Two Big Questions

Dennis Friedman  |  Oct 3, 2023

MY WIFE CALLS HER 99-year-old mother every morning. One morning, her mother asked, “Are you making big things happen?” After Rachel reminds her mother that she’s retired, her mother asked, “How do you make money?”
Although I chuckled when I heard the conversation, those two questions are probably on most folks’ minds as they prepare for retirement. First, how are they going to generate enough income to fund their retirement? Second, how are they going to stay busy doing meaningful activities?

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Care Money Can’t Buy

Marjorie Kondrack  |  Sep 23, 2023

FULL OF PROMISES AND plans, we start retirement in our 60s. It surprises me when people reach age 65 and say, “I don’t feel old.” That’s because, at 65, we aren’t.
We’re still in our go-go years. We still have the time and energy to conquer the world, visit new places, experience new adventures. The 70s, by contrast, are the slow-go years. Maybe we need replacement parts, to slather on Bengay, to load up on Advil.

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Footing the Bill

Max Chi  |  Sep 7, 2023

MANY RETIREES ARE looking for ways to supplement their income. Others would like something interesting to occupy their time and allow them to stay productive and engaged—and, if it brings in a few dollars, all the better.
We’re fortunate to live in the internet age, with the opportunities that it offers. Previously, retirement-income sources consisted mainly of pensions, stocks, bonds, rental real estate and part-time work. Today, there are many other choices, including a few you may not have heard about.

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Worth a Read

Ken Cutler  |  Aug 11, 2023

DURING THE 1990s, I subscribed for several years to Worth, a financial magazine that targets high-net-worth individuals. I enjoyed reading articles that were, for the most part, geared toward folks in a far loftier tax bracket.
One article, in particular, stayed with me: “The Rise and Fall of Retirement” by Stephen M. Pollan and Mark Levine, which appeared in the December-January 1995 edition. Pollan died in 2018. His daughter is Tracy Pollan,

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Young at Heart

Dennis Friedman  |  Aug 7, 2023

MY WIFE AND I TOOK a two-week trip to Ireland. We flew to Dublin and stayed at the Hotel Riu Plaza. If you’re ever on the run and need a hiding place, just ask for a room on floor 2C. They’ll never find you because of the strange floor plan. All things considered, the Riu Plaza is a fine hotel at a reasonable price, with a good buffet breakfast to start your day.
After touring Dublin for four days,

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Our Exit Strategy

Larry Sayler  |  Jul 18, 2023

IT’S CHALLENGING TO GO from saving during our working years to spending in retirement. Our solution: Use a modified version of the 4% rule.
Financial planner William Bengen was the first person to articulate the 4% rule. He wanted to know how much people could withdraw from their investments each year and still not run out of money. Through extensive back-testing, he found that if folks withdrew 4% in the first year, and thereafter increased this amount each year for inflation,

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Thinking Ahead

Dennis Friedman  |  Jul 11, 2023

WHEN I RETIRED, I thought about creating a website and writing about my retirement. I looked into what it would take to build a site and have someone edit my work. The more I thought about it, the more I realized the only ones who would probably visit my site would be my sister, brother-in-law and maybe a few curious friends. It wouldn’t be worth the time, effort and money—especially when HumbleDollar offers all the benefits an unknown and inexperienced writer needs.

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Foolishly Fixated

Richard Quinn  |  Jul 7, 2023

GOOGLE THE QUESTION, “How many Americans live on a fixed income?” You won’t find an answer. But we all know “fixed income” is used endlessly to describe the plight of us seniors.

For example, there’s this from the National Council on Aging: “Living on a fixed income generally applies to older adults who are no longer working and collecting a regular paycheck. Instead, they depend mostly or entirely on fixed payments from sources such as Social Security,

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Aging Well

Sanjib Saha  |  Jul 3, 2023

LIKE MANY IMMIGRANTS living in the U.S., I regularly return to my hometown to visit family and friends. My trips to Kolkata are usually short and jam-packed, seeing not just contemporaries, but also the older generation, including aunts and uncles, my parents’ friends and my friends’ parents.
My two recent visits—one last fall and the other this spring—were no exception, but I had mixed feelings this time. Most of the older generation are now in their 70s and early 80s,

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Protecting Seniors

Richard Connor  |  May 15, 2023

RECENT HUMBLEDOLLAR articles have addressed issues of aging, including defrauding the elderly, end-of-life considerations and preparing our homes to age in place. It must be the season for worrying about the elderly because I’ve also had their welfare on my mind, thanks to several recent events.
First, a friend’s 93-year-old mother fell down a flight of steps in her home. A faulty handle came loose from a door at the top of a staircase,

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Unkind Cuts

Ron Wayne  |  May 5, 2023

AS A RETIREE FOR WHOM Social Security payments are my financial foundation, it’s worrying to hear about a potential cut in benefits 11 years from now—because I’ve seen this movie before.
If Congress does nothing, benefits would drop 23% in 2034. It’s an unfathomable situation, but one that most pundits believe is unlikely. Let’s hope. Thankfully, I feel secure that my state pension—one third of my monthly income—will stay solvent.
More than 40 years ago,

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Still Time to Change

Marjorie Kondrack  |  May 1, 2023

AH, RETIREMENT. You’re blissfully free of the daily grind. If you’ve made plans for this long-awaited milestone, great. What if you haven’t? You may feel out of sync and out of sorts.

I’ve heard it said that, “The capacity to take a fresh look at all things makes a young person out of an old person.” It’s never too late to look anew at the challenges of retirement, while you still have time to resolve them.

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Planning My Time

Edmund Marsh  |  Mar 29, 2023

GETTING TO RETIREMENT is lazy work for an indexing aficionado. What could be easier than stuffing money every paycheck into an all-in-one target-date index fund? Even building a two- or three-index-fund portfolio takes minimal effort.
Actually retiring, on the other hand, feels like a fulltime job. Who knew that spending money takes more thought than earning, saving and investing it? At age 61, I’m faced with important decisions that I want to get right,

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Writing My Retirement

Dennis Friedman  |  Mar 24, 2023

I WROTE MY FIRST article for HumbleDollar in 2017. I’d been retired for nine years and I had plenty of material. I’d made a lot of mistakes with my money over the years.
I was truly a humble writer then, and I still am. My early articles weren’t my best. It was a learning experience. I wrote them using the notes app on my old iPhone 5—an app that was designed for jotting down quick thoughts,

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Reinventing Myself

Mike Drak  |  Mar 20, 2023

WHEN I WAS FORCED out of my banking job of 36 years, I was age 59 and had enough money to retire comfortably. But I still felt the need to work—because that’s how I’m wired. Working gives me a sense of purpose and makes me happy, but it has to be the right kind of work.
I need work that’s fulfilling and which allows me to help others. I knew myself well enough to realize that,

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