Author Topic: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?  (Read 7922 times)

dachs

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Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« on: August 13, 2014, 09:43:42 AM »
Hello there. What I dont get about mustachianism is why, if you can live on so much less money, don't just get a part time job or work for 3 months and live the rest of the year on what you earned?

If you can still save and invest some of that, even better.

Because that would save you the hassle of at least 7 years in a job you might not be enjoying.

PloddingInsight

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2014, 09:53:01 AM »
For some that would probably be a decent move.

For me, and probably for many other people, I have developed a particular skill set via education and work experience, so that staying in my current career basically triples my hourly salary in comparison to part time work in some other field.  (Rough guess.)  So it makes sense to keep working, at least until I'm most of the way there.

dandarc

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2014, 10:10:00 AM »
You also need that excess income to build your assets to provide financial security - the 'stache does more than just provide income for regular spending.

catccc

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2014, 10:16:30 AM »
For some that would probably be a decent move.

For me, and probably for many other people, I have developed a particular skill set via education and work experience, so that staying in my current career basically triples my hourly salary in comparison to part time work in some other field.  (Rough guess.)  So it makes sense to keep working, at least until I'm most of the way there.

Pretty much this.  I would love to quit and work part time at my local library, but I make 5x more in my current job.    (I don't make that much, but I know I've seen the job postings for circulation assistants at the library and they make $8/hr...)  However, it wouldn't be out of the question for me to take part time work after FIRE, though.  I might try to keep my FI status on the DL.  Close friends will know the deal, but everyone else will just think I made a really stupid career move, trading my full-time, relatively high compensation position for "menial" part-time work.

mak1277

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2014, 10:20:23 AM »
This is definitely something I've considered.  My wife recently re-entered the workforce after a short hiatus.  She started with a 3-month contract position, which paid surprisingly well and covered Dec - Feb.  I've definitely considered the idea of having us both find work like this every year (we're in the same profession) and then take the remaining 8-9 months "off". 

MandyM

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2014, 10:21:50 AM »
What Liberty Stache said. Plus plenty of other reasons, including the fact that I don't hate my current job, I just don't want to do it for the rest of my life.

Truth is, PT is part of my post-career plan. So I don't see that Mustachianism and PT/seasonal work as mutually exclusive.

Cromacster

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2014, 10:25:00 AM »
This is sort of the plane once we reach FIRE.  Mostly just as a supplement to income, not to live off of.  The DW would like to work in a floral shop or bakery.  Something she's always wanted to do (or atleast try), but at this point in time it wouldn't make sense based on the income loss.

sandandsun

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2014, 12:37:38 PM »
I think you'll find most answers along the same line:
Most pursuing FIRE have jobs that are not conducive to PT work (i.e. full time required, positions) and anything they might take that is PT wouldn't come close to touching their current rate of pay...

Kaspian

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2014, 02:16:01 PM »
Are you saying that it's better to work more so I can spend more rather than save?

The whole point of my ERE journey is to NOT work.  ...Or at least choose what and when I do.  Grabbing a low-paying/other job and working Sundays and 18 hours a day on yet another person's schedule goes against everything I am trying to do.    Free time is way too precious.  I'm trying to get out of the rat race, not more involved in it.

Eric

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2014, 02:37:13 PM »
I'm seriously considering a sort of semi-retirement, where I save enough to cover all of my basic expenses and then work part time to cover travel and other "luxuries".  Probably depends on how much I loathe my job by the time I get my basic expenses covered.  Of course, as others have pointed out, my pay rate is a lot higher in my chosen profession than it would be as a part time worker, so in some ways it makes sense to stick it out and cover the luxury portion too in a couple of years instead of working part time for many years.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2014, 02:53:43 PM »
Because relying on a job, no matter what type, is not freedom.

nawhite

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2014, 06:10:28 PM »
Part time/seasonal work is exactly my plan. Wife and I looked at our numbers, saw 11 years till FIRE, realized that didn't make sense with when we wanted to have kids and how we wanted to raise them, so we changed the plan to 3 years at high income to get our retirement accounts to ~$250k at 30 years old.

Then the plan is quit the jobs we hate, do part time/ seasonal work (raft guiding/kayak instruction/yoga instruction/ski instruction/national park trail building crew etc) until normal retirement age (~35 years of surprises). In those 35 years, our $250k will have grown to somewhere around $750k which should be plenty for us to never need to work again especially when combined with 50% of our expected Social Security (I'm saying 50% because I think that is a pretty conservative expectation for what we'll actually get). If my job lets me go to 3 days a week or take 12 weeks unpaid per year, in 3 years (~30% likelihood) then we may reconsider the current plan.

Some people around the forums have taken to calling plans like this "downshifting."

P938LVR

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2014, 06:32:32 PM »
Because relying on a job, no matter what type, is not freedom.

Well said.

MrsPete

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #13 on: August 13, 2014, 07:10:17 PM »
I have no problem with part time /seasonal work; in fact, it's something we may do after we're retired.  BUT we don't want to do this to pay for groceries -- we feel strongly about having enough to cover our necessities before we quit our "real jobs".  We'll take on part time /seasonal work as it presents itself so that we can afford special trips, etc. 

I don't want to do that NOW for the same reasons others have already mentioned:

- Part time /seasonal would pay less than I'm earning now in a professional job; thus, I would have to work more hours to earn the same amount of money.  Part time /seasonal wouldn't provide benefits, the largest of which is the pension I'll have in a few more years.

- We'd have no guarantee that part time /seasonal would continue year to year -- it's not something to count upon.  For example, my mom had a nice-paying little one-week job that revolved around an event for . . . oh, ten years.  She enjoyed it, looked forward to it every year, worked her butt off, and then she was done for 51 weeks.  Suddenly last year the event changed locations -- and the event coordinators are now required to hire from the venue's staff.  Because it was just fun money for her, she was disappointed but not devastated.

- Once I'm retired, if I take on a part time /seasonal job, I never want to HAVE TO work.  I want to be able to do it on my own terms. I'm thinking of a teacher friend who was begged to come back and "finish out the year" when we found ourselves short-handed.  After much deliberation, he said he'd do it, but he would not teach a 1st period class because he wasn't going to get up early /drive in the dark anymore.  The school needed him so badly that they changed 50-60 students' schedules to accommodate his demands.  I don't know that I would personally have made that demand for a six-month job, but the point is valid:  If I work after retirement, I want to be able to make my own decisions -- and if I NEED the money, I can't do that.

- I would feel uncomfortable retiring and not having a comfortable amount of money saved.  I am a little more conservative than most people here and feel the need to have a pretty good financial buffer against inflation, etc.  If I quit before I have what I consider necessary, I would worry about what might happen if I were unable to find work next year, if I became disabled and could not work, etc.  I do not like to worry, and I am not a person to put off 'til tomorrow what should be done today.  When I quit, I want to know that I've completed my goals. 

Emilyngh

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #14 on: August 13, 2014, 07:14:19 PM »
Hello there. What I dont get about mustachianism is why, if you can live on so much less money, don't just get a part time job or work for 3 months and live the rest of the year on what you earned?

If you can still save and invest some of that, even better.

Because that would save you the hassle of at least 7 years in a job you might not be enjoying.

This is pretty much what I have.  We have a stache, but are not FI, yet.   I work about 1/2 time, DH is a SAHP.   I took a very large salary cut switching to my current job, but the pay is about the same per hour if I divide out how many hours I actually work.

We still do save, but only about 25%.    Should still reach full FI in about 10-15 years.

Ian

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #15 on: August 13, 2014, 10:23:27 PM »
Working three months a year will equal seven years of full time employment after 28 years - that's within the expected lifespan of most young members here, so it makes sense from a mathematical perspective.

Having said that, I can see seasonal work being a good choice for people who are mostly bothered by the endless grind. Personally, I would dislike the idea of an annual period with a bunch of obligatory work. Right now I'm working toward FIRE while employed less than half time, so I'm hoping to never have to work 40 hours a week again. That's too much of my time to surrender, even for a few weeks.

sdp

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #16 on: August 13, 2014, 10:32:13 PM »
I quit my 70K/year job and now make about 18k-20kworking about 1,000 hours a year.  I work for a white water rafting company and it is way more fun than before... I am not FI yet and this move has definitely delayed FI but I am way happier and get to spend so much more time doing things I want to do.   I am still saving and my net worth is going up steadily.  I am 40 and my wife and I have decided to start a family.  now I get to be home a lot with the little one instead of working....  It was not the best financial move for us, but it is better for my soul.......

nawhite

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #17 on: August 14, 2014, 09:34:36 AM »
sdp, what river do you work? I basically want to do the same thing you described.

sdp

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #18 on: August 14, 2014, 04:26:09 PM »
I work in the grand canyon..... we live in flagstaff, poverty with a view...

sarah8001

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Re: Why not just get a part time / seasonal job?
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2014, 05:44:30 AM »
We want to do this, but I want a stash first, mostly because we plan to have kids. I've worked in healthcare, no one thinks they'll have a major health problem, or anticipates the financial disaster afterward. So, work for 10 years, build up about 500k dollar stash, then coast. I'd also like to get our expenses low enough that we could make it on two part time minimum wage jobs (under 2000/month). The unknown is a big scary thing.