Retirement Planning Checklist

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There is nothing more detrimental to your pension and retirement savings than to cross your fingers and hope it is enough. Many suffer from ‘Ostrich syndrome’ – We don’t exactly know what we have and hope it will be enough by sticking our heads in the sand and pretending there isn’t a problem.

Even those who are confident in their retirement shouldn’t become complacent. Life can be unpredictable, and the state of your retirement savings might not be as cut and dry as you think. Recent global inflation highs have eroded pension and retirement savings. You might not be where you thought you were with your retirement planning, and high inflation might occur again.

What do retirement and pension planning entail?

Retirement planning is setting and achieving financial goals to ensure a comfortable and secure retirement. It involves assessing your financial situation, estimating future expenses, and creating a strategy to save and invest money to maintain your desired lifestyle during retirement. 

Retirement Checklist

Even the most confident and financially secure professional needs to review this checklist occasionally as individual financial circumstances or retirement goals may have changed.

Determine Retirement Goals: Define your retirement goals and aspirations. Consider factors like when to retire, the lifestyle you envision, and any specific activities or travel plans you’d like to pursue.

Assess Current Finances: Evaluate your current financial situation, including your income, expenses, assets, liabilities, and any existing retirement accounts. This will give you a clear picture of where you stand financially.

Estimate Retirement Expenses: Estimate your future retirement expenses based on your desired lifestyle. Consider housing, healthcare, transportation, leisure activities, and potential emergencies.

Calculate Retirement Income: Determine your sources of retirement income. This can include Social Security benefits, work and private pensions, annuities, and any other investment income.

Gap Analysis: Compare your estimated retirement expenses with your projected retirement income. If there’s a shortfall, you’ll need to find ways to bridge this gap through savings and investments.

Adjust Your Retirement Savings Plan: Develop a strategy to supplement your savings for retirement or other employer-sponsored plans. Take advantage of any employer-matching contributions.

Investment Strategy: Develop an investment plan that aligns with your risk tolerance and retirement timeline. Diversify your investments across various asset classes to manage risk and potentially earn higher returns.

Monitor and Adjust: Your financial advisor will regularly review and adjust your retirement plan as circumstances change. This includes evaluating investment performance, adjusting contributions, and updating retirement goals.

Healthcare Considerations: Healthcare costs tend to increase with age. Ensure you have a plan for covering medical expenses, including Health and supplemental insurance.

Estate Planning: Create or update your estate plan, including a will, living trust, and powers of attorney. This ensures that your assets are distributed according to your wishes and that your affairs are in order.

Debt Management: Aim to pay off high-interest debts before retirement, as carrying debt into retirement can strain your finances.

Long-Term Care: Consider the possibility of needing long-term care and explore options such as long-term care insurance to protect your assets.

Transition Plan: Think about how you want to transition into retirement. Some individuals choose to gradually reduce their working hours, while others prefer to stop working entirely.

Social Security Strategy: Understand how Social Security benefits work and explore the best strategy for claiming benefits to maximise lifetime payments.

Tax Planning: Consider the tax implications of your retirement income sources and withdrawals from retirement accounts. Optimise your withdrawals to minimise tax liabilities.

Remember that retirement planning is a dynamic process that requires ongoing attention and adjustments. It’s a good idea to consult with financial advisors, pension and retirement planners, or experts who can help tailor a plan that suits your individual needs and goals.

Please note, the above is for educational purposes only and does not constitute advice. You should always contact your deVere advisor for a personal consultation.

* No liability can be accepted for any actions taken or refrained from being taken as a result of reading the above.


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