This isn’t your parents’, or your grandparents,’ retirement. Instead of accepting a pension, a gold watch and a rocking chair at age 65, more people are heading into the next phase of life with a plan to stay active, and perhaps to continue to work, as they eye a retirement that could last through their 60s, 70s, 80s and beyond.
Yet as much as the reality of retirement has changed for people over the years, it remains part of the American Dream. And realizing all that dream entails — living the lifestyle you envision, pursuing items on your bucket list without fretting about running out of money — takes preparation both financially and psychologically, according to Jamie Bosse, a Certified Financial Planner™ with KHC Wealth Management in Overland Park, KS.
“More people today are trying to retire to something, not from something,” she says. “To maintain financial independence during retirement, you need to look at the big picture and start planning well in advance.”
Whether retirement is imminent or a still some years away, it’s not too early to assess your readiness, and, based on that assessment, to begin taking steps to position your finances and your mindset for what comes next. “When preparing for retirement, you not only want to ensure that you have enough money to retire with, but also want to determine what you want to do in your ‘second life,’” explains New York City-based Certified Financial Planner™ Michael Cooper.
Are you ready for retirement? Use the following checklists (much of which comes courtesy of Bosse and KHC Wealth Management) to help you assess, then consult a financial professional for guidance and assistance putting all the moving parts into a coherent plan.