A Lost and Found Retirement
Early last year, I was sure that I would have a comfortable retirement. But then the stock market took a plunge. That gave me pause. Then I got my real estate tax bill. What an increase! Don’t they know that I will have a fixed amount to spend in retirement? And they just announced a 13% premium jump in my healthcare plan. And they didn’t even offer better coverage for this shocking increase. We just had a party for my dad’s 90th birthday. How long will he live? Will he need to go into a high priced assisted living facility? What if he lives another 10 years? Can he afford it? Can I afford to help him? Will my retirement plan work if I live to 95 or 100? But that was yesterday. Confidence that my fixed retirement income and all the money my wife and I have saved suddenly come into question. What do I do?
My employer no longer wants me there. He has young “kids” who do as good a job as I do. He pays them a lot less money and they are not on the same costly retirement plan I am on. Besides, after all of these years, I’m tired of it.
I thought about looking for another job. There are actually a lot of retail companies who will hire me. Some want me to work as a greeter and some as a handyman expert. Or I can start a business. But I don’t want to put a lot of my nest egg into it and risk the modest retirement that I still can afford. I sure don’t want to have a lot of employees and all of the complexities they bring to your business. I can’t do any heavy lifting. Will I still be able to get away for the winter to Florida like I always dreamed about?
I found that the answer to this is yes, there are seasonal mini-businesses, some only lasting as long as one month each year, which can provide a supplemental income, with no employees and can be started for under $5,000. This can be the perfect retirement business. This will allow me to delay withdrawing from my retirement savings some of the money I need each year to live off. As I learned when I first started working and saving for retirement, a dollar invested when you are 25, turns into a lot more money when you are 65. The same goes here, if you can skip withdrawing $15,000 the first few years of retirement, it will make a huge difference in your finances if you live to 90.