These Red Flags May Mean You’re Not Ready for Retirement

Feel like you’re unprepared for retirement? You have company. A recent Gallup study found that more than 50 percent of Americans are worried that they won’t be able to fund their retirement.1  The good news is that even if you are behind or unprepared, it’s never too late to take action. The first step is to identify the areas in which you may need improvement. Below are a few red flags that could indicate you’re not as ready as you should be. If any of these sound familiar and you’re approaching retirement, now may be the time to take action.

You don’t know how much income you’ll have in retirement.

Much of retirement planning involves the creation of income. In order to fund your lifestyle, you’ll have to generate income that exceeds your living expenses. You’ll likely receive income from Social Security, a pension, personal investments and possibly other sources.

Have you created a retirement income projection? Do you know how much income you’ll receive each year? While you may not be able to accurately predict your exact income each year, you can probably develop a reasonable estimate. You can then use that estimate to develop a budget and identify any gaps in your savings.

You don’t have a strategy to pay for health care.

Think Medicare will cover all your medical expenses in retirement? Think again. Health care is a major expense item for many retirees. Medicare covers many health care costs, but it doesn’t cover everything. In fact, Fidelity estimates that the average retired couple will spend $280,000 on out-of-pocket medical expenses.2

There are steps you can take to manage your out-of-pocket health care costs. For example, you can fund a health savings account (HSA), or you can look at supplemental Medicare policies. You may even consider long-term care insurance. If you don’t develop a plan, though, health care expenses could take you by surprise.

You’re providing financial support to others.

Do you have grown children who still rely on you for financial support? It’s become a common phenomenon. According to a recent study from Fidelity, 47 percent of millennials receive some form of financial assistance from their parents. More than 20 percent still live with their parents.3

It’s natural to want to support your children, especially if they’re facing difficulties. However, that financial assistance could hurt your ability to save for retirement. If you continue to support your children after you retire, you may have trouble supporting yourself.

You may want to have a conversation with your children about your financial needs and challenges. Explain how much you’ll need to save and how the support you provide to them impacts your ability to save. If you provide a significant amount of assistance, you may need to implement a long-term plan in which they gradually become more independent over time.

You’re struggling with debt.

Debt is a difficult financial challenge at any age, but it can be especially problematic for those in retirement. Every dollar you spend on debt payments is a dollar you can’t use to fund your lifestyle. You may even have to take extra money out of your retirement accounts to pay your debt. If you’re struggling with debt, work with your financial professional to develop a plan to pay down the balance before you retire.

You don’t have a comprehensive retirement plan.

As you may have noticed, all these issues can be resolved with planning. A comprehensive financial plan can help you identify risks and implement strategies. If you haven’t yet developed your comprehensive retirement plan, now may be the time to sit down with a financial professional and start the process.

1http://news.gallup.com/poll/210890/americans-financial-anxieties-ease-2017.aspx

2https://www.fidelity.com/viewpoints/personal-finance/plan-for-rising-health-care-costs

3https://www.glamour.com/story/how-much-do-your-parents-help-you-get-by

Licensed Insurance Professional. This information is designed to provide a general overview with regard to the subject matter covered and is not state specific. The authors, publisher and host are not providing legal, accounting or specific advice for your situation. By providing your information, you give consent to be contacted about the possible sale of an insurance or annuity product. This information has been provided by a Licensed Insurance Professional and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting insurance professional. The statements and opinions expressed are those of the author and are subject to change at any time. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, presenting insurance professional makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. This material has been prepared for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, accounting, legal, tax or investment advice. This information has been provided by a Licensed Insurance Professional and is not sponsored or endorsed by the Social Security Administration or any government agency.

17696 – 2018/5/30


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