10 Years Left to Retirement
The first step is to assess your situation as thoroughly as possible. To start, you should evaluate what you envision your retirement lifestyle to look like. Will you spend your winters somewhere warm? Are you going to downsize to a smaller home? Maybe you even plan to move to be closer to your children or grandchildren? If you’re not yet sure how your retirement will look, a retirement lifestyle checklist may help.
You should then fine tune your retirement income needs as closely as possible. Put together a budget and then calculate how much money you’ll need in savings to fund those costs. Take a look at the amount you have saved today and factor in the amount of retirement income you can expect to receive from your pension, government benefits and personal investment accounts. With a clear dollar figure outlined for your future retirement needs, you can then work backwards and see if you have saved enough to date to hit that target. If you don’t have enough, now’s the time to discuss changing your lifestyle expectations and/or your planned retirement date. Whether or not you like the results of this analysis, the time to work through these issues is now.
The next step is to develop your retirement plan. Utilize the above information and be sure to make the plan as detailed as possible. Take into account any special circumstances such as a dependent child or anticipated inheritance and establish priorities in your goals. The retirement plan that you establish at this stage will be used as a benchmark for future planning sessions. As you approach your retirement, you can look back at it and see if you are getting closer to or farther away from your targets. The plan will also help to confirm if you can retire at your target date or if it can be earlier or needs to be later.
The retirement plan you put together should be reviewed on an annual basis and updated as needed. If there is a major change in your personal situation such as a new dependent, marital change, change in debt situation, etc., a full revisit to the plan should be done.
The final step of putting together your retirement plan is to also put together an estate plan. This should be viewed as a separate plan but should also be prepared in conjunction with your retirement plan. Make sure to plan for all eventualities and ensure that your final wishes are upheld.
A financial professional can provide a lot of assistance in the retirement planning process and can help you think of all sorts of details that you might forget about. While the process of retirement planning might seem overwhelming, it’s really not too bad once you get started. Take the time today to help ensure that your retirement goes smoothly and stress free.
Scott Millard, Senior Executive Consultant, IG Wealth Management
Investors Group Financial Services Inc.
This is a general source of information only. It is not intended to provide personalized tax, legal or investment advice, and is not intended as a solicitation to purchase securities. Scott Millard is solely responsible for its content. For more information on this topic or any other financial matter, please contact an IG Wealth Management Consultant.