A comfortable and financially stable retirement is one of the most important goals for many Americans today. However, not many individuals plan adequately to fund their retirement so they can live comfortably throughout their retirement years and ultimately fall short of achieving their retirement American dream.
One of the most common dilemmas for individuals in their 50s and 60s is determining how best to fund their lifestyle once they get into retirement. According to the Social Security Administration, baby boomers can expect to live, on average, to around 85 years of age.4 But, seven out of 10 baby boomers are never confident that they have adequate financial resources to sustain them up to that age, according to a study by Bankers Life Center.5
To secure your own retirement, your 50s and 60s are the years to aggressively eliminate debt from your life, save more than you did in your previous years, and work to develop a sound retirement plan based on your current assets, investments, income and savings.
Here are few tips to help you secure retirement in your 50s and 60s:
Begin Serious Planning for Retirement
In the last decade prior to retirement, it is imperative that you get a clear picture of your financial status. Begin by taking stock of where you stand with assets, income, savings, and most importantly debt. List all your assets and calculate them against debts and expenses such as mortgage, insurance, vehicle loans and more. Having a clear picture of where your finances stand forms the basis of your retirement planning.
Next, consider what you would like your retirement lifestyle to look like and estimate your expected monthly budget. Would you like to maintain the same lifestyle as when you were working? Will you be moving to a new location? What are the tax rates in your new location? Do you have family members to support even in retirement? Do you plan on working part-time during retirement? All these questions and more will help you form a well balanced budget for retirement.
Finally, decide on when to retire so that you can plan on the savings and debt-reduction steps to take for you to secure your financial wellness in retirement early. Here is a helpful online chart from the Social Security Administration to guide you through the decision of when to start Social Security.1
Boost Your Retirement Savings
The 50s and 60s are prime years for saving towards retirement. For most individuals that did not save enough in their earlier years, this is the time to play “catch up.” The kids may be out of the house, your earnings are likely in their peak years, debt has been paid down, and you have more cash to save. Luckily, the federal government has put laws in place to help such individuals maximize their retirement savings.
If you are 50 or older, one of the best ways to catch up and boost your retirement savings is by contributing more to tax-advantaged plans such as IRAs (Individual retirement accounts) and workplace plans such as a 401(k). The federal laws allow individuals aged 50 or older to contribute more to these accounts. For example, in 2021, someone over age 50 can contribute an $1,000 to IRAs for a total of $7,000, and an extra $6,500 to 401(k)s for a total of $26,000.2
Cut Back On Your Expenditures and Paydown Debts
As you seek to boost your retirement savings in your 50s and 60s, cutting down on expenditures is unavoidable. Proper budgeting will help you cut spending on certain things and you can put that money into a retirement savings account instead. Your expenses may decline naturally as child-related expenses come to and end (hopefully!) and your earnings may be increasing as you near retirement.
Clearing your debts before getting into retirement is equally important. However, this is one of the most common challenges facing many retirees. Housing is often the largest portion of debt for individuals aged 55 and above, according to the Employee Research Institute.3 If you are not sure of the right steps to help you reduce debt from your life, consult a professional for advice tailored to meet your specific situation.
If you are really looking forward to enjoying a comfortable and secure retirement dream, you have to plan for your future days now to help you secure the retirement you have always desired.
Investment Advisory Services offered through EnRich Financial Partners LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor.
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