(DISCLAIMER: Over time, I hope to include articles, web links and other references,
and my own observations and musings,
that pertain to retirement in general and retirement planning in particular. I am not a financial planner, not
affiliated with any financial entity, and get no compensation for anything included here.
I have no certifications nor am I in any way professionally
qualified to make recommendations about investments.. What I will write about includes only
my opinions based on my experiences, what I've read (that makes sense), what has worked for me
(and what hasn't), and some of the choices I've made and the reasons behind them. I hope you will find
them of some value.)
One of the benefits retirement brings is "freedom" -- to do what whatever you want, travel wherever you want, control how you spend your time. Sounds great, but it's not that simple. It takes planning, and the earlier you start, the more likely you'll be able to enjoy a happy and healthy retirement. (After that, it IS pretty simple!) From the start of my professional career, I expected to retire one day, but I had no idea when that might be, or what I might do in retirement. Although I didn't realize it, my retirement planning began with my first job, when I allocated a percentage of every paycheck to "savings": an interest-earning savings account and participation in my company's employee stock purchase plan at first. Later, my savings became more sophisticated: equity market investments, contributions to an IRA, and ultimately participation in the 401(k) plans of every employer I ever worked for. I credit the habit of saving to my father--it was probably the best thing I ever learned from him.
For me, "formal" planning began in earnest about three years before I "officially" retired on March 31, 2006. This was by no means too soon. It began when I read Paul & Vicki Terhorst's book "Cashing in on the American Dream: How to Retire at 35". Although I was quite a bit beyond my 35th year, what I got from reading their book was the idea of how I wanted to spend the rest of my life and the basics for how to structure my retirement to enable this. Knowing what you want to do in retirement is the first requirement. IF YOU DON'T KNOW, DON'T RETIRE!!
Here are the links to articles I've written:
The Great Recession of 2008
Outlines for two seminars I presented at The University of South Carolina School
of Music (September 5, 2014):
Here's a short email I wrote in response to some questions about retirement planning I received from a reader of the Kiplinger Personal Finance magazine article (Oct 2005) in which we were featured.
One of my re-discoveries in retirement is the public library. I have read several books on retirement in general and early retirement in particular. Here are some recommendations along with my editorial comments:
The Smartest Money Book You'll Ever Read by Daniel R. Solin.
(It is. You can read it in a couple of hours. I own it and refer to it often.)
The Adventurer's Guide to Early Retirement a CD available for purchase from the authors,
Billy and Akeisha Kaderli. They retired in their late 30s and have been traveling the world ever
since. They cover everything from finances to medical care. (My main page has the link.)
and, of course, the one that got me started back in 2003: Cashing in on the American Dream: How to Retire at 35 by Paul Terhorst. (Written over 20 years ago and out of print, but you can find it on the internet if you look hard.)
You'll find many of these books make reference to each other. They all read pretty easily--they won't put you to sleep.