Briefcase Study

Briefcase Study: Transition into Retirement

In Articles, Briefcase Study, Estate Planning, Income Planning, Investment Management, Long Term Care, October 2017, Retirement Thinking, Social Security, Tax Planning by Adam Cufr

A number of couples that we work with recently found themselves working through a change in their life: the transition into retirement. When a long career ends, what steps might we take to best prepare for that big day? Here’s a helpful list.

As you read through this, please remember that no transition is perfect; obstacles and challenges can appear at any time. The key is to expect it and plan accordingly. Please let us know if we can be helpful to you in any area.

  1. Reduce or eliminate debt.
  2. Create an emergency fund cash reserve (six months of expenses is a good place to start).
  3. Apply for any financing, such as a home equity line of credit, before you retire – even if you don’t use it, you will have it readily available should you need it.
  4. Determine the best day to retire to maximize your employer benefits before you retire.
  5. Control your spending and identify additional expenditures you will have once you retire, such as travel, etc.
  6. Decide on the lifestyle you plan to have in retirement.
  7. Evaluate your pension plan payment options, lump sum, annuity options, etc.
  8. Calculate how long your money will last – a financial advisor can help you with this.
  9. Inform your insurance agent that you will no longer be working (your auto insurance premium could possibly be reduced).
  10. Document any email addresses and contact information, events stored in your calendar, and special websites in your bookmarks.
  11. Decide if you should rollover your 401(K) or 403(B) to an IRA.
  12. Review your Social Security statement to ensure your reported income is accurate.
  13. Determine when you should apply for Social Security Benefits.
  14. Understand what your health care coverage and cost will be after you retire.
  15. Determine when to apply for Medicare.
  16. Become aware of the Required Minimum Distribution, mandatory withdrawals from IRA accounts, once you turn 70-1/2 years of age.
  17. Determine if you will need an income stream beyond your pension, Social Security benefits, and savings.
  18. Update your will and estate planning – powers of attorney, beneficiaries on retirement accounts, etc.
  19. Consider your need for Long Term Care.
  20. Enjoy the benefits of your hard work!