Retirement is supposed to be the most rewarding time of your life. You finally get to enjoy the benefits of all your hard work and saving. Of course, you can only enjoy these benefits if you actually save. Here are a few tips to help you model an appropriate retirement plan that you will enjoy.
Most people look forward to their retirement, especially after they have been working for several years. They believe retirement will be a wonderful time when they can do things they could not during their working years. While this is somewhat true, it takes careful planning to live the retired life you had planned.
Regularly contribute to a 401k, and boost the employer’s match if you can. The 401k puts away pre-tax dollars, letting you save money and reduce the strain on your paycheck. If you have an employer willing to match contributions, you can almost get free money.
Retirement is an expensive endeavor, and you should be prepared for that when doing your planning. Experts have estimated that you’ll need between 70% and 90% of your income before retirement in order to keep the same standard of living. Understand these needs early on in the planning process so that you won’t become frustrated later.
While you obviously want to save as much money as possible for retirement, it is also important to think about the kind of investments you should make. Try to stay diversified to reduce risk. This way, you assume less risk.
Make sure that you stay in touch with your friends during retirement. When you were working, a majority of your socialization came from the workplace. However, after you retire, you will not have that any more. To make your days more interesting, spend more time doing things with your friends.
Never spend your retirement money. Pulling money from your retirement fund not only reduces the amount of money you have for retirement, but it also increases your tax burden. You will also be responsible for early withdrawal penalties, tax liabilities and lose interest from the amount withdrawn from your retirement fund.
If you’ve always wanted to be more politically active in life, but simply never had the time, do so in your golden years. The 65+ voting group has become quite a force, and you could have fun expressing your political opinions. Look online or sign up for a local group, and let your voice finally be heard!
Cut back in other areas of life to save more money. Saving money seems impossible when you have very little money left over at the end of the day. Try making small cutbacks in other areas and putting those savings into your retirement plan. You might find that those small dollars make a big difference.
Make sure that you know what you are going to do for health insurance. Healthcare can really take a toll on your finances. Make sure that you have your health expenses accounted for when you retire. If you retire early, you may not qualify for Medicare. It’s important to have a plan.
Travelling to favorite destinations is something that many retirees look forward to. Since travel can be very expensive, it is wise to set up a travel savings account and add too it as much as possible during the working years. Having enough money to enjoy the trip makes travel much less stressful.
You will have a limited income from which you will draw for your retirement expenses. Therefore, it is important that you develop a budget so that you will not overspend. You do not have to count pennies, but you should consider each purchase carefully before you buy something to stay withing your budget.
Be very certain that the funds that you’ve saved for retirement are vested by the time you are looking to retire. Sure all that money is earmarked for retirement, but there may be restrictions on when you can actually touch those funds. Removing them early could mean having to pay fees for touching the funds.
Make a budget for your current lifestyle and stick to it. If you are not able to live within your means now, your retirement suffers in two ways. You will never have a surplus of money to save up for retirement. You also would be unable to live within your boundaries in your retirement when your income is no more.
Leave your retirement savings alone, even when you hit a financial slump. You lose interest as well as principal when you do this. There could also be withdrawal fees and tax losses. Hold off on using retirement money until you’re really in retirement.
Don’t be afraid of your retirement, it’s a time to rejoice. Remember though, you have to save if you want to play. Small amounts here and there do make a difference, so keep your chin up and keep saving. These tips will help you save better, but they won’t do the work for you.