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Thread: FERs Retirees, anyone?

  1. #1

    Default FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Hi, everybody! Are there any FERs future pensioners in this group who are getting close to retirement, within the next 1-5 years? Maybe I can get some pointers from you or vice versa!

    Or maybe those who already retired in the FERS system, can you share with us your experience? Actions that you should have or not have done?

    For starters, let me tell you about myself. I already reached my MRA (minimum retirement age), but a tad short of 30 years of service. So I really cannot retire until April of 2015. The caveat of retiring without 30 years of service is you don't get the supplemental income and annuity is a lot less than when you have 30 under your belt.

    I try to max my TSP whenever finances permit, but despite financial hardships, I never went below 10% in any of my TSP contributing years. Of course, looking back, I wish I had contributed more. Fortunately, with kids out of college, I was able to max my contributions these last 5 years.

    I joined TSP talk sometime in 2012, but forgot my log on, password, and the credentials I used. Now I am officially Maricar19. Over the years, including 2013, I have gained a measly 4%-5% annual return and lost big time in 2008. The funny thing is I had a 5% gain when most people lost money in 2011. Since May 2014, I started subscribing to Intrepid_Timer. Let me tell you, it is worth every $20 every month. There were times when I wanted to question his IFTs, but I learned to abide and follow his game plan.

    I have researched a lot about FERS retirement which I am willing to share, but I know there are a lot more to learn. So please find time to respond.
    Emotions should never play a role in one's investing strategy!
    No to Greed...No to Fear!
    http://share.robinhood.com/mariloc1


  2.  
  3. #2

    Join Date
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    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Hello Maricar19.

    I think a mod could move this to Retirement and IRA Talk to get more replies. There are a lot of retirement threads on the board with lot's of great info based on lot's of different situations.

    I haven't started a retirement thread yet but have been thinking of it for a while.

    Three years more for me.

    PO

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  5. #3

    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Virginia
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    478

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Hi, I retired a little over a year and a half ago and thing have been very good. I think it is important to plan things you want to do so I chose to learn about investing as well as a few other activities like church and reading etc. Even though I received a buy out and I had saved enough to be able to comfortably afford to retire I often question my judgment because I didn't have to retire and I probably should have waited until I was at least 66 when I plan to start collecting social security. Life is not all about money but another two years would have been an extra cushion in case the family needed help or something unexpected comes up.

    Here are a few other tips. Consult your HR and OPM and request retirement estimates for different dates. Look at OPM.GOV and find the best retirement dates in the year. Make sure you calculate your accrued leave and sick leave. Sick leave can be counted as time in service but it is calculated on a whole month basis so you could loose almost a month if you are not careful.

    If you are going to get monthly distributions from the TSP you should know that they won't take out State Taxes. I compensate for this by having extra dollars taken out of my OPM Retirement.

    Lastly, I would advise staying active in investing and not getting too conservative when you retire. No matter where you put your money you should stay invested and informed because you want that money to grow and last at least another 20 -25 years.

    Good luck!

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  7. #4

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Marica19,

    I concur with PO !!! Many of the Board Members have shared their retirement experiences, both CSRS and FERS, in the thread he linked !!! Also, lot's of questions, answers, and opinions posted there, as well

    I'm sure adding your knowledge and experiences there will help us all...one thing for sure...Fed "retirement" is NOT a cut-and-dried issue !!! I've had my eyes opened several times !!!

    BTW...loved PMaloney's post, too !!!


    Stoplight...
    "Too old to rock and roll...too young to die"... - I. Anderson

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  9. #5

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Thanks PO. I tried to do a search, "retirement" and i didn't get a hit. Maybe, I did the search wrong. I appreciate the info.
    Emotions should never play a role in one's investing strategy!
    No to Greed...No to Fear!
    http://share.robinhood.com/mariloc1

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  11. #6

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Thanks for sharing, PM. I already started getting some retirement estimates.
    Emotions should never play a role in one's investing strategy!
    No to Greed...No to Fear!
    http://share.robinhood.com/mariloc1

  12.  
  13. #7

    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Posts
    8,428

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Maricar19,

    I'll will get someone to move this over to the retirement thread. Just add to it once in awhile so it stays on top and you will get some information other retirees or soon to be.
    May the force be with us.

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  15. #8

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Really, the best thing you can do for you retirement other than put the max in TSP, is to do whatever you can to push your Hi 3 earnings calculation as high as you can. Take/compete for any and all promotion opportunities as they present themselves. Save the max annual leave in you final year, and if you have a large sick leave balance, don't use it, let it roll over to credit the extra time. One other thing you can do is move to an area with a higher locality pay to inflate your Hi 3. Sure some of this is not doable, but it can make a difference to the numbers when you finally retire.

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  17. #9

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by wheeble View Post
    Really, the best thing you can do for you retirement other than put the max in TSP, is to do whatever you can to push your Hi 3 earnings calculation as high as you can. Take/compete for any and all promotion opportunities as they present themselves. Save the max annual leave in you final year, and if you have a large sick leave balance, don't use it, let it roll over to credit the extra time. One other thing you can do is move to an area with a higher locality pay to inflate your Hi 3. Sure some of this is not doable, but it can make a difference to the numbers when you finally retire.
    Thanks W. Unfortunately, wherever I work, the pay will be the same. Regarding Annual leave, I tried to map it out so that by the time I retire, I would have 760 hours to cash in, again..things happened this year that I have only 300 plus hours to carry over next year. Anyway, I just have to keep on trying.
    Emotions should never play a role in one's investing strategy!
    No to Greed...No to Fear!
    http://share.robinhood.com/mariloc1


  18.  
  19. #10

    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Stinking desert valley of bad air quality, AZ
    Posts
    2,450

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maricar19 View Post
    Thanks PO. I tried to do a search, "retirement" and i didn't get a hit. Maybe, I did the search wrong. I appreciate the info.
    The search function on this site is lacking or I haven't figured out how to use it in the last six years. Not necessarily Tom's fault (Mr TSPTalk to most of us) but seems to be true on all vbulletin forums.

    Whatever, the thread has been moved to a better place to get responses, which you have gotten. I would suggest reading all the retirement stories when you can. There is a whole lot of good info in them, some of which will not apply directly to you. I will share more of my story so far but the reply I started got wordy and whiny so needs editing.

    I did not know about the sick leave being calculated on a whole month basis so am asking pmalaoney how many hours of sick leave equal one month. You do learn something on this thread every day.


    Regards PO

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  21. #11

    Join Date
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    Location
    Cleveland, Ohio
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    8,428

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by PessOptimist View Post
    I did not know about the sick leave being calculated on a whole month basis so am asking pmalaoney how many hours of sick leave equal one month. You do learn something on this thread every day.


    Regards PO
    When I retired my sick time got calculated into my total time in service. But they calculate out to the full month and it was calculated 6 hours for every 8 hours I had on the books. I had to use up almost 3 weeks of sick time or loose it. I left 3 days on the books just in case I miscalculated. If you fall under the month by even one hour you loose that whole month.
    May the force be with us.

  22.  
  23. #12

    Default Re: FERs Retirees, anyone?

    Quote Originally Posted by nasa1974 View Post
    When I retired my sick time got calculated into my total time in service. But they calculate out to the full month and it was calculated 6 hours for every 8 hours I had on the books. I had to use up almost 3 weeks of sick time or loose it. I left 3 days on the books just in case I miscalculated. If you fall under the month by even one hour you loose that whole month.
    According to OPM website, 6 hours is equivalent to 1day, ergo 174 hours is equivalent to 1 month.
    Thanks to you both for the responses.
    Emotions should never play a role in one's investing strategy!
    No to Greed...No to Fear!
    http://share.robinhood.com/mariloc1

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