For better or for worse, these days it seems like everyone has advice about retirement. With so much (mis)information out there, it’s hard to know what to believe anymore. Let’s debunk some common myths surrounding the subject of retirement.
Myth #1: Your retirement age is set in stone.
Age is often used as the primary point of reference when it comes to determining when someone will retire. Depending on the year you were born, the age your Social Security becomes fully available to you can vary, but the average age of retirement in the US is 63. This often means that if you do retire “early,” you will not have total access to your Social Security payout, which often accounts for approximately 90% of retirement income. This creates significant obstacles for individuals that focus primarily on the age they will retire at, rather than the life stage they will be most equipped to leave the workforce. Your age of retirement fluctuates, with factors like health, income and lifestyle all playing a major role in your readiness. Like most other things in life, your retirement age will be personal to you and it’s important to understand what you will need in order to thrive throughout retirement.
Myth #2: You will work through your retirement.
Staying engaged and active is important at every stage of life, but even more so during retirement. Without the structured interactions that come with work, it’s easy to become isolated and disconnected. Work also provides regular, reliable income, which can make working through retirement, even part-time, very appealing. While working in some capacity during retirement can be a very good thing, it is not a guarantee. In reality, things like health and time spent out of the field can seriously impair your ability to work. You may not get the kind of job, pay or flexibility you’ve come to enjoy or expect prior to retiring. What this ultimately means is that the amount and frequency of income you may be counting on having post-retirement may not be possible, creating the potential for significant financial hardship.
Myth #3: When I’m retired, I will need less income overall.
Life is expensive. Retirement doesn’t change this. While it’s true that certain costs decrease, it’s important to realize that others significantly increase. For example, while it’s true you may no longer spend the same amount on transportation, work clothes, business lunches and potentially even housing, other expenses such as medical costs can drastically rise. When budgeting for retirement, think of it less as money saved and more as money reallocated. That will give you a much more realistic picture of how much money you will need to thrive during retirement.
Myth #4: I can manage my retirement finances all on my own.
This myth may be the most damaging of all. While you may have been an expert in your line of work, managing your finances through retirement can be very confusing. Working closely with a financial professional can help you make more informed decisions that best suit your particular needs and desires. It’s especially helpful to have a reliable, neutral party present throughout the entire decision-making process, which can often be very stressful and emotional. The relationship you develop with your financial manager is a long lasting one based on trust, so it’s important to find the right match for you.
The retirement planning experts at Ganim Financial have the experience and knowledge to create a successful retirement plan for you. We provide wealth management services, and we are proud of our thorough and transparent process, working closely with our clients to create the best possible plan. Contact us today!