It’s Not Too Late For Retirement Resolutions
The first month of 2018 is behind us, but it is not too late to take stock of various aspects of our lives. If you are thinking about retiring within the next few years or longer, you may want to create a resolution or two so that you can better plan for your non-working years. However, some people believe that it is simply too late for any type of plan to be effective or beneficial. While it is better to start preparing for non-working years early in your adult years, starting now is better than not making any preparations. One of the primary areas that we suggest be reviewed each year is your written income plan, and if you don’t have one, we can help you craft a blueprint to get you where you want to be.
Set Retirement Goals
Everyone has some dream about what their life may be like after they stop working in a full-time position. For some, the goal is to continue working on a part-time basis. Others want to travel, and some may simply want to be closer to family. A primary resolution should be to define your goals1. Without specific goals, it is unlikely to properly plan for the future. After all, maintaining your lifestyle if you travel frequently may be much more expensive than if you stay close to home.
Another resolution should involve eliminating debt2. Debt cannot usually be paid off quickly, so resolve to create a feasible debt reduction plan. When you pay debts off now, you can reduce the amount of income that is needed after you retire. For example, if you pay off your mortgage, car loans and credit card balances, you may be able to live on several thousand dollars less each month. By reducing the income that is required to live comfortably, you can feasibly retire with less money saved up. Of course, using those funds now may prohibit you from maximizing your financial preparedness for retirement. We can help guide you through these planning decisions.
Prepare a Budget for Retirement
In addition to making a plan to eliminate debt from your life over the course of the next few months or years, you also need to prepare a budget3 for your non-working years. This budget will include estimated income from all sources after you quit working. It also will include reasonable estimates for expenses. Your planning should focus on cost-of-living adjustments related to inflation. If you plan to relocate to a new town after you retire, your budget should be realistic for that specific area.
Update Insurance Coverage
Many people who are preparing for the future fail to take into account changing insurance needs4 after leaving the workforce. As you get closer to retiring, determine if you will continue to need life insurance. Analyze your need for different types of medical insurance and long-term care insurance. Each retiree is in a different position, so there is no catch-all rule regarding how much or what types of insurance you need to have. Remember to update your budget with the premiums for these various insurance products. It is also wise to take into account deductibles that are associated with each policy when determining how much money you will need.
Some people are so discouraged by their late start at planning for this stage of life that they simply throw in the towel. However, you can see that your initial efforts in each of these areas can help you to get on the right path to lead to financial freedom. Even though you think that you may be far behind others who are your age, you may be in a better position than you appear to be at first glance. When you make these important resolutions and start acting on them quickly, you can move forward with confident footing as you approach your non-working years. Call us at (888) 558-3700 if you’d like a complimentary assessment to see if you’re on track to achieving your hopes and dreams in your golden years. Because retirement doesn’t have to be just a fairytale.