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Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Review: Engineering your retirement

Engineering your retirement is a book about retirement planning. The author cleverly published it with IEEE press, which means that he can use equations with impunity.

Unfortunately, retirement planning doesn't require much math, so that freedom doesn't actually help him much. For instance, safe withdrawal rates are discussed for free at the retire early home page.

The sections on how to leave below your means is basically a list of ideas. Unfortunately, if you're an engineer (as Golio is smart enough to point out), frugality and efficiency in spending is already second nature to you, so this list is full of ideas that you've no doubt already considered. The section on increasing your earnings is similarly vague --- for instance, he talks about negotiating your salary, but doesn't list steps to go about doing so.

The section on investments does not cover asset allocation. The Retire Early study at least publishes a typical asset allocation strategy that's simple and easy to follow.

Ultimately, while I wanted to like this book, I can't find anything to recommend in it that you can't find for free elsewhere on the internet. In addition, he doesn't cover important topics such as the SEPP 72(t) exception, or the Social Security Application withdrawal option.

If you find John Greaney's web pages disorganized or hard to navigate, then this book might be interesting to you. Otherwise, you are better off spending some quality time on Greaney's web pages, and spending your $31 on something else.

1 comment:

md said...

he talks about negotiating your salary, but doesn't list steps to go about doing so

Do you know of any resource that does this well? I've read numerous articles from the usual online sources, and find them glib, out-of-touch, and mostly worthless.