Are you ready for retirement? Some people may think they are working towards it, but are unsure if they’re doing the most that they can to retire comfortably. Here is a simple guide to start your path to create a solid plan to relax and unwind from the perpetual daily grind.
Do You Know Your Retirement Income?
This may be a dreaded question for some, but it should be the first and most important question to ask when beginning to plan for your retirement. By using the Canadian Retirement Income Calculator made by the Government of Canada, you can figure out how much you need to retire, what the impact of inflation will look like on your retirement income and much, much more.
If you are interested to learn about public pensions, OAS, CPP, RRSPs, employer pensions and other sources of personal savings, visit the federal government’s page on source of retirement income.
It’s important to note that planning your retirement income in advance is not the same as planning a finite amount of income in your future. There are many who are considering working during their retirement. If you are interested in working casually, part-time or even bursts of full-time in your retirement, check out this page that explains how working during your retirement will impact your CPP, OAS or other pension income.
Is It Worth Selling Your Family Home?
There are a lot of things to consider when it comes to selling your family home. One popular reason that people do this during retirement is that they are hoping to gain more tangible assets by downsizing. To see if downsizing is right for you, try using this excellent worksheet which illustrates the financial impact of downsizing. If you are specifically looking to downsize to a condo, try using this worksheet to see if moving into a condo will actually lower your monthly costs.
There are many kinds of housing options upon retiring, and the federal government has a handy link regarding housing costs and housing options for seniors.
How Much Will Your Retirement Investments Grow?
If you have made financial investments in preparation for retirement and you would like to get an approximate idea of what the return expectations could look like on your investments, try this worksheet by The Globe and Mail.
Who Do I Go to For Advice?
Finding someone you can trust with your financial future is extremely important. My suggestion to you is to not go down the road of finding someone who will directly try to sell you investments. Instead, find a financial planner who charges an hourly or flat rate. Their job is solely to give you the best financial advice possible without making a commission, which means they can be trusted more than someone who is directly selling investments to you. Trying to find a financial planner like this isn’t as easy as you might think because a directory of them hasn’t been made yet. However, try using this 2012 listing from MoneySense magazine to give you a healthy head start.
Fee-only financial planners aren’t for everyone! If you are interested in saving every penny earned there are plenty of online advisers who provide automated management of exchange-traded funds and low-cost portfolios. By running your own portfolio through an online broker you can focus mainly on the growth of your investment without worrying about extra fees. However, with taking this route you will need a bit of research and patience to make sure you are always getting the best bang for your buck.
What Kind of Investments Should I Make?
Just as it is important to do your homework when running your own online portfolio, so too it should be with any investment you do – including those made by a paid financial advisor. Invest in things you know and understand. This may take some time as there are many investment options that may be of specific interest to baby boomers. These investments could be bonds, preferred shares, dividend stocks and ETFs. Such investments are often low-risk and tax-efficient, but this can only be verified with research and understanding how these investments would work for you and your financial goals.
Another investment that can be made is in real estate. With the proper research, you can invest in an income property that can yield steady and likely increasing income so that you will feel comfortable when it comes to your retirement age. If you are considering in investing in real estate as way to prepare for retirement, I would love to talk to you and iron out any questions or concerns you may have. Feel free to contact me here.
Retirement planning doesn’t have to be daunting! With a few deep breaths and the right advice you’ll be able to achieve the retirement you deserve.