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Old 09-10-2012, 04:46 PM   #1
BubMunkeyBles
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How much savings to separate from military?

So we're still 5 or 6 years out (DH just re-upped to 22 years of service) but how many months of expenses should we have saved up? He's planning on taking full terminal leave which will cover a couple months of expenses with medical, housing and regular pay too, plus he'll get a retirement check (less than we'd be able to live on though) but I've heard those can take a couple months to kick in. Ideally he'll have a job lined up prior but that's not a guarantee no matter how prepared he is education wise etc to get out.
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:16 PM   #2
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I would say in this job market a years’ worth. On a good note my husband has several of his peers who have retired over that past year and their first retirement has been the month after they got out. I only know this because we were discussing retirement and his last night.
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:25 PM   #3
BubMunkeyBles
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I would say in this job market a years’ worth. On a good note my husband has several of his peers who have retired over that past year and their first retirement has been the month after they got out. I only know this because we were discussing retirement and his last night.
That's good to know that it's not taking long to get paid. We actually don't know anyone who it's taken longer than a couple months to get a well paying job (at least what they were making in the military), but we want to be prepared regardless. Luckily DH has prepared pretty well and gotten his bachelors and is almost done with his masters. We're hoping to "retire" to the DC area. His checks will be about $2000/month after taxes, maybe a little more. I'm sure we could live with family until he got something set up but that sounds not so fun, lol.
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:33 PM   #4
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First, good for you for wanting to be prepared! You so seldom see people preparing for life after the military, and then they complain.

It's a tricky question, because there are so many variables.

With 22 years, I would think the two of you would be covered under TriCare for Life. Will that be the case? If so, I would look up the current annual premium, add about 10% to that, plus any current deductible (not sure if that applies, or how far you will be from a MTF). That will be a good starting point to determine how much you will need, especially if you can take care of a full year's premium and breathe a little easier about medical care. If he is able to find another job right away, with benefits, it may not be an issue, but better to be prepared.

Will you be moving back home? A GTC will have to be turned in prior to final out processing, and it will take several weeks to receive travel reimbursements that may be due. Your tickets and household goods will be paid for if you're flying from overseas, but if you plan on driving and/or doing a DIDY, you will need to have enough saved to cover that OOP, as they will typically not advance monies when a member is separating for any reason.

Are you in military or privatized housing? If privatized, they are paid at the end of the month, not the beginning, and are not authorized to deduct BAH from final paychecks. So you will need to have enough to pay them before out processing, as they will not bill you.

Also, be aware that a final paycheck can and will be held for up to 60 days (I was lucky, mine was only 2 weeks) while they double-check that you don't owe anyone affiliated with the military any money (Exchange card, library, Enlisted Club, etc). This is separate from any travel vouchers you will need to submit, and that money may also be held.

In short, I would recommend
a minimum of 6 months' expenses

at least 6 months' health premiums

enough to cover a full month in housing (plus any damages/fees you think you may incur)

enough to travel to your home of record or pay
any difference between shipping to your HOR and your chosen destination

Getting out of the military is quite the hassle, since it's almost impossible to have a job solidly lined up before you do. Best of luck to you and your DH!
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by donaldlovesdaisy View Post
I would say in this job market a years’ worth. On a good note my husband has several of his peers who have retired over that past year and their first retirement has been the month after they got out. I only know this because we were discussing retirement and his last night.
"This" current job market doesn't apply. She said 5-6 years til he retires. I work with many military members and retired military. They all had jobs lined up before their terminal leave ended. It really depends on where you are living at the time and where you want to live.
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Old 09-10-2012, 06:01 PM   #6
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"This" current job market doesn't apply. She said 5-6 years til he retires. I work with many military members and retired military. They all had jobs lined up before their terminal leave ended. It really depends on where you are living at the time and where you want to live.

I would still do a year just to be on the safe side.
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Old 09-10-2012, 06:31 PM   #7
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I would aim for a year, you should kickight into tricare for life of standard depending on your choice... a big reminder is that retired tricare ded and priemums stc reset Oct 1 so you will have that as a expense also some docs who take active duty will not take the standard /for life s check around for doc before so your not ff guard.

what branch is he out of? we tend to move near bases even now ( 12 yrs later) just to have the commissary and px close by!
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Old 09-10-2012, 06:56 PM   #8
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Go to the transition class on the base one year out and again at 6 months out. DC is a good place for contacts/networking, so he may have good luck with finding a job right away. Good luck! It's an exciting time in your active duty life. My husband retired a year ago and we are still learning things about civilian life, but I am so happy to have him home and safe.
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Old 09-10-2012, 07:00 PM   #9
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Thanks. We'll plan on a year of expenses. I'm thinking me and the kids will probably kick it with my parents while DH tries to find something in the DC area. He'll of course be putting in for stuff before he gets out too. We do Tricare Standard now and I'm sure will stick with that when he gets out. We'll just have the $3000 catastrophic cap in savings. No biggie. Oh, and he's Air Force with a lot of contacts pretty much everywhere, but many in the DC area.
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Old 09-10-2012, 07:20 PM   #10
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Depending on what your DH does, it can be pretty easy to find a job here when he retires. Obviously the market can change often, but I work in a government installation where we've had many people retire and come back as contractors or even government personnel. Good luck to him (and your family!!)
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Old 09-10-2012, 08:13 PM   #11
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Depending on what your DH does, it can be pretty easy to find a job here when he retires. Obviously the market can change often, but I work in a government installation where we've had many people retire and come back as contractors or even government personnel. Good luck to him (and your family!!)
His actual job isn't really transferable. It's just not something people do in the civilian world. BUT he has a lot of management experience and will continue to get more and there's specialized jobs within the government that he wants. But he'd take an aviation safety or management job too. He'll also look at contractors, but doesn't want to do that long term as it's not as stable. He's pretty much a desk jockey and supervisor for the rest of his career at this point.
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Old 09-10-2012, 08:46 PM   #12
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there does seem to be some confusion amoung some of the responses regarding Tricare-Tricare for Life is a Medicare Supplement plan-between retirement and age 65 you actually used Tricare Prime-or Standard retired. There is currently a 536 dollar per year enrollment fee for family coverage that will in all likely hood go up before you retire. There are no enrollment fees for Tricare for life but you must pay Medicare part B premiums to be eligible.
Sounds like you have a good plan and hopefully his contacts and experience will translate into a decent job when he seperates.
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Old 09-10-2012, 09:30 PM   #13
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I'll add to the above poster. There is no charge for Tricare Standard. If you plan on using tricare standard I would suggest getting a supplement also. We have used standard for several years and have had no problems finding Drs. Next year we turn 65 and so will be using tricare for life which will be the second payer after medicare.
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Old 09-10-2012, 11:02 PM   #14
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A little off topic. Does he have his degrees? Is he going to transfer his GI Bill to you or your children? He would have to do that while on active duty is why I ask.
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Old 09-10-2012, 11:27 PM   #15
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I'll add to the above poster. There is no charge for Tricare Standard. If you plan on using tricare standard I would suggest getting a supplement also. We have used standard for several years and have had no problems finding Drs. Next year we turn 65 and so will be using tricare for life which will be the second payer after medicare.
We like standard and we also know that retiree standard can only spend up to $3000 a year out of pocket. That is including prescriptions, copays and no premium monthly. That's pretty good. Like I said, I'm on Standard now and am very happy with my care and I went through cancer treatments on it. I like the freedom and hate HMO's so it's a good fit.

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A little off topic. Does he have his degrees? Is he going to transfer his GI Bill to you or your children? He would have to do that while on active duty is why I ask.
He has his bachelors and is almost done with his masters. He's used TA and not used his GI Bill. He JUST transferred the GI bill to me (I'm getting a second degree in accounting so I can actually hopefully find a job in this craptastic economy) and to the kids. That's why his enlistment is out so far.
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