Retirement marks a significant milestone in life. It’s a time when decades of hard work and dedication finally culminate into a period of relaxation and freedom. The transition isn’t always automatic and proper planning is crucial to ensure you enjoy your retirement years to the fullest. To help you prepare, we’ve assembled a list of priorities to keep in mind as you count down the days to retirement.
1) Get Healthy and Stay Healthy
Entering retirement in good health can significantly enhance the quality of your life during these years. Many people develop chronic health-related conditions in their 50s, which can impede enjoyment and become costly. Therefore, it’s essential to incorporate fitness and a healthy diet into your routine while you’re still working. By doing so, you’ll not only improve your current well-being but also establish good habits for your retirement.
2) Plan Your Free Time
Retirement opens up a vast amount of free time. Have you thought about how you want to spend it? Whether it’s embarking on long-awaited travel, dedicating time to hobbies, or engaging in volunteer work, these activities will shape your retirement lifestyle. They will also help determine what your expenses will be each month and that impacts your financial plan.
3) Consider a Post-Retirement Career
Not everyone is ready for a complete withdrawal from the workforce. In recent times, more retirees are opting for lower-stress or part-time work post-retirement. If the idea of going cold turkey into retirement doesn’t appeal to you, start exploring options that align with your interests and offer a more relaxed pace. It’s never been easier to work from home and that’s great news for retirees.
4) Save More Before You Retire
Retirement planning often involves maximizing your savings. With catch-up provisions, you can contribute more to tax-deferred accounts. This stage of life typically coincides with peak earning years and potentially lower expenses – a perfect opportunity to bolster your retirement savings. Use these final weeks and months to put away as much as you can.
5) Aim to Retire Debt-Free
Entering retirement debt-free is ideal. While a mortgage might be manageable, other forms of debt can complicate your income planning in retirement. Strive to pay off debts before retiring to ensure financial flexibility and peace of mind.
6) Reduce Portfolio Risk
As retirement approaches, re-evaluating your investment strategy is crucial. A portfolio suited for a 38-year-old might not be appropriate for someone who is 58. Reducing risk and adjusting your investment approach to match your current age and retirement timeline is essential for protecting your savings.
Every individual’s situation is unique, and there might be other factors to consider based on personal circumstances. Consulting with a financial advisor can provide you with tailored advice and help add any additional priorities specific to your situation.
Preparing for retirement is about more than just financial planning. It’s a holistic approach that includes health, lifestyle choices, and personal aspirations. By taking on this list of items, it will help you enjoy a fulfilling and secure retirement.