I've been researching personal financial planning for more than 20 years, and have been an active investor since my first days in the military. As I approach retirement-eligibility I have been suprised to see a lack of consolidated information regarding military retirement choices and recommendations.
So, I'm launching this blog to catalogue my discoveries and share them with others.
Here are my specific questions:
1. What is a military retirement worth? (What would an annuity cost that would throw off the income that a taxable military retirement does?)
2. How much life insurance would you need to offset the benefit of the Survivor Benefit Plan(SBP)? Is the SBP the best way to insure income for my spouse?
3. Should I roll my Thrift Savings Account plan into a traditional IRA? If so, how should I allocate my proceeds?
4. What are my retirement benefits? What does the VA have to offer?
5. How much will my health care benefits cost? How much freedom of choice will I have?
6. Will I be able to keep my dental care coverage? What about my family?
7. Where will my children be able to attend college and be charged as "in-state" residents?
8. Where can I live so that my military retirement income is tax-free?
9. What will my cost of living be in retirement? How can I make up the difference?
10. What life insurance programs will I be eligible for? Other than SBP, how much do I need?
I think that this list should be enough to get me started. In addition, I hope to add topics on issues that I have learned along the way, such as TSP choices, Roth IRA's, whether military members should purchase real estate or just rent properties, buying automobiles, and living overseas, something I have personally done. I thing that this blog could be very helpful for many people.