This column was written by Edward Jones for use by local financial advisers. Its appearance in The Boyne City Gazette is sponsored by Ruth Skop at(231) 582-3416.
October 21 through 27 is National Save for Retirement Week, established by Congress to remind Americans of the importance of — you guessed it — saving for retirement. So why not mark the occasion by considering ways in which you can boost your own financial resources for those years in which you’re officially a “retiree”?
If you’re somewhat concerned about your financial prospects during retirement, you’re not alone. Check out a few of the findings from the Employee Benefit Research Institute’s 2012 Retirement Confidence Survey:
In these challenging economic times, it can be challenging to pay your living expenses and still have money left over to save for retirement. But you can take some steps to help your cause. Here are a few to consider:
Control your debts. It’s never easy, but try to reduce your debts as much as possible. The less money you need to devote to debt payments, the more you can add to your investments.
Build an emergency fund. Try to build an emergency fund containing six to 12 months’ worth of living expenses, kept in a liquid account. This fund can help you avoid dipping into your retirement accounts to help pay for unexpected costs, such as a big doctor’s bill, a new furnace or a costly car repairs.
Create a retirement income strategy. It’s important to project your living expenses during retirement. Then, once you have at least a good estimate, you can create a long-term strategy — involving your investments, retirement accounts, Social Security benefits and all other financial resources — to help you achieve the retirement income you will need. To calculate these figures and develop such a strategy, you may want to work with a financial advisor.
National Save for Retirement Week will come and go quickly. But your retirement could last for decades — so do everything you can to prepare yourself.