Outside the Box: 3 reasons why this couple is ignoring their 401(k) accounts in early retirement

We are planning a two-phase retirement: a more basic lifestyle in phase one (what the Elephant Eaters have dubbed “dirtbag millionaires”), supported by our taxable investments and rental income, followed by a more traditional retirement, funded by our more gold-star worthy 401(k)/tax-advantaged funds.

One of the things we consistently get questions about is why we’re taking the two-phase approach, especially with well-funded retirement accounts already in place, instead of starting to tap those funds now, and already being able to retire. Of course, what they’re really asking is “Isn’t it all just one big pool of money?” You can certainly choose to see it that way, but I’ll be crystal clear on where we stand on the question:

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