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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

One More Year

Stress upon stress upon stress. First of all, I am at the end of my semester: expected stress. Second, we decided to go ahead with the house for Frugal Son, commencing a grand experiment in uncharted waters. Third, UGH, we had our SIXTH yearly scare about the budget. Actually, the scare is on-going even now.

I think things are going to be OK (let us hope--some of my colleagues are pretty hopeful), but I live in a state where the only unprotected areas in the budget are healthcare and higher ed. So for 6 years, we have endured major mid-year cuts, the most drastic of which led to the zapping of the French major. But, hey, when we committed to this house for Frugal Son, I figured the budget crises were past. Many states have surpluses this year.

When we heard the scary news, I had a sense of deja vu: I first started reading Funny About Money a few years ago. She helped HER son buy a house at what they thought was the bottom of the market. The housing market promptly tanked further and Funny--with a teeny bit of warning--had her position eliminated at her university.

So what can a worry wart do? First, I ran my numbers through my new BFF firecalc. I discovered that Mr FS and I are on track for a humble retirement. Then I read around the site. One of the things these early-retirement wannabes warn against in OMY. That means ONE MORE YEAR. People fear early retirement and so keep adding OMY to their plans.

I'm using OMY differently. When I think of a splurgy or uncharacteristic purchase, I now think: would I buy this if I only had OMY? Yes: to storage containers. Yes: to travel. No: to Hermes scarf. No: to fancy handbag. Of course, that's just me. You get to make your own choices.

I feel a lot better. Wish the legislature good luck with their deliberations. Wish me and Mr FS as many OMYs as we desire...


Liamsmom2 said...

Hi FS,
Does OMY refer to another year of work or another year of living?

Frugal Scholar said...

@Liams...-in the case fo the firecalc folks, it means one more year of WORKING. This is a pro-early retirement group. I'm using it in the same sense (though I like my job)--if I only get one more year of work, what would I spend on? Thinking about one more year of LIFE would be extremely stressful.

Duchesse said...

I'm glad you're feeling better. How close are you to normal age retirement?

Shelley said...

I agree that a humble retirement requires conscious choices about priorities. Then again, that's what I've always understood frugality to be about. Bill and I have been reasonably content on a fraction of our working life incomes. Having my time and energy for my own use is a real blessing and I was amazed at how much it cost me to go out to work. I can't think of any time I would less like to sign up for a mortgage than one year before retiring, but I'm assuming you've used your numeracy skills and know what you are doing.

MBH said...

You are ahead of the game as usual FS:

This article says the best thing you can do for retirement is use a retirement calculator and make good decisions based on the info.

Frugal Scholar said...

@Duchesse--Not sure what normal is in my situation. Would love to teach for quite a few more years.

@Shelley--The financials are complicated in this instance and may post about them more later.

@MBH--Thanks for the link. I feel better having done the calculations.

Duchesse said...

frugal: Universities used to have mandatory retirement for professors at 70, that was but was banned (in '94) so, if you would "love to teach for quite a few more years" you have that opportunity.

Frugal Scholar said...

@Duchesse--I'm 59--I would love to go to 70. Don't know if I can make it that long!