If you’re concerned about having enough savings to retire, you’re not alone. According to this article, 78% of Americans are stressed about saving for retirement.
The financial services industry has done a poor job of teaching Americans what it really takes to retire, in terms of savings and financial protection.
When thinking about how much money we’ll actually need to fund our retirement years, here are a few things I want you to consider:
1. Healthcare – Did you know that experts have determined that a couple retiring at age 65 will need $260,000 in order to pay for healthcare costs beyond what’s covered by Medicare? Plus an additional $130,000 to pay for long term care needs. (Long term care is not covered by Medicare.)
2. Inflation – In twenty years, a retiree will need $2422 in order to buy what $1314 buys them today (assuming 3% inflation). Inflation is a stealth tax that erodes your purchasing power over time.
3. Taxes – Do you know what tax rates will be 5, 10 or 20 years from now? Of course you don’t. Nobody does. Then why are we all putting the majority of our retirement savings into tax-deferred plans? So you can lower your taxable income today. But how I want you to think about it is tax-deferred really means tax-delayed. You eventually have to pay taxes on the money you take out of your tax-deferred plans (401K, 403b, IRAs). You’re just putting it off until you retirement.
4. Longevity – Did you know that the fastest growing segment of our society are people turning 100 years of age? We’re living longer these days. Statistically, women outlive men. Which means most women will need more money to fund their retirement years than their male counterparts.
Please understand, I’m not pointing all this out in order to discourage you. I’m simply trying to get you to see that taking action today, so you can create a big-picture plan for your money will bring you financial peace of mind.
I firmly believe that in today’s economy, we need to do everything we can to ensure we’ll be okay financially in retirement. We need to leave no stone unturned in our finances.
We need to deliberately commit to increasing our financial literacy. Especially if you’re a single middle-aged woman.
One way to do that is read financial articles on a daily (or at least weekly) basis. Check out the Chicago Tribune Article: Will You Have Enough?
Beyond that, start creating your financial plan today. If you already have one, is it updated?
Let me know how I can help.