When looking into finally retiring, there are many factors that a person must have take into consideration. Retiring is not a small life choice that a person should suddenly decide to do one day, but something that needs to be carefully planned for and hopefully saved or invested into throughout their adult life. According to the Department of Labor (DoL) “fewer than half Americans have calculated how much they need to save for retirement.” This is a major amount considering that according to the DoL “the average American spends 20 years in retirement.” This being said there are a few things that a person can do to be prepared for their retirement. People need to be able to make the “transition” from one part of their lives to the next part. A “transitional plan” is a way for a person to account for their retirement. These easy steps will help prepare for that day.
1. Start saving early and keep your goals. Know what your needs will be for retirement.
2. Start an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Explore if it should be a traditional IRA or a Roth IRA and what is best for them. A person can put up to $5,500 a year into these kinds of accounts.
3. Simplify your finances and keep tract of any and all pensions.
4. Factor in all health care costs and do not ignore any major expenses.
5. Find out about your Social Security Benefits. If you go to the Social Security Administration Website http://www.ssa.gov, you can find simple questions and answers you did not know to ask.
6. Do not take social security to early. People tend to underestimate their life spans, do not underestimate yours.
7. Do not miss your Medicare deadlines. Once they have passed they have passed.
8. Do NOT touch your retirement savings. You have placed money in those savings for a reason, keep them there.
9. Finally, Ask Questions. If you are worried and don’t know what to do for your retirement there are people out there to help you. Do not be afraid to ask.
With these factors in mind, people can easily “transition” into retirement. There are many accessible sites and tools online that people can use to help them estimate their life expectancy, find the best age to start receiving retirement benefits for themself and their spouse, work out a timeline for retirement, explore market volatility that can effect pension plans and many other things to consider. Groups like the Vanguard Group Inc., the Social Security Administration, Department of Labor, AARP, Consumer Federation of America, U.S. Securities and Exchange and many others have helpful tools on their websites, like retirement calculators and retirement timelines and a Retirement Toolkit on the DoL site www.dol.gov that make saving and planning for the future within peoples grasp. People simply need to focus on what they want to achieve and how much they are willing and able to save.