Retirement Journey, Worry

How the present is affecting our retirement future.

man and woman sitting on brown wooden bench
Photo by Monica Silvestre on

The present market situation has caused a bit of a pause for us as we figure out when we will retire.  In four years, or age 60 (for my hubby), we still would have a sizeable nest egg, but not nearly what we thought we would have.  We are considering and expecting a very slow recovery, and only a 3% rate of return once it does.  Once our investments come up to what they were before the crash, we plan to put almost all of our investments to conservative, non volatile funds.

Along with watching our funds in the stock market, we are assuming our cash savings in bank accounts will not earn much, if anything.  Still, we are stashing away as much as we can, and I still anticipate we will meet our cash goal in four years.

What else has changed for us?  I’m applying for a job and my husband is considering working until 62 or 63.  We are both healthy, and want to make sure we work as long as we can to save the amount of savings we feel comfortable with in retirement…without the concern of another bear market down the road.  If we save enough, we won’t have to worry about interest rates.  Period.

I know we are fortunate.  I know we have it better than a lot of people.  I’m grateful every single day for my husband and his secure job.  However, if he lost his job tomorrow, we would be okay.  We have a considerable amount of equity in our home, which we could sell immediately.  Downsizing is in our future anyway, so it wouldn’t feel like a hardship.  In the meantime, while he is working, we are saving and paying down our mortgage as quickly as we can.

That is the financial side, but how am I navigating today?

Taking time to just breathe.

Trying to help others where I can.

Remaining positive in this space.

It is scary, I know, and I’ve lived through bear markets, 911, and the snipers (which traumatized me for months) but I believe we will prevail.

Just remember we are all in unchartered territory, including our government officials.  Be patient.  Don’t blame.  Don’t hoard.  Share.  Above all, be kind.

Sending my love and prayers to all those who are suffering a loss, whether it be a loved one who lost the battle with this illness, loss of pay, or loss of savings.

We are all in this together.



13 thoughts on “How the present is affecting our retirement future.”

  1. I am glad you are seeing steady waters for your future. Do you think that you will have luck with a job search? I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you!
    We, too, are terribly thankful that we, and our children, are not yet effected by this situation. Our retirement is as secure as it could be. Our kids are both employees of the government. I am thinking that my small pensions from teaching may dry up over this. That would be sad, but not horrid.
    We do have extended family (7 out of 12 adults) who are in some type of service industry that is slowing or stopping all together. These are people who are, overwhelmingly, successful. Living in the West (not coast) they are still in disbelief stage. They are where the Washington metro was about a week ago. I keep warning them to stock up, just a bit.

    1. I had gotten spooked about three weeks ago and decided to do some prepping. No one else seemed to be doing it in our area. The stores were calm. I ordered my paper supplies online, and stocked up on canned goods, extra flour, sugar, pasta and frozen foods. I made room in my basement for the overstock. My family thought it was a bit over the top. Not so much now. I bought enough to help others as well. I’m not hoarding. I would rather starve than not share. But that’s me. I’m glad you are doing well and have some extra stuff. 😉

    2. Janette, in reply to your question about a job. Only time will tell. I applied to 3 positions, but I’ve had a two year sabbatical, not sure if that will hurt my chances.

  2. If you are that close to retirement you should only have a small percentage in stocks, especially volatile funds. You won’t need all your nest egg at once in retirement so don’t panic over this downturn. We were overdue for a correction. Though the market may take years to recover you’ve got time before you’d need those funds. Maybe more them into safer funds but don’t yank them out like folks did in 2008 when the Recession hit.

    BTW-My brother was on the Beltway Sniper Jury for John Muhammad.

    Just being on that jury changed my brother.

    1. Holy sh*t, I’m sorry for your brother! That was a horrible time for me, ducking at gas stations, worried sick when my kids were at school. Was so relieved when they found them, apparently they were on their way to PA to do more damage. 🙁

      Did you see me wave to you from 81? I went to visit my parents last week. I always think of you when I go through. 🙂

      Yes, I hear you about the market. We have three different retirement accounts in three different brokerage firms. The ones we are going to use before we hit social security are going to be all in safe stocks. We were never WILD investors, but we’ve lost 15 – 20% and it woke us back up to pay attention. We would never take them out, I still very much believe it’s the only way we can make our money grow. 😉

  3. I’m working from home today. Grateful that I have that option. We did a bit of prepping this weekend, not a lot, but some. The news is constantly giving us new information which feels a bit overwhelming.
    Trying to focus on this scripture: “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

  4. Sharon, one thing I learned about retirement is that you can’t plan it exactly. You have to play it by ear. See how your holdings are when your husband reaches 60 and re-decide what you want to do. My husband was going to retire at 62 but then we changed it to 65. Now, in light of the falling economy, we’re rethinking 63 or 64? I put a small amount of our savings into the stock market just to earn some extra money for vacations. Needless to say good thing I don’t need that money for vacations. BUT it would have been a nice enhancement. Thankfully, we can wait it out. Maybe we’ll enjoy that money when we’re 80! LOL.

  5. I feel very fortunate that we even have money in the market. We’ve still only lost growth – our initial investment is all still there. It’s all about perspective. We have enough food, toilet paper and dog food. We are all healthy and home.

    1. Yes, we are still ahead of the game in our accounts with what we put in. (Except my most recent deposit for spousal IRA). I’m not worried about it, but am taking a different approach in the next couple of years. We are still putting money in. What matters is that you have enough food and are healthy. Enjoy your time home! 🙂

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