Do you dream of the day you can say goodbye to the 9 to 5 grind? Retirement is something many older adults anticipate, but very few actually prepare for. Unfortunately, most adults nearing retirement have made very little effort to plan for the lifestyle changes that lie ahead. This, in turn, results in debt, limited incomes, and more. As you want to enjoy your retirement, it is important to start planning as soon as possible.
No one wants to end up having to return to work, live on a shoestring budget, or be unable to accomplish any goals after they’ve retired. To ensure you’re on the right path for setting up for a positive future, ask yourself these questions to determine just how ready you are to retire.
Have You Met or Exceeded Your Savings Goals?
You won’t have your stable income to live off of anymore once you retire. Though you may receive social security benefits and/or a pension, the more money you have saved the better you can survive and enjoy retirement. It is recommended that you try and save at least 25 times your annual retirement expenses. So, if you review your retirement account statements, are you on target to save that much? Have you exceeded that amount? Or, are you nowhere near your goal?
Are Your Affairs in Order?
Of course, the plan is to live years and years after your retirement, but it’s never too soon to think about when you pass. You’ve accumulated a lot over the years and want to make sure that your loved ones are secure after you’re passing. An estate planning lawyer can help you to get your affairs in order. From drafting a will and naming beneficiaries to develop a living trust and dividing your assets, they will work with you to ensure you’re secured before you retire. If you haven’t made these preparations yet, unfortunately, you’re not ready to retire.
Have You Paid Your Debts Off?
Remember, you’ll be living on a fixed income once you retire. In order to maximize the money you do receive, you need to reduce the amount of debt you have. If you’re nearing retirement and still have thousands of dollars in credit card, mortgage, and medical bills, you’re putting a huge financial burden on your shoulders. You can determine what kind of shape you’re in by checking your credit reports. Calculate all outstanding debt. Do you have a lot of debt? Are the accounts you still have maxed out or are they under 30% utilization rates? Are you on track to pay off your debts by the time you plan to retire? The answers to these questions will let you know if you’re actually ready to retire.
Can You Live Off Your Retirement Income?
Though some expenses will disappear or reduce drastically once you retire, you still have bills that need to be paid and expenses you have to cover. Before you retire, it’s a good idea to determine whether or not you can live on this limited income. You can start by calculating your retirement income (what you’d receive monthly from social security, pension, and other financial sources). Using that number, tally up your expenses and compare it. Are you able to live on the amount you’ll make in retirement, or are there some adjustments that need to be made?
Have You Thought About What You’ll Do?
Sitting around the house catching up on television shows and rest is fun for a few weeks, but after that, you’ll find yourself really bored during retirement. Seniors who don’t do anything after retirement is at increased risk to suffer from both physical and mental health problems. That’s why it’s important to think about what you’ll do once you retire. Would you like to start a business, travel outside of the country, learn a new hobby, or visit family?
There are a lot of things to consider when preparing for retirement. Whether it’s decades or just a few short years away, planning your future is imperative to living a long, happy, and healthy life. If you’ve answered no to even one of the above questions, the truth is, you’re not really ready to retire. Fortunately, it’s never too late to start. Using information like what was provided above will help get you on the right track for a bright future.