You're counting down the days to retirement, but in those precious final months there is much to consider. Many people work their whole lives looking forward to retirement, but don't have any actual idea what they will do once they get there. Now is your chance to arm yourself with the information you need to create a solid financial retirement plan that will serve you for the rest of your life. Follow these three steps to get started:
Set new goals. Just because you sold your practice and freed up your time doesn't mean you're exempt from goal setting. Now is the time to set some simple goals for yourself in retirement. First and foremost, you should include a budgeting goal that will leave you enough money to live comfortably while accounting for any unexpected costs. However, you should also set goals for your money to keep working for you through investments and other income streams. A financial retirement plan that includes passive income is the best way to take advantage of your retirement years.
Budget your time. In retirement, time may be your most valuable resource. You now have the ability to travel, golf or take up other hobbies. Since you've already put your financial retirement plan together, you can look at how much your time will cost you whenever you hit the links or take off for a week on the lake. This will tell you how often you can afford to make these expenditures without running out of money in a few years.
Consult with a tax specialist. Before you finalize your financial retirement plan, meet with an accountant or tax specialist to determine how much your tax obligations will change over the coming years. With the addition of Social Security income and possible changes to your living situation, you need to be prepared for ups and downs in your taxes for the first couple years until you settle into a stable retirement.
Hopefully by the time you've completed each of these steps you will have a complete financial retirement plan that accounts for all of the variables in your life during this transition period. You should always make sure that you are working with a qualified specialist who can help you estimate your needs for emergency savings, changes in your monthly expenditures, and tax adjustments. All of these will ultimately affect your month-to-month budget over the rest of your life. If you start by setting clear goals for yourself going into retirement, you can actually increase your spending a little bit each year without running short on funds.