How to Make Your Retirement Plans a Reality

Posted on: August 28, 2023

Note: This blog was updated July 2, 2020.

You’ve got a vision for how you want to spend your retirement years. And even though times are changing, you can still take steps to ensure your resources can deliver on that vision by following these five steps.

1. Plan Ahead For Retirement

The best plan is the one you make before you need it. So plan ahead — keeping in mind that changes in your health can transform your entire financial picture if you’re not prepared for them.

Where do you see yourself living out your retirement – in your current home? In a smaller, easier-to-manage place? At a retirement community? Think about where you want to be, and consider some of the following:

  • Your health and your spouse’s health
  • Proximity to amenities, family, and friends
  • Geographic climate and weather
  • Size and required maintenance of the home
  • Timing – when will you retire and/or move?

Retired couple planting flowers with grandsonMany people want to live at home for as long as possible, and that’s certainly an option – but it might not be as simple as you think. For one, you may need to hire extra help with home maintenance and health care needs. And if your health needs change in the future, will you still be able to get the care you need at your home?

Many people are now thinking about a retirement community in light of the pandemic. There are pros and cons to both staying at home during a pandemic and moving to a retirement community. At a community like Otterbein, you would have access to things like meal deliveries, socially-distant community activities, nearby health care, and more.

2. Do The Math For A Peaceful Retirement

According to the nonprofit Employee Benefit Research Institute, people who calculate the costs of their retirement future feel more confident they can afford the comfortable lifestyle they want compared to those who haven’t added up the costs. It pays to check the numbers! 

Check with a trusted financial adviser to be sure you’re on track for your retirement and understand any rules and regulations related to IRAs, Medicare, and so one. And remember that your investment strategy is usually quite different as you age compared to when you started. 

If selling your home would be a key part of your financial plan, consult with an expert about the current housing market, and keep in mind that it may change as the pandemic plays out. 

Finally, a last word on Medicare and Medicaid: Don’t assume they’ll pay for everything you need. Know what’s eligible to be paid with via these sources of funding and what’s not as you plan for retirement. 

Need help? Download our free cost comparison guide.

3. Retirement Planning Is Different For Everyone

Retired couple planning vacation You’ve probably heard all sorts of numbers thrown around when it comes to how much you need to fund your retirement lifestyle.

The truth is, there’s no replacement for sitting down and running the numbers for your specific situation, including your age, income, assets, the kind of lifestyle you want, and other factors.

For example, remaining in your current home and making some renovations will be a different cost than selling your home and moving to Florida. And if you’re planning to move to a retirement community, those costs can vary widely depending on amenities, services, home options, location, and more.

One mistake that many people make is thinking of their current lifestyle as the “free” option. In reality, there are still costs – such as paying for rent or mortgage, utilities, landscaping, and other services. 

4. Prepare To Be Happily Surprised While Retirement Planning

When you crunch the numbers and compare the costs of living at a retirement community to your current costs of maintaining a home, you may be surprised to learn just how affordable it can be.

That’s because, as we mentioned above, you might not realize how much you’re already paying in your current Happy retired couple sits outsideresidence. Factor in mortgage or rent, home maintenance, transportation, groceries, utilities, and more, and you might find that living at a retirement community is quite comparable to what you already pay. 

Download our free cost comparison guide to see the difference between what you’re already paying and what you could pay at a retirement community. 

5. Take The Guesswork Out Of Your Retirement Planning

Prepare today to make your retirement dreams a reality. 

Contact Otterbein SeniorLife today, and we’ll help you put the numbers together so you can see exactly where you stand. While we’re meeting, we can create your personal financial forecast to help you project how you can fund your preferred retirement lifestyle.

Develop Your Retirement Plan Sooner Rather Than Later

Sooner is better than later when it comes to developing your retirement living plans. And getting good information while you’re considering your choices can help you in your search for a secure, fulfilling future.

Download our free cost comparison guide to learn more about retirement community costs and get help planning for retirement – your way. 

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