Author Topic: Part-time work?  (Read 2876 times)

mountains_o_mustaches

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Part-time work?
« on: November 04, 2016, 07:52:17 PM »
I currently make about $90k / year.  I am focusing on FIRE like crazy and am getting tired of the rat race.  A new job posted - a part-time position that would pay $50k/year, so basically half of what I'm making now for half the hours.  My question to you all - is it worth it to work longer (but for fewer days each week) or to just suck it up and keep the 9-5 job until I'm completely FIRE?

Some additional information: We're hoping to save $750k for retirement (for a $30k/year withdrawal in retirement).  We currently have about $500k saved.  My SO has some stocks in a trust from his family that he'll get access to in 2 years.  The stocks are pretty volatile (family-owned business) so will amount to anywhere between $20k and $400K (based on the last 5 years of stock prices).  I wish we could just rely on that money because then we'd be super close to FIRE (current value of stocks is about $120k), but it's just a small company and who knows what the next 2 years will hold  We're debt free (except  for our mortgage).

Spruit

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2016, 03:21:53 AM »
To answer your question you should ask yourself the following questions
- why do you want to FIRE (is it to Travel, to spend more Time with family, to pursue a hobby...)
- Will parttime work allow you to do (part of) that now?
- Will parttime work allow you to save more (no longer needing day care or do more yourself)


Spruit

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2016, 03:35:07 AM »
Also, in my country with progressive taxes, one gets essentially a higher net wage per hour for working less. That's not the case in the US, you should take the possibility of losing health insurance etc into account.

I'm a happy parttimer; more free time now, while i'm young and healthy. But extensive travel in the off season is out of the question. Good trade off for me, but not for everyone.

MayDay

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2016, 05:47:39 AM »
I am part time, my H is full time.

For me it makes sense as we have little kids, so this saves hassle and childcare expenses.

Given that you are in the homestretch, I'd probably do it. But I love working part time. And my job is super flexible with tons of vacation time. If it was a pt job with a strict 2 weeks vacation then no way.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2016, 06:00:39 AM »
Would you like that job better? Will it allow you to do more of what you want to do in retirement right now?

I would take the downshift unless the day to day of the job would be significantly worse because I have a number of time-consuming hobbies and never have enough time in the day even though I don't work in a conventional job at all (I'm a SAHD who homesteads and homeschools).

Need2Save

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2016, 07:38:08 AM »
It wasn't clear if the new job that is PT is with the same company that you already work for?

Would the decision effect your health insurance access or retirement plan access? 
Would the PT job make you ineligible for a 401k or similar plan, for example?

druth

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2016, 08:52:20 AM »
I recently was faced with a similar decision and it really helped to plug everything into the spreadsheet thats in the stickied how to write a case study thread.  I made one spreadsheet for each scenario, including the change in healthcare options, change in travel spending, change in benefits options, etc.  It gives you a pretty straight forward way of seeing your new time to fire as well.  That on top of what Spruit asked should hopefully help guide you.

mountains_o_mustaches

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2016, 08:34:41 AM »
Thanks for the replies.

The new job would be a for a different company, but essentially the same job I'm doing now, just PT.  I don't hate my job or the company I work for, but really do get burned out at 40 hours per week and they (current employer) won't budge on my schedule.  My access to benefits / 401K is a little unclear should I take the new job; although my understanding is that I can get health insurance, just with a higher employee contribution than a full-time worker.  I need to ask about 401K, but it feels weird to ask about benefits before applying or before the job is even offered to me.

In terms of what I'd do with my extra non-working days - I'd like to be more engaged with hobbies (woodworking, gardening, cooking), spend more time with volunteer and church communities, and I would like to do some traveling, although I tend to travel more locally, so long weekends would actually be pretty sufficient for a lot of the trips I'd like to do.  I do know that I would still accrue PTO, so could hoard PTO hours to do a longer trip as well. 

I like druth's suggestion of using the spreadsheet to look at all of my options and compare.  I'm thinking maybe I should apply for the PT position so that I can get clearer on the benefits (health insurance, 401k) and then I can decline or accept the offer should it match my goals.

Roadsidetreasurehunter

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2016, 10:03:03 AM »
Could you work from home a day or two a week at your current job?  That might allow a little more flexibility in your week.

Spruit

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Re: Part-time work?
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2016, 01:44:20 AM »
Yes I think you should apply. That's always a good idea if a job sounds even remotely interesting. You US folks have all this room to negotiate on salary, use it. There's nothing lost by trying. You'll get a deel if it's a nice company to work for as well.