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Retirement Tips

Retirement: The Best of Times (or the Worst?)

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”

-Benjamin Franklin

Retirement can be a stressful process if there isn’t a strategic plan in place—preparation is the determinant factor in whether your retirement years are some of the best or some of the worst. Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to help navigate retirement successfully. Before you start day dreaming of impromptu trips to the Caribbean and European gateways, find below a few things to square away as retirement approaches.

Monthly Budget

One of the biggest shocks in retirement is taking a pay cut from your working days salary and having to adjust to living more conservatively. However, you can soften the blow by mentally preparing for the change. First, start by documenting your current monthly expenses and then remove all of the work-related costs (commute costs, work attire, lunches/happy hours) followed by all the luxuries you can personally do away with and begin to slim down your list of expenses.


If you have any outstanding debts, pay them off while you’re still employed, and make sure to account for upcoming bills that are larger than usual. The goal is to have the least amount of outstanding debt possible as your leisure days draw near.

Source of Income

There are many combinations possible for how you may be covering your retirement years financially. Whether it be a Roth IRA, 401K, Social Security or other mediums, you should begin to figure out how much of each will contribute to your yearly retirement income and how exactly you plan to allocate these funds.

Insurance Coverage

Health coverage is usually a benefit provided by employers, but once the job is gone, so are the benefits. Investigate health care rates in your state and identify the coverage that best suits your needs. If you are planning on relying solely on Medicare, figure out if your current medications (if any) are covered and what kind of deductibles you can expect.

Living Arrangements

Do you want to age in place? Are you more interested in an active adult community? Are RVs more your thing? Once you decide, research the friendliest cities for seniors, as well as the best states for senior housing. Some things to consider, should you choose to downsize, are the amenities that are most important to you. Some amenities to consider include proximity to local hospitals, planned activities, outdoor spaces and meal services.

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