How to prepare for retirement without fear or anxiety, that is the goal. The necessary preparations can be made in a simple method, breaking things down along the way, and you can make sure that you are ready without the stress or last minute breakdowns that sometimes seem essential to these sorts of plans.
Retiring is a major life change that should affect the rest of your life, so you don’t want to jump into it without being ready. How do you know you’re ready? Well, there are two major areas to cover, your financial life and your emotional one.
For your finances you need to know what funds you’ll be living on in the immediate future, and long term. You can start making withdrawals from your 401k and IRAs when you reach fifty nine and a half years old. You’ll want to decide when you want to start receiving funds from social security, there is some debate on what age is the best to do that at. If you have other income sources for this time you’ll want to take those into consideration as well. Whatever it is you believe you’ll need to live on each year, you’ll want to make sure your income sources add up so that you’ll be comfortable and able to do the things you want to do.
You also need to make sure that you have enough funds to really retire long term, if you live to ninety five or a hundred years old are you still ready? It would be better to work a few extra years now and do some catch up contributions to your 401k than to be ninety years old and broke.
For your emotional well being you want to make sure that you have plans for yourself! You’re about to have a lot of time on your hands, finally–so what will you do with it? Do you want to travel? Do you want to learn some new skills, pursue your interest in the arts, or golf? Make sure you’ve thought about this so you don’t end up bored and depressed–there are a lot of options for things you can do now, don’t waste this exciting time.
With all of that in mind, prepare for retirement by taking each part of your future life and combing the pieces over to make sure that the necessary preparations for your life are taken care of and you’re ready to dive in.