How to be retirement ready: Here is a checklist to determine your readiness
Retiring is not something you do in a hurry. It takes careful planning to ascertain your retirement readiness. There are complex issues to weigh, including pension and health benefits, income and expenses, longevity expectations and the emotional effects of walking away from your professional career.
Retirement is a phase where you end your professional career and live life with ease during old age. It is often tricky to decide when is the right time to retire? Do you want to dismiss yourself early and have up to 30 years or more like a retired person or do you continue doing what you love for as long as possible? Well, retiring is not something you do in a hurry. It takes careful planning to ascertain your retirement readiness. There are complex issues to weigh, including pension and health benefits, income and expenses, longevity expectations and the emotional effects of walking away from your professional career.
Certified Financial Planner, Poonam Rungta, told Zee Business Online, ''Retirement is not an easy decision to make, one should determine all the prospects of life before taking a step. He/she should have enough financial support, willingness to discontinue the work, mental and physical aid for rest of the life etc. Make your investments provide you with a regular income. It is important to understand that fixed deposits (FD) don't beat inflation, so there should be other asset class to serve you. The corpus should not be built on your current lifestyle. It is because, after a few years, the value of your expenses may will likely to change.''
It is not just on the financial front, retirement should have a cushioning that can surround you until your last breath. However, it’s a very personal decision. But there are some concrete considerations or a checklist that can help you determine your readiness for retirement:
1. Check if you can afford to retire:
Well, this is the most important thing to be checked before making a decision to retire. An estimation of your retirement income from all sources and estimation of your expenses for the rest of your life would be required to make. Calculate how much you’ll need to withdraw from savings to help both estimations meet. Also, note that health care expenses will rise as you get older, inflation constantly plunges and how will you manage the rest of the life with finances you have.
2. Know about pension and social security benefits:
You need to know about your pension and social security benefits before retirement. There is a number of retirement plans and schemes with both government and private entities. If you are still working and young, there are various schemes, where you can start investing like National Pension Scheme (NPS), LIC Jeevan Nidhi Plan and some other plans of private corporations. Also calculate your pension fund, provident fund and maturities of various other investment plans you have.
3. Health care costs after retirement:
One needs to keep in mind that the health cost will increase with your age, you should have ample health benefits or insurance plans for yourself. If you are still young, go and opt one as soon as possible. ''A healthy body state is the most important thing that a person requires for a peaceful living. A retiring person needs to ascertain the cost that he/she might require to live post-retirement. For younger or working class people, he/she should have a regular medical checkups and buying health insurance at an early stage will make you pay less premium and allow tax deductions of up to Rs 25,000 under Section 80D for medical insurance (under 60 years of age,'' Rungta explained.
4. Ready for post-retirement effects:
Even if they can afford to retire, many people continue to work beyond the typical retirement age, because they love what they do. You need to look at your feelings to make sure you are emotionally ready to walk away from your passion. You also might need to keep yourself challenged and engaged after you say goodbye to your career.
5. Find your happy spot for retirement:
Delaying retirement, even by just a few years improves your retirement finances. Your pension may be higher and the added paychecks and tax-deferred retirement plan contributions can continue to build up your savings balance for the post-retirement life. But the final decision is not just a financial one, so it is important to do your homework, run the numbers, get in touch with your emotions to find the ideal retirement age.