away. Go to that financial institution and figure out how much is in that account. Then, have those folks do the math for you, and see how long you can live on the amount you will receive.  If it's less than a year, you can't retire.

Good luck in all your future endeavors, but please get off my lawn--

Auntie Em

Linking at TOHT


Good Time Charlie said...

My kids are making fun of me because I am laughing out loud so hard.

Rose L said...

When my dad retired mom said it was nice at first, but then she got tired of him wanting to be with her and go with her to places all the time. She finally figured out that he did not like to go to the genealogy library, so she started saying that was where she was going every time. He then started telling her that she was spending too much time doing research. LOL
I will not get to retire ever as 63 and no money left after my husband died after 10 years disabled and many medical needs. I gotta win the lottery!

Heidi @ Decor & More said...

xo Heidi

Andrea said...

Fabulous advice! Now I just need to figure out what to be now that I am grown up (and BEFORE he retires)

Tina@WhatWeKeep said...

I'm used to having Magoo at home since he works from a home office, but at least he's out of my business for the most part. I will go insane when he retires. I'm telling you that ahead of time so you will come save me.

Doreen McGettigan said...

I work from home most days so when my husband has a day off, he acts as if I am not trying to work. He would constantly interrupt me. No I ask him to do things and leave him to do lists. Retirement should be fun:)

Stacey said...

Oh my gosh, this is awesome! Funny too. :)

We've saved for years and years but we live in fear of having to eat cat food. Blech!!

Stacey said...

Please link this up with Thoughts of Home on Thursday. It's wonderful!

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

I am laughing out loud because when my husband takes vacation days he drives me NUTS!
Thank you ever so much for linking up at Thoughts of Home on Thursday. Your presence adds such a ray of sunshine!

Stacey said...

Yay I'm so glad you shared with Thoughts of Home. I know that everyone who reads this will walk away smiling. :)

I sure have.

Laura said...

This is hilarious and TRUE.
I know because my husband and I are both retired and at home TOGETHER.
I saw a sign once in a gift shop that read:
Retirement- MORE HUSBAND,less money!

Thank you for sharing this with all of us at Thoughts of home on Thursday.

Bliss said...

Dear Auntie Em,
It's less than a year, it's less than two years, probably less than a month, now what?

karen@somewhatquirky said...

I'm not sure we will ever retire. And now Mike wants me to go back to work...I need to sell some furniture!

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