5 Fundamentals for Retirement Readiness

Aegon and the Transamerica Institute® sponsored a survey that aims to understand how people are preparing for retirement, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic altered so many peoples’ plans. As part of their report, they shared what they call the 5 Fundamentals of Retirement Readiness. These five tips provide a solid foundation for retirement planning, and will help you get prepared to relax during your golden years!

Save early and always

The basis for retirement has shifted over the years. Where there were once pensions are now 401ks — meaning that retirement is more self-funded than ever. It’s important to start saving for retirement as early as you can and to make it a habit. This is easier said than done, but it’s recommended to always contribute to your retirement before making your spending budget.

Write your plans down

Whatever your strategy is, make sure you write it down. It helps keep you accountable and makes success tracking easier. What do you want out of retirement? More travel? A new home? That will help you gauge how much to save. What age do you want to retire? Will you continue working, either part- or full-time to supplement your income?

Though life throws curveballs, it’s good to always have your plans in place and accessible so you can make changes and re-shift priorities easily.

Have a back-up plan

Speaking of curveballs, make sure you think through a retirement back-up plan that you’re comfortable with. The COVID-19 pandemic showed us that everyone and everything can change quickly. Having a few options for retirement plans isn’t a bad idea. You can work for an extra year or two to get more Social Security benefits. You can pick up a part-time job as needed to get extra cash. Downsizing is always a good option too.

Be healthy

A healthy lifestyle is a great way to minimize risks that could derail your retirement savings. While illness can’t be entirely avoided, approaching health proactively may help you stay on your feet longer. You may be able to avoid long absences from work or a forced early retirement. And don’t underestimate how quickly your savings can disappear to medical bills. That’s why we also recommend getting Medicare Supplement Insurance once you get on Medicare. If you’re wondering if they’re worth it, the answer is YES.

A Medicare Supplement plan will protect you financially if/when the worst happens. The plan will help you pay copays, coinsurance, and more. Without a Medicare Supplement plan, you could spend your entire life savings in a single year because Medicare alone does not have an out-of-pocket max!

Never stop learning

Continuing to learn new skills throughout your life will help you stay active longer. Whether you’re interested in learning new technology, a different industry, or a new hobby, keeping an open, curious mind will help you get where you want to go.

It’s ok to not have the answers to every question. You can rely on experts for the things you don’t know much about. If you find Medicare confusing, United Medicare Advisors is here to help. You can speak one-on-one with a licensed insurance agent who will help you find reliable health insurance at a budget-friendly price. Call or visit our Plan Comparison Tool to get started.

Source: https://transamericainstitute.org/docs/default-source/research/future-proofing-retirement-report-2021.pdf

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