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Wouldn't it be nice if you could just stop working without having to worry about your finances? This unfortunately is not the reality for most. Many people either start planning for retirement too late in the game, and if they did save, they are unsure about how much they can live on from their savings and other retirement income.
This is why planning and investing wisely is so important at every stage of your life. All of us will face retirement whether we plan for it or not. It only makes sense that you have a plan in place so that you are not at retirement wondering what your financial future will be like.
When Should Retirement Planning Start
Ideally you should start planning for your retirement when you start working in your twenty's, but the reality is that when you are or were in your twenty's this is the last thing on your mind. Sadly, the older you get the more difficult it becomes to start planning for retirement. Marriage, children, new home, debt, and other factors make it difficult to start setting money aside for retirement. This is especially true if you have never developed a savings pattern.
This however does not mean that if you waited to start planning for retirement you are doomed. It just means that you will have to develop discipline to catch up in your savings. A financial plan can do this for you, it's never too late to start.
Investing for Retirement
Whether you have assets saved up for retirement or are starting to save for retirement, it is important to invest your money wisely. Many people open retirement accounts or participate in 401K, 403b accounts or pension plans without the proper guidance. This is a terrible thing. Many things can go wrong without the proper monitoring of your these accounts. By the time you are close to retirement or are retiring, it's too late to fix what may have gone wrong along the way.
One of the big mistakes people make when it comes to their retirement accounts is that they have multiple accounts with conflicting investment strategies. Many times these accounts can be easily consolidated or rolled into an IRA where you can gain greater flexibility and choices. Consolidating your accounts can also make it easier to track you investments, asset allocation, and beneficiary information.
When it comes to selecting the investments in your accounts, it is important to consider you risk tolerance, your age, current savings and what you plan to do during retirement. All of these factors will play a vital role in your investment strategy and asset allocation plan.
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