Often, I am asked, ‘do I have enough saved for retirement?’ The answer is simple. It depends! What’s your plan? What is your target retirement date? You have to know what you want and then you are able to build a strategy and roadmap to help get you there. The very first step is to have a goal, then the written plan can be constructed. As part of this process, consulting with a financial planner may be helpful.
Beginning the process can be the most challenging, but when you have a written plan, it becomes important, tangible and will give you motivation as well as a benchmark to measure your progress along the way. Gathering your information is the first step to creating your plan. After analysis and deciding what changes need to be made to improve your current situation and what the gaps are between your reality and your future goals and how to work towards those goals, the strategies are implemented. This is followed by monitoring and reviewing the plan at least annually to see if you are on track and if any adjustments should be made.
To get started, you’ll need to gather some documentation. This will include your current income, tax returns, investment and bank accounts, list of you assets and liabilities, insurance policies, your budget which includes your monthly and annual expenses and your anticipated retirement income, including social security benefits, pensions, etc.
Once you receive your final paycheck there’s little room for financial errors. Staying focused on your long-term objectives and maintaining a disciplined investment strategy can help reduce the market noise and distractions in life and increase the odds of a successful outcome over time.
I’ve attached an article from Reader’s Digest, “13 Retirement Facts you need to take Seriously”, https://www.rd.com/advice/saving-money/retirement-facts-you-need-to-take-seriously/. I think it’s well written with some key steps in being prepared for retirement.
Don’t wait for retirement – Let’s Plan for it! Make 2018 the year you have a written plan to help you better preserve your hard earned money!
Jackie Campbell, CPA, CFP® PFS
Campbell & Company, Wealth Advisors & CPAs