Retirement is coming soon, and you should be excited. However, you might have so many questions and concerns about retirement that you’re more nervous than anything else.
We get it.
At Warren Street Wealth Advisors, we’ve helped countless people, from families to business owners, plan for their retirement and reach their financial goals. We put together this Retirement Handbook to help you on your way to a successful retirement.
1. Have a Plan
Nothing else on this list matters if you don’t have a personalized financial plan.
Having a plan not only lays out the destination, but it shows you the steps you need to take along the way. It’s your roadmap to a successful retirement.
2. No Seriously, Have a Plan
Having a plan is half the battle.
You can be tax savvy and an investment genius, but if you don’t have a plan for retirement or any financial goal, chances are you’ll miss the mark.
3. Say “Goodbye” to Debt
Excess debt is the biggest destroyer of retirement dreams.
If you have excess debt, then formulate a plan to eliminate it as soon as possible. It’s not the end of the world, but it might be time to roll up your sleeves and get to work.
Imagine how rewarding it will be once you have freed yourself from excess debt.
4. Budget it Out
Targeting your annual expenses is key to understanding if you have enough money to retire.
It’s no fun to build a budget. We get it.
However, knowing where your money is going on a monthly basis may help you identify where you can save. Get rid of the stuff you hate and keep more of the things you love. Love your bowling league? Keep it. Hate your cable or phone bill? Shop it around or eliminate it all together.
Not sure where to start with your budget? No problem. Download our retirement toolkit and utilize the Budget Template to help get you started.
5. Build Up Emergency Savings
We’re always optimistic about the future, but sometimes life takes surprising and difficult turns. Wise financial planning means being prepared for those situations.
Having cash available can help you through some of these hard times. Maybe the car breaks down or you need to find a new job. Having six months of cash on hand in a savings account can help out and keep you prepared for life’s ups and downs.
6. Save ’til it Hurts.
401(k). 403(b). 457(b). IRA. SEP. Simple. Deferred Comp. Roth.
Max it out.
Are you putting money aside for the long term? Does your employer have a 401(k) program? Do you have a personal investment account you contribute to?
Whatever it is, make sure you continue to think long-term for that beautiful retirement you’ve been dreaming of.
7. Wait Until Full Retirement Age to Take Social Security
There are all kinds of articles out there about what to do about your Social Security. Let us boil it all down: you don’t have to take it at 62!
When we build a financial plan, we calculate all options for optimizing Social Security, no matter how many times we do it, one thing becomes clear every time: it’s usually best to wait until your full retirement age to take Social Security.
There is also plenty of evidence to support wait until age 70 too as the 32% increase in benefit can be worth the wait. It’s ultimately your decision, and we suggest weighing your options before committing to collecting a 25-30% reduced benefit at age 62.
8. Have a Plan
Yep. Said it again.
If you’re not sure where to start with your financial plan, that’s OK. We can help.
Schedule a free consultation to talk through your finances and take the first step toward building a confident retirement.