This is my personal repository for all sorts of useful content (blogs, videos, etc.) to help you better understand not only life insurance, but other financial tools and strategies as well. You can browse through everything page by page, or you can click on any of the categories in the sidebar to narrow the information down to precisely what you’re looking for. Enjoy!
“The best way to predict your future is to create it.” – Abraham Lincoln
When we’re younger, retirement can be an abstract concept. It’s so far off that it’s difficult to get excited about, but something amazing happens when we turn 50. Retirement gets real. We start paying more attention to our anticipated Social Security benefits, and start thinking about how we’re going to convert our accumulated assets into a lifelong stream of retirement income.
That’s all quite rational and to be expected of course, but keep in mind there are other important questions to consider as you approach retirement as well:
When do you plan to retire?
This may be the most important question of all, because of its impact on so many other things including your retirement income, health care needs, activity costs, and much more. Generally speaking, most of us are advised to delay retirement as long as possible, but quite often that decision is not up to us. Prepare for your date, but be aware it may happen sooner than you think.
Where do you want to live?
Is the plan to pay off the mortgage and stay in your current home, or are you hoping to move somewhere warmer? How about the snowbird option? If you’re headed to a new location, don’t underestimate the importance of having friends or a family member close enough to help with the unexpected.
What do you want to do?
Retirement expert Tom Hegna says there are three distinct phases of retirement: the go-go years, the slow-go years, and the no-go years. A good retirement plan takes all three phases into account. What have you always wanted to do with your go-go years? Are there places you’ve wanted to travel, but never had the time? Special events you’ve dreamed of attending? Include them in your plan and make them happen. You’ve earned it!
How much income can you count on?
When to start receiving your Social Security benefits is one of the most important decisions you will make. Get familiar with your options. Everyone’s situation is different, so don’t wait until the last minute. The rules change, so consult with a trusted advisor. Consider other sources of retirement income as well. The key to a happy retirement is the successful conversion of your nest egg to a stream of retirement income you won’t outlive.
What can you do to simplify your finances?
Eliminate burdensome debt long before retirement, especially credit card debt. Set up automatic deposit of your Social Security and other retirement income sources into your bank account. Make life even easier with automatic bill payment for things like utilities, insurance premiums, group memberships, etc. You’ll thank me later when you’re on that cruise without a care in the world!
How will you cover your health care costs?
Be aware that Medicare doesn’t cover everything. You’ll have choices to make. Consult with someone who understands your options, and can help minimize your out of pocket costs. Consider long term care coverage as well. This is extremely important. Studies have shown 70-80% of people 65 or older will need long term care at some point. Nothing can derail your plan faster than an unexpected illness.
Any one-time expenses you should get out of the way before you retire?
Take some time to consider any major repairs or expenses you may want to have out of the way before you retire. Will the house need a new roof soon? Are your vehicles in good shape and reliable? Are you thinking of purchasing a second home, or just hoping to pay off your current mortgage? If so, you’re probably better off wiping these things off the to do list while your still working.
Reviewed your life insurance coverage lately?
Make an appointment to review your coverage. Today’s policies have new features you may not be aware of. Assure your beneficiary designations are properly aligned to your desired legacy plan. If you’re a business owner, work with someone to develop a proactive succession plan and/or buy-sell agreement to assure a smooth transition.
Legal documents all up to date and aligned to your current situation?
As with any major change in life, take a look at any wills, trusts, powers of attorneys, etc. you have, and whether they need updated. Be sure to review all beneficiary designations for insurance policies and retirement plans as well. Make sure your beneficiaries know where all of these documents are located. If you love them, don’t leave them with a mess to clean up.
Remember, the best way to assure a worry-free retirement is to create one. If you’re interested enough to read this blog... It’s probably time to get started!
Note: Not sure how best to convert your nest egg into a stream of retirement income that will last as long as you do? For a free copy of the best-selling book Retirement You Can't Outlive... Click here: http://goo.gl/ptRmQG
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