Retirement is often treated like the elephant in the room that nobody acknowledges. You know it’s there, but dealing with it gives you too much discomfort. What if what I have isn’t going to be enough? What will my life be like after retiring?
These questions seem daunting, but they are pretty simple to answer once you give them some serious thought. Here are things that you should do when planning for your retirement:
1. Decide what a “happy retirement” means for you.
Each person has a different concept of a happy retirement. For you, it might be long days at the beach with no care in the world, while for another, it might be working part-time at a local advocacy group fighting for a worthy cause.
Have a serious talk with yourself and decide what will make your retirement fulfilling. Do you want to travel the world? Put up an advocacy group? Volunteer at the local kid center every week? Move to the countryside and grow a garden?
Your decision will influence the steps that you take after. Don’t rush this, but don’t take too long, either.
2. Plan where you want to retire.
Once you’ve decided on the kind of retirement that will give you the most joy and satisfaction, it’s time to get into the specifics. You need to determine where you want to be living. If you’re going to live a beach life, what beach exactly? And if you’re going to move to the countryside, where?
Once you’ve planned that out, you need to answer the following questions:
- How much is real estate there?
- How much is the cost of living? How much do you need in a year to live a comfortable life?
- How much does the relocation cost?
- Do you have any friends or relatives there?
- What’s the community like?
If you’re going to stay where you’re living right now, consider if you want to move to a different part of town or a new house or apartment.
3. Consult a financial planner.
Once you’ve gotten a grip on what you want to be doing upon retirement, it’s time to check your finances to see if it will allow you to live your dream life and if it won’t, what else can you do about it.
Ideally, you already have a substantial retirement fund that will let you live comfortably for the rest of your years. It’s also ideally put into a good investment. Find a good financial planner in Utah, or if you already have one, arrange a meeting so that you can discuss your status and what needs to be done to get to where you want.
Say you have $800,000 in your retirement fund, but your desired retirement lifestyle requires you to have at least $1,000,000. Ask your planner what your options are in terms of saving and investing opportunities to reach your goal. This is why starting to save early is a wise financial decision. It will allow you to keep enough money to let you live the life you want.
Planning for your retirement is both scary and exciting since it offers a new life for you in a few years. Planning will help you have a smoother transition to retirement without any fear of running out of money.