Six Important Questions When Planning for Retirement

Almost everyone dreams of retiring one day. Planning for retirement can be done no matter your age, but experts encourage people to start as early as possible. Retirement planning can seem daunting for many people as they focus on day-to-day financial obligations. Many people have no idea where to start. Below are six simple questions that can help people of any age plan for retirement.

What does retirement look like to you?

This is an essential question to ask when planning for retirement. Begin by jotting down your ideas and if you’re married, include your spouse’s ideas for retirement. Maybe traveling is in your plan. If not, then how do you plan to spend your time? Will you want to downsize your home? 

Many people find that the home where they raised their family is too large or too much to maintain. If so, how much do you wish to work? Will you continue working? Part-time or contract work can give more flexibility while providing a source of extra income. These are very important and helpful questions one should ask themselves when planning for retirement. 

What assets do you have?

This question is the beginning of financial planning for retirement. Don’t just look at your bank account and retirement accounts; also consider the property(s) you own. It may seem like a no-brainer to some, but in my experience, homes sometimes get overlooked.

Other assets to consider are collections with significant financial value, such as coins, artwork, machinery, etc. Also, take stock of other investments that can be used to fund your retirement.

How is your health?

Personal health can play a significant factor in planning for retirement. The first step is to ensure you are up to date on your health screenings and check-ups. Once you evaluate your health, you can better assess your plans for retirement. Health can affect finances and quality of life in retirement. There is no better time than the present to evaluate your lifestyle and, if necessary, improve your health habits to improve your quality of life and extend it.

When should you take Social Security?

There is no easy answer to this question, and it is a case-by-case decision that an attorney or financial professional can help you make. 

In the most basic terms, waiting longer to take benefits will increase your monthly benefits. However, for many, this is not an option. It is crucial to assess your expenses and make the most informed decision possible with help from informed professionals.

How can I cut expenses to save more?

Cutting expenses can provide extra savings to throw into your retirement plan. Furthermore, cutting back can also help when creating a budget for retirement. If you can cut in some areas, you can allocate to other areas to live more comfortably in the future. Paying off debt also becomes more manageable when you can cut other expenses.

How do I plan for the unexpected?

There is never any guarantee that your retirement plan will become a reality. Many unexpected events can and will arise before and during your retirement. These events can financially strain families, so planning for unforeseen events is essential. When planning for retirement, it is also an excellent time to talk to family members and think about future care needs. Good health today is not guaranteed in the future. The possibility of needing long-term care increases each year we grow older. Creating a plan that includes legal and financial considerations helps get all family members on the same page and can significantly reduce stress should the unexpected occur. 

Your Next Steps

Considering these questions will help you begin working on a retirement plan that will fit your needs in the future. An attorney can also help you with the legal side of planning for retirement, especially when considering the possibility of needing long-term care. Your estate plan must be long-term care compliant to position yourself to deal with a medical crisis. The destination (retirement) is more accessible when the roadmap is clear, and you have a plan for bumps in the road.

I hope you found this article helpful. Please contact us today at 877-585-1885 to schedule a free consultation to discuss long-term care estate planning.

Christopher E. Botti, Esq., Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law