Friday, February 06, 2009

Early Retirement - Time Gains Outweigh Financial Losses

In October, 2007, I took early retirement. Since then, the financial markets have been in turmoil, causing our savings to decline significantly. On the positive side, I feel the non-financial aspects of our lives have improved tremendously. Here's my subjective comparison of the gains and losses from retiring early:

CategoryLoss in 2008Gain in 2008
WagesThousands of dollars not earned-
InvestmentsDecline of 5.4 times pre-retirement salary-
Commuting-$50 and 20 hours less per week due to no commuting
Sleep -3 more hours per night
Exercise-2-3 times more per week
Activities with family-Hundreds more hours per year

Was retiring early in 2007 the right decision? For now, the answer is still yes.

I admit that if I hadn't already retired early, I would be hesitant to do so now. However, I am still glad that I took early retirement in 2007. Having lived through 2008 as a retiree, I realize that it's possible to survive financial losses, provided there is a recovery. However, if I hadn't retired, the time that I gained back in 2008 would have been lost. And there is no way to recover time that is lost.

For more on Reaping the Rewards, check back every Friday for a new segment.

This is not financial or retirement advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

Copyright © 2009 Achievement Catalyst, LLC

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