The Retirement Checklist: 8 Things To Do So You Can Enjoy Your Later Years

By on November 29, 2016
The Retirement Checklist: 8 Things To Do So You Can Enjoy Your Later Years

After years of working at least 9-5, five days a week – if not more, depending on your role – retirement is on the horizon. Have you decided what you are going to do with all that free time? If you haven’t you’re probably at least thinking about it. Perhaps, you will spend more time in the garden tending to your plants, or you will take some time to travel the world and relax on a sun-drenched beach.

However, before you decide how to spend your time, there are a few things you need to do first, so that you can really enjoy your later years:

  1. Work out your retirement income

You can work out your income by getting a State Pension Statement and/or a defined benefit pension as well as adding up the savings and investments that you could use, and tracing any lost pensions.

  1. Delay your retirement by a few years

You no longer have to retire when you reach a certain age – so if you love your job and are still fit enough to work – why stop? Plus, did you know that delaying your retirement by just a few years could lead to a significantly bigger retirement income? It lets your pension fund gain more value, it results in a higher state pension and if you are buying an annuity it can also mean you obtain a better rate.  

  1. Decide when to start taking your pension

Work out when you want to start taking your pension – you don’t have to have stopped working but you must be over 55 and the above may determine this decision.

  1. Budget for changes in your spending

You will have spent most of your life budgeting your money, but leaving work is going to come with some big changes to your lifestyle. While spending may go down in some areas, it could go up in others – and of course your monthly income will be different. Think about what changes you may need to make to ensure you are comfortable in your later years.

  1. Find ways to boost your pension

If your pension isn’t going to be as much as you were expecting, you may want to find a way to boost it. One way to do this is by paying more into it, which will increase the amount you retire on.

  1. Clear your debts

You want to enter into retirement with as little debt as possible. Your income is likely to go down so any fixed repayments will seem to take a bigger chunk from it. First, add up how much you owe, then check the interest rate you are paying on each one – if you can pay off the debt that charges the highest interest rate first.

  1. Sell your home

Do you really need a four bedroomed house now the kids have moved out and set up their own home? Not really. There is a lot of money tied up in those bricks and if you sell it, you could add to your pension pot, pay off your debts, have money to enjoy yourself now you aren’t at work and so much more. If you are now nodding in agreement and typing into Google ‘sell my house quickly’ – did you know if you go through a cash buyer rather than an estate agent it could be sold within just seven days? Perfect if retirement has crept up on you and you aren’t prepared for it!    

  1. Get some advice

Some decisions you make will shape your income for the rest of your life and you may want to ask for some financial advice. So, before you do any of the above make sure you speak to the experts so you fully understand your choices.

 

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The Retirement Checklist: 8 Things To Do So You Can Enjoy Your Later Years