When it comes to retirement planning, one of the most important things you can do is to make sure you’re creating a portfolio that will provide you with lifetime income. To do this, here are a few retirement pitfalls to avoid:
1. Waiting Too Long to Save. With average life expectancies increasing, it’s becoming more and more difficult to create a nest egg that will provide you with lifetime income. It might seem simple, but it’s worth repeating: the earlier you start saving, the more likely you are to have income that lasts as long as you do.
2. Not Taking Advantage of “Free Money”. If your company offers a 401(k) or an employer-sponsored plan, consider contributing to it. Think of any match your employer makes as “free money.”
3. Underestimating Medical Expenses. According to a recent estimate by Fidelity, a 65-year-old couple retiring this year will need an estimated $245,000 to cover medical expenses throughout retirement, up from $220,000 last year. That’s why it is so important to make savvy financial decisions and start planning for retirement early so you’re prepared for not only any medical expenses, but are also able to enjoy retirement.
4. Lack of Balance in Your Portfolio. While a 401(k) is a great start to a retirement portfolio, it likely won’t be enough for retirement and will need to be supplemented by another product. For example, a Fixed Indexed Annuity can provide much-needed balance to your portfolio and can offer guaranteed lifetime income.
5. Relying on Social Security Only. It’s no secret that Americans are questioning the future of Social Security. It’s important to know that Social Security might not be enough to get you through retirement comfortably, and to keep in mind the importance of a balanced portfolio supplemented with other retirement products.
6. Retiring Too Early. While it might be tempting to retire early and take advantage of traveling, remember that you’ll need your money to last as long as you do, so it might be worth waiting a few years.