Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google+ Share on Reddit Share on Pinterest Share on Linkedin Share on Tumblr Retirement Plan Five Steps to a Safe Future: Retirement is a tricky thing, one day you feel good about it considering the fact that you will be relaxing, finally, and the other day you feel worried about your finances. But people who plan for their retirement beforehand may have little or nothing to worry about. Retirement planning is a continuous process, and you would have to try to foresee things, of course, no one can predict everything but to try to be close enough can do some benefit. Retirement planning is not a hard science and following these few steps you may take now for a safe and sound future. Know What You Want We all want so much that we confuse ourselves among so many things. Make up the list of the things you think must be in your lifestyle after your retirement. Consider everything that may even seem small to you so that you would be prepared for it. How much money would you be need to retire and live comfortably? Research says that you need to replace 70-90 percent of your pre-retirement income, so you can then estimate your target based on your current income. This of course is a rough estimate but if you keep this in mind you will be able to be on track. Keeping factors such as vacation habits, medical expenses, house rent (if you don’t own a house at the time you retire) will have a strong impact on how much you need to save. If you are able to save a good amount of money for retirement, then you will also have options of living the kind of life you want; without any barriers and constraints, add to the leisure of golden retirement period and you might also have enough to leave something for your next generation. Don’t be scared to aim high! Cash Flow Planning Present value is very important for your retirement planning. It is the amount of money you need in your account today to plan and save for your future. Many people work with their financial advisors or their retirement planners and make individual retirement accounts to plan for their retirement. There are two types of savings: – Planning before retirement – Planning after retirement Planning Before Retirement Budgeting It is almost impossible to start any financial planning without budgeting. Your budget is very essential part to your cash flow planning for both before and during retirement. It is an important analysis that one should necessarily do. Figuring out your cash flow means knowing from where your cash is coming and where is it going. Figuring out this will help you in identifying your current financial status which will let you predict your future financial state and let you have a financial plan for now. Invest or Save It is important to save from as early as possible, and compound interest can help you with that. But it’s absolutely okay if you start late as well. The key to expecting success is having a positive outlook and understanding that being late is better than never starting! If you are over 55 years of age, the government offers savings on catch –up contributions so you can get help to save a little bit more. But sometimes, chances are that savings account and employee pensions are not enough to each your goals. That’s when you explore investment products. It is always good to have an investment on your side if you are planning to upgrade your living standard and staying financially sound for long. There are many different ways to save your money, but IRA accounts have proven to be the best. If you do not know about it yet, then search the mighty internet for guidance. Create a diversified portfolio of savings accounts, investments, stocks, bonds, property, and insurance which can all contribute to benefit you. Make Strategies To Maximize Your Social Security Income Social security is likely to remain an important part of your retirement plan and it is important to maximize this benefit. To maximize the benefits of social security, you need to sit with your retirement planner and make effective strategies for collecting social security. The age at which you decide to withdraw funds will also have an impact on your lifetime savings. You can start collecting from the age of 62, but the more you wait, the more you will be paid. If you wait till 70 years of age, your payment will increase up to 77%. Another important thing that you should be aware of is, if you’re eligible for more than just your own retirement benefits! If you are married, divorced, or widowed you might also be eligible to claim “spousal” or even “survivor” benefits. But these are based on your records with your spouse, whether they are dead or alive. Remember not to file for two or more types of benefits at once. Chances are you will lose one of them if you file for both simultaneously. Make strategies to claim the smaller one first, and later on the larger one. Social security uses the best 35 years of your working life to calculate your monthly earnings. If you have worked less than 35 years, you should keep working, this will also help you to bump some of your lower earning years. Executive Plan everything out, but execute it in even better manner. What most people do is, they plan so much, use their time energy but fails to implement the plan and all the hard work goes down the drain. Check And Repeat Planning makes you execute things, but it does not mean that your work is done here. Learn to check on the things you have planned and improvise if necessary, improvising a little too much cannot be right, but essential changes must be done. Author Bio: Sarah Smith has been a personal finance author for the last five years. She is also, an independent and very passionate finance and investment advisor. She regularly posts at PersonalIncome.org.