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Retirement

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How to Plan for Your Retirement

Are you ready to start planning for your retirement? Whether you are 30 years
old or 55 years old, there are a number of important steps that you will want
to take. For your convenience, a few of those steps are highlighted below.

The first step in planning your retirement is examining your future. There are
a number of important questions that you will want to ask yourself. Where do
you want to live when you retire? How do you want to live? What do you want to
be doing? Knowing your retirement needs and wants is important when looking to
create a retirement savings plan. Even if you are only 20 or 30 years old, you
can still plan for your retirement. A few small changes to your dream plan
won't be the end of the world. At least you have a starting point to build on.

As previously stated, knowing what you want and need to get out of your
retirement is important to creating a savings plan. Why? Because it can help
you determine how much money you need to have saved. Having a set goal to reach
is one of the best ways to accurate and successfully save and prepare for your
retirement.

Next, are you employed? If so, examine your company's retirement plans, such as
their 401(k) programs. How much have you been contributing to your 401(k)
account? If nothing, you will want to start. Why? Because it is easy to do so.
Inquire to see if you can have your paycheck set up so that a small amount of
money will automatically be deposited into your 401(k) account.

As an important note, 401(k) accounts are advised, as they are considered tax
sheltered. This is because your taxes are much lower when you contribute money
into your 401(k). Also, see if your employer contributes money as well. There
are some companies throughout the United States that will match the amounts
contributed by their employees, which is you. What is better than free money
for your retirement? In addition to a 401(k), also examine IRAs (Individual
Retirement Accounts).

In addition to 401(k) and Individual Retirement Accounts, you do have other
options. If this process seems overwhelming for you, you should seek
professional help. There is nothing wrong with doing so. In fact, seeking
professional advice can help prevent you from making many common mistakes. When
looking for help, it is a wise idea to speak to a professional accountant or a
financial advisor.

Even though you have made the decision to save for retirement now, there may
come a point in time when you find yourself on a fixed income. It is no secret
that living day-to-day on a fixed income can be stressful, overwhelming, and
fearful. With that said, it is still important to keep on saving for your
retirement. Any money that you can put into a 401(k) account or an IRA, do so.
A few dollars here and there can easily add up.

In keeping with hitting a rough patch in your finances, if you are not use to
living on a fixed income, you may want to take steps to improve your financial
standing. This is a good plan to have, but stay away from your retirement
savings. Whether you have spent the last year or ten years saving for
retirement, try to leave that money alone. Dipping into your retirement savings
can have negative consequences. If you are required to pay the money back, you
may have to pay interest or taxes. Even if you don't have to pay the money
back, it is still less that you will have for your retirement years. Unless you
are in a truly serious, life or death situation, leave your retirement savings
alone.

As you can see, saving for retirement isn't really that hard. Unfortunately,
many news organizations and other similar websites make it seem harder than it
really is. As an important reminder, if you need financial planning help, seek
it.

The Best Ways to Save for Retirement

Are you looking for information on the best ways to save for retirement? If you
are, you have come to the right place. Please continue reading on.

Establish a Moneysaving Goal

If you want to save money for retirement, it is first important to determine
how much money you need to save. This is the most important step to take, when
looking to save for retirement. While you can always save money for retirement
without having a goal in mind, will you have enough? You will never know unless
you take the time to do the research first.

When determining how much you need to comfortably retire, examine your wants
and needs. Account for living expenses, such as housing, utilities, food,
transportation, healthcare and other related expenses. Next, what are your
retirement goals? What type of home would you like to live in? Where you would
like to live? What activities do you want to enjoy? Calculate the average cost
of these. That total figure is your retirement savings goal. As an important
reminder, do not stop saving even if you reach that goal early on.

Create a Budget for Yourself

Creating a budget is another easy way to save money for retirement. Why?
Because it can help you determine where you can save money. Many Americans
waste money and a considerable amount of it. To prevent yourself from doing so,
create a budget. This budget should include expenses that you must pay; ones
that you cannot live without. For example, your rent or mortgage payment and
all utility bills, transportation costs, and food should be included in your
budget.

Once your needed expenses are totaled, subtract that amount from your monthly
income. The difference is money that you can and should put into a retirement
savings account.

Eliminate Unnecessary Purchases

In keeping with creating a budget, be sure to eliminate unnecessary purchases.
If you work outside of the home, do you bring your lunch to work or make your
coffee at home? If not, you should start doing so. If you are 35 years old, you
may be surprised with how much money you can save over the next ten or twenty
years by taking this simple approach.

In addition to completely eliminating unnecessary purchases, consider reducing
those that you do not want to give up. For example, do you like to eat out?
Instead of eating out once a week, aim for once a month. Also, examine the
packages for your phone, cable, and internet. Can you reduce their costs
without having to give them up completely? If so, do so.

Contribute to Your 401(k)

Do you have a 401(k) plan through your employer? If so, do you currently
contribute to it? If not, now is the time to start, even if you are only twenty
years old. Those between the ages of twenty and forty are encouraged to
contribute around 5% to 10% of their income. Those forty to sixty years old are
encouraged to contribute as much as possible.

What is nice about 401(k) plans is that most employers maximize your
contributions. For instance, if you were to meet your company's minimum
personal contribution for the year, they may match that money for you! Yes, you
do still have to deposit your own money, but the money that your employer
contributes can be considered free money.

Seek Professional Help

While you can find a number of helpful retirement planning resources online,
this information can sometimes be difficult to read. Sometimes, it seems as if
financial experts are talking in a different language.

If you are not familiar with 401(k) plans, Individual Retirement Accounts
(IRAs), social security benefits, and pension plans, you should schedule a
meeting with a professional financial advisor. Not only can they help you
understand these great retirement programs and accounts, they can also help you
develop a sold retirement savings plan. This can help to ensure that you
successfully meet your goal.

Forced Into Retirement? What You Should Do

Did you love your job? If so, you may have been happy with your life. That is
until your supervisors explained that your company was cutting costs. Due to
those cost cutting measures, you are being forced into early retirement. If you
are like many other individuals in your shoes, panic may be the first feeling
that sets it. Yes, being forced into early retirement may seem like "the end of
the world," but it doesn't have to be.

When being forced into early retirement, you will be required to sign a number
of important documents. Never agree to retirement without first learning about
your company's rules, restrictions, and attached strings. Will you receive a
severance package? Does that severance package eliminate your pension or
eliminate you from receiving any other important employee benefits? If so, talk
to a financial advisor right away, particularly before you sign anything.
Determine what your best course of action is. Is it better to take the
severance pay or receive all of your benefits?

Speaking of talking to a financial advisor, you should take this step anyways.
Early retirement can throw a wrench into your plans. You may need professional
assistance to get those plans fixed and back on track. A financial advisor can
examine your retirement wants and needs, determining an estimated figure that
you need to comfortably retire. Next, a financial advisor can help you come up
with a plan of action to get those needed funds.

In the event that you opt for a severance package, do not spend that money
right away. Unfortunately, many forced into retirement make this mistake. If
you are living day-to-day, use your money to pay for your necessities, such as
food and shelter, but nothing else. If you have "extra," money, deposit it into
a savings account or an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Doing so may
increase your money, based on interest rates and tax benefits.

It is also important to remember that social security benefits come with rules
and restrictions. Just because you are forced to retire early, it doesn't meant
that you qualify to receive social security yet. That is why you are encouraged
to take action and right away. Should you qualify for early social security
benefits, due to your age, know that the amount you receive overtime may be
smaller than what you intended to live on.

Most importantly, remember that being forced into early retirement doesn't
necessarily mean that you have to stop working. If you are asked to retire a
few years earlier than planned, you may be unable to do so financially. Will
your money run out too soon? If so, working may be your only option.

Before leaving your current job and accepting your company's early retirement
package, examine your health insurance. Regardless of your age, you should
never be left without health insurance. Depending on your age and your
financial standing, you may qualify for Medicare or Medicaid. However, do not
leave your job without knowing. COBRA will leave you protected for 18 months,
but you should have another plan. If you start working again, you may be able
to get health insurance coverage through your new employer after 90 days.

If you haven't been forced into retirement, it is an event that you should
still plan for. Many companies are finding themselves losing money. For that
reason, they are offering early retirement packages to many of their long-term
workers, particularly those that are close to the retirement age. With that in
mind, just because you are close to the retirement age, it doesn't mean that
you are ready for it. Even if you are only twenty or thirty years old, please
know there is a chance you could be forced into early retirement down the road.
That is why it is imperative that you start saving for retirement now, as you
never know what the future holds.

Tips for Helping Your Parents Plan for Retirement

Are you concerned with your parents and their future? If you are, you should
talk to your parents about their retirement plans. In fact, the sooner, the
better. Doing so can give you, as a loved one, comfort and peace of mind. You
should start discussing retirement with your parents when they reach the age of
fifty; however, you can start the conversation sooner if you wish.

When talking to your parents about retirement, determine what their retirement
wants and needs are. Where do they want to live? What type of property or
establishment do they want to live in? What activities or hobbies would they
like to enjoy? It is important to know how your parents want to live in their
retirement years, as it will have an impact on how much they need to save.

Next, it is important to determine how much your parents currently have saved
for retirement. Is it enough? Do they even know? If you are concerned with
asking your parents, take the above mentioned approach first. Asking your
parents about their retirement goals can ease you into the conversation about
costs and savings. Asking your parents outright how much money they have saved
for retirement may cause tensions to erupt.

When discussing their retirement with your parents, make sure your parents know
that they cannot live on just their social security benefits. You may be
surprised how many retirees plan to do so. Once again, be sure to take a
cautious approach. You want to lookout for the best interests of your parents,
but don't treat them like a child who knows nothing on the subject. Returning
back to social security benefits, tell your parents you read online that most
retirees only receive about 40% of their living expenses through social
security benefits.

In keeping with social security benefits, you should encourage your parents to
request a statement of their benefits. This is easy to do online or
over-the-phone. This statement can give them an estimate of how much they will
receive in social security benefits. This is a good wakeup call for those who
believe social security will cover their retirement expenses. Be sure to remind
your parents that their statement is just an estimated total.

You will also want to examine your parent's profession. This is important, as
the economy is having a negative impact on many businesses. Some older workers
are finding themselves forced into early retirement. Is your father or mother
in the auto industry or another industry that is taking a hit? If so, there is
a chance they could be forced to retire early, if it hasn't already happened.
In the event of forced, early retirement, do your parents have a plan?

Also, discuss healthcare with your family. If your parents were to move into a
retirement community examine the costs. Then, examine the costs of long-term
care. When your parents live together, they are able to save money, but what
happens when one gets sick? Can your parents afford two separate living
arrangements? Make sure the cost of long-term care is realistically entered
into their retirement plan.

Speaking to your parents about retirement is a step in the right direction, but
they can still benefit from professional help. If you feel that your parents are
unprepared for retirement, offer to schedule and pay for a meeting with a
financial advisor.

Retirement Checklist: Are You Prepared?

Are you looking to retire within the next two to three years? If so, it is
imperative that you are prepared to make the leap. Retirement can be a fun and
exciting time in your life, but only if you are fully prepared for it. To make
sure that you are, please continue reading on.

Before retiring from your job, make sure that you and your spouse are properly
covered by health insurance. Not taking this step can be costly and it can have
a negative impact on your retirement savings.

Most senior citizens are able to qualify for Medicare. Do you? If so, complete
your paperwork and signup right away. You do not want to create any lapses in
coverage. If you do not qualify for Medicare yet, be sure to examine other
avenues of coverage. Can you purchase affordable health insurance or can you
extend your current health insurance plan with COBRA?

Before retiring from your job, make sure that both you and your spouse are
covered with the right amount of life insurance. Do you have a private life
insurance policy? If not, now is the time to get one. Some employers terminate
an employee's life insurance policy if it was provided and paid for by the
company. As your age increases, life insurance is a must, so make sure that you
are covered.

If you have been contributing to your company's 401(k) plan and an IRA, you
need to decide when to start withdrawing this money, as well as how you want to
do so. Do you want to receive one large, lump sum payment? If you are unsure, 
it may be best to first consult with a financial advisor. In fact, when doing 
so, be sure to ask about all rules and restrictions. If you withdrawal your 
money from your Individual Retirement Account (IRA) before the written 
guidelines, you may be charged a penalty.

Over the past few years, you likely developed a clear vision of what your years
in retirement would look like. Where do you want to live? What type of property
do you want to live in? What activities do you want to enjoy? Do you want to
start your own small business? Your retirement savings are likely based on your
retirement wants and needs. Now is the time to make any last minute changes, as
you still have a couple of years to save additional money.

Do you foresee yourself making a large purchase in the near future? These
purchases can include a new home or a car. If so, now is the time to make them,
especially if you will depend on financing from a professional lender. Some
lenders will give loans to those in retirement, but some are also cautious of
doing so, due to fixed income living. That is why you are encouraged to make
all large purchases before you enter into retirement.

The above mentioned points are just a few of the many that you will want to
examine and take action when needed. As a reminder, if you plan to retire in
two or three years, you still have time to save for retirement. Contribute any
amount that you can to your 401(k) or Individual Retirement Account (IRA). When
it comes to retiring, there is no such thing as having too much money.

Why Saving For Retirement Is Important

Whether you are 20, 30, 40, 50, or 60 years of age, are you planning for
retirement? If not, you should be. Unfortunately, many individuals do not
understand the importance of planning for retirement. If you are one of those
individuals, please continue reading on for information that will likely change
your outlook on planning and preparing for your retirement.

The greatest reason why you should save for retirement is because it is your
life. The amount of money that you save for retirement will have a profound
impact on how your life is lived. Do you have any dreams or goals? Typically,
retirement is the best time to meet your goals and transform your dreams into
reality, but you can only do so if you are financially prepared. If you are
not, you may be worried about where you will live or where your next meal will
come from, as opposed to wondering when the best time to take a vacation is.

Another important reason why you should start saving for retirement and early
is for your children. Even if you are twenty years old and single, remember
that there may come a point in your life when you have a family. Those who do
not properly plan and save for retirement put a huge burden on their families.
As a parent, it is your job to protect your children, not cause them to face
their own financial difficulties because they must pay for your retirement
expenses.

Saving for retirement can also help to ensure that you are well cared for. This
is important in terms of health. There comes a point in everyone's life when his
or her health starts to worsen with age. While you may be able to live on your
own and care for yourself when you first enter into retirement, there may come
a point in time when you can no longer do so. If and when that time comes, are
you financially prepared? Can you afford the cost of long-term care? The cost
of long-term can be expensive and it should be included in the cost of your
retirement; therefore, you should start saving now.

Another one of the many reasons why you will want to start saving for your
retirement is because you won't want to keep on working. Those who are
unprepared for retirement often keep on working or later return to the
workforce. Is this really something that you want to do? Also, remember your
age and your health. It is highly unlikely that you will be ale to work until
you die. That is why you should start saving for retirement, as you cannot
generate income for yourself forever.

Finally, social security benefits are nice, but they will not cover all of your
retirement living expenses. Many financial advisors state you will need around
70% of your current income to live comfortably in retirement. Unfortunately,
most individuals only receive about 40% of that from social security benefits.
Depending on how much you contributed through the payment of taxes, that amount
may be lower. Since you cannot rely on social security benefits to survive, you
need to start saving for retirement.

As highlighted above, there are a number of reasons why you should save for
retirement. Your life is in your own hands, so start saving today.

Tips for Saving for Retirement

Are you concerned with retirement? If you aren't, you should be. Of course,
retirement is nothing that you have to be worried or fearful about, but now is
the time for you to start planning. In all honesty, it doesn't matter whether
you are 25 years old or 55 years old. It is never too soon to start planning
for your retirement years.

The first step in saving for retirement is to determine how much money you need
to save. When doing so, be sure to keep inflation costs in mind. The cost of
goods will likely increase overtime as you age. Calculators online or a talk
with a financial advisor can give you an estimated inflation rate to work with.

In keeping with estimating your retirement money needs, look at your wants and
needs. As for needs, you will need shelter with the appropriate utilities, food
to eat, transportation, and money for your healthcare. These are items that you
cannot live without. Next, examine your wants. Where do you want to live in
retirement? What do you want to be doing in retirement; boating, camping,
traveling? To have the golden years of your dreams, make sure that you have
enough money to do so.

You will also need to plan for the unexpected. Often times, the unexpected is
considered a medical emergency or a death, but in this case it can be living
longer than expected. Many seniors are living longer than expected.
Unfortunately, many seniors are also running out of money because of this. Do
not let yourself be one of those individuals.

Now is also the time to start paying off any money you owe. The earlier you are
able to pay off your debts, the better your finances will be. You and your
family won't have to worry about your unpaid bills coming back to haunt you
later on. You can also save money by paying off your debts. Credit card fees
and other similar late fees can add up, taking valuable money away from your
golden years. Once your debt has been paid off, take the same amount of money
you were putting towards your debt into a retirement account.

As it was previously stated, you may want to seek professional help. This help
can come from an accountant or a financial advisor. These professionals can
help you create a solid retirement savings plan. For example, they can help you
curb your spending, develop a savings goal, as well as help you allocate your
funds into the correct accounts.

If you are employed, you should have a 401(k) program through your employer. Do
you contribute to this account? If not, now is the time to start doing so. Any
bit of money that you can deposit into your 401(k) is a good idea, as it can
later help. It is also important to familiarize yourself with your company's
policy. Some business in the United States will deposit additional money into
the accounts of their employees. For example, some will match your personal
401(k) contributions. While certain rules and restrictions may apply, this is a
great way to get free money for your golden years.

Another way that you can go about preparing and saving for retirement is by
living on a fixed income. Even if you are only 30 years old and in good
financial standing, there are a number of benefits to creating a fixed income
budget. This can save money, as a fixed income often calls for the elimination
of unnecessary purchases. Once you hit the age of 50, you are encouraged to
revert to a fixed income. Not only
can you continue to save money for your retirement, you can also practice. Most
retirees live on fixed incomes. If you aren't prepared to do so, you may end up
with nothing left.

The above mentioned steps are just a few of the many that you can take to start
preparing for and saving for your golden retirement years. As a reminder, the
earlier you get started, the more money you should save.

Saving for Retirement at 20

Are you around twenty years of age? If you are, retirement may be the last
thing on your mind. With that said, it should be at least towards the
forefront. Why? Because the amount of money that you are able to save
throughout your lifetime can have a significant impact on your future, the
amount of money you have, and how you live until you die. Do you really want to
be homeless or living with family when you should be able to support yourself?

One mistake that many men and women make around the age of twenty is assuming
that they have more time to save for retirement. Yes, you do. You have into
your 30s, 40s, 50s, and possibly even into a part of your 60s. With that said,
there are no guarantees that you will be able to save money in that time frame.
You have a job now, but will you five or ten years from now? There are two many
what ifs that could result in you not having enough money to retire. That is
why you are urged to start saving for retirement now, when you know you can.

Okay, you now know that you should start saving for retirement now, even if you
are only 21 or 28 years old. You may, however, be wondering what steps you
should take. First, you need to meet with human resource workers from your
workplace. These individuals are knowledgeable on retirement plans that are
operated by or through your company. One of those being the 401(k) program.
Your company may also have a pension program that you can participate in as
well.

When meeting with a company representative to inquire about retirement savings
through your company, ask about matching. Most companies will match
contributions made by their employees. There may, however, be some rules and
restrictions concerning this match. For instance, you may have to contribute a
specific dollar amount or percentage of your income. Speaking of which, most
financial advisors recommend that those in their 20s put around 5% to 7% of
their yearly income into a 401(k).

In addition to 401(k)s, those in their twenties are also encouraged to look
into Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). Although you will find some
disputes online, many financial advisors suggest that Roth IRAs are best for
those who are young in age. The only downside to Roth IRAs is that they money
is not tax free when you deposit it into your account. It is, however, tax free
when you retire, as long as you followed all rules and guidelines, such as not
borrowing from your account early.

Another great way for you and others in their twenties to save money for
retirement is to look at your spending habits. Most twenty year olds are known
for their not so careful spending. Do you have extra money each week that you
blow on new clothes or snacks that you don't really need? If you do, consider
depositing that money into a savings account. Even if you only deposit $5 into
your account a week, the money can significantly add up overtime. In fact, why
not use a calculator to determine how much that $5 a week can turn into
overtime. Don't forget that you can benefit from interest rates.

Saving for retirement early is a great way to make sure that you are set for
life. The earlier that you start saving money, the more money you are likely to
have in the end. With that said, there are risks. Due to young age, more
individuals like you are likely to tap into their retirement savings. This is
can be a risky and costly move. Remember that your retirement is important and
that money shouldn't be used for a new expensive outfit or a trip overseas,
especially one that you do not need to survive. Aside from depositing money
into your accounts, it is best to just forget about them.

Saving for Retirement at 30

Are you in your thirties? If you are, retirement may be something that you
occasionally think about. If not, now is the time to start. While there are a
number of benefits to saving for your retirement years when you are in your
twenties, it is imperative that you start in your thirties. If not, you may
find yourself with little or no money to retire with.

One of the easiest ways to set aside money for your retirement years is by
saving money. Take any bit of money that you are able to save, by eliminating
unnecessary purchases, and put it away. To save the most money, examine your
spending habits. Buying an expensive pair of jeans is a nice pick-me-up when
you were twenty, but now is the time to start worrying about your future.
Remember, apply any money saved to your retirement future.

As for what you should do with your saved money, you do have a number of
different options. One of the easiest approaches to take is to open a savings
account. Often times, all you need is $50 to do so and your account should be
fee-free, as long as you maintain the minimum monthly balance. As easy as it is
to open a savings account, only do so if you are good with money. You will want
deposit money into your savings account and forget all about it. If you have a
passbook, hide it. Ignoring your savings account, aside from putting money into
it, is the best way to leave it untouched. Unfortunately, with a savings
account, it is much easier to get a hold of your money and you can do so
without any immediate consequences.

As nice as savings account is, there are many other profitable and convenient
approaches for you to take. These include a 401(k) plan. If you are employed
and full-time, you should be able to contribute to your 401(k) plan. Have you
already been doing so? If not, it is recommended that you start. Those in their
twenties are encouraged to deposit at least 5% of their income into a 401(k).
The same percentage is recommended for those in their thirties, as long as
contributions were previously made. If this is the first year that you will
continue to your 401(k), 7% to 10% is recommended. 401(k)s are nice because
they offer tax savings and many employers will match contributions.

As previously stated, now is the time for you to start saving money.
Eliminating unnecessary purchases and carefully tracking your spending is a
great to reduce your living expenses and save additional money for retirement.
Before you put all of that money into a savings account, 401(k), or an
Individual Retirement Account (IRA), examine your debt. Do you have any?
Retirement and debt do not mix, so take steps to rid yourself of debt and start
doing so now. The best step to take is to reduce your expenses, which was
outlined below, and split the money saved between a retirement savings account
and your unpaid debt.

Now is also about the time that you should start thinking about what you want
your retirement to be like. Many people think this is a step that is too early
for someone in their thirties to take, but there is no harm in planning ahead.
Where do you see yourself when you retire? What kind of home would you like to
live in? Do you intend to travel? What activities do you want to enjoy? These
questions can help you determine how much money you need to retire. Of course,
you can still continue to save money for retirement even if you don't know the
answers to these questions, but a goal can help make sure you are able to
retire comfortably and with ease.

The above mentioned steps are just a few of the many that you, a person around
the age of thirty, can take to prepare for retirement. They are, however, the
easiest steps to take.

Saving for Retirement at 40

Are you in your forties? If you are, retirement may be something that you
occasionally think about. After all, you have been in the workforce long enough
to wish you could get out of it. With the right retirement plan, you may be able
to do so a little bit sooner than originally planned.

Of course, retiring a year or two early sounds nice, but it isn't as easy
as you may have thought. The good news is that you are at the right time in
your life. The amount of money that you are able to save and put towards
retirement in your forties can have a significant impact on when you are able
to retire.

If you have been putting aside a little bit of money in an Individual
Retirement Account (IRA) or if you have been contributing to your 401(k), there
is a good chance that you sat down and set retirement goals for yourself. This
may include where you want to live and what activities you want to enjoy. Since
your goals may have since changed, they should be reexamined. This is important
in the event of a cost increase. If the costs of your retirement goals have
increased, you need to work on saving more money.

It is also important to look at your spending. If you are a parent, now may be
the time when your children are getting ready for college. Are you footing the
college bills? If you wish to do so, first make sure that you can. As important
as it is for your children to get an education, do not go into debt and do not
dip into you retirement savings to pay for that education. Instead, examine
other avenues of financing, which may include student loans for your children,
scholarships, and grants.

If you have any debt, now is the time to get it paid off. Request a copy of
your credit report. If any bills are marked as unpaid, work on getting them
paid off. You cannot comfortably and securely retire if you are suffering from
debt. The average consumer debt can be quite high. If yours is high, you may
need to spend five to ten years paying it. That is why you should start now.

As it was previously stated, most individuals start contributing to their
401(k) plans or open an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) in their late
twenties or thirties. If this is a step that you have yet to take, do so. The
sooner, the better. On average, experts recommend contributing at least 5% of
your income to be put in a 401(k) or an Individual Retirement Account (IRA).
With that said, if you are just getting started now, at least 10% of your
income should be contributed.

Now is also the time to look at how retirement works. For example, most
financial advisors state you will need at least 70% of your income to
comfortably retire. Do you have this money? Can you reasonably come up with it?
If not, now is the time to take further action. You do not want to rely on
social security payments, as they are only able to provide most retirees with
an average of 40% of needed income.

To make is so that you are able to relax and enjoy life in retirement, as
opposed to working through it, it is a wise idea to start cutting corners now.
Are there any unnecessary purchases that you can eliminate to help you save
money? Can you reduce the packages for your television, internet, or cable? Are
there ways for you to reduce your car insurance payments? If so, do so. Any
money that you save can be put into a checking account or deposited into your
IRA.

The above mentioned steps are just a few of the many that you, a person around
the age of forty, can take to prepare for retirement. Remember, each year that
passes by is one less year for you to save money for your retirement. Don't be
left out in the cold or be unable to enjoy your favorite activities later on in
life because you didn't start planning for retirement when you should of.

Saving for Retirement at 50

Are you fifty years of age? If so, are you prepared for retirement? For many,
retirement is just around the corner, about at the age of sixty. While some
individuals will find themselves in good financial standing, many more see just
how unprepared for retirement they are.

If you are unprepared for retirement, there is good news. That good news is
that it isn't too late to start saving. If you just turned fifty, you likely
have a little bit more than ten years to save. While it won't be as easy as it
was when you were twenty, thirty, or forty, it is still possible.

The first step in planning for retirement at the age of fifty is determining
how much money you need to save. On average, financial experts state that most
individuals need at least 70% of their current income to financially survive
through retirement. A small percentage of that, around 30% to 40%, may come
from social security benefits. It is also stated that you should prepare to
spend thirty years in retirement.

If you have been contributing to a 401(k) plan at work, you are a step ahead.
You likely have a few thousand dollars or more saved. You will want to keep on
contributing. Be sure to meet the requirements that your company has for
matching. When you do so, your company will match the contributions that you
made. This money can go a long away, especially if you are finding yourself
unprepared for retirement.

If you are employed, it is also important to examine pension plans. Pension
plans are advised for long-term employees. Now is the best time to get one, as
you are less likely to leave your job. There are some companies that have rules
and restrictions, such as you lose you pension if you switch jobs.

It is also important to examine Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). Do you
already have one? If not, now is the time to start. IRAs give you numerous tax
benefits and they are a much better approach than traditional savings accounts.
Why? Because many individuals find it easier to dip into their savings accounts
and spend their money. Whether you use that money for yourself or give it to
family members, it reduces the amount of money that you have for retirement. It
is also important to note that the rules for IRAs are less strict when you reach
the age of fifty, as you are able to deposit more money into your account.

As previously stated, most individuals will receive social security benefits
that account for about 30 to 40% of income needed during retirement. This is,
however, just an average figure. You can request a statement that outlines your
benefits. This statement can give you an idea of how much in social security
benefits you will receive overtime. With that said, this is also just an
estimate; therefore, it is not a figure that you should rely heavily on.

Now it also the time to start living on a fixed income. There are two benefits
to doing so. When in retirement, you will be on a fixed income. You will run
into trouble if your money runs out too soon. Starting to live on a fixed
income now can give you practice for when you truly do depend on it. Also, when
living on a fixed income, you are able to reduce your expenses. Any money that
you save can be put towards your retirement.

If worse comes to worse and you are truly worried about retirement, now is the
time to supplement your income. A second job may be the last thing you want or
need, but it may help you considerably. If you do opt for a second part-time
job, place any money that you make into a retirement account, whether it be an
Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or a savings account. Working a second job
when you are fifty is much better than doing so when you are sixty.

aving for Retirement at 60

Are you sixty years old? If you are, you may be preparing for retirement. As
excited as you may be about no longer have to work, can you really afford the
transition? If you haven't been preparing for retirement, it isn't too late to
get started, but you need to get started now.

The first thing you will want to do is start contributing to your 401(k)
program. At this point in your life, any contributions that you can make, you
should. At the very least, contribute 5% of your income. However, know that
many employers will match contributions made by their employees. There is a
minimum amount that you must contribute to receive this matching. If you do,
you can essentially get free money for your retirement.

Next, you will also want to consider opening a Roth Individual Retirement
Account (Roth IRA). At your age, you are able to deposit more money into your
account than those younger than you. When you go to withdraw the money, it is
tax-free, as long as you wait until the right time to make your withdrawal.

Next, you will want to examine your retirement wants and needs. Typically, this
is the first step that you take. However, if you haven't been saving for
retirement, it is imperative that you get started soon. Depositing any extra
money that you have right from the start can help you get ahead in your goal to
save for retirement.

Returning back to your retirement needs, examine your housing. Is your house
costly to maintain? If it is and if there isn't much sentimental value attached
to your home, consider relocating to a more affordable housing option. In fact,
you may want to closely examine retirement communities. Most are affordable to
live in and you are automatically paired with neighbors that are your age, many
of which will share your interests.

It is also important to examine your retirement wants. What do you see yourself
doing when you retire? If you are like most retirees, you will likely want to do
things other than stay at home watching television. Do you want to travel? Do
you want to start your own business? Are there other activities that you want
to enjoy, such as camping, boating, or fishing? If so, it is important to
examine these costs and add them to the estimated amount of money you need to
save to retire comfortably.

Next, it is important to learn to cut corners. Do you live in a fixed income?
If not, it is time for you to start. When in retirement, most men and women are
on a fixed income. For example, if you were to spend your retirement savings
before you pass away, you are essentially left with nothing. Is this really how
you want to live? It is important to practice living on a fixed income. If you
find that you cannot do so, you have a small amount of time left to increase
your retirement savings by working longer.

Now is also the time to examine your debt. Do you have any? To see, request a
copy of your credit report. Usually, the companies that you owe money to will
try to collect. This may involve a request to appear in small claims court.
Should this happen to you, you may be court ordered to pay the money. This can
put a damper on your retirement savings and plans. Eliminating this from
happening by making sure that all your debts are paid off before you retire.

One question that many individuals in their sixties have involves paying off
that debt. Many wonder how they can pay off their debt when they are also
supposed to be saving for retirement. The two actually go hand-in-hand. When
you pay off your debt, you should have more money for retirement in the
long-run. Also, you can work to save money by eliminating unnecessary purchases
or temporarily supplementing your income with a second, part-time job. A good
approach to take is dividing the money into two. Some money can go towards your
unpaid debt and the rest can go into a retirement account.




Tips for Choosing a Retirement Community

Are you preparing for your retirement? Once you have determined that your
finances are in good standing, you may be concerned with your living
arrangements. Despite the fact that many retirees choose to stay right where
they are, many more opt for retirement home communities. If you are interested
in doing so, you will want to choose your retirement community wisely.

The first step in choosing a retirement community involves familiarizing
yourself with all of your options. Did you know that you have multiple choices?
You do. Retirement communities come in a number of different formats.

Independent retirement communities and facilities are the most popular choice
among retirees who are in good health. These are establishments where you are
essentially on your own. It is like you are just renting an apartment. Often
times, the only onsite staff members are office workers, maintenance workers,
and security personnel. Many independent retirement communities are designed to
provide you with ease of living. This includes making onsite activities, like
exercise classes and arts and crafts, available.

Assisted living communities and facilities are ideal for retirees whose health
is just starting to worsen. If you need help on occasion, an assisted living
retirement community may be perfect for you. The assistance provided does vary,
but you can get help with going for a walk outdoors, cooking, preparing for your
day, or taking your medication.

Nursing homes and facilities are another retirement option for those poor in
health. Nursing homes are essentially hospitals with a more laidback
environment. They are designed for individuals who cannot care for themselves.
If you are researching nursing homes, you are likely a family member of the
retiree, not him or her. When residing in a nursing home, patients are provided
with around-the-clock care. This is a nice alternative to living with family or
constant home nurse care.

Continuing care retirement facilities and communities are another option that
you have. This option is one that is increasing in popularity. Continuing care
retirement facilities and communities essentially provide residents with
independent living, assisted living, and around-the-clock care, depending on
the resident's needs. These facilities are great for retirees who are concerned
with their health and finances. Yes, your health may be good now, but there are
no guarantees with the future. Relocating and putting stress on your family
isn't advised. That is why continuing care facilities are often recommended.

When making your retirement community and care decision, it is important
examine your needs. Do you need assistance with day-to-day activities? Are you
suffering from a debilitating disease that will only continue to get worse? If
so, you should examine assisted living communities, nursing homes, or
continuing care facilities.

Next, examine your retirement community wants. Do you want to meet new people
and develop new friendships? If so, make sure that the retirement community or
facility is well populated. Also, examine onsite activities, as they make it
easier to meet new people.

Finally, examine cost and location. Always choose a retirement community that
you can afford. If you are the relative of a retiree who needs care, be sure to
keep quality in mind. Affordability is important, but not if quality must be
compromised. As for location, choose a retirement community that is nearby your
family. As you age, you will need the love and support of your family more.

Saving for Retirement: Why Flexibility is Important

Are you ready to start preparing for your future, in terms of retirement? If
you are, you should get planning right away. In fact, the sooner you start
planning for your retirement, the better off you are likely to be. That is why
most men and women are encouraged to start saving for their retirement years
when they are in their early twenties or thirties.

When saving for retirement, you will want to create a detailed, yet realistic
goal. After all, you need to know how much money you should save. Even if you
are young, like in your twenties or early thirties, outlining your retirement
goals and aspirations are important, despite the fact that they may later
change.

To determine how much money you should save for retirement, there are a number
of important questions that you first need to ask yourself. Where do you want
to live? Do you need to relocate to get to that destination? What type of home
or living arrangement do you see yourself as having? What hobbies or activities
would you like to take up? Do you want to start a small business in retirement?
If so, start estimating the cost of these. When doing so, also take into
account the standard cost of living, such as the basic needs of shelter, food,
and transportation. Inflation should be accounted for as well.

Once you have completed the above mentioned step of determining how much you
need to save for retirement, you will want to expand that amount. You should
always save more money than you need. Why? Because there are no guarantees with
retirement or an age increase. Your retirement spending plan should account for
flexibility, as there are some events that can arise that call for you to be
flexible with your spending.

As previously stated, inflation should be taken into consideration. The cost of
goods and services will only continue to rise as you age. Not accounting for
this rise can cause you to not have enough retirement money. Online, you can
find a number of tools that can help you calculate the estimated inflation rate
at your time of retirement. Keep in mind, however, that these are only
estimates. A financial advisor can also provide you with these numbers.

Next, it is important to remember that your health may start to worsen after
retirement. Many senior citizens reach a point in time when long-term care is
needed. Even if you are sixty years old and in good health, please remember
that can change at just about any minute. Are you prepared for that change, if
and when it arrives? You should be. The cost of long-term care should be
included in your retirement savings. If you are retiring with your spouse,
examine the cost of long-term care for each of you. Unlike living comfortably
with one another in an independent living retirement community, the cost of
long-term care can be expensive.

Flexibility is also important as your family situation can change as well. Do
you have children? If you do, do not rely on your children to help make it
through retirement financially. Even if your children are in good financial
standing now or when you first enter into retirement, that can easily change.
It is expensive to raise a family, as you likely already know. You do not want
to put your children's health, family, or finances, at risk; therefore, you
should make sure your retirement savings plan is flexible and able to account
for many of the unexpected events that life can throw your way.

Saving for Retirement When Working from Home

Are you self-employed? If you are or even if you are a home based worker who is
employed as a contractor for another company, you may be disappointed to learn
that you are, essentially, on your own when it comes to retirement. Those who
work from home are responsible for saving and setting up their own retirement
accounts. Unfortunately, this leaves many men and women regretting their
decision to work from home.

Planning for retirement when working from home or when self-employed may seem
like a long and hopeless process, but it doesn't have to be. Even though you do
not have a "traditional," nine to five day job, you can still save and start
preparing for your retirement. In fact, now is the best time to get started.

One of the first steps you will need to take involves determining how much
money you will need for retirement. This can be difficult to do, but at least a
rough estimate is advised. To estimate how much money you will need for
retirement, examine your needs and goals. Where do you envision yourself in the
future? Where do you want to live? What activities do you see yourself enjoying?
It is important for you to answer these questions, as there is no way for you to
meet your retirement goals if you don't have any.

Another way that you can go about planning and saving for your retirement, when
working from home or when self-employed, is by creating a monthly budget.
Unfortunately, not all home based workers are raking in the money. Some moms
work at home part-time and some offer services, such as web design and
freelance writing, that are not needed on a regular schedule. If you are one of
those individuals, a budget is a must have. Monthly budgets are advised, as our
expenses tend to vary from month to month.

When creating a budget, take your average monthly earnings and just start
subtracting your expenses. If you are married, you will also want to include
your husband or wife's expenses as well. There is no reason why the two of you
can't help each other with creating a retirement savings plan. After all of the
necessities have been added to your budget, such as your rent, mortgage, car
loan, car insurance, food, gasoline, and utility bills, how much money is left?
Take a percentage of that money or a set dollar amount each month and set it
aside for your retirement years.

Speaking of saving your money, many home based workers want to run on down to
their local banks and open up a savings account. This is okay, but it,
honestly, isn't the best approach to take. Instead, look for those that you can
benefit from opening, like those that are considered tax-deferred accounts or
programs. Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are recommended, but SEP-IRA
accounts are designed specifically for small business owners and the
self-employed.

It is also a wise idea to seek professional help. This help can come from a
professional accountant or a professional financial advisor. It is best if you
seek this professional help around the age of 40. This gives you enough time to
make changes if your financial advisor thinks you do not have enough money for
retirement saved. In fact, many home based workers and self-employed
individuals wonder what happens when they don't have enough money saved for
retirement.

If the time for you to retire arrives and you don't believe that you can
financially survive until you pass away, don't quit working. Do not use this as
a part of your plan, however. You should plan and save for your retirement with
the goal you will stop working. If you find yourself short on money, consider
working part-time to make up the difference. If and when the time comes, you
can also make additional changes, such as moving into a smaller home or
relocating to a more affordable city or town.

Saving for Retirement When Running a Small Business

Are you a small business owner? If so, are you ready for retirement? Whether
you are only thirty years old or if you are fifty, retirement should be on your
mind. Small business owners are 100% in charge of their retirement. If you don't
start acting now, you may find it difficult to stop working and retire in a
timely matter.

As previously stated, you will want to get started with saving for retirement
as early as possible. Small business owners are encouraged to start planning
for retirement in their thirties or even earlier. Why? Because setting up
retirement savings accounts, such as an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) can
be harder for small business owners. Often times, more paperwork is needed and
extra verification is often required. For that reason, the earlier you start,
the better your financial situation will look when it comes time to retire.

One step that you will not want to take involves relying on the sale of your
business. Unfortunately, this is where many small business owners find
themselves in trouble. Many believe that they can sell their business and live
off the profits. Yes, this may happen, but you may be surprised to learn how
slim the chances are. Even if your business turns a nice profit, you still may
not have any buyers. Many entrepreneurs like to start their own businesses from
the ground up and not everyone has the funds needed to purchase a profitable and
well-established business, like yours.

Since you are encouraged to not rely on the sale of your business for
retirement, you may want to refrain from selling. How many employees do you
have? If you have one or more employees, can you work with and train someone to
take over your position? If so, you can retire and still collect profits from
your business. If you must hire an employee to replace the worker you promoted,
your profits may slightly decrease, but you should still have enough to survive
throughout your retirement. If worse comes to worse, you can always return to
work.

As a reminder, no matter how successful your business is, you should not rely
on it as your only source of income during your retirement years. That is why
you should also examine popular retirement saving accounts. Aside from a
traditional savings account that you deposit extra business profits into, you
should examine 401(k) programs. Unfortunately, many small business owners do
not know that they exist for them. They do. A Single Participant 401(k), also
commonly referred to as a Solo 401(k), may be perfect for you. They enable
business owners who don't have employees to save money
for retirement. Higher contributions are also allowed.

When it comes to creating a Single Participant 401(k) or a Solo 401(k), you may
want to speak to a financial advisor. This is because companies that offer these
types of plans and programs can be difficult to find. They are out there, but
you may need help finding them. Also, consulting with a financial advisor
cannot do you any harm. In fact, you may learn additional tips and techniques
for saving for retirement as a small business owner.

Speaking of additional tips, it is important to not put all of your eggs in one
basket. As previously stated, do not rely on your business to get you through
retirement. Also, do not rely just on a 401(k) plan. Depending on your
contributions, such as how often you paid your taxes, you should also qualify
for social security benefits. You can estimate your benefits by contacting the
United States Social Security Department, but still don't rely on it. On
average, it only covers about 30% to 40% of income needed during retirements.

To stretch your money to its fullest extent and to properly and safely prepare
for retirement, examine 401(k)s for small business owners, SEP-IRAs, SIMPLE
IRAs, stocks, and bonds. In the event that one of your options does not pan
out, you still have savings to fall back on.

Retiring: Should You Rent or Own a Home?

Are you in the process of planning for your retirement? Of course, you will
want to take steps to save money for retirement, but you also need to have a
plan, Part of that plan should involve determining where you want to live and
how. A common question asked by soon-to-be retirees is "Should I rent or should
I own?"

When it comes to determining if you should rent or own a home during your
retirement years, it can be difficult to make a decision. Why? Because every
situation is different. That is why you should first examine the pros and cons
of each.

As for owning your own home, the biggest benefit of doing so is the equity you
are provided with. This can give you security in your older age. Renting a home
or an apartment does not provide you with any security at all.

In the aspect of security, owning a home is typically advised, especially one
that is already paid for. Should you find yourself short on retirement money
later on, you can always sell your home. The money that you profit can be used
to relocate to a smaller home or you could consider renting instead.

The biggest downside to owning a home is the costs associated with doing so.
When planning to retire or when in retirement, the last thing you may want or
need is a mortgage to pay. With that said, remember that you do receive
benefits. The interest rates on your mortgage can be used as a tax deduction.
This can save you a small, but meaningful amount of money each year.

If you are the sole owner of your home, like if your mortgage is already paid
off, do not make the mistake of assuming that you are free and clear. There are
still expenses that you will need to account for in your retirement years. When
you own your own home, you are responsible for all taxes, including both school
and property tax. When you rent an apartment or a home, you are not the
individual responsible, as these should already be included in the cost of your
rent.

When comparing renting and owning a home in your retirement years, maintenance
and renovations should also be taken into consideration. If you are 70 years
old and your house needs a new roof, would you be able to afford the cost of
it? You must be able to do so if you want to continue living in retirement
safely and comfortably. As for renting, many renters receive reassurance and
security because they are not the individuals in charge of making or paying for
needed repairs and renovations.

One downside to renting a home or apartment is cost increase. Your rent can
increase at just about any point in time. In most states, unless your lease
states otherwise, rent can be increased with 30 days notice. Even so, most
leases are only for one year, meaning your landlord can raise your rent then.
In fact, your landlord can raise your rent to any amount that they want, even
an amount that you cannot afford.

So which decision is best for you? Costs should be examined. If you live in an
area with high rental rates, it is best to stay in your own home or even buy a
new home. When making your decision, examine the long-term costs of each.
Remember that rent can increase, while fixed rate mortgages do not.

Retirement Planning Mistakes You Need to Avoid Making

Are you ready to start planning and preparing for your retirement? If so,
congratulations you are making a step in the right direction. The earlier you
start planning for your retirement, the better off you will be when the time
comes.

The decision to start planning and preparing for retirement is a wise decision.
As previously stated, the earlier you start, the better. With that said, the
earlier you start planning for retirement the more mistakes you are likely to
make. These mistakes, a few of which are outlined below, can cause financial
problems and more when you are ready to retire.

Not creating a budget for yourself and not tracking your spending are two
mistakes that you will want to avoid making. This often leads to you spending
more money than you have. You should be saving for retirement, especially at
around the age of forty, not getting into debt. For that reason, never spend
money that you don't have and never spend all of your money. It is best, but a
must when you reach the age of forty, to start paying for all of your purchases
with cash, checks, or debit cards. Before doing so, however, make sure that you
have enough money to spend and keeping on saving for retirement.

Another common mistake that people make, when creating a retirement plan,
involves not taking health into consideration. Health and the impact it can
have on your retirement can work two different ways. For starters, what if you
get sick? Can you afford the cost of emergency surgery or long-term medical
care? Even if you are healthy now, remember that your health can always take a
turn for the worse. It is also important to note advancements in medical
technology. Many men and women are living longer than they originally planned
for. You don't want to run out of retirement money just because you lived
longer than expected.

In keeping with your health and wellbeing, it is important to examine your
spouse and visa versa. There is a good chance that one of you will live longer
than the other and possibly a significant amount of time longer. Make sure that
you have enough money to retire on your own, in the event that your spouse
passes away. It is also important to recheck all important documents. Make sure
your will, mortgage, and all property deeds are in order and designed to protect
the surviving spouse.

Relying too much on government assistance, like social security, is a mistake
that many make. This is a mistake that can be damaging to you. Did you know
that social security will only pay for portion of your retirement needs? On
average, it only covers about 40% of your needs. What plan do you have for the
other 60%? If you don't have a plan, now is the time to develop one.

The biggest mistake that many individuals make is dipping into their retirement
funds before they are ready to retire. This is a huge mistake that can have a
negative impact on your retirement and your finances in the future. You should
never take money from your retirement funds, unless it is a dire emergency. Use
your retirement savings as a last resort. If you need cash quickly, consider
approaching your local bank or speaking to friends or family members to acquire
small loans.

Not knowing all of your saving options is another mistake that you will want to
avoid making. Did you know that there are multiple ways that you can save money
for retirement? There are, for example, a employer's 401(k) program, as well as
Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). There are also many others who use stock
and bonds to save extra money for retirement. In fact, it is advised that you
spread out your retirement savings to offer you protection. Do the proper
amount of research online or schedule an appointment with a financial advisor
before it is too late.

Retirement Planning: 5 Reasons You Should Meet a Financial Advisor

Are you planning and preparing for your retirement? If you are, you may have
some questions. After all, soon-to-be retirees want and should have all of
their bases covered. Of course, you can find retirement advice online or seek
answers from those you know. There are, however, a number of benefits to
meeting with a professional financial advisor. In fact, five reasons why are
outlined below.

1 -- Knowledge and Expertise

While anyone can claim to be a financial advisor, a small amount of research or
recommendations from those that you know can help you ensure that you are
dealing with a true professional. When doing so, you should receive valuable
information. Most financial advisors are trained and experienced in the world
of finance, as well as retirement. Generally, you should feel comfortable and
trust the advice given to you by a financial advisor.

2 -- Realistic Goals

Another benefit to meeting with a financial advisor is that he or see can make
sure that your feet are on the ground. Unfortunately, many men and women get
carried away with their retirement goals. If you want to start a business, you
may be able to so. If you want to spend your days vacationing, you should also
be able to do so. But, only if you have enough money saved. A financial advisor
can let you know if it is even possible for you to meet your retirement goals in
the remaining time that you have left to save.

3 -- A Good Value for the Money

Yes, scheduling a meeting with a financial advisor will cost you money.
Unfortunately, this is a problem for many. After all, to save for retirement,
you are supposed to be saving money and reducing your expenses. While this is
true, meeting with a financial advisor can be considered an investment. The
small appointment fee is one that you can easily make a return on, should you
adhere to the advice provided by your financial advisor.

4 -- Easy to Schedule an Appointment

Many soon-to-be retirees don't want to go through the trouble to find and then
schedule an appointment with a financial advisor. Doing so doesn't have to be
difficult. First, ask for recommendations from those that you know and then
call to make an appointment. The internet can also be used to research and find
quality and reliable advisors. Your local bank may also be able to provide you
with assistance.

5 -- The Consequences

The consequences of not meeting with a financial advisor or not being prepared
for your retirement are enough reason why you should schedule an appointment.
At this point in your life, you should have been contributing to your 401(k)
and you should also have an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) with money in
it. If not or if you don't even know what these accounts and plans are, you
need to meet with a financial advisor right away.

As you can see, there are a number of benefits to scheduling an appointment
with a financial advisor. A financial advisor does more than an accountant. In
addition to helping you save money, they can also help you determine exactly
how much money you need to retire comfortably. Yes, you can develop this total
on your own, but financial advisors know to take other factors into
consideration as well, such as medical emergencies and inflation. Do you?

Professional Retirement Help: Where Can You Turn

Are you in the process of planning for your retirement? If you are around the
age of forty or fifty, you may be concerned with the planning process. Are you
on track to retire comfortable? Do you need to save more money? How can you
save that money? If these are questions that you have asked yourself, you may
want to consider seeking professional help.

As nice as it is to hear that you can seek professional retirement help, you
may be curious as to how you should get that help. Better yet, you may be
wondering why you should pay for it. Yes, you likely have a large number of
friends and family members who are tossing retirement suggestions your way, but
are they really qualified to give that advice? If not, you may be putting your
retirement years and your finances at risk. As for how you can seek retirement
help from a professional, you do have multiple options.

A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is a great way to seek affordable, yet
professional advice on your retirement. If you have used an accountant before,
you may want to return to the same individual or company. To improve the
accuracy of the information given to you, choose to meet with a CPA, as opposed
to an accountant who working on the side or uncertified.

When seeking professional advice through the use of an accountant, there is a
lot of work that you will have to do yourself. Typically, accountants just help
you get your finances in order. They help you determine how much money you have
now, as well as share tips with you on how you can save money. It will often be
your job to determine how much money you need to save for retirement. This
involves determining your retirement wants, needs, and goals and then examining
the estimated cost of them.

If you would like professional retirement help, but if you would also like to
limit the amount of research that you have to do, a financial advisor is
advised. Financial advisors tend to offer more services than traditional
accountants do. In fact, some financial advisors specialize solely in
retirement planning.

When working with a financial advisor, you will need to know what you want to
get out of retirement. Where would you like to live? What type of establishment
would you like to live in? What activities or hobbies would you like to enjoy
during retirement? Explain these to your financial advisor and they can help
you determine how much money you need to save. Next, you will both work on a
plan to save that money.

Another approach that you can take involves using the services of an attorney.
Typically, attorneys try to refrain from providing you detailed financial
information and tips, but a long-term attorney of yours may do so. It is still
recommended that you meet with an attorney however.

When entering into retirement, you need to have all of your finances and
important documents in order. Do you have a will? If not, now is the time to
draft one. Who will care for you or become your power of attorney in the event
your health worsens? If you are married, is your home in both the name of you
and your spouse? It should be.

Are you getting ready to start preparing for your retirement years? Whether you
are 30 years old or 50 years old, this is an important step to take. Planning
for your retirement doesn't have to be hard, but there are a number of bases
that you must have covered to see success.

To make sure that you are on the right track to seeing the retirement future
you always dreamed of, there are a number of important questions that you will
first want to ask yourself. The answers to these questions are important when
developing a retirement savings plan.

When do you want to retire? The date you would like to retire is important, as
that is your goal date. To retire when you want to, your goal of saving a
specific amount of money must be met. When setting this date, it is important
to be realistic. If you haven't saved any money for retirement, it is highly
unlikely that you can be set for life in as little as a year or two. That is
why you are encouraged to start the planning process as early as possible.

Can you afford to retire when you want to? As previously stated, it is
important to be realistic with your retirement goals. To help ensure that you
are financially prepared and not left disappointed, determine when you can
afford to retire. If the two dates don't match, you may be able to meet your
goal by increasing your savings or living on a fixed income. For your own
protection, do not retire until you are financially prepared to do so.

What kind of retirement lifestyle are you seeking? This is one of the most
important questions you will ask yourself. Why? Because it gives you a savings
goal. Of course, it is important to estimate the cost of your living expenses,
but what about your wants? Do you want to spend your days vacationing along the
beach? Do you want to take up a hobby like boating? Would you like to start your
own business? If so, try estimating the cost of these adventures. This can help
you determine how much money you need to have saved to "safely," retire.

Am I making use of my company's 401(k)? Are you employed? If so, do you have a
401(k) through your workplace? If you are employed full-time, you should. Are
you contributing to your account? If not, this is a step that you must start
taking now. It doesn't matter whether you want to retire in 20 years or in 5
years, any bit of money that you can put aside will help. This is particularly
true if your company matches your 401(k) contributions, as you are,
essentially, receiving free money.

Should I open an Individual Retirement Account (IRA)? The answer to this
question is yes. If you don't already have an IRA, get one and right now. IRAs
are much safer than traditional savings account, as you are less likely to dip
into your account and use or "borrow," the money. An Individual Retirement
Account (IRA) also provides you with tax benefits.

What benefits will I be provided with and how much? It is important to know how
much you will receive in social security benefits. The good news is that this
information is easy to verify with a phone call to social security offices. If
you are relatively young, such as under the age of 30, remember that changes
may take place that may lessen the amount of social security your were
projected to receive.

Am I in debt? If you are in debt, now is the time to start taking action. Debt
can have a negative impact on your retirement goals and dreams, especially when
debt collectors come knocking on your door or even take you to small claims
court. That is why you should never enter into retirement when you have unpaid
bills. Instead, create a budget for yourself. The money that you are able to
save can be spilt to repay your old debts, as well as add more money into your
retirement savings.

How to Save Money After You Retire

When it comes to saving for retirement, much focused is placed on saving in
your 30s, 40s, and 50s. Of course, you will want to do so. The sooner you start
saving for your retirement, the more money you will have. With that said, did
you know that you can still save money after you have retired? You can.

Before focusing on a few of the many ways that you can save for retirement
after you have already retired, it is important to examine your reasons for
doing so. It is no secret that our wants and needs change, sometimes on a
monthly basis. You may have been fine with the plan of staying around home, but
you may have since changed your mind. Would you and your spouse like to travel
the world or the country? Would you like to travel with friends? Do you want to
start your own business or take up an expensive hobby? If so, you will need to
save money, to extend to life of your retirement savings.

As for how you can make money after you retire, start examining your expenses.
For starters, look at your bills. How much money are you paying for auto
insurance, electricity, heat, internet, television, and phone? Are there ways
that you can reduce their costs? Is there a cheaper phone, internet, or
television package you can purchase? Can you find cheaper auto insurance
through a different company? If you can, make the switch.

It is also important to examine unnecessary purchases. These purchases tend to
reduce after leaving the workplace, but are you still spending money on things
you don't need? Do you like to get a soda or coffee when you leave the house?
If so, consider packaging a drink for you to take from home. As nice as it is
to help your family in their time of need, make sure that you can afford to do
so first. If your retirement goals depend on you saving more money, don't offer
to help send your grandchildren to college or buy them a new car, no matter how
hard it can be to say no. Remember that your retirement should come first.

Another easy way that you can save money after you retire is by making use of
senior discounts. Many businesses, including retail stores and restaurants, do
offer them. If you know you qualify for a senior discount, ask for it. Do not
wait for this discount to be offered to you.

An easy way to save money after you retire is to supplement it. Are you still
able to work? Can you comfortable move around or stand for long periods of
time? If so, consider getting a part-time job. Many retailers need part-time
employees. Some of these employees are only needed to work ten hours a week.
This may be the perfect type of opportunity for you. This is an easy way to
make and save more money for your retirement. Just make sure that you choose a
job that you love and actually enjoy being at.

If you find yourself in need of more money for retirement, as opposed to just
wanting more, it is advised that you examine your current living situation. Is
your home paid off? If so, you are at an advantage, but examine your maintence
costs. Is the home in constant need of repairs? Are your utility bills higher
than you can afford? If so, you should consider relocating to a more affordable
home. In fact, you may want to consider renting. If you are able to find an
affordable apartment, the money from the sale of your home can do wonders for
your retirement savings account.

As you can see, there are a number of ways that you can save money after you
retire. In fact, it is recommended that you do. Your retirement goals can
change at any point in time. There is also always the chance of an emergency,
such as a medical emergency. Since retirement can be risky, you should be
financially prepared.

How to Save for Retirement on a Limited Budget

Are you living day-to-day or from paycheck-to-paycheck? If you are, you are not
alone. Many Americans are now finding themselves in a financial crunch. At that
same time, financial advisors are still encouraging Americans to save for
retirement. This is where you may feel hopeless. There is, however, good news.
That good news is that there are still ways that you can save for retirement,
even when experiencing financial problems right now.

The first step you should take depends on your age. If you are between the ages
of forty and fifty, you will want to closely examine your retirement goals. This
includes both your wants and your needs. How much money do you need to retire?
To determine an amount, look at your living situation. How much will it cost
you to survive with the basic necessities, including food, shelter, health
insurance, and transportation? Next, examine your retirement goals or wants. Do
you want to start your own business? Do you want to travel? Is there are hobby
you want to take up? Examine the costs of those activities.

If you are between the ages of twenty and thirty, your retirement goals are
still important. Of course, you will want to sit down and determine how much
money you need to retire, but this can also wait a few years. If you are on a
tight budget, it may first be a good idea to examine ways that you can save
money for retirement. As an important reminder, there will need to be a point
in time when you will examine your retirement years and what you want to get
out them.

As for how you can start saving money for retirement when living day-to-day,
you will want to track your spending. You should do so for at least a week. You
will want to record every single purchase that you make, including a small bag
of chips or a cup of coffee. At the end of your week, look at your spending
list. Circle all of the items that you can live without or make other
arrangements for.

Once you have a list of items that you can live without, it is time for you to
take action. This action involves cutting corners and eliminating unnecessary
purchases. The good news is that you don't necessarily have to go without. You
can still save money by taking a few simple steps. For example, instead
of buying a cup of coffee on the way to work each morning, make your own at
home. If you are known for buying new clothes too often, consider shopping at a
department store or a thrift store, as opposed to a high-end clothing store.
There are so many different ways for you to save money.

Now, saving money is great, but only if you put that money where it needs to
go. Do you have a 401(k) plan? If so, start applying your saved money to that
plan. If you do not, open up an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). There are
other options that you have as well, such as a savings account at your local
bank, stocks, and bonds. Some of these methods can be risky; therefore, you
will want to spread your money out.

As you can see, there are a number of ways that you can save for retirement,
even when you are on a limited budget. Whatever approach you take, be sure to
stick to your plan.

How to Meet New People After Retiring

Are you getting ready to retire? If you are, you are not alone. In fact, there
is a good chance that many of your friends are reaching the age of retirement
as well. Unfortunately, you may find some of these friendships coming to an end
or you may at least see a reduction in frequency. Why? Because many retirees are
now choosing to relocate, often to their dream vacation destination.

If you find yourself retired and without many friends, you will want to take
action. Retirement is a time in life when you should be enjoying yourself. This
includes making and developing new friendships. For tips on how you can do so,
please continue reading on.

Your county's senior center is a great place to start. Most areas in the United
States have senior centers for their local seniors. These centers are typically
run on a countywide basis, meaning that you may have to travel to the next town
over. The good news is the reward that you will receive. At one point, many
senior centers were only used to provide health and retirement advice to senior
citizens, but now they are also being used for entertainment. Some counties have
days filled with onsite activities, that may include cooking classes, group
counseling sessions, arts and crafts, and well as bingo games.

In addition to events that are hosted by your local county's senior citizen
program, there should also be other public and privately sponsered events in
your area. Attending these events, namely those that are designed for seniors,
is a great way to get out and meet new people. Look in your local newspaper or
on community message boards for informational seminars for senior citizens,
exercise classes, recreational card games, and cooking classes.

Volunteering is another great way to meet other seniors and retirees your age.
As an added bonus, you can feel good about yourself in knowing that you are
doing a good deed by volunteering. For the largest selection of other men and
women your age, you are encouraged to examine hospitals and nursing homes that
need volunteers. Other volunteer opportunities may include the library, pet
shelters, and local schools.

If you are at the point where the lack of social interaction you are getting or
expect to receive is having a negative impact on your health and wellbeing,
consider relocating to a retirement home or community. Regardless of where you
live now or where you want to live, you should have multiple living options.
Retirement communities and homes are a great place to meet other retirees and
senior citizens, as everyone is about the same age. Just be sure to greet those
that you meet in the hall.

Speaking of retirement communities and homes, make use of all onsite services
and activities. Most retirement communities and homes are designed to provide
residents with convenience. For example, your facility may have weekly exercise
classes, card games, or bingo games. If so, attend these events to meet new
people. Also, frequenting high traffic areas, like the mailroom and laundry
room, can also give you an opening to meet new people.

As you can see, there are a number of different ways that you can meet new
people and develop new friendships once you enter into retirement. As an
important safety note, avoid using the internet to develop new friendships, as
doing so can be dangerous.

How to Find Retirement Communities

Are you planning for your retirement? If you are expected to retire within the
next year or two, you may be on the hunt for retirement communities. With so
many options to choose from, many seniors are wondering, how they can start
familiarizing themselves with their options.

The first step in finding a retirement community is to decide on a location. Do
you want to stay in your current community? Have you always dreamed of moving to
Florida or another location with beautiful weather? If so, now is the time to
make your decision. Targeting your retirement community search to a specific
location can save you time.

Once you have decided on a destination, you have a number of different options.
If you will be staying in or around your local community, you can turn to your
local phone book. There, you will find a number of retirement communities
located in the yellow pages or business directory section. These centers may be
listed under "retirement," "housing," or "assisted living." Your phone book
should provide you with the telephone number of the establishment in question.
Contact them for more information.

If you are internet savvy, you can use the internet to find retirement
communities. If you already have the name of a retirement home or community,
like one that was recommended to you, perform a standard internet search with
that company or community name. If the place has an online website, you should
be directed to that website. Not only can you get the needed contact
information, you will also be provided with other valuable information. This
information may include a summary of rates, pictures, room layout plans, a
detailed list of onsite services, facilities, and scheduled activities.

In keeping with using the internet to find retirement homes and communities,
you can also turn to online business directories and online phone books. Many
enable you to search for a business, like a retirement home, by location, such
as your chosen destination. The information that you will be provided with
should include an address, a telephone number, and possibly a company website
link. Be sure to visit the website of the retirement community in question or
at least call for additional information.

Typically, you will find it easier to find retirement communities online. In
fact, you will likely be provided with more options. Your local phone book may
be limited in its information or it may be outdated. If you are not computer
savvy yourself, consider asking a friend or trusted family member for help. An
afternoon spent together can produce a large list of retirement homes and
communities in or around the location of your choice.

Remember that moving into a retirement community is a huge decision. In fact,
you will need to do more than just find a retirement community. You will also
need to choose one. When making your decision, keep affordability in mind. It
is a must to choose a retirement community that you can afford. Also, examine
your needs. Do you need assistance with living day-to-day? If so an assisted
living retirement community is advised.

The above mentioned methods are all ways that you can go about finding
retirement communities. As an important reminder, don't just find a community
to live at; choose the one that is the perfect fit for you.





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