If you’re like most people, you want to retire as early as possible and still live a comfortable lifestyle. The fact of the matter is that retirement takes a lot of preparation that should begin in the early years of your working life.
It’s never too early to start planning for your retirement. At a minimum you should at least decide how much money you will need annually to live comfortably and the age at which you would ideally like to retire. This will help you decide how much money you should save for retirement. So, for example, if you want to retire at age 60, you’d need about 40 years work of income saved up.
From a financial standpoint, it’s best to save and invest retirement money at a young age, so it can accrue interest as time passes. Statistics show that investing money earlier rather than later will allow you to gain much more in interest. Not only that, it’s often easier to invest and save early in your career because you have fewer financial responsibilities.
Retirement planning isn’t just about making sure you have enough money saved up to live. While that’s a very important aspect of planning your retirement, it’s not the only one. You also have to consider how you’re going to spend your life after you leave your career. There are crucial questions to answer. Where are you going to live? How will you spend your time? Will you have a part time job? Failing to plan for these things may leave you surprisingly bored and restless.
If you are married, it’s definitely important to include your spouse in your retirement plans. Working together, the two of you can often reach your financial goals easier than if you were working separately. It’s vital to have conversations about what the two of you would like your lives to be like once you’re both retired. Will you retire at the same time? What if one of you retires before the other?
Think about your health while you’re young. Sure, drinking and hard partying on the weekends may be a lot of fun now, but remember you’re going to have to live in that body for a long time. It’s best to take care of it.
Retirement planning doesn’t have to be a difficult process, but it does take time and effort. Don’t be fooled into thinking you can procrastinate retirement planning until another time. Before you know it you’ll be 55 and, believe it or not, 5 years is not enough time to effectively plan for a retirement. I would suggest using online calculators to help analyze what your financial situation will look like before you hit the golden years. These calculators can help you plan ahead and dip enough money into your selected 401k, high interest savings accounts, and forecast your debt situation.