When’s the right time to retire? It’s a question that nearly every worker struggles with at some point. Unfortunately, there’s no universal correct answer. Your decision on when to retire should be based on your unique circumstances, such as your objectives, needs and risk tolerance.

There are likely several planning items you need to check off your list before you reach retirement. For instance, perhaps you want to pay off your mortgage or reduce other debt. Maybe you need to tie up loose ends at work or complete a major project. Or maybe you want to sell your home so you can move to a new location.

There are also planning steps you can take to minimize risk and solidify your financial footing. Below are three such steps. If you’re thinking about retirement but haven’t completed these items, now may be the time to do so. A financial professional can help you complete your planning so you can enter retirement with confidence.

Create a projected retirement budget.

Almost 60 percent of Americans don’t use a budget.1 Are you among that group? If so, you may want to consider developing a budget, as it’s one of the most powerful and effective financial tools at your disposal.

A budget is especially important as you enter retirement. It helps you make informed spending decisions and helps you determine whether you’re on track. Without a budget, you may overspend in the early years of retirement and potentially deplete your assets.

You can’t predict every expense you’ll face in retirement, but you can make estimates based on your current spending and your desired lifestyle. Also, be sure to include inflation in your budget. Your cost of living is likely to increase over time.

Project your retirement income.

Where will income come from in retirement? If you’re like most retirees, you’ll receive Social Security benefits. You also may receive a pension or some other type of income. And you’ll likely need to take distributions from your 401(k) plan, IRA or other retirement accounts.

Take some time to project your income. The Social Security Administration can provide you with benefit estimates, and your company’s human resources department should be able to provide estimated pension payments. A financial professional can help you determine a reasonable distribution amount to take from your savings each year. You also may want to consider an annuity, which can generate guaranteed* lifetime income.

Consider risk management strategies.

What happens if your retirement doesn’t go according to plan? Life is unpredictable, and there are many ways in which your retirement strategy could be thrown off track. For instance, you or your spouse may need long-term care. A market downturn could threaten your retirement income. One of your grown children may need financial assistance.

Work with a financial professional to develop risk management strategies and backup options. For example, you may want to consider long-term care insurance. An annuity could be a helpful tool to guarantee* your income and minimize downside risk. Consult with a financial professional to evaluate your risk exposure and your available options.

Ready to implement your retirement strategy? Let’s talk about it. Contact us at Jim Lee Financial. We can help you analyze your needs and develop a plan. Let’s connect soon and start the conversation.

 

1https://money.cnn.com/2016/10/24/pf/financial-mistake-budget/index.html

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*Guarantees, including optional benefits, are backed by the claims-paying ability of the issuer, and may contain limitations, including surrender charges, which may affect policy values.

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