1:10 am, April 17, 2014

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  • Tips from a ready to retire FERS
    deployed decoy
    80% or 40% ONLY is based on FERS/CSRS annuity payments. In the case of FERS and having both MRA and 30 years of service the Social Security Supplement (SSS) percentage is based on FERS years over 40. (Note real SS is based on the highest 35 earning years). The 5 year fudge factor that lowers the SSS aside. The SSS is NOT paid until OPM figures it all out, thus don’t count on that $1000 a month for a year or so. Also anyone looking at any early out incentive be it VSIP or VERA, know that unless you have turned 55 by the date you go off the books. You can NOT tap TSP until you turn 59 1/2. My agency forgot to tell people that last year and as I hear a few are ticked off because they took the buyout and now have to wait most of 6 years to draw TSP. One last tip. If you do plan to retire at the end of 2012. Wait until the middle of November. Yes this will screw up your agency estimating your retirement package. But IF a VERA is offered on 15 Oct and you dropped retirement papers on 10 Oct, no $25k for you. On TSP if you tap it at about 2% of the balance immediately, it will last far longer than you will.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • All good tips
    contrarian
    I plan to roll my TSP into a broker and pursue better options than TSP has. Even if you're a safety investor looking for dividend stocks, TSP has nothing for you. Plus the withdrawal options are alot better with a private broker, which I won't name lest anyone think I'm a shill for someone in particular. There are several, take your pick. I'd hope that anybody retiring has paid off their credit cards and debt except for house. We've already had a big dose of inflation, but living frugally is the key. McMansions and retirmement don't seem like a successful strategy to me.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • "...roll my TSP into a broker and pursue better options..."
    FERS Fed
    Before you do, contrarian, suggest that you plan a hypothetical transaction or two with said brokers; work up estimates of purchase fees, redemption fees, exchange fees, managment fees, account fees, yada yada yada; and see what kind of return you would have to achieve to offset the fees and still net a gain. The opportunity to 'pursue better options' might cost you more than it's worth.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Better than hypothetical
    contrarian
    I already have Roth & brokerage accounts. Those fees you describe are bogeymen put out by TSP. My profits have far outstripped any trading fees. I've owned physical coins too. Well worth it.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Broker vs. TSP
    Moderate
    I think each person must decide for him(her)self whether to leave the money in the TSP or roll it over into a brokerage account. If you are a savy investor, not afraid of the higher risk, you MAY do better or MAY do much worse with a broker. I am not a savy investor although I have tried with modest dollars. I am leaving the CSRS money in CSRS, although I would like to find a way to shift it a piece at a time into Roth. I believe that starts May 7. I will shift my payments into Roth as soon as possible.-------To FERS and contrarian-good luck with your investments. I am CSRS so TSP will not help me that much.
    worker
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Some people
    deployed decoy
    I have 2 close coworkers that are FERS. No amount of my beating on them, can I get them to contribute to TSP. I try to explain that the 5% they toss in really costs them about 4% then the agency matches 5%. Thus the market would need to go down more than 50% a pay period just to lose money. Both of these folks also have between 5 and 12 years of active duty time that they just wont post 56 buy back. I dont get it, maybe it is because the HR folks didn’t tell them the truth... They are the ones that will suffer in the end. The problem with coins is the IRS considers them a collectable (as the IRS does with a few metal stocks and IRAs in American Eagles), and as such profits are taxed at 35%. That of course assumes a person does not open a small business and sell these as a business (with all those home business deductions), vice a collection or for that matter hand carry 9,000 silver dollars offshore to live off in a depressed 3rd or 4th world country, since it is technically below the $10k threshold.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • The truth comes out
    contrarian
    We see that the Roth option is to help the CSRS people, not the FERS people. But then any savvy investor would definitely be better with a private account. It's the novices that might be better with TSP.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Didn't know that!
    Joe
    Thanks DD. I never knew OPM was delaying SSS payments. I will need to save even more for that 1st year in retirement. There is also a good chance FERS annuitants will lose the SSS benefit in some future year. This year's proposal to eliminate SSS got derailed, but it is now a target for deficit cutters.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • Joe
    deployed decoy
    FNR does a radio spot Mondays at 10AM with Tammy Flanagan. She is the smartest person on the planet when it comes to federal retirement. She writes for 'another' online federal employee site, I wont name here for fear Mike will block me. I actually asked her a couple questions several months back, from the link in her online story. She answered back in detail. One was on the SSS not paid until OPM gets it all correct. I am still waiting on the same answers from my agency and OPM... Also be warned, if you have Post 56 buy back or have worked for 5 agencues like I have, expect OPM to take at least 6 months on the final deal.
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • What's an Interim Payment
    SecondTimothy
    Lucky I retired when I did, Septemeber 30, 2006. I got my first retirement payment right on time November 1 and it was NOT an interim payment but the full amount. I see things have gotten really screwed up in the last 3 years. How's that hope and change working out for you?
    { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }
  • { "Agree":"1","Funny":"1","Insightful":"1","Disagree":"-1","Offensive":"-1","Troll":"-1" }