2 Retirement Goals Financial Planners Say They’re Adopting ASAP

NOTo No matter your age, it’s never too early to start planning for retirement. But before you start planning, it’s essential to identify your retirement Goals, which, according to experts, are essentially the desired outcomes for your retirement life. It is important to set these goals before defining your retirement plan, because they are precisely what will inform the parameters of this plan, which will finance your life after work.

So how do you set those retirement goals? According to financial planners, it’s best to take a two-pronged approach: figure out what your ideal retirement looks like (aka your vision of retirement) as well as when you’d like to retire. With these two retirement goals set, you can then start working backwards to create a plan to help you get there.

Retirement goal 1: Determine your vision

“The first key element, before even looking at the money or the numbers, is vision,” says Anthony Delauney, CFP, author of Roadmap for a retirement without regrets. To help you define your vision of retirement, Delauney suggests asking yourself a few questions:

  • what do you really do you want your retirement to look like you?
  • How do you imagine it unfolding?
  • How do you see your calendar? Your day? Your years?
  • What activities or hobbies would you like to be able to practice?

When imagining your retirement vision, Delauney says to also keep the stakeholders in your life in mind. For example, if you have a life partner, your vision should probably be shared. Also consider how close (or not) you want to be to friends and family, as this answer will help you know where you plan to live in retirement. Once you know what your vision is, Delauney recommends putting it down on paper and sharing it with whoever it could impact.

Retirement goal 2: Decide when you want to retire

The second part of this approach is to determine the age at which you wish to retire or become optional work, which Akeiva M. Ellis, CFPfounder of personal finance site The Bemused, says this means you don’t have to work if you don’t want to, financially speaking.

“Your time horizon is definitely an important part of the picture,” says Ellis. “We can’t just start saving money aimlessly.” Determining the “when” of retirement “informs the kinds of investments you might need so your money can grow fast enough to reach your goal,” she adds.

“It’s really hard to know where or how much to save if there’s no goal set for when someone wants to be able to retire.” —Anthony Delauney, CFP

Without setting a goal for when you’d like to retire, you don’t give yourself a timeline to work on, which is crucial in the planning process. “It’s really hard for individuals to know where to save or how much to save if they don’t really have a specific goal for when they want to be able to retire,” says Delauney.

When you figure out that retirement goal yourself, it makes the planning process easier because you can start figuring out how much you’ll need to save down the road. “There are people who say, ‘You know what, my idea of ​​retirement is making work optional, and I want to do it as soon as possible,'” Ellis says, adding that this goal would make their retirement plan very different from that of someone looking to retire at a specific age.

While it can and should be your prerogative to set your retirement age goal when it feels good to you, Ellis advises “to be realistic and consider your circumstances.” For example, she says, if you have a chronic condition that you know may not allow you to work until your ideal retirement age, you may benefit from having your savings plans or even a modification of your retirement vision objective to adapt it to your reality.

And while it’s never too early to start setting retirement goals that inform the planning process, Ellis also wants people to know it’s never too early. late Do the same thing. “It’s a very personal matter. And each of us has to come to the ‘what’ and ‘when’ at our own pace.”

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