How Much Retirement Money Is Enough for You to Stay Happy and Healthy?
7 minute read
Retirement should be about relaxing and enjoying your well-earned time off. You’ve worked hard and now you should be able to spend the rest of your life in leisure.
Sadly, retirement can bring fear along with it. Fear of not having enough money to live comfortably or to do the things you want to do. How are you supposed to know how much money you’ll need?
The number you need for retirement differs for everyone, but there are a few tips that can help you calculate what costs to expect.
Calculating Retirement Numbers
Calculating how much money you will need for retirement depends on a number of factors. Your health as well as your travel plans and dreams all influence how much money you need to save. Obviously, you will need more money if you plan on travelling the globe.
If you are used to living more extravagantly as opposed to modestly, more finances will be required. No one can know for sure how long thy will live, but you have to assume the best when planning retirement.
While there is no single, magic number or formula that we can follow for retirement planning, there are a few important things to consider. When trying to determine that magical number you will need to retire in comfort, make sure you remember the following:
Your Living Costs
The first thing to calculate is how much you are spending now. Start a budget so you can keep an accurate account of your spending. For calculation purposes, plan on having between 70 and 80 percent of your pre-retirement income after you finish working.
Some may aim for 100 percent because your spending doesn’t really slow down once you retire, so it is better to be safe than sorry.
What Lasts Longer
People often do not take longevity into account when setting retirement goals and funds. Thanks to medical advances people are living longer these days so you need to make sure you’ll have the finances to meet that.
It is not uncommon for a healthy couple to easily reach 95 years of age (for both of them), so make sure your savings are planned to extend that far too.
Interest rates and inflation are the things you cannot control, but you need to be aware of them. You can always use estimates and averages to help calculate how much cash will be generated based on your savings.
It is advised to speak with a financial advisor to get the best information regarding interest rate fluctuations and planning.
The Power of Crunch Time
Many people realize they have not saved enough as they get closer to that retirement age. Do not panic. There is still plenty of time to generate ample savings in the last ten years of your work life.
Compound interest makes this all possible along with watching your spending and cutting back. If you are careful, you can make the most out of the last decade of working and retire right where you wanted to be.
Going Beyond the Finances
Retirement should be a time of resting after years of work. There is nothing wrong with kicking back for a few weeks or years. Even if the finances of retirement are settled, you still need to prepare for what to do and how to spend your time.
Retirement can often bring boredom and depression as a result of change and losing a routine. Now that you’ll have the time, it is important to take care of your physical and mental health too, so you can get the most out of life and retirement.
Relaxing is one thing, becoming stagnant is quite another. You need to keep your blood pumping and your life going, so plan activities. Whereas your day was once filled with responsibilities, appointments, and work, you can now slow down and explore nature.
You have more time to watch TV when you retire, but it is important to make it count. Don’t waste days watching soap operas and game shows; take the time to learn something new and keep your brain healthy.
An aging brain is never too old to learn. When you watch TV, make it an educational show that can teach you something. The more active your brain is the less risk you have for neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.
No longer being at work naturally reduces your social circle and commitments. It is important to stay social and not become isolated when you retire. Make plans with friends whether it is weekly lunches, going to the gym together, or starting a new book club.
What matters is keeping your social calendar active and keeping isolation and depression at bay. Being social creates happiness and happiness promotes physical and mental health.
Focus on Health
Before you may have been too busy to fit in the health check-ups as often as you should have. This needs to change after retirement. The aging body slows down and naturally become more at risk for disease.
By making your health a priority, you can be assured of sticking around to get the most out of those retirement funds you saved. Stay on track of medications, keep active, eat healthy, and make routine appointments with your doctors for necessary screening and checks.
The Bottom Line
Retirement is the time to enjoy life and truly relax after working so hard for so many years. You deserve it. To really enjoy retirement, though, you need to do some planning and saving, because as long as you’re alive, expenses will exist.
To live your best retired life, work out a savings plan early and make sure you plan to do all the things that make you happy. Financial security is important, but your health is of ultimate value.