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The Simple Dollar

Retirement: A time to generate income?

Retirement means the loss of a regular paycheck to many people. Look at the answer to question No.4 for some suggestions of how to generate income during retirement.

By Guest blogger / May 10, 2011

In this May 3, 2011 photo, Luanne Schmidt, 50, of Lannon, Wis., opens mail at her home in Lannon. She said her recent divorce left her feeling unprepared for retirement because she'd left those decisions to her husband. Guest blogger Trent Hamm advises, in item No.4 of the Reader Mailbag, to try to figure out how to generate an income during retirement from something you like to do.

Jeffrey Phelps / AP


What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question.
1. Cross country move
2. Building credit without cards
3. Quick repayment and credit scores
4. Income generation in retirement
5. 401(k) manipulation
6. What’s your day like?
7. Fix it up or not?
8. Emergency fund vs. financial aid
9. Handling proceeds from sale
10. Epic board games, not D&D

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I have had consistent dreams lately in which we have a fourth child, a little girl with strawberry blonde hair. She keeps showing up in dreams of all kinds as if she’s naturally part of our family. I’m not sure what to even make of it.

Q1: Cross country move
You may have covered this before. I am about to embark on a cross country move with three small children. My husband is going for a job where he will make significantly more money. We will have the opportunity to pay off our very high student loans in a few short years and save for the future. I am not too excited about the place we are going and I love my life here – job, career, friends, etc.

I am struggling with what to take. I grew up with borderline hoarders so I have a skewed perspective on what is trash, clutter and useless. Once we paid money for things, we used them way past their life expectancy and tended to keep them forever. I still feel guilty throwing away things that may be useful one day or that I spent money on.

I have spent a good deal of time over the past two years decluttering and I feel that this move will help a lot to finish up getting rid of things that are not useful or not treasured. I also have the mindset that I want to be frugal and not have to repurchase things once we arrive. The salary my husband will earn will allow us to afford the option of getting new things, but I am not sure that is the best option. I am concerned that I will miss items from this life that I love where I am now. Perhaps they will help me adjust to my new life – or perhaps new items will help me.

Here are some general items that I am conflicted about.

Linens – sheets, towels, kitchen towels, etc – do we take with or purchase new?
Dishes and other kitchen items from our wedding 15 years ago? Have I used them long enough to justify getting new ones?
Kids toys – how do I decide what to bring?
- Elizabeth

With each item, ask yourself a few questions.

First, will we really use this item after we move? Is it something we’ll actually use a lot upon our arrival? If the answer is no, leave it behind.

Second, will it cost more to ship the item there than to replace it when there?

Third, does the item itself have sentimental value or does the sentiment reside mostly in your mind?

Finally, does this have any resale value right now?

You’ll find that those questions, as a whole, will really filter your items. The ones that make it through this type of thought process will be the ones you want to take with you.