How do I get what I want when I retire after 20 years of military service?

I have 6 years left before I hit my 20 year mark. I need to start planning for when I get out but I I don’t know what to do to get what I want. 

This is what I want: 

A house by a lake and a pontoon boat. I want to be able to not work at all. 

House by lake for around $200k

Pontoon boat for around $20k

After 20 years of faithful service to my country my monthly retirement pay will be somewhere around $2500 before taxes. 

My mother lives with me and I support her financially (she does not assist with many bills (currently water bill only $40 month) and she has health issues). I have had an extremely stressful career so far so when I get out I want to have as little stress as possible. If I have to work I only want to work a low stress job that I enjoy (like lawn service). The only debt I have is my new truck which I owe $48k and will be paid off before I retire. I don’t currently own a house or any property. I just want a peaceful life after my military career. Any advice is appreciated. 

4 Answers

  • 8 months ago

    Basically; save as much as you possibly can.

  • R P
    Lv 7
    8 months ago

    Save up enough money to pay cash for the house & pontoon boat.

  • n2mama
    Lv 7
    8 months ago

    Several things to consider. The lake house-have you looked into what those property taxes might be, because they will almost certainly go up year after year, even as your income is stagnant. If you are able to buy the house free and clear you will be much better off, because unless you have a huge down payment, you might not qualify for the mortgage you would need on income of only 30,000/year. Rule of thumb is mortgage is 3x your income, so for a 200k property you’d need a down payment of about 110k (plus associated costs) with the 90k mortgage you’d qualify for. 

    How is mom’s health going to be paid for? Assuming she has government insurance, there still will be costs and expenses that aren’t covered. And medical bills can run up quickly and easily eat up that income. What about if her health worsens and she needs full time care? Your income will not support a private nurse, nor a private care facility. 

    Many people who do their twenty and then retire (from military or public service) then enter a second career, because if you entered the military out of high school you aren’t even forty when you “retire”. Then you have a second career and double dip, with the military pension being extra income and not your only means of support. To live on only the pension, you will need to buy your house and boat with cash and live pretty frugally. 

  • Anonymous
    8 months ago

    You need to sell your truck and start saving.

    $2500 a month is way more than I have ever lived on. Of course, I don't insist on a house on a lake and a pontoon boat.

    The time to invest was starting 14 years ago.

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