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View Full Version : Retirement Eligible But Staying In



Mcjohn1118
09-25-2012, 12:54 AM
Like some of you on this board, I am retirement eligible. In fact, I submitted my paperwork and have been approved for 1 Sep 2013. Anyway, I'm curious to those who chose to stay in after 20. I once heard that you do 20 because you have to and anything after 20 because you want to. So, my question is, why do some of you still want to do this after your 20 years? I'm not trying to demean you in anyway. I'm just curious. Is it the economy and that guaranteed paycheck? Is it a more noble reason: You still have a lot to offer the Air Force and you feel you still still effect change? For me, I'm tired. Not tired of the shenanigans we deal with on a daily basis, but physically tired. But, I'll be honest, the paycheck is nice in times like these and if I happen to be on that next promotion list prior to retirement, I may consider withdrawing my retirement. Yes, sometimes the hours suck ass, but all in all, I can't believe I get paid to do what I do, even if I am tired. What say you? However, I may not have to worry about it if the Board puts my record in the "Pass" pile because of my retirement code. Either way, I'm happy.

VFFTSGT
09-25-2012, 01:06 AM
I have only known two types of people to stay in past 20:

1. Divorced and wife got part of retirement so trying to bump it up a little to make up for the loss*

2. Aiming high for Chief



*Think this is BS too...whoever allowed this to happen should be taken to the wood shed.

Pavegunner72
09-25-2012, 01:18 AM
I have only known two types of people to stay in past 20:

1. Divorced and wife got part of retirement so trying to bump it up a little to make up for the loss*

2. Aiming high for Chief




3. PaveG-Kids still in College. Only reason I'm still here.

ske4za
09-25-2012, 01:26 AM
Tak doesn't post outside his thread but my signature says it all.

Venus
09-25-2012, 01:43 AM
Still enjoyed what I did until new leadership made things stupid. I was final pay for retirement so anymore that I did after 20 it increased my retirement which is 53.5%. Plus my family got sick of it.

Measure Man
09-25-2012, 03:40 AM
There could be selfish reasons: Retirement of an E-9 at 30 is at least double an E-7 at 20. Try to find a 401K to do that! Retire at 20 and it's maybe a house payment...go 30 and you just might be able to live off it.

Myself, I did 26...up to 24, I was still "all-in"...I got tired my last 2 years and just waited for the right job offer.

BRUWIN
09-25-2012, 04:24 AM
I did 30 and stayed in past 20 because I wanted to wear the new ABU. Yeah, go ahead...ask how that worked out for me.

hugomk
09-25-2012, 04:32 AM
22 years in. Pretty good chance making E-8 that should bring me to 26 HYT. I still like what I'm doing that't why I have not turn in my paperwork. Anything can change in the future.

Vrake
09-25-2012, 04:39 AM
I was stupid and took REDUX because I had found out I made Chief and could go 24 years before HYT. After 20 you get 3.5 percent so I needed to do 23 to even it up so to speak. At the time I looked at it like a 20k bonus that I had never had and could make it up by going over 20. Only to sweat out the new ERBs for a couple of years.It did put me in a position to pay off all my bills and buy my retirement home. I wouldn't recommend it though.

As for staying after 20 if you are still earning your check and taking care of your people hang out and have fun.

CrustySMSgt
09-25-2012, 04:47 AM
I'm at 27 and hadn't thought of retiring before 30... until this deployment. I volunteered, so it's not like I HAD to come, but the time away from home & family are starting to weigh on me. Been with the wife for 11 years; of that, we've spent over 5 of that apart, either on opposite deployment schedules, join spouse assignments not working out, or whatever. That's a lot of time.

She retired last year and just started college with her GI Bill last month; she's decided she's not moving again, so any assignments I get from here on out, I'll be going it alone. With no decent options on this last assignment cycle, I opted to extend in place here, so I'll be doing a year at Kandahar. If the next round of assignments sucks, I'll hit the button for 12 months out, go back home and they'll have to find me a job (mine is already filled) for 4-5 months and i'll take my 3 months of terminal + PTDY and hang it up at 28 & change.

I love the Air Force and love what I do, but I'm not getting any younger. I figured if I stayed in until 30, I could afford to get out and do something I WANT to do, not something I HAVE to do. A year here will have me rolling out of here debt free (excluding house payment), with a nice chunk of change in the bank... makes retirement and actually spending some quality time with the wife look that much more appealling!

raider8169
09-25-2012, 05:02 AM
I would love to stay past 20 if I can make E 8/9. As it is looking I will punch at 20, not because I want to but I owe it to my wife and kids to not be away anymore.

LogDog
09-25-2012, 05:34 AM
The decision for me was mainly the opportunity to go back overseas. I originally planned on retiring at 20 but circumstances in my favor led me to extend beyond 20. I returned to Williams AFB, to close it, after a 1-year tour at Osan. I was at the MSgt at the 18 1/2 year mark and figured I'd get a CONUS base before retiring. When the assignment team came in to brief the base on the assignment process I found out I moved to the head of the list, because I was a mandatory move, for an overseas assignment. Bitburg AB had an opening so I extended to take the assignment. Shortly after I arrived the AF announce they were closing the base and another assignment team briefing put me at the head of the list for overseas and RAF Lakenheath had an opening which I took. Since I had to take a 3-year tour, to guarantee the assignment over another MSgt, I had to do another enlistment extension. When I returned to the states, McClellan AFB (another closure base), I planned to retire but got picked up for SMSgt. In order to take the stripe I had to extend my enlistment. As the base was closing, my SMSgt counterpart at HQ AFMC called and asked what bases I was interested in. I told him Eglin AFB and he said his Maj and him were hoping I wanted Eglin AFB because that's where they wanted to send me. I took the assignment, again another extension, and stayed there for 2 years before retiring after 28 years of service. The reason I chose to retire was because after turning around the flight and getting it operating right there was no further challenges for me. I'm the type that doesn't like to maintain operations instead I like to take under- or poorly performing flights and make them operate the way they're supposed to.

SoonerE8
09-25-2012, 08:32 AM
Because I love the Air Force. Plain and simple. I will stay in until the last possible day I am allowed. I dread the day I am not allowed to wake up and put this uniform on (seriously). Get to travel the world, make a difference in peoples lives, the benifits are great etc. Job satisfaction! If you find it stay with it, be it in the AF or Wal-Mart.

Barberakb
09-25-2012, 10:19 AM
I would stay for 30 if we could get a little peace...

We have been at war since I joined. All that time we have downsized. We need a break.
I feel sry for the army/marines

CrustySMSgt
09-25-2012, 10:39 AM
I would stay for 30 if we could get a little peace...

We have been at war since I joined. All that time we have downsized. We need a break.
I feel sry for the army/marines

You're not doing it "right"... lol

I am AMAZED by the number of people I've run in to on this rotation who have NEVER deployed. The latest, a 24 year aircraft maintenance SMSgt... W-T-F?!? I'm on #6 since 9-11 and have 4 prior to that.

Shrike
09-25-2012, 12:20 PM
I've been in a little over 24 years. I stayed past 20 for two reasons:
1) I still loved what I was doing. If you've got job satisfaction, enjoy where you're stationed, have great peers, and the family's happy, why retire at 20? It wasn't until I got to my current job that all the joy got sucked out of the USAF for me.

2) Made SMSgt at 19 years. Took a look at the pay charts. Realized that the difference in pension between retiring at 20 years as a MSgt and retiring at 24 years as a SMSgt was $1000/month. So the thought process was something like this: "Hmmm, I can turn down this stripe and retire at 20 even though I love my job, or stay for another four years and get the equivalent of my mortgage and utilities paid for for life. Yeah, that's a tough choice."

CrustySMSgt
09-25-2012, 01:08 PM
If you've got aspirations to have another lucrative career, it makes sense to punch at 20 and get started. I've got no such desire. My wife punched as a SMSgt at 25 and gets around a combined $3k a month. If I make it to 30, I'll be at $4800 (give or take whatever happens with diability). I'm lucky to have a full year of delayed enlistment when it counted towards my pay date, so if I stay to 30, for one year I'll be paid over-30 pay, which will bump up my monthly amount by almost $200.

If I quit at 28 (29 for pay), I'll only get $4216.

For 29 (30 for pay), it'd be $4546.

Will be interesting when I'm presented with my assignment choices early next year; weighing the value of $600 a month over spending 2 years separated from my wife.

Luvnlife
09-25-2012, 01:50 PM
We all know the magic number is 20 so if you're not prepared to retire at that time then you're doing something wrong. You don't have to retire at 20 years but at least be in the position that if you had to, you could up and get out and be financially stable enough to do it.

I’m a lowly retired TSgt and I took the REDUX! If I can make it with my small retirement check, you can too. BUT my wife and I prepared for this for years, knowing I was retiring right at 20, we laid down a nice foundation so that we wouldn’t have to work for the rest of our lives. Work smarter not harder!

Do you really want to work after retirement into your 50s/60s? I hate seeing guys getting out at HYT then spending their terminal leave looking for a job because they have to work because they can't make it on their retirement check, quit living beyond your means, quit buying a new car/house every few years. I don’t think I have ever bought a new car and every house I have ever bought is now a rental property bringing in extra income.

Barberakb
09-25-2012, 02:06 PM
If you've got aspirations to have another lucrative career, it makes sense to punch at 20 and get started. I've got no such desire. My wife punched as a SMSgt at 25 and gets around a combined $3k a month. If I make it to 30, I'll be at $4800 (give or take whatever happens with diability). I'm lucky to have a full year of delayed enlistment when it counted towards my pay date, so if I stay to 30, for one year I'll be paid over-30 pay, which will bump up my monthly amount by almost $200.

If I quit at 28 (29 for pay), I'll only get $4216.

For 29 (30 for pay), it'd be $4546.

Will be interesting when I'm presented with my assignment choices early next year; weighing the value of $600 a month over spending 2 years separated from my wife.

Maybe you will get Cannon. That place is awesome.

CrustySMSgt
09-25-2012, 02:15 PM
Do you really want to work after retirement into your 50s/60s? I hate seeing guys getting out at HYT then spending their terminal leave looking for a job because they have to work because they can't make it on their retirement check, quit living beyond your means, quit buying a new car/house every few years. I don’t think I have ever bought a new car and every house I have ever bought is now a rental property bringing in extra income.

To each his own I guess. As long as you're aware of the consequences, then it is up to the individual to balance work with play. My wife and I have this discussion all the time; we're COMPLETE opposites when it comes to finances and self-gratification (though I did push her in to doing something nice for herself when she fell in love with the new Camaros when they came out; difference between she and I, she paid cash... lol). I love to travel, I love motorcycles, and I grew up poor as hell and enjoy living life NOW... seen too many people be frugal their whole lives waiting to enjoy life and then never get the chance.

My wife just spent the last year no-shit being retired and doing nothing... drove ME crazy, just because I couldn't imagine not doing anything for a whole year... lol Now she's doing the GI bill and enjoying going to school.

I certainly don't live beyond my means, though I'd have to do something when I retired; this deployment was going to be perfectly timed at 6 months, now that I've extended out to a year, I will be in a fantastic position to punch if I choose to and screw off for awhile before I milk the GI bill for a few years.

Good on ya for being smart enough to set yourelf up as well as you did; if you are really luvnlife, then that's awesome!

CrustySMSgt
09-25-2012, 02:16 PM
Maybe you will get Cannon. That place is awesome.

my wife spent her last year at Kirtland (with me at Peterson); that's as close to that joint as I plan to get! lol

OtisRNeedleman
09-25-2012, 06:56 PM
Retired at 21 and some change. If I'd made lieutenant colonel might have stayed longer, but I didn't, so I retired. God's will. Anyway, didn't want to move again. Was a single dad then and the kids were getting bigger. Also in CA disabled vets' kids are eligible for free tuition to a UC, CSU, or community college.

Mr. Happy
09-26-2012, 02:37 AM
I'm at 22 1/2 years now and I currently have a 3 year ADSC due to promotion. So I'm going out to at least 26 years. I'm still satisfied with the Air Force, but I will keep options open as I near 26 years, and I will consider any opportunities that may come my way at that point. But it will have to be an opportunity I can't refuse like a $75K+ annual salary or maybe a GS-11/12 position. Otherwise, I may keep rolling to 30 years as long as I do not get burned out. I will not hang around any longer if my passion for the Air Force starts to die out.

I too was dumb enough to take REDUX earlier in my career, so there's some incentive to go 30 years to recoup the lost retirement percentages as well. When I first came in the Air Force, the retirement plan was 40% of High 3 anyways, so I figured I was always good with that and REDUX was no loss to what I originally signed up for anyways...I regret it now. Another driver for our household is seeing our high school daughter through college; that'll also place me at about 30 years TIS.

So unless I or my family gets totally tired of the Air Force life, I'll probably stay on. But I'll be honest too, sometimes lately I feel that "settling down feeling" more and more.

Drackore
09-26-2012, 04:59 AM
If the AF keeps me past 20, I'd be surprised, and I would. I do want to make Chief and I do want to go to 30 because I don't want to work after I get out of the AF. I can't see me working in a civilian capacity - mostly because I hate the majority of the American population. I don't even want to retire in America.

Blue Warrior
09-26-2012, 10:18 AM
I think it's scary how so many people choose to stay in because of the "guaranteed" retirement check from a gov that is completely broke and literally paying the bills with borrowed money ($.42 for each $1.00 spent). With each passing year the promises of retirement checks, tricare, other bennies become questionable, if not doubtful. Just look at what's been going on over the last couple of years with retirement studies/recommendations, debt ceiling threats, sequestration, more upcoming debt ceilings, $1 trillion annual deficits and a climbing $16 trillion debt that many claim will soon completely destroy the economy and our way of life.

Getting a retirement check will be nice, but honestly, I'll feel much safer when my livelihood is 100% funded by non-gov sources. Now THAT'S real security! In my opinion, the time to start working for that security sooner than later, not when you're close to 30 yrs TIS…when all of those so-called “guaranteed” promises could very well be stripped away from you.

CrustySMSgt
09-26-2012, 10:42 AM
I think it's scary how so many people choose to stay in because of the "guaranteed" retirement check from a gov that is completely broke and literally paying the bills with borrowed money ($.42 for each $1.00 spent). With each passing year the promises of retirement checks, tricare, other bennies become questionable, if not doubtful. Just look at what's been going on over the last couple of years with retirement studies/recommendations, debt ceiling threats, sequestration, more upcoming debt ceilings, $1 trillion annual deficits and a climbing $16 trillion debt that many claim will soon completely destroy the economy and our way of life.

Getting a retirement check will be nice, but honestly, I'll feel much safer when my livelihood is 100% funded by non-gov sources. Now THAT'S real security! In my opinion, the time to start working for that security sooner than later, not when you're close to 30 yrs TIS…when all of those so-called “guaranteed” promises could very well be stripped away from you.

Way to take a big steaming dump in everyone's morning coffee :fish :hurt

Blue Warrior
09-26-2012, 10:54 AM
Way to take a big steaming dump in everyone's morning coffee :fish :hurt

Sorry, but the other day I got lectured on why it's more important for me to stay until 30 years (if I can) versus get out closer to 20 so my wife can get traction on her civilian career. The whole argument was about how better off we'll be because of my higher "guaranteed" retirement check. I guess my kool-aid faucet is now down to a trickle and I'm just not buying the company line any longer.

CrustySMSgt
09-26-2012, 11:45 AM
Sorry, but the other day I got lectured on why it's more important for me to stay until 30 years (if I can) versus get out closer to 20 so my wife can get traction on her civilian career. The whole argument was about how better off we'll be because of my higher "guaranteed" retirement check. I guess my kool-aid faucet is now down to a trickle and I'm just not buying the company line any longer.

At 27 years I'm going to keep my head in the sand... lol

But you do bring up a valid concern; as money gets tighter, nothing would surprise me.

Luvnlife
09-26-2012, 12:28 PM
Sorry, but the other day I got lectured on why it's more important for me to stay until 30 years (if I can) versus get out closer to 20 so my wife can get traction on her civilian career. The whole argument was about how better off we'll be because of my higher "guaranteed" retirement check. I guess my kool-aid faucet is now down to a trickle and I'm just not buying the company line any longer.
I think it's been mentioned a few times on here about those that would have to PCS without their families because of their wifes job.

Same happened to me, after I hit 15 any PCS would have made me move without the family, it's hard to tell the wife she needs to move and uproot the entire family when she's firmly established in her job and we're in the city we plan to retire in, plus she's making much more $$ than you. It wouldnt make sense to move to a new city, try to get another job with the same pay and then end up moving back in a few years.

HeyEng
07-06-2013, 05:31 PM
OK...doing a necropost here, but it's not about PT, so what the hell. I had EVERY intention of retiring @ 20 years exactly. Was ready to go home and was tired of the games. When I hit 364 days prior to my eligible retirement day, I punched the button. THEN...I heard about a job opening BACK HOME. So, I had a decision to make. Go ahead and hang around for 8 more months to retire and move, or go ahead and move back home in 60 days. I would have to extend about a month to PCS but I thought "what the hell, it's only 2 years, how bad could it be?" Financially, I had set myself up to retire and be able to live on my retirement check alone. Sure going out to eat and movies 3 times a week wasn't going to happen but I could live comfortably on my retirement.

Anyway, fast forward about a year after my PCS back home and I absolutely LOVE MY JOB. To be 100% honest, this job is a joint assignment...but not joint in the manner you are used to. It's a DoD component, but mostly civilians. What does this mean? Well, I am as far removed from the AF as you can be without being retired. I get to fly airplanes and the rules we have are SO MUCH more reasonable than we have to deal with in the Air Force. Since we do a lot of flight test stuff, we can actually break shit and not get hung up for it. We aren't deployment eligible and the only real way you know you are employed by big blue is the paycheck and the uniform. That is it. My expenses do not go over what I would be making in retirement, so I am putting mad money away for the future.

I am taking this job a day at a time...as soon as it sucks, I will punch. But, for me, I get to do something I really enjoy, like the people I work with and am making "free money" I say free because I really don't look at this as a "job". Last weekend I was sitting at home bored off my ass and was looking forward to going to "work"...and that is just crazy...I know. I was a PT loser in my last assignment so with a referral EPR on my record, I don't have to worry about the promotion BS anyway...not only to mention I wouldn't want to get promoted for fear of having to PCS. So...there are my reason(s).

raustin0017
07-06-2013, 07:49 PM
Joined when I was 22 yrs old. Set goal to do 20. Found myself there and was still pulling hard having a great time. Did the full-pull to 30. It is all about a passion. If you loose the passion....punch out as fast as you can. If not....stay for as long as your productive. What do I miss the most? "Chief, you got a minute?" What do I miss the least? Staff meetings.

raustin0017
07-06-2013, 07:53 PM
I think it's scary how so many people choose to stay in because of the "guaranteed" retirement check from a gov that is completely broke and literally paying the bills with borrowed money ($.42 for each $1.00 spent). With each passing year the promises of retirement checks, tricare, other bennies become questionable, if not doubtful. Just look at what's been going on over the last couple of years with retirement studies/recommendations, debt ceiling threats, sequestration, more upcoming debt ceilings, $1 trillion annual deficits and a climbing $16 trillion debt that many claim will soon completely destroy the economy and our way of life.

Getting a retirement check will be nice, but honestly, I'll feel much safer when my livelihood is 100% funded by non-gov sources. Now THAT'S real security! In my opinion, the time to start working for that security sooner than later, not when you're close to 30 yrs TIS…when all of those so-called “guaranteed” promises could very well be stripped away from you.

Drop you papers Monday morning!

raustin0017
07-06-2013, 07:58 PM
If the AF keeps me past 20, I'd be surprised, and I would. I do want to make Chief and I do want to go to 30 because I don't want to work after I get out of the AF. I can't see me working in a civilian capacity - mostly because I hate the majority of the American population. I don't even want to retire in America.

You hate the majority of the American pop and don't want to retire in America? And you want to make Chief? That is some funny shit right there......

TSgt"M"
07-06-2013, 09:09 PM
For about 90% of my AF career, I loved it. Saw and did shit that a admin/comm weenie never would normally get to do. My downfall, took a job as a admin weenie for ROTC. My fault, no arguments. Stripped me of my spirit and chance to make MSgt. When I got away from AETC, faith was restored but the folks at home were getting old and I had to come back and spend some time with them before they passed. I think the fact the most of us (retired folk) are here is that we miss the good times and still try to connect to it. (even with a keyboard).

HeyEng
07-07-2013, 03:55 AM
For about 90% of my AF career, I loved it. Saw and did shit that a admin/comm weenie never would normally get to do. My downfall, took a job as a admin weenie for ROTC. My fault, no arguments. Stripped me of my spirit and chance to make MSgt. When I got away from AETC, faith was restored but the folks at home were getting old and I had to come back and spend some time with them before they passed. I think the fact the most of us (retired folk) are here is that we miss the good times and still try to connect to it. (even with a keyboard).


Family...for sure. If it wasn't for being able to come back home, then I'd be out. 20 years was too long to be away from the family...can't ever get that time back.

KC-10 FE
07-07-2013, 05:48 AM
I will not go past 20 as I am tired of being a flash in the pan father to my kids in between TDY's/Deployments, and a pen pal husband.

My family deserves to feel like my top priority, before my kids get too old to care.

raustin0017
07-07-2013, 11:45 AM
I will not go past 20 as I am tired of being a flash in the pan father to my kids in between TDY's/Deployments, and a pen pal husband.

My family deserves to feel like my top priority, before my kids get too old to care.

Good for you....family is most important.

DWWSWWD
07-07-2013, 03:43 PM
Guess I've given up somewhere in the neighborhood of $250K in retirement...... and counting.

BISSBOSS
07-07-2013, 05:08 PM
I stayed in past 20... Was in USAFE with zero debt and shoveled ca$h into the bank by the bucket..! When it became no longer fun - I left the Air Force.

I LOVED what I did (Comm/Nuke QA) and had a succession of fantastic bosses. As long as I got to stay in Europe I figured it was worth it. I retired but the wife was working for the Wing King who kept her on in-place for a one year past my retirement date so then I was basically a tourist!

Took the year off and got a genuine opportunity to decompress and detox from the Kool Aide and then to hired in the CONUS. All in all, I would do it again in the same manner. I would not stay any longer than I had too.

It is a TOTALLY different place then when I joined. Much has changed and not very much has been for the better.

-BB-

fufu
07-07-2013, 10:50 PM
Joined when I was 22 yrs old. Set goal to do 20. Found myself there and was still pulling hard having a great time. .

Shit, I wish I was having a decent time. I pretty much despise going to work everyday.