No matter where you are in the retirement process, there are many questions that a financial advisor can help you answer. If you’re still working, an advisor can help you decide how much money you’ll need to live on, and that information can help you determine a retirement date. If you are already retired, you may want to find out about different investment and withdrawal strategies to minimize the chances of running out of money too soon. You might have questions about when to start Social Security, how best to do estate planning, whether to move to a smaller house, how to stretch your travel dollars, and so on.
I remember a conversation I had with my mother-in-law shortly after I was married, many, many years ago. We were talking about our different approaches to shopping for dresses. She described going into the “best” store, finding a dress she liked, then comparison shopping at three or four other stores to locate the best price before making her purchase. She always thought of this as her way of getting a discount. As I was working full-time and had precious little opportunity to shop, I thought this approach was an awful waste of time just for the possibility of saving a few dollars.
By the time we get to retirement age, many of us are taking a few prescription drugs. If we have something chronic, such as diabetes, it may be even more than just a few. The natural place to turn is to Medicare Part D to help cover the costs. But, as we often find in life, it may not be that simple.
Choosing a Part D plan
Medicare Parts A (for hospital costs) and B (for medical costs) are easy; you just sign up with the government to get the insurance and both the costs and the coverage are the same for everyone in the same income categories.
Many of us worry about whether we’ll have enough to do once we retire. Especially if we’ve been in demanding jobs, the thought of long, empty days can be very unappealing. Don’t be discouraged and don’t let this postpone your retirement plans! It may take some time and effort, but I promise that you will eventually find the right mix of activities and leisure time and you will join in the chorus of, “I don’t know how I ever found the time to go to work!”
Important things to check out now while they’re still fresh:
This is a guest blog, written by Louise Machinist and Karen Bush, and is based on a presentation they did at a professional conference.
This is an exciting time to be retired. The array of positive aging strategies is expanding as knowledge and lifestyle options proliferate, including innovative shared housing models that allow retirees to enhance both their financial resources and their quality of life.
It took my husband and me several years to figure out our retirement plan – and it wasn’t an issue of money. We both loved our work but we knew by the time that we were in our late 50s, we needed to do something else with our lives. The nagging question: How were we going to live this new life? We had both had extremely demanding careers and we were ready to move on from the stress of our work lives. But the thought of sitting at home all day watching Judge Judy or stretched out on hammocks on the seashore in endless-summer scenarios really didn’t appeal.
I'm Linda Fleit. My husband and I were lucky enough to retire when we were 61, about nine years ago. We love being retired and want to share all that we've learned over the years about this wonderful stage of life.