I should have printed that in red. It is on a lot of minds right now. Just think of the Boomers retiring left and right, day and night! I found a few pearls of wisdom, one entitled “How You Could Retire Comfortably on Half of Your Income” by Matthew Frankel, and felt compelled to share:
Oh wait, it is advising some smart planning in my pre-retirement years. Who has that much time? Something about the 80% rule, or the assumption that your postretirement expenses will be close to your pre-retirement ones. You will still be paying for the same utilities, etc. as before, but the only thing you “save” is the amount you had been putting aside for retirement. Granted, good point. A pre-retirement suggestion, next, was to see if you can “up” your payment on one of your debts prior to retirement, so you get to keep, or spend, that amount along with what you were saving to spend. Make sense so far?
Basically, try to get rid of a major debt (like car or home) prior to the milestone moment. If you are fairly young enough to get this plan going, the article makes a few suggestions to get you started:
Use a biweekly payment plan to pay off your mortgage…pays off sooner and saves interest.
Take any tax refund each year and put it on the mortgage
Trade down to a less expensive car (what?) that you can pay for in full.
Seriously, this plan is not a bad one, (check out Fool.com) and there are many ways to save for retirement as in CD’s instead of bank savings accounts, market trading, financial investor (be careful; as Suzi Ormon directs…stay away from Annuities!),and many types of investments. It reminds me of the old saying..”Gee, if I had known I would live this long I would have taken better care of myself!” I always thought it meant health:)
You cannot go forward without a plan. As I mentioned before (and I know you did it) you have your personal financial statement, your credit score, and now you can crunch some numbers. You have to sit down and figure out exactly what your expenses are, then you need to know exactly what your annual social security will be (remember those letters we receive once in awhile that you put somewhere?), and pensions or any other passive income you have. If you are still working and you are, let’s say, over 40, you will need to try to put away $18,000 a year (Government limit in 401K for 2015) and any other monies in any form you choose, savings accounts, etc. Now, and beside the point, the Social Security check will vary, depending on what part B Supplement plan you buy that is deducted from your check, or you can have an increase, but the important thing right now is to GET A PLAN. We will discuss Medicare and Supplemental Insurance in another segment when you have figured out where you really are and how you got, or will get there.
Stay wise, my friends!