It is not unusual for women today to experience some fear and anxiety about retirement – many feel that they will not have the finances needed to retire comfortably. If this accurately describes the way that you feel about your circumstances, you may find comfort in the fact that you can take control of your finances and save the money you will need later in life. By cultivating an ongoing money stream, you can continue to earn and save money when you are no longer working full time. Once you learn how to do this, you will be able to generate income for the rest of your life.
Retirement Goals and How to Meet Them
Consider your expectations for retirement. Think about the kind of lifestyle that will make you feel comfortable. If you wish to live in style when you retire and expect to purchase a vacation home, then you may need to pursue a specific degree or specialized training to advance significantly in your career and generate the income needed to meet your expectations.
In order to achieve your goals, you may need to continue working longer than you previously anticipated. Consult a financial advisor regarding how long you might need to work so that you don’t run out of money. The average life expectancy is much longer than it used to be, so you may need to work an additional five to ten years past the typical retirement age in order to provide for your needs and desires.
You might also consider semi-retirement. Countless people work part time for many years after reaching retirement age. This could be a great time to work in a field you’ve always dreamed about; if you retired from a longtime job in public relations, you might want to do something different, like cultivating a hobby (such as cooking) and working at a job that reflects that interest (such as catering).
Additionally, working from home can give you a sense of fulfillment and autonomy. When you work for yourself, you will have more freedom to do what you truly want to do. You might take a previous pastime to the next level and monetize it. If you enjoy finding great deals at auctions and estate sales, you could turn that passion into an online business by selling some of your great finds.
Establish Connections With Other Women
One way to build an incoming money stream is to pool your assets with other women. You could establish a start-up venture with several women now or after retirement. Each of you may have unique talents and resources to offer, and this can result in a successful endeavor for everyone involved. One person might apply her marketing talents to the business while another provides her accounting experience. Everyone should have talents and skills worth contributing.
Be Open to Changing Your Living Arrangements
If you own your own home, you could rent a room to maximize your income. A roommate can share living expenses, and this could dramatically reduce the amount that you spend each month. You might also consider downsizing to a smaller home – if you are newly single or your children are grown, you might benefit from having less space to deal with (as well as lower rent/mortgage payments and utility bills).
Optimize Your Social Security Benefits
Before you make any major decisions regarding your Social Security benefits, be sure to educate yourself on your options. Taking spousal benefits may be a viable strategy for you. Delaying when you begin receiving your benefits will increase your monthly amount. The difference between what you receive monthly at full retirement age (66) and starting Social Security benefits at 70 is over 30%.
Pay Off Your Credit Card Debt
Get your credit card debt paid off as soon as you can. Pay more than the minimum requirement on your credit card bills, and try to pay them in full on a monthly basis. Doing this now will give you more financial freedom later.
Learn the Language of Finance
Speaking with a financial advisor can not only aid you in setting realistic goals for yourself – it can also help you to understand the language of finance. When you become literate in this language, you will be better able to make the most of your finances. Additionally, don’t forget to do your own research online and in books for invaluable information on the topic. Explore the differences between low-risk and high-risk investing, for example – you’ll be better equipped to make financial decisions when you understand the basics.
If you’re daunted at the thought of retiring, don’t be afraid to explore your options. The culture of retirement isn’t what it used to be. You might consider a wealth of strategies to generate income for the rest of your life.