A Realistic Financial Plan for Retirement

A Realistic Financial Plan for Retirement


Nearly 70% of Americans worry they won’t have the money to retire comfortably. The challenge is determining a realistic retirement savings, considering all the variables that aren’t exactly within your control.

From life expectancy to inflation to unexpected healthcare costs, it’s impossible to pinpoint an exact amount to cover your expenses. But that doesn’t mean you can’t set smart and realistic retirement savings goals to help plan for the future. 

  • Save for more than 20 years of retirement. With the growing cost of living and increasing life expectancy, your retirement financial planning should include a strategy for spending (and conserving) your funds. You may have enough retirement savings to live comfortably for 10 years, but you could be looking at 25 years of dining out, traveling and enjoying your retirement. Try to maintain a balanced investment portfolio, so there’s room for growth as the years go on.
  • Have an adequate emergency fund. Separate from your retirement assets, establishing an emergency savings can help get you through an unexpected crisis without disturbing your long-term investments. You can enter retirement with less worry knowing the money is there if and when you need it.
  • Aim to retire with minimal or no debt.  Before you can even think about how much savings are needed to retire comfortably, consider how much debt you want to carry over into retirement. The total debt for Americans over age 70 increased 543% between 1999 and 2019. While eliminating debt completely can give you a great sense of freedom, it’s not always realistic. The interest rates you’re paying may help determine which debt to tackle first. For example, if you have substantial credit card debt, consider a new credit card offering a low-interest balance transfer to consolidate your debt and avoid growing interest and fees.
  • Set a budget — and stick to it. How can you best allocate your funds to cover your bills, pay down debt and still have the means to live your best life? While it’s wise to consult your financial advisor, you can also crunch some numbers on a retirement budget calculator to get a better idea of what’s affordable. 
  • Determine your will and life insurance needs. Make an appointment to sit down with a professional to get your final requests and asset divisions in order. To protect your assets and dependents, keeping a life insurance policy may also be a good idea. If you have a policy under your employer that will end upon retirement, do your research and get a few quotes before deciding on the best type of policy to purchase.

Making retirement goals align with reality

When it comes to retirement financial planning, consider the benefits of a reverse mortgage loan to help you achieve your retirement goals. For homeowners age 62 and older, a reverse mortgage can be a smart financial tool, giving you the freedom to leverage the home equity you’ve built up over the years. You can access funds as a lump sum, monthly payments or a line of credit, all while continuing to live in and own your home.* As with any mortgage, you must meet your loan obligations, keeping current with property taxes and insurance, as well as basic home maintenance.

To find out more and schedule a convenient, in-person appointment, call me today.

Not financial or legal advice. Consult with a financial and/or legal advisor

*Borrowers who elect a fixed rate loan will receive a single disbursement lump sum payment. Other payment options are available only for adjustable rate mortgages.