How To Figure Out What To Do In Retirement


Take Advantage Of Aarp Benefits

How to Calculate Your Financial Independence Number to Retire Early

One of the greatest advantages of retirement is the ability to go traveling at the drop of a hat , with no work or school schedules to get in the way. AARP offers discounts on flights, hotels, car rentals, and cruises, as well as last-minute deals through Expedia. Members of its AARP Advantage program get additional money off stays at lodges in national parks, tours of Europe, and other choices.

Percentage Of Your Salary

To begin to figure out how much you need to accumulate at various stages of your life, it can be useful to think in terms of saving a percentage of your salary.

Fidelity Investments suggests saving 15% of your gross salary starting in your 20s and lasting throughout the course of your working life. This includes savings across different retirement accounts and any employer contributions if you have access to a 401 or another employer-sponsored plan.

Create Your Retirement Budget And Retirement Income Plan

As you near your retirement date, consider your budget in the short and long term. In the short term, youll have a last paycheck that may include back pay, vacation/sick days, commissions, or a bonus.

You may also have lag between your last paycheck and when your retirement income kicks in. If you think youll have that gap, consider increasing your savings in the weeks and months before you leave your job, says Heather Winston, assistant director of advice and planning at Principal®. If you still run short, you could also tap into youremergency fund rather than using credit cards to finance day-to-day expenses.

Not sure how to create a post-work plan for income and expenses? Use our retirement budget worksheet .

After youve retired, your retirement income plan may include two sources:

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How Much Do You Think Your Pension Is Worth

Whenever the topic of retirement planning comes up, it is often associated with building as much wealth as possible so that you can reach that time when you no longer have to work to create income. Building wealth, accumulating assets, investing money are always the centres of discussion.

What about your pensions? What if you have a Defined Benefit Pension Plan? What about Canada Pension or Old Age Security ? How do these streams of income factor into your net worth?

Valuations For Streams Of Income

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One of the challenges in calculating net worth occurs when you deal with assets that really represent a stream of cashflow like a pension plan. How do you account for these assets in your net worth calculation?

I talked to Rein Selles, one of Canadas most respected Professional Retirement Planners . Rein believes that the retirement planning industry largely ignores the value and importance of pension plans as an asset. Rein uses a simple rule of thumb when it comes to valuating a pension or a stream of cashflow,

For every $100 per month of income, you have an asset worth $18,000.

If you have a pension that pays you $3,000 per month, that pension is worth $540,000. If you get $800 per month from CPP, then that is worth $144,000. $500 per month from OAS is the equivalent of $90,000.

While this is a very simplistic approach it helps people to understand the value of pensions, government benefits and other streams of income.

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Know Your Taxes In Retirement

Also factor in taxation when deciding where to live later in life. There are three key aspects of taxation consider in retirement:

  • State taxes: Currently, several statesAlaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Tennessee, Washington, and Wyomingdo not have personal state income taxes.
  • Taxes on retirement income: Four statesHawaii, Illinois, Mississippi, and Pennsylvaniaexempt all or most retirement income from taxable income. Twenty-seven states tax some, but not all, retirement and pension income. Ohio, Oregon, and Utah provide a tax credit for these types of income.
  • Taxes on dividend income: New Hampshire taxes dividend and interest income.

Keep in mind: A state with lower tax rates in any of the above categories doesn’t necessarily make it cheaper to live in. That depends on other taxes that apply. For example, choosing an area with a smaller tax break but a lower cost of living or lower property taxes may actually save you money.

Focus on life planning over tax planning. If you don’t like where or how you’re spending your days, low taxes won’t necessarily make you happy. Depending on other financial data points of the location, low taxes might not save you much money, either.

Pensions 401s Individual Retirement Accounts And Other Savings Plans

401, 403, 457 Plan

In the U.S., two of the most popular ways to save for retirement include Employer Matching Programs such as the 401 and their offshoot, the 403 . 401s vary from company to company, but many employers offer a matching contribution up to a certain percentage of the gross income of the employee. For example, an employer may match up to 3% of an employee’s contribution to their 401 if this employee earned $60,000, the employer would contribute a maximum of $1,800 to the employee’s 401 that year. Only 6% of companies that offer 401s don’t make some sort of employer contribution. It is generally recommended to at least contribute the maximum amount that an employer will match.

Employer matching program contributions are made using pre-tax dollars. Funds are essentially allowed to grow tax-free until distributed. Only distributions are taxed as ordinary income in retirement, during which retirees most likely fall within a lower tax bracket. Please visit our 401K Calculator for more information about 401s.

IRA and Roth IRA

Pension Plans

In the U.S., pension plans were a popular form of saving for retirement in the past, but they have since fallen out of favor, largely due to increasing longevity there are fewer workers for each retired person. However, they can still be found in the public sector or traditional corporations.

For more information about or to do calculations involving pensions, please visit the Pension Calculator.

Investments and CDs

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When You Shouldnt Contribute To An Rrsp

There are a few instances when you may be better off not contributing to your RRSP, and instead putting your money elsewhere. Here are a few examples:

  • If you have high interest debt, such as a credit card balance. Paying down that debt should take priority.

  • If your tax bracket is the same or lower than the tax bracket youre expecting to be in during retirement. In that case, your money may be better off saved in a TFSA until youre in a higher tax bracket.

  • If youre in a lower tax bracket now, but expect it to increase in the short-term. Say youre expecting a big raise next year, you might want to use a TFSA for the time being.

We have a great article that compares RRSPs vs TFSAs, and when you should choose one account over the other.

Make Sure Your Kids Are Independent

How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?

Currently record numbers of 18-34 year olds are living with their parents. These children can often be a financial burden. Your own parents might be another potential expense that you will need to budget. Will they need financial assistance? Will you need to care for them as they age?

When you retire, you need to assess all kinds of expenses family included.

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Receiving Your First Check

You will receive your first benefit payment approximately 8 business days after OPERS receives all valid documentation from both you and your employer, or your retirement effective date, whichever is later.

If you chose a partial lump sum option payment, it will be released 90 days after your first benefit check.

Others On Their Fire Journey

We plan to have enough cash-producing real estate in Mexico and the United States so we dont have to trade dollars for work hours said Victor Zeledon, a FIRE enthusiast who coaches others on how to secure their own short-term rentals. Ideally, we will have four to five rentals that we will live in and also rent out so we can fund our early retirement.

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Tip #1: Focus On Your Health

It goes without saying that taking care of your health should be a priority in retirement. Yet many retirees wont take better care of themselves.

According to a 7 Misconceptions About Retired Life article, most retirees dont take care of themselves like they say they will.

Exercise, join a gym, replace inactive time for active time, eat nutritiously and keep up with your health adherence. Be sure to include in your weekly goal planning designated health-related activities and topics.

Orly Lazarov, PhD, found from her Alzheimers Association New Investigator Research Grant that physical and mental stimulation appear to decrease hallmark Alzheimers pathologies and support new nerve cell growth and better cell-to-cell communication.

Physical and mental stimulation can mean many things to different people. And, of course, customization is key to making what works best for you. In retirement, you should also come to terms with your limitations. Remember to listen to your body as well as your mind and pay close attention so you dont overexert yourself.

Bonus Tip: Heres a list of 22 activities to improve your health in retirement.

Volunteer For A Worthy Cause

Before you can figure out how much money you need for ...

Volunteering lets you give back to the community in ways that often benefit the volunteer just as much. And because youre not in it for a paycheck, you can be much choosier about the organizations that you help.

A study by the Center for Social Development, George Warren Brown School of Social Work, Washington University, in St. Louis reports, Older adults who volunteer and who engage in more hours of volunteering report higher levels of well-being. This study ways that the benefits of volunteering are the same no matter your gender, race or social status.

Here are 5 Tips for Transitioning to Work with a Nonprofit

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The Bottom Line On Retirement Savings Goals

There is no perfect method of calculating your retirement savings target. Investment performance will vary over time, and it can be difficult to accurately project your actual income needs.

Furthermore, it’s worth mentioning other considerations. For one thing, not all retirement plans are equal when it comes to income. Money you withdraw from a traditional IRA or 401 will be considered taxable income. On the other hand, any money you withdraw from a Roth IRA or Roth 401 is generally not taxable at all, which may change the calculation a bit.

That’s just one example, and there are other possible considerations as well. While we’re trying to present the broad strokes here, it’s still a good idea to consult a financial advisor who can not only tailor a retirement savings goal to your particular situation but can also help set you on the right path with a savings and investment plan that can make sure you reach your goals.

How To Calculate How Much Money You Need To Retire

This article was co-authored by Dmitriy Fomichenko. Dmitriy Fomichenko is the president of Sense Financial Services LLC, a boutique financial firm specializing in self-directed retirement accounts with checkbook control based in Orange County, California. With over 19 years of financial planning and advising experience, Dmitry assists and educates thousands of individuals on how to use self-directed IRA and Solo 401k to invest in alternative assets. He is the author of the book “IRA Makeover” and is a licensed California real estate broker.There are 24 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 607,511 times.

Most people look forward to retirement. This is a period of life in which you can step away from the grind of daily employment and follow your dreams. In a perfect world, everyone would be able to retire without worry or regret. Unfortunately, many people fail to prepare financially. To get started, youll need to figure how much money you are likely to need for retirement.

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Don’t Neglect Your Estate Planning

A subject that many retirees neglect is the inevitable end-of-life planning. However, it’s important to make sure all your affairs are in order so when the inevitable happens, your family will not be weighed down with decisions.

You’ll probably have to make some necessary adjustments, so talk to your legal and financial advisers after you retire about how best to handle your estate.

Downsize Your Home: Find The Best Place For You To Retire

How Much Money Do I Need To Retire (Money Sense Article)

Maybe remodeling isnt for you. Maybe your home isnt for you either!

Most of us live in homes that we bought with dreams of raising our children. Now, most of our children are grown and gone and we can think about where we want to live for retirement. Here are some lists of the best places to retire.

Moving when you retire can be great for your lifestyle, it can also be great for your finances. If you can buy a less expensive home, then you can lower your monthly expenses and maybe even use home equity for retirement expenses.

Use the NewRetirement Retirement Planner to model downsizing as part of your retirement plan.

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Head To The Local Library

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Even if books arent your favorite, public libraries offer lots of programs and events that will get you out of the house. Book clubs, movie nights, reading challenges, and technology classes can all be attended here for free! Plus, your local library offers access to computers and other technology that you may not have at home.

Photo via

One of the best things to do when you retire is to get involved in theatre performances with fine arts groups in your community! Most local plays, musicals, and operas only require a few weeks of rehearsals and shows, so youll be able to stay busy and make new friends without long-term time commitments.

Become An Expert At Anything

Youve probably had a lot of life experiences and dreamed about others that never happened. Did you ever think about becoming a brilliant chef but didnt have the time to go after it? Or did you once think about developing your mechanic skills but couldnt follow through?

Retirement is the perfect time to turn an interest into something that you master. You could create the next great thing in pottery, or fine-tune your woodworking skills. Whatever you pursue, plan to become an expert. And then pass that knowledge on.

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How Long Can You Stay On Each Page

For security reasons, there are time limits for viewing each page. You will receive a warning if you dont do anything for 25 minutes, but you will be able to extend your time on the page.

After the third warning on a page, you must move to another page. If you do not, your time will run out and your work on that page will be lost.

Here Are 12 Ways To Prepare Now For Retirement So That Youll Be Happy Active Fulfilled And Never Ever Bored

How to Figure Out How Much You Will Need in Retirement

175,200 hours.

10,512,000 minutes.

That is the amount of time you can expect to have in retirement, considering the average length of retirement is approximately 20 years, according to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

How will you spend all of that newfound free time?

Without a sense of purpose, the risk of dissatisfaction increases, and what should be a meaningful time becomes an anxious or uninspiring one. The average retiree in Britain grew bored after just one year, according to a U.K. survey. And one-third of retirees eventually give up on retirement and return to the workforce, according to a 2016 Federal Reserve study.

The notion of retirement as a time of leisure is outdated. Most older adults want a similar level of engagement and meaning as in their working years. This is as it should be. From traveling the world to helping people in need, there are a variety of activities that can give you meaning and joy in retirement.

To get a leg up on a happy retirement, start in the years before leaving your job by exploring the interests you want to pursue later in life. You can even use those interests to create a more personalized financial plan. Then youll be fully prepared to hit the ground running .

Need some inspiration? Here are 12 ideas.

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What Is A Fire Number And Why Im On This Journey

FIRE stands for financial independence, retire early. Its a movement that encourages people to live below their means so they have more money to invest towards early retirement or part-time work. The higher your savings rate and the percentage of income you dont spend, the faster you can become work optional.

Before learning about FIRE, I thought retirement was something that only people with pensions could do at the age of 65.

Now, I know that retirement doesnt magically occur at a certain age, but rather when we can afford to pay our annual expenses with passive income.

Simply put, your FIRE number is the amount of money you need to have invested in order to live off those returns and quit working.

On the one hand, knowing this number left me and my husband worried. I was scared, wondering whether we would ever be able to retire since we didnt start investing consistently until our thirties. But, at the same time, it was empowering.

As I calculated how much we would need to invest to retire early, my husband and I started to view FIRE as a game that would make planning for retirement fun. We realized that even if we did not reach our early retirement goal, we would still be on track to retiring at some pointand considering we had loved ones who could not say the same, we were eager to at least start.

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