A recent study in Money Magazine found that “making better decisions can dramatically boost your income in retirement.” The decisions that affect your income during retirement are not really the nitty-gritty investment choices that you might expect—whether or not you should by a certain stock, for example. Instead, the questions are more broad, even personal.
The questions include:
Are you an investor or saver?
Identifying your natural inclination is a large part of planning for your retirement. If you are an investor, it’s important for you to know that, in many cases, saving can be more important than investing. Although you should be investing, you can by no means count on skyscraper-high returns. Increasing the amount you save annually may have a larger impact on your retirement income than more aggressive investing.
How much help do you need?
This is a valuable, personal question to consider. You may need to think about how comfortable you are with managing part or all of your wealth. If you need to save money, you may have to learn more about wealth management tools in order to do it yourself. Or, if you value the peace of mind that comes with having others manage your wealth, you need to asses how effectively your advisors are working for you as well as whether or not your current financial plans are creating regrets for you.
How much should you take out during retirement?
The typical strategy when withdrawing from retirement accounts involves starting at 4% and adjusting for inflation. Using this strategy, there is an estimated 80% chance that your savings will last you three decades. However, this blanket approach may not be right for you. By re-estimating your withdrawals each year, you can have a better idea of where you are in retirement—which also gives you a better idea of how you can enjoy your wealth and the kind of inheritance that you can leave behind.
When you’ve asked yourself the above questions, you should also think about your wealth beyond the dollars and cents of it. How will your wealth, now and in retirement, affect your family and the causes you care about deeply? Planning not only to secure your wealth in retirement and but also to use your wealth to enjoy life and positively impact others is the key to Wealth With No Regrets.