Bichon Frise wrote:
Do you want to retire? Are you a pessimist or an optimist? When do you want to retire?
What is the point of saving?
Yes I would like to retire by age 55...sooner if possible or at least be financially independent by then. I enjoy work but I would like to have the option to pursue other interest (volunteer, travel, etc.).
I guess I am more of a pessimist when it comes to money and long-term job stability. I worry that something will happen that will make me not able to provide for my family and now that I have a child on the way I think about it even more. My ultimate goal is to be financially independent so that I can be free of these worries...I may still end of working but it would be nice to know I would be set if something happend to my income stream.
My gut reation is to max out all tax deferred accounts and then save as much as possible in taxable accounts but I am not sure locking up that much money in tax deferred accounts makes sense or not.
I've shared this quote many times here before, but it bears repeating. "Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of cancer."
It's important to have goals. And a plan to achieve those goals. I'd start working on one of these with your spouse and you can answer the questions for yourself rather than take advice from random people on the internet. http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Investment_Policy_Statement
BTW, assuming you have no other IRA funds, the ROTH IRA is available to you and your wife. Not sure how the SEP-IRA plays in.
Most people here will tell you to save as much as you can. And that is very vague and ambiguous. There are 2 ends to the spectrum: 1) Run as fast and long as you can until you keel over, 2) take a step out of the gate, get distracted and never take another step. I think it is important to find a balance or happiness today and happiness down the road. This means, do some traveling now, do some volunteer work now, but make sure you are working towards your future goals as well. Buy the nice house (which you have done), etc. No sense punishing yourself now, just to die 6 months after you "retire."
This all works into your investment plan obviously, and as time goes on, things get tweaked and priorities change.