Sur­pris­ing Facts About Re­tire­ment

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - BUSINESS -

Leave your re­tire­ment up to chance at your own risk. Most of us need to be sock­ing away funds for our fu­tures and in­vest­ing that money ef­fec­tively. Here are some things you should know:

• Most peo­ple are un­der­pre­pared for re­tire­ment. About half of Amer­i­cans aged 35 to 44 have less than $25,000 saved for re­tire­ment, per the 2019 Re­tire­ment Con­fi­dence Sur­vey. Folks in that boat do have some time to take ac­tion, but they should save ag­gres­sively, prob­a­bly aim­ing to save more than 10% of their in­come each year.

• It’s im­por­tant to have a plan for re­tire­ment. De­ter­mine how much money you’ll need at re­tire­ment, and what your in­come sources will be. Most of us can ex­pect So­cial Se­cu­rity in­come, but that’s not likely to be enough. The av­er­age So­cial Se­cu­rity re­tire­ment ben­e­fit was re­cently around $1,475 per month, or $17,700 an­nu­ally.

• Don’t for­get to plan for health care costs. A 65-year-old cou­ple re­tir­ing today will spend an av­er­age of $285,000 out of pocket on health care, ac­cord­ing to Fi­delity In­vest­ments. That’s for ex­penses be­yond what’s cov­ered by Medi­care, and it doesn’t in­clude long-term care.

• Many peo­ple plan to re­tire in their mid- or late-60s. But thanks to job dis­place­ments or health con­cerns, most Amer­i­cans ac­tu­ally re­tire by 65, mak­ing it all the more im­por­tant to be fi­nan­cially ready. If you re­tire at 62 and live to, say, 87, you’re look­ing at 25 years of re­tire­ment! (The So­cial Se­cu­rity Ad­min­is­tra­tion notes, “About 1 out of every 3 65-year-olds today will live past age 90.”)

• It’s not too late to im­prove your fi­nan­cial health. If you can save and in­vest $10,000 per year for 20 years and your money grows at an av­er­age an­nual rate of 8%, you can amass close to $500,000.

Don’t be afraid to con­sult a pro­fes­sional for re­tire­ment plan­ning ad­vice. You can find a fee-only pro near you at NAPFA.org. You can also get a lot of clear and con­cise re­tire­ment ad­vice by try­ing our “Rule Your Re­tire­ment” ser­vice at Fool.com/ser­vices.

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