Before you retire, you wonder if retirement will work out for you. Today marks two months of retirement. Retirement has been good so far, with no surprises. The long list of chores that you don’t have time for during a weekend is much shorter now.
Retiring just before Labor Day, retirement seemed like a long vacation at first. Then there was a Monday when it sunk in that I didn’t have to go to work. I don’t miss work and the pressure, and no one misses the commute. I miss talking with some people at work. I’m doing things important to me: traveling, doing this blog, going to more yoga classes, taking pictures, and improving my photography and gardening skills.
Last week American Airlines had a sale, and we purchased tickets to visit Chicago after Thanksgiving. The really cheap seats disappeared in a day so in Hong Kong we bought the tickets we reserved the morning before in Yangshuo. First time we bought airline tickets without our managers’ approval. With retirement, you have more time than money, so being able to jump on travel sales is much appreciated.
A surprise about my 401k. We read recommendations to invest in low-expense mutual funds and ETFs. I’ve been asking for the actual expenses for the mutual funds in my 401k for several weeks. We are provided estimated expenses, but I learned the hard way that actuals may vary from estimates. A supervisor at ING, the custodian for my 401k, told me today that ING doesn’t know the actual expenses for the mutual funds offered in our 401k and I can contact the management company for each mutual fund to get this information. I told the supervisor that with over 100,000 people in the savings plan, ING should collect and provide this information as a service to the investors. But the ING supervisor promised no action and could not provide the contact at my former employer who oversees ING. As a retiree, I can rollover my 401k funds to a company that knows, manages, and discloses expenses to the investors. And I will do this.