Four tips to help you retire financially sound
In the early parts of our career, it would be fair to say that very few of us pay any sort of attention to a retirement plan. Or, if we do, we are certainly the exception rather than the rule.
As we get older, things start to change. We start to read about the topic in the news, and reality starts to hit home. In short, unless we take action, our latter years are not going to be as comfortable as we thought they might once have been. In truth, today’s four points aren’t going to transform your financial outlook, but they might be enough to change your mindset and ultimately, help you prepare better for those latter years.
Think about your new financial life
It might be decades away, but try and think about your new financial life now and just what it might entail. By then, hopefully, a lot of debts will have been eradicated (more on that shortly). Not only that, but you will have additional costs, with elderly care regularly in the news, while funeral costs are another (admittedly morbid) topic to consider.
In short, your financial commitments are going to be different, and you need to understand just what your income and expenses are going to be like before making any sort of plan.
Clear debts as a matter of urgency
It sounds simple, but it’s incredible to see how few of us clear our debts. Sure, anything which you are not being charged interest isn’t too bad, but these debts tend to be few and far between.
Your mortgage is naturally going to be the biggest culprit here, and if you can pay it off early, you can save thousands in interest and ultimately put this towards your retirement.
Treat your pension wisely
In truth, a whole dissertation could be penned on your pension. They can be something of a minefield, but treat them well, and the rewards can be significant.
Let’s not forget that there are some huge tax benefits with pensions, while you also need to remember that your company is matching your contribution meaning that they are effectively regarded as “free money”.
Be wary about the ‘save’ principle
First and foremost, there’s nothing wrong with saving. It’s something that can protect your future, but the issue we’re trying to highlight is that it’s sometimes not always the most efficient form of looking after your money.
By all means, save some of your money, but don’t dismiss investing some of it as well. Sure, it arrives with a small element of risk, but the rewards can make your retirement significantly more comfortable if you play your cards right. We’re by no means saying that you enter the stock market as an (un)seasoned trader, but there are certainly a lot of low-risk funds that you can turn to – and many of these don’t require all of the experience that some books might suggest.