As your ideal retirement date appears on the horizon, just like a pilot, be sure you have your runway path clearly defined. During the final landing approach, it’s important to stay on track. Use these suggestions to help ensure a smooth touchdown.
First, now is the time to increase your allowable contributions as much as possible to the company 401(k), 403(b), Simple IRA, etc., each year.
- Take full advantage of company matching amounts, if available.
- Increase contribution to include the “catch-up” for those over age 50
- Dedicate a portion of overtime or bonuses to your retirement pool.
If your employer doesn’t offer a plan, consider opening an addition savings account, such as an individual retirement account (IRA). If you have already contributed the maximum allowed to a company plan, then this option may be available to you as well. Check out the 2021 contribution levels here.
Next, pay attention to tax diversification. If all of your savings are tax-deferred, then all of your income in retirement will be subject to ordinary income taxes. Keep in mind, no one knows what rate your income will be taxed at in the future – that tax rate and bracket has yet to be defined. It may make sense to use these final years to build a block of assets that will be tax-advantaged in the future. A Roth account or cash-value life insurance may be a good tax-diversification strategy.
Consolidate your accounts to simplify your portfolio and possibly reduce expenses. Consider simplifying your investment touchpoints by streamlining your accounts. Consolidating plans from past employers may save you money in fees and expenses as well as keep on track strategically.
Invest for Retirement
Any landing strategy has to consider what you will need for your future. Create a retirement budget to determine how much you will need to live comfortably. Be sure your savings pattern will create the desired bucket of savings to cover your needs.
Next, be sure your investment portfolio is aligned with your risk tolerance and time horizon. It’s important to manage your speed when you are getting close to landing.
Finally, work with a financial professional to assess your target and approach. A goal planning session can help define your gals for the future. We’ll help you build a plan to ensure your future lifestyle is secure. Working together over the years, we’ll use established reference points to make sure you stay on track.
The key to landing is to be ahead of the event and set up properly on final approach.
Landing a plane requires skill and experience – unless you are a veteran pilot, you would not expect the airline to hand you the jet controls! Likewise, it makes sense to bring in an expert in retirement planning. We are ready to assist you with our expertise and guidance so you don’t have to do it all on your own. Click here to schedule a visit to get your free retirement assessment.
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