Financial Independence And Nursing

  1. Are there any RNs here (or former RNs) who have been able to become financially independent or close to it after being an RN? The reason I ask is because I've been reading a lot of stories online about people who have become financially independent and able to retire before the age of 65 (some at the age of 35-40) and I admire that, like that, and find that to be inspirational. The thing is, many of these stories have been from people who were in the engineering field.

    Is there anyone here who was able to take this path with past experience as an RN?
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  2. 43 Comments

  3. by   llg
    I am not technically "financially independent," but I live a comfortable lifestyle and will be able to retire in my early-mid 60's with no great financial worries. But then again, I never made any great effort to become "financially independent" either. (I've never liked to work overtime and wouldn't do it just to make more money.) Had I focused on earning the maximum amount of money throughout my career rather than on doing the work I wanted to do and having a personal life outside my work ... and foregone a few luxuries along the way ... I probably could have retired earlier.
  4. by   anon456
    My mom has been a 27 year RN and has a great retirement plan. She will retire next year. She has a nice home, is partially supporting two adult children through college (along with her ex), and living a comfortable life. She has worked most of her years at a government hospital. She did not get paid as much as a private hospital-- but her retirement benefits are really great. She's going to be comfortable for many years to come. She is 62.
  5. by   itsmejuli
    What is your definition of "financially independent"?
  6. by   llg
    I'll let Soliloquy speak for himself, but I assumed he meant the traditional definition of not having to depend on having a job to meet your financial needs -- having enough in savings and investments to live on without having to work. That's what I assumed when I responded a little while ago.

    I am 59 now -- and I could survive on what I have saved now, but it would not be a very enjoyable life -- and it probably wouldn't last all the way to 100 years old. So I am going to have to work a few more years to be comfortable.
  7. by   Soliloquy
    I think llg expressed what I mean very well.
    Quote from llg
    I'll let Soliloquy speak for himself, but I assumed he meant the traditional definition of not having to depend on having a job to meet your financial needs -- having enough in savings and investments to live on without having to work. That's what I assumed when I responded a little while ago.

    I am 59 now -- and I could survive on what I have saved now, but it would not be a very enjoyable life -- and it probably wouldn't last all the way to 100 years old. So I am going to have to work a few more years to be comfortable.
  8. by   anon456
    Quote from llg
    I'll let Soliloquy speak for himself, .
    Now that was a great play on words! ha ha!
  9. by   LadyFree28
    I think it's possible; by living below ones means and paying down debts, now, do I know anyone personally, yes; house paid, kids grown, has a pension from a former employer, but continues to work because she enjoys what she does.
  10. by   mhy12784
    Being financially independent is far more about not being a moron (being responsible with your money and spending), then it is about how much $$$ you make (though more does help)

    You could easily retire as an RN at 50 (if not earlier) if you became a nurse early, didnt racket up a ton of debt (loans) and started working right out of school (early 20s)

    Invested wisely (403b, iras etc) and had a pension plan.

    Pensions are hard to find these days, but even without that you could make big moves.

    I think a smart young nurse who starts working in early 20s, that maxes out their 403b/roth ira for at least 10 + years should easily be to dictate their financial future assuming theyre not a horrible spender.
  11. by   imintrouble
    Anybody with a decent paying job, can be financially independent at a fairly young age, if they manage their money well from the very start. I mean early 20s, or with the first job.
    Saving. Living within your means. Avoiding credit cards like they're the devil.
    When I consider the money I squandered most of my life, I become sad.

    A perfect example is the waitress who dies a millionaire.
    The amount of money you make is important, but what you do with it makes all the difference.
  12. by   rita359
    Being able to support oneself is one thing. Being able to retire at 45 or 50 is a totally different thing. I believe many nurses support themselves and children on a nurses salary and have a reasonable lifestyle.

    As for being able to retire early, I think that is a pipe dream for anyone. This is speaking from experience as I am 65. Who knows how many years you have to support yourself in retirement. If you live to be 95 and have to support yourself for 50 years it should be obvious that would be an impossible thing.

    I currently know many people who are nearly 95 and your life expectancy will be even longer. Sounds good to retire early until you look at those possibilities.
  13. by   mhy12784
    Quote from rita359
    Being able to support oneself is one thing. Being able to retire at 45 or 50 is a totally different thing. I believe many nurses support themselves and children on a nurses salary and have a reasonable lifestyle.

    As for being able to retire early, I think that is a pipe dream for anyone. This is speaking from experience as I am 65. Who knows how many years you have to support yourself in retirement. If you live to be 95 and have to support yourself for 50 years it should be obvious that would be an impossible thing.

    I currently know many people who are nearly 95 and your life expectancy will be even longer. Sounds good to retire early until you look at those possibilities.
    I certainly dont believe retiring early is a pipedream

    Its about smart investing, and if you have a pension retiring early becomes REALLY easy

    Smart investors mostly live off dividends/interest while the principal remains.

    I dont think its unrealistic to have 1-3 million dollars in a 401k/403b/ira (and or combination of)

    Conservatively 5-8% a year is quite a bit of money, plus social security (assuming that Ponzi Scheme still exists down the road) could easily last 40 + years

    Add in a pension and you could retire indefinitely

    Ill note that my father (not in healthcare) retired in his late 40s, and is more than sufficient
  14. by   HouTx
    One of the problems for my generation (Boomers) is that so many of are also caught in a financial 'sandwich'... providing support for elderly parents as well as children who can't/wont achieve independence or (worse yet) boomerang back home with the grandkids after ending up as a single parent. I don't know if anyone accounts for all of these events in their long-term plan. But it is reality. Many of us could retire earlier if we only had to support ourselves, but that rarely happens these days.

    A more frequent scenario? Retirees returning to the workforce due to unexpected changes in their financial situation. Worst case scenario? Getting stuck with a child/grandchild's student loans because you co-signed and they can't or won't pay them...

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