Senior Resources » Don’t Let Retirement Catch You Off Guard! Discover the 9 Choices You Need to Make for a Secure Financial Future!

Don’t Let Retirement Catch You Off Guard! Discover the 9 Choices You Need to Make for a Secure Financial Future!

money bags man financial future

Retirement is one of life’s biggest milestones. It’s the time when you can finally enjoy the fruits of your labor and take a break from the hustle and bustle of your daily routine. But, without proper planning, transitioning from a working professional to a retiree could be challenging – especially when it comes to money matters.


One of the biggest concerns for seniors and retirees today is outliving their money. And it’s a legitimate concern. Did you know that actually, 27% of Boomers have nothing saved for retirement?

The good news is that with the right choices, you can give yourself peace of mind and prepare for the retirement you want. Here are some proactive choices you can make today to boost your financial security for the future.


1. Start Saving Early

stacking coins

It’s never too early to start saving for your future, and the earlier you begin, the more time your money has to grow. While it may seem daunting, even small contributions can add up over time, leading to greater financial security in retirement.

If you’re already in your 50s or older and haven’t started saving yet, don’t despair! It’s not too late to make a change. Start by taking an inventory of your finances and identifying areas where you can cut back on expenses to free up money for savings.

Make saving a priority by setting clear financial goals and creating a budget that allocates a portion of your income towards retirement savings. Consider investing in a retirement account, such as an IRA or 401(k), to take advantage of tax benefits and ensure your money is working hard for you.

2. Pay Off Debt

man counting money at a table confused

Debt can be a major obstacle to achieving financial security. High-interest credit card debt, loans, and mortgages can eat away at your retirement savings and put you in a precarious position. If you have debt, focus on paying it off as soon as possible. Try adding extra payments or paying down high-interest balances first. If you’re struggling to make payments, seek professional help from a financial advisor.


3. Maximize Contributions to Retirement Accounts


Retirement accounts such as 401(k), 403(b), and IRA are designed to help you grow your wealth over time. To make the most of these accounts, you should contribute as much as feasible. If you’re unable to contribute the maximum amount allowed by law, aim to at least contribute enough to claim your employer’s full matching contribution (if that’s an option). By maximizing your contributions, you can take advantage of compound interest, which helps your savings grow at an accelerated rate. Over time, this can lead to significant gains.

It’s important to note that retirement savings accounts have different tax implications, so it’s worth consulting with a financial advisor to determine which account may be right for you based on your individual circumstances.

4. Invest Wisely

money bag investment

Investing can help grow your retirement savings but it’s important to do so wisely. Don’t invest in anything you don’t understand and avoid risky investments that could wipe out your savings. Consider working with a financial advisor who can help you make informed investment decisions.

Thinking about an annuity? Then start researching here!

5. Plan for Healthcare Expenses

hospital piggy bank

Medical expenses can be a significant expense in retirement. It’s important to plan ahead and factor healthcare costs into your retirement savings plan. Consider what insurance options you’ll have in retirement and factor in the cost of premiums, deductibles, and copays. Also, think about long-term care insurance to cover the cost of in-home care or assisted living should you need it.


Start here to learn all about Medicare!

6. Get Thrifty


Consider ways you can cut back on expenses and get more frugal. Cancel services you no longer use, think about downsizing to a smaller home or moving to a lower-cost-of-living area. Shop at discount stores and make use of coupons when shopping. There are plenty of thrifty ways to save money that don’t leave you feeling deprived or miserable, but give you the freedom to enjoy life!

7. Make a Budget (and Stick to It!)

budgeting couple Don't Let Retirement Catch You Off Guard! Discover the 9 Choices You Need to Make for a Secure Financial Future!

A budget serves as a roadmap for your finances and helps you make the most of your savings. To create a budget, start by listing your monthly expenses such as housing, food, healthcare costs, entertainment, and transportation. Then, compare your expenses to your income to determine if you’re living within your means. If not, look for ways to cut costs or increase your income. Here are a few great resources to help you get started:

8. Consider Delaying Social Security Benefits

Social Security Card

If you’re approaching retirement age, you might be eligible to start collecting Social Security benefits. However, if you can afford to wait, consider delaying your benefits. For every year you delay beyond your full retirement age, you’ll receive a higher monthly benefit. If you delay until age 70, your monthly benefit will be about 32% higher than if you started at your full retirement age.

9. Get a Part-Time Job or a Side-Hustle

working baby boomber asian woman

Working part-time in retirement can provide you with extra income, social interaction, and a sense of purpose. Plus, it can help you delay dipping into your savings, allowing your funds to grow for a few more years. Many retirees today are choosing to work in fields such as consulting, freelance writing, or even starting their own businesses. Here are 14 unique ways retirees can make extra money in 2023!

Originally published July 05, 2023

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