You’ve made it to the finish line and retirement has officially come a-knockin’. It may seem like those endless paycheck contributions will take care of you, but financial mishaps can arise in the most unexpected of ways. You may not even notice until it’s too late. Don’t kick yourself later, find out now about five common mistakes that can ruin your retirement plan.
Whether you’re 24 or 54, it’s crucial to not invest too conservatively. Yeah, you can retire in your 60s, but you may live until your 98. You want to make sure your money stretches to the end, so plan ahead and make more moderate contributions to your 401(k) or IRA. It could make all the difference between existing and living
Not being realistic about future costs
There’s a difference between living and simply existing. You want to enjoy your retirement, so plan ahead for the realistic costs of life after work. Form a budget that factors in the cost of living with the cost of chasing your retirement dreams. If you need to, find part-time job options that let you do what you love while earning cash, like childcare or piano lessons.
Overlooking inevitable medical expenses
Taking Medicare into consideration, Fidelity Investments has estimated that the average 65-year old couple who retire in 2018 will need a whopping $280,000 of their own money for medical expenses during the course of their retirement. Yikes! To avoid unnecessary out-of-pocket charges, plan ahead, look into long term care insurance, and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Blowing bucks on a big retirement gift
Some people think that retiring means scooping up that shiny new sports car, or getting that big boat you’ve always wanted and now have the time to enjoy. But wait! Before you go making that huge celebratory purchase, try out retirement for a little to see how much you spend day-to-day. If you can, by all means, go all out. Just be smart about it!
Forgetting about that pesky tax business
Just because you don’t work anymore, doesn’t mean the tax man doesn’t. The typical 401(k) plan requires you withdraw a minimum amount each year once you hit a certain age, with taxes and fees at the ready. Get help from a financial advisor to see what plans are available now that will let you pay taxes upfront (while you have a larger income) to avoid harsher penalties later.