Most of the “retirement” stories we read these days in the mainstream media seem to fall into two categories: (1) how poorly prepared baby boomers are for retirement; or (2) success stories of those who retired with plenty. I have to acknowledge my part in this, as I pass on gloom and doom stories here regularly.
It seems that the answers are “yes” and “yes”, at least for some of them. How are they doing it?
A good way to find out it is to read their stories. There are places to do that. One of my favorites is the retirement forum at the City-Data.com site. It is refreshing to see how open and (apparently) honest some people can be in sharing their retirement experiences, both positive and negative. They also seem to be willing to interact with others in the forum about their personal stories. Real retirement spending numbers are available for all to see.
Sure, these are anecdotal and not necessarily absolute guidelines for the rest of us. But stories can be great teachers if we approach them with wisdom.
If some people can be content living in retirement on $25,000-$30,000 per year, that at least gives hope for the rest of us. Maybe it is possible to shed ourselves of spending “wants” without sacrificing true happiness.
Anyway, I encourage you to visit this forum and read the stories. Make mental notes as I have of what is working for the “shoestring” survivors and what isn’t.
If you are struggling, maybe the stories will help you can regain some confidence about your retirement future.