Leave Early Retirement, Already?

Certain circumstances are compelling me to leave early retirement.  I’ve barely scratched the surface and am considering a one year contract.   I received the dreaded phone call from my previous employer while we were visiting the Atlanta Aquarium last Wednesday.  There is a major divestiture underway and the person who I transitioned my work to resigned from the company last week.

For those that missed it, I started this blog after I resigned from my job and had some uncomfortable conversations.

Before I left, I was an IT Director of Solution Architecture for a fortune 20 company.  I hold unique insights as to how these systems should be bifurcated for the divestiture.  There will be a major IT consulting company engaged, but they will stumble due to the business complexities.  Anyway, the program manager responsible for the project called me to see if I would subcontract.

Starting my own consulting company has been a dream for a long time.  This would be an ideal way to get started.   However, this was my dream years ago and I never pursued it.  I am not sure if the dream fits our family plans at the moment.  Not to mention the going back to a high stress lifestyle is unappealing.  Will I regret not taking the chance to start my own consulting company?

The entire purpose of me leaving was to enable our family with more time for adventures.    This would derail those plans, temporarily.

Terms I Laid Out

They wanted a systems architect to be engaged with the project full time.  Full time on these types of projects usually run somewhere between 40 and 80 hours a week.  I told the program manager I would be willing to do 20 hours.   30 hours max per week.  After two days she came back and accepted.

She wants to know when I will start and what my rate will be.  I think I could easily fetch somewhere around $125 to $150 an hour.  Assuming I work an average of 25 hours per week I could charge $156,250 to $187,500 over the year.  That is good money for working 25 hours per week.  If I really wanted to I could do 40 hours and get $250,000 to $300,000.  I don’t think it is worth going back to work full time, even if I am my own boss.

Positives to the New Worth

  • Additional consulting income stream.
  • Starting a business will enable us to deduct some business expenses not currently available.  Cell phone, lunches with clients and the office in our home will constitute business expenses.
  • We could defer a portion of the income into a SEP IRA.
  • My understanding is that if I create an S Corp we can save on self employment taxes.

Negatives to the Net Worth

  • CPA & Attorney Fee’s to create the corporation
  • Errors and Omissions Insurance
  • Additional tax liability
  • Miscellaneous start up expenses

For all the Early Retiree’s and aspiring Early Retiree’s, how much would it take you to leave early retirement?


  1. It is a strange position to be in isn’t it? I have more money than I need and have been early retired for a couple of years but have side gigs that keep my brand alive in my industry so I keep getting offers. I was a high earner but two days ago I got an unsolicited offer to do basically what my boss was doing when I retired but for a different Fortune 500 corporation. They were offering me over three times what I was making in my last and best year in my former career! I said no and gave them the names of some of my friends that might be interested. It really is strange to say no to that kind of money but if I don’t need it what is the point of jumping back into the lion’s den? BTW on my side gigs I charge similarly to what you are talking about from $100 to $250 per hour depending on the work and have been able to cover the family expenses working 16 hours or less a week. Working part time as a contractor is much less demanding that you are probably expecting, at least for me, and much more fun!

    1. $250 an hour would be fantastic. I doubt I’d ever be able to pull that. You make some great points. Thanks for the feedback on part-time consulting. I need to make a decision soon.

  2. Wow, sounds like a great opportunity to make some nice money!

    People contacted me about gigs for years after I retired from software development. I turned them all down. There’s just no amount of money that would get me to go back to work if I didn’t love the work. If I loved the work and I couldn’t think of anything better to do, then any money would be an added bonus.

    It feels odd to type it, but I guess I’ve gotten to the point where there’s more important things to me than more money.

    Best of luck!
    Mr. Freaky Frugal recently posted…To budget or not to budget?My Profile

    1. I hear you about not needing the money. It’s whether I want to chase it or not.

      It feels more like a side hustle than “going back to work,” kinda like this blog but at least I will make some cash 🙂 I think I am ok with this.

      As a contractor I will not be directly in the unpleasantries, like office politics and jockeying for promotions that I could not stand.

  3. Honestly if I didn’t need the money and I was enjoying spending time with my family. And more importantly they were enjoying time with me. The answer would be zero. Life is too short for me to be away from my family more than I have to. Now if it was life altering generational wealth that would set up my grandkids children. That’s a different story 🙂
    Mustard Seed Money recently posted…From Homeless to Hopeful in One YearMy Profile

    1. This is a great point. It could be life altering, but not for me. If we fund the trust funds with this cash and let it compound that would be a decent sum. Or it could pay both college educations. Or it could fund a nice cabin in the North GA mountains. Something to consider.

  4. There is a certain excitement to be “back in the game”! Can you stick with 20 hours per week or will you be sucked back in 40+ hours because you “want to get the job done right”? It’s flattering to be sought after. Stop and think about why you got out. I know I am a sucker to jump back in and then the stress hits hard.
    All the best.
    Grand Dad Helper recently posted…GrandDad is out of Honey Nut Cheerios Again!My Profile

  5. Interesting dilemma. That has never happened to me. I might be tempted to take something like that just to boost the stash, knowing it would be temporary, especially if non-salaried. But downsized in classic older employee mass layoff, with no chance of return. Company actually banned former employees for life! A surprising number of them are doing that now. While claiming they can’t find enough “qualified” workers.

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