How far away are your "golden years?"

Many of us have a countdown to retirement, but our “golden years” could be further away than we think. A recent study shows 79% of United States workers expect to keep working into retirement.

Dale McCarty from Retirement Designers Financial Group shared some tips to help working folks one day leave the labor force.

Q: WHY DO RETIREES EXPECT TO KEEP WORKING?
• More often than not, retirees plan to work to supplement their income or to fill up some time in their day.
• But interestingly enough, nearly half of those retirees are working not because they need to, but because they want to!

Q: WHAT ARE THE PERKS TO WORKING IN OUR “GOLDEN YEARS?”

Workplace Benefits
• The average 65 year old retired couple can expect to pay over $320,000 in healthcare over the course of their retirement.
• If you can find a part-time job that offers healthcare benefits. You could save money on health care costs, not to mention you could still be contributing to your 401(k).
• Some employers also offer employee discounts on products and services, which can help you save some extra cash.

Delaying Social Security
• By working in your retirement you could potentially delay filing for Social Security.
• You can file as early as age 62, but you get a smaller monthly benefit. If you delay filing, your Social Security continues to grow 8% every year until age 70.

Good for Your Health
• Studies have shown that working in retirement could improve your health.
• Working keeps your mind active and provides social opportunities.
• There is also a satisfaction that comes from doing a job that is fulfilling to you.

Q: WHAT CAN WE DO NOW IF WE DON’T WANT TO WORK LATER IN LIFE?

Create a Plan
• If you don’t want to work in retirement, you have to plan like you won’t.
• Start thinking about what you want to do, from trips to daily expenses, and how much that is going to cost you. I have a retirement calculator on my website, retirementdesignersfg.com, that can help you get started.
• To quickly check if you are on track, I have 4 milestones:
o The first milestone is at age 30, you should have your annual salary saved in retirement account, like a 401(k).
o By age 35, you should have double your annual salary saved.
o The milestones keep building on each other - You should have eight times your salary by age 60.
o Then your ultimate goal is ten times your annual salary by age 67.

Cut Down Your Debt
• The average credit card debt per household was over $8,000 in 2016.
• You don’t want to spend your retirement money on debt. That’s not what it’s there for!
• Start chipping away at your debt by paying at least the minimum balance on your loans or credit cards. Then take any extra money you have and put it toward the one with the lowest balance.
• Once your lowest balance is paid off, move to the next lowest balance until you have eliminated all of your debt.

Talk with a Professional
• If you don’t picture yourself working in retirement you need to create a plan that will last and that’s where a financial professional could help.
• People can be reluctant to go to a professional because they think that they are in such bad shape no one can help them.
• That’s not true! A professional can create a plan to help you grow your money and give you the confidence to retire.
• Retirement is too important to not ask for help.