If you are retiring soon, there is a good chance you have a lot of uncertainty at this time. A big reason for this is the fact that there is a pandemic going on. The health crisis has overwhelmed the healthcare industry to the point that stay-at-home orders were handed down. It was also to help lower down the infection rate.
Because of this, people had to spend weeks and months inside their homes. Businesses and industries suffered to the point of closure. Employees were let go and suddenly, a lot of people were trying to make ends meet. Their paychecks drastically reduced or for some, it completely stopped. This is why the application for unemployment benefits was at an all-time high in the past few months.
With this bleak financial picture, retiring soon could start to become a scary decision. You are suddenly thrust into an economy trying to open up again versus keeping it scaled down for the health of the people. There is a good chance that if you are nearing retirement, you are at the home stretch of building up your nest egg.
CNBC eve shares that even before the pandemic, most Americans are not saving enough to let them retire at 65 years old. There are a lot of factors to consider but with the current economic situation resulting from the health crisis, it is safe to say that it is a lot harder to save for retirement. If you are just a few years out before retiring at this time, here are a few things to look into. These can help you understand and assess your current situation.
Evaluate your retirement goals
If you are retiring soon, you need to revisit your retirement goals. In the very beginning, you have a marker you aim for to know you are nearing your retirement stage. It can be a specific amount you need to save up, a certain achievement in the workplace, or even a life event you are just waiting to happen to know if retirement is near.
One of the biggest components in your decision to retire is the amount you have saved up for your golden years. Once you retire, you no longer have to worry about clocking in and out for work. But it also means that you lose that regular paycheck you have gotten used to at work. You might argue that you have Social Security benefits but that is no the same.
Yes, you will get that regular check coming in but it will not be as much as what you were getting from work. The Social Security Administration also shares that it is best to wait until your full retirement age to enjoy the highest benefits you can receive. It means you have to take this into account when putting your plans for your retirement savings.
Retiring soon also means checking up on your plans. At a time when the pandemic is sill out there, you might need to make a few changes to your plans. For starters, you might have planned for a lot of traveling once you retire. Though that is still feasible, traveling is not advisable when there is a health crisis of this magnitude.
Your plans might include selling you a big house and transferring to a small one since you are an empty nester. It is important to take note that this pandemic has introduced a shift in the way people purchase homes. As more and more people find the ease and comfort of working at home, they could begin to forego expensive housing arrangements near their place of work. You might want to look at the properties you were looking at previously to check if prices have changed.
Check your investments
If you are retiring soon with the pandemic still out there, it is safe to assume that you are worried about your investments. With all the businesses and industries affected by the health crisis, investments could have dipped which would worry a lot of people. But one characteristic of most investments especially stocks is that it is resilient.
There have been numerous economic challenges in the country and even the world has faced in the past. The last one was the 2008 Recession when the housing bubble collapsed. This led to Americans losing their homes as well as their jobs. As a result, it also battered the stock market and saw plummeting numbers. But as always, it also picks back up over time.
Before you throw in the towel and retire from work, it is a good idea to check your investment portfolio. They might not be at a level you need them to be to retire but do not worry. The market will eventually pick back up again. If you are unsure, this might be a good time to invest in a finance professional to help you look at your investment options.
Assess your health if you are retiring soon
More than your financial ability to retire, you also need to focus on your health when you are nearing your golden years. This should be a top priority as well during this time. The COVID19 virus has affected many senior members of society. One of the reasons for this is the fact that as you age, your body tends to weaken over time.
There is nothing you can do you stop this but you can slow it down. If you still have a few years before retirement, you can make a conscious effort to live a healthier lifestyle. This includes watching and being careful with your food intake as well as getting a decent amount of exercise in your daily routine. These can help you get started on the right track.
This will help you in your retirement plans because the healthier you are heading into retirement, the more you can enjoy your golden years. For starters, you have the energy and vigor to go through and accomplish your retirement plans. The healthier you are, the more you can save from health-related costs as well. This can also give you that peace of mind knowing you are putting in the work to be a lot safer from the virus.
Back up plan
As with anything in life, you always need a back-up plan. If you are retiring soon, you need to make sure these plans are still doable especially with the health crisis out there. Having a contingency plan should cover several areas in your retirement plans. It needs to span over your retirement funds, activities, and even health in advanced years.
When it comes to your finances, you need to make sure that you have a steady source of funds even in retirement. More than your social security checks, do you plan to set up a small business to get by? This could be a good way not only to earn extra money but to keep busy in retirement as well. Eating healthy and maintaining a small garden where you can grow fruits and vegetables can give you a decent amount of exercise while ensuring you eat a healthy meal every day.
Retiring soon at a time when there is a health crisis requires you to put in extra work in making sure your retirement goes on smoothly. It does not mean you try and eliminate all possible problems but being proactive in dealing with retirement problems can give you a better chance of enjoying your golden years to the fullest.