Whether retirement is approaching in the immediate future or you’ve got a few years before retirement hits, you, like many aging Americans, may suddenly find yourself with the realization that you haven’t saved nearly enough for retirement. Retirement anxiety* can be challenging. How are you going to provide for your needs once you’re no longer working? Will you have to work longer than anticipated?
Start planning early. As soon as possible, take the steps necessary to start planning for retirement. If your employer offers a retirement savings plan try to set aside as much as you can, and take a look at what you really want your standard of living to look like once you retire. Ideally, by that time, your mortgage will be paid. You may well own your dream car (though it will still need some work occasionally). Health expenses can be a real concern, but by planning ahead, you may be able to minimize your stress and anxiety when they arise.
Think realistically. As you make your plans, there are several things you’ll want to consider:
•At some point, you may need to move into long-term care. Planning for this possibility ahead of time could mean a better plan in place for your care.
• It is a possibility that you could live well into your seventies. According to the social security administration, the median lifespan in America in 2016 was approximately 78 years. Once a man reaches the age of 65, he can expect to see an average of 84 or more**.
• You could experience health-related expenses as you age, and retirement planning should include provision for those expenses.
Speak with a financial planner. Well before your retirement years, you should consider sitting down with a financial professional and discuss what a realistic retirement will look like for you. Get a solid idea of how much you should be saving now in order to retire with the funds you’d like to have in your savings account. Discuss when it’s realistic to expect to retire.
Consider alternative options for retirement income. A solid retirement portfolio doesn’t just provide you with a steady stream of money from a savings account. Instead, it offers you a source of income throughout your retirement years. Ideally, you’d like to be able to live off of that income and allow your retirement assets to keep working for you. Rental housing, can be a great stock market portfolio that can allow you to keep trading, and other investments can allow you to continue to bring in income without needing to work a full schedule.
Find ways to cut your retirement expenses. Do you really need to maintain the big family home that has enough room for all the kids after they’ve grown up and moved out? Can you get by with a smaller vehicle with better gas mileage now that you’re no longer hauling kids or cargo on a regular basis? By taking a hard look at ways to cut retirement expenses now, you’ll find that you’re better equipped to deal with the challenges of managing your available funds once you leave your job behind.
Deciding how you’re going to handle your retirement years can be a big decision. By starting your planning as early as possible, you may have the ability to better control the way your money will flow once you retire. Even if you’ve waited until your forties, fifties, or beyond to start thinking about retirement, however, it’s not too late! Making smart decisions now will allow you to manage your money more effectively for years to come.
Contact your dedicated IFN representative today to make sure you’re on the right track to retirement. 800.921.3100.