Happy New Year!

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As I look back on 2013, there is a lot to be thankful for.  Good health of my family, with some minor allergy exceptions.  Rewarding work for both myself and my wife.  And some good memories to bring in the New Year.

As we all say goodbye to 2013, we look forward to 2014 and the excitement of a new year.  In some ways, I look at New Year’s resolutions with minor amusement. I’m more of the mindset of seeing a need for a change as something that can be acted upon regardless of a calendar.  If I’m feeling like I need a change in my exercise routine, I don’t tend to wait until the beginning of a year, or a week to make the change.  Just get it started now.

But that’s what works for me.  If others need a set time to begin something, that’s great.  As long as they recognize the need and it works for them, more power to them.

For some changes, we do need to wait for a specific time. Like Tax or retirement items.  The planning itself can take place at any point, but the execution is tied to the calendar. New limits on Retirement contributions, new Medical Premiums and deductibles are all starting over again today.

My recent posts have been fewer and fewer as I’ve been preparing for the release of my new book, “Retirement for All Ages”.  With this in mind, I wanted to put out a Top Ten List of Retirement things to think about as you begin the new year.

 

  1.  If you haven’t already, start thinking about retirement and retirement planning — especially if you’ve turned 50.
  2. Plan for some sort of retirement transition, and have activities planned. ‘Test’ your ideas while you’re still working.
  3. Don’t let family members throw your retirement off track.  Keep your plan and try to minimize the needs of others impacting your savings.
  4. It’s never too late to start saving, but late starters need to be more fluid in their lifestyle expectations
  5. Outliving your money in retirement is real for millions of people. Plan and save so this doesn’t happen to you
  6. If you are planning to continue to work in retirement, working may be more difficult than you imagine. Your health and the availability of employment for people as they age makes it more difficult.
  7. Don’t underestimate health care costs in retirement. As we age, our bodies are breaking down.  Begin/Continue exercising now, to enjoy a healthier retirement.
  8. The less debt you have going into retirement, the more likely you are to find success in your retirement.  Need to Get Outta Debt?  Check this out
  9. Figure out how to make Social Security work best for you. IF Social Security is still around when you retire, there are some great strategies for making the most of it.
  10. Do not be too conservative in your retirement savings. Remember, you are more than likely going to live much longer in retirement than previous generations (especially if you follow #8), so you will need more money.  Being TOO conservative is something that you need to avoid.
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