Plan And Prepare For A Successful, Stress Free Retirement

Written by: Jennifer Watkins

When people are young, in their twenties and thirties, very little thought is given to retirement. They know that their employer provides them with a 401K, or other savings fund, but that is all they know about the subject. Many people think that this fund is for them to borrow on, and use at their discretion during the time that they work. It is not until a person reaches the age of 40 that they seriously consider the impact that retirement may have on their lifestyle. It is usually during this time that the conscientious person starts to realize that retirement is not too far away.

Retirement means early preparation

Waiting until the age of 50 may be a little late to start preparing for a life on a fixed income. Many people start to worry about how they are going to survive on a reduced income with the same budget that they currently have. The time to start planning for retirement is in the early years of being in the workforce. The retirement deductions from a paycheck are just the beginning. There are many more important things to take into consideration. Mortgages are probably the number one factor to filter into a retirement budget. If a home is bought when people are around 30, then chances are that mortgage will be paid by the time they retire. some folk pay off one mortgage, but decide to buy a better home after they reach 50, and the children are grown. This home, depending on the initial down payment, will still be active by the retirement years.

Planning for these things is not always at the forefront of the thoughts of the average person. Budgeting for retirement may take the assistance of a financial planner, attorney, of an advisor who is knowledgeable of the pitfalls that people face when they are not fully prepared. The average couple under the age of 40 may not be aware of the spending and budgeting habits of their spouse. They may pay bills together, but when it comes to savings, they put it off until a more convenient time, not realizing that the time is upon them. Many places of employment provide some type of financial service that more people should use to their advantage.

Know what you want to do after retirement

Having a general idea as to how retirement will be spent will greatly help with the planning. Knowing what retirement will bring, the things a person wants to do, and how they expect to pay for it will go a long way in helping one plan. People who retire as early as 60 years of age sometimes live until the become 90 years old. They may have a general idea as to what they will do for a while, but the extended years could mean not having enough money to continue with a high quality of life. The same check will still come once a month, but any extra savings may be exhausted after the first ten years of retirement.

If traveling after retirement is in the future, ensure that this can be done with ease by starting early with a savings plan. Having a personal savings, and the retirement fund will last for a while, but some people go further to secure their future by investing is stocks, CDs, real estate, and other choices that will help enhance their financial security. An important part of retirement planning is knowing how the retirement will be spent. This aspect can provide insight into how a person will save during their working years. After a while, some people will automate their savings each month, or periodically. This way, the money will hardly be missed, and the savings will grow faster. A good rule of thumb for savings is to pay yourself first, then continue with all other payment matters.

Some people increase their retirement income potential by purchasing longevity annuities. This can be used to start at any age after retirement to ensure that the quality of life can continue. Many of these annuities can start as late as age 85, or when the regular savings is about to run out. No one can predict what will happen during retirement, but a retiree wants to have the peace of mind of knowing that no matter what happens, be it an illness or debilitating disability, they can be provided the best care possible. This will help ensure that the retiree will not outlive their savings.

Pay off some debts before retirement

In today’s world of fast paced living, total technology driven lifestyles, people are acquiring debt without consequence. Some of this debt is long term, adding to the amount of money that is paid monthly of bills. This trend is something that is practiced by people who are well into their fifties. By the time they retire, much of this debt will still be ongoing. A wise thing to do when facing retirement in a few years is to pay off as many of these debts as possible. Taking them along into retirement could mean a very dissatisfied person struggling to make ends meet with less income. It is understandable that mortgages, and life insurance payment, may go on into retirement, but mediocre bills should not. A time of leisure should not begin with worries about how the bills are going to get paid.

Retirement can be a complicated time if the proper precautions are not taken. Everyone needs to some educated advice on the subject, and be made aware of the many components that could influence their life. This should be a time of wonderment, and exploration for older adults, not a time of chaos. Knowing what to expect is the solution to entering it with grace. The key to a successful retirement lies in the careful planning and preparation. This is no longer the time when a social security check will suffice. This aspect of the government has not changed much. A great deal more is needed, and required, to meet the economic status of today. Everything costs more, food, utilities, transportation, and the overall cost of living.

People may not realize this until they reach retirement age, but it is a fact of life that one day, the business people, entrepreneurs, and industrial workers of today will be the retired people of tomorrow. Take time to look into your retirement portfolio to help determine what needs to be done to improve. Do not hesitate to get professional assistance to help ensure your retirement future. Let the golden years be the best years. Retire with the assurance that everything has been done, and now the fun can really begin. This is a great time for many people, especially if they are health conscious by making a lifestyle change to be healthier, and more physically active. There should be no excuses for not making doctor appointments now that time is not an issue.


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