In these tough economic times, many people are uncertain what the best financial decisions are for their family. In particular, the older population may not have everything that they need to get them securely through retirement. Sadly, many may have to change the lifestyles they have grown accustomed to, just to make it day to day. However, with some smart decisions and some luck, much of the younger population may be able to avoid these problems in their future.
So, you want to plan for retirement. Well, here are some basic first steps in doing that. This is not meant to be an all-inclusive list. First, go online and get an estimate of what you may earn in retirement with the Social Security Benefits Estimator. This will give you a good starting point from where you can decide to go next.
No one wants to downgrade their lifestyles in retirement. Talk to the people at your bank. They can help you choose savings accounts that can most benefit you and your lifestyle. Each person has a different set of financial goals and those can most easily be met with the help of trained professionals. You may not be able to save a lot to begin with, but a little is always better than nothing.
Also, what are you doing everyday to save money? Do you really need that Starbucks coffee EVERY morning. Yes, I know it’s yummy, but a comfortable retirement is way better. Get up a little earlier in the morning and make your own coffee. By my estimate, you could probably save at least $21-$28 a week by making your own coffee, alone!
Also, be sure you are regularly updating your bank accounts. Many banks offer different types of checking accounts based on age, financial needs and frequency of use. Do you really need automatic renewal of check printing if you don’t write checks? Be sure to ask about 401K and IRA options that can help you meet your retirement goals, as well. Talk to the people at your bank and make sure that you are getting the most out of your bank account. They are there to help you. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. It’s your money and you can make it work for you with some planning.
*I am not a financial advisor.