Monday, March 01, 2010

13 Easy Tips to Help You Plan for Retirement

There are many ways to plan for retirement. Some people contribute to an employer-sponsored retirement plan or 401K, some people are self-employed and contribute to a Self-employed plan (SEP) and some employers contribute money to a retirement account for employees without a required employee contribution.

Whatever method you choose it is a known fact that unless you are born in a wealthy family you will have to save for retirement. If you are in good health when you retire at age 65 you could live another 10-20 years which means you will need on average $1,000,000 to $1,600,000 depending on your salary.

This translates into contributing to a retirement account for a minimum of 20 years depending on your salary but more likely for 25 to 30 years on a consistent basis. The key to planning for retirement is to start planning as soon as your get your first job, planning early eliminates the need to play catch-up in your later years in life.

However, it is never too late to plan for retirement. No matter what your age you should put some money aside for your retirement even if you have to get a job after retirement which is better than having no money saved at all. Many people do not save enough for retirement and end up having to work well past their desired retirement age or have to get part-time jobs because social security is not enough to cover all of their expenses. Here are 13 tips on how to plan for retirement.

1. Sign up for matching contributions (free money)

2. Increase retirement contributions with each salary increase

3. Save at least 10-20% towards retirement

4. Purchase health, life and disability insurance

5. Pay mortgage off early (bi-weekly, principal) before you retire

6. Keep debt at 15% of your monthly income

7. Need 70%-80% of your income at retirement

8. Setup protections to protect your retirement account(s) such as establishing a will, trust, investing in tax free accounts such as Roth IRA or purchasing an annuity.

9. Establish goals for your retirement years

10. Create an emergency fund to cover expenses for 9-12 months

11. Consultant a financial advisor

12. Don't depend on your spouse's retirement account because your spouse may not have saved enough money for retirement

13. Scale back expenses within at least one year to five years of your retirement date

1 comment:

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