Retirement is a Journey, Not an Age

We all dream of one day enjoying our golden years with a comfortable retirement. Perhaps, your goal is to travel and see the world, or maybe even just sleep in a bit and enjoy your garden or putting around the house. Whatever your dream retirement looks like, be it extravagant or simple, to get there is a journey. 

Admittedly, this journey is made much easier if you have a GPS or map that guides you through the process, ensuring you make all the right turns to arrive at your destination when you should. This map is your retirement planning. However, don’t assume you have to wait to begin this process of planning until you are on retirement’s doorstep. No, in actuality, you should begin as early as possible, even decades before you actually arrive. After all, getting there is half the fun, so it’s important to enjoy the journey as well. Read on to learn more about why retirement is a journey, not an age, and what you should be doing at each part of your journey towards retirement:

Planning Early

Begin with the end in mind. You always want to know where you want to go before leaving on a road trip. Your retirement is no different. You need to know where you want to end up. Once you have this goal in mind, it is vital to start contributing to your retirement and investing in savings accounts in your 20s and 30s to meet those financial goals. If your employer has a 401K program and will match contributions, make sure to take full advantage of that. If you wait until retirement is right around the corner to begin the process of planning, you won’t have much freedom to operate. Starting early gives you many options and possible ways to meet your target retirement goals. 

Keep in mind, life insurance should never be your primary source of retirement funding. Instead, retirement should be funded with retirement accounts like investments and IRAs. After all, not all life insurance policies provide a source of supplemental income. This is only possible with specific types of life insurance like permanent policies, such as whole life, universal, and variable life insurance policies.

Approaching Retirement 

Social Security is a vital part of retirement security. Make sure you have a plan in mind for when you will need to apply for Medicare. Also, ensure you are continuing to review your life insurance policy with your insurance representative. Then, well before you work your last day at the office, it’s wise to try living off your current projected retirement income for a period of several months. This will tell you if your estimated retirement income will realistically meet your needs. It’s also important to pay down any remaining debt to reduce payments during your retirement. This is a good way to offset too little income, by reducing what you pay out. It’s also a good idea to consider purchasing longevity insurance, or an annuity contract designed to pay guaranteed income for life once the policyholder reaches a certain age.

Enjoying Retirement

You need to safeguard what you have worked so hard to build by managing your resources and making wealth protection a priority. As you get older, your associated medical costs will most likely tend to rise. Projecting these types of expenses while factoring in the cost of health insurance coverage is vital. Also, consider looking into long-term care insurance.

Bottom Line: It's About the Journey, Not Your Age

Winter-Dent works in all the areas mentioned above and can help you prepare and enjoy your retirement. We will sit down with you and look at different programs to see which ones are the best fit for your goals. Our team offers a more personalized approach to retirement planning. Contact our team at Winter-Dent to see how we can partner with and support you on your journey toward a successful retirement.

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