Retirement, childrens education and paying down mortgage

Mayo1969

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Age: 51
Spouse’s/Partner's age: 47

Annual gross income from employment or profession: €55,000
Annual gross income of spouse: €36,000 (Job sharing)

Monthly take-home pay: €5,000 (after pension contributions, AVC)

Type of employment: Both employed in the public sector, civil service (me) and education (her)

In general are you:
(a) spending more than you earn, or
(b) saving?


Saving

Rough estimate of value of home: €275,000
Amount outstanding on your mortgage: €52,000 (pay €800 per month incl overpayment)
What interest rate are you paying? 2.75% variable

Other borrowings – car loans/personal loans etc – None. Generally replace car(s) every 3-5 years from savings, cost approx €15-20k, possibly invest €10-15k in home improvements in the next 5 years also.

Do you pay off your full credit card balance each month? Yes
If not, what is the balance on your credit card? N/A

Savings and investments: €48,000 savings, (Combination of cash €25k, Prize bonds €12k, Peer to Peer €8k, Gold €3k) plus Childrens savings of €35k made up of savings bonds and PO/CU a/c's (portion of children's allowence diverted to savings bonds each month)

Do you have a pension scheme? Yes

Me – 17 years of public sector contributions plus small AVC (€50 p/m contribution)
Wife – 27 years of public sector contributions.

Do you own any investment or other property? No (possible inheritance of family properties in the future)

Ages of children: 11, 9 and 5

Life insurance: Yes, €300k cover for both of us plus whatever benefits accrue with work cover.

What specific question do you have or what issues are of concern to you?

Provide for adequate pension provisions for us both – For myself wondering whether to buy back years or continue to contribute or increase contributions to AVC and possibly use that to buy back down the road. Also will I be able to retire comfortably at 65? For her, can she retire before 65?

Provide for children's education and future? Continue as is for education provision, will it be adequate to see them through college, should we look to retiring before they are all in college to maximise any available grant aid?

Continue to pay down mortgage with extra accumulated cash from savings and over payment?

Should we speak to an independent financial consultant? (prior experience of "financial advisors" largely negative since they tend appear to be motivated by commission rather than what's best for your needs)
 
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