The Pre-Retirement Checklist

10 crucial steps toward retirement readiness | May 31, 2022

Getting ready for retirement? Thinking about getting ready for retirement? Before you can cross that bridge, you’ll need to cross some important items off your to-do list.

  1. Retirement Budget – Understand what your income will be, and how you can confidently spend the money you have accumulated for retirement.
  2. Emergency Savings – Prepare for life’s surprises by saving at least three months’ living expenses, and have that money readily available to you.
  3. Tax Strategy – Identify a sound tax strategy to guide you through the process of spending money from both taxable and tax-deferred accounts.
  4. Lifestyle & Location – Consider where you’ll live, both short term and long term. Have a plan for funding a move or moves, and understand the timing involved.
  5. Distribution Strategy – Create a strategy for your retirement plan(s), including the best timing and method to access the money, based on your goals.1
  6. Bucket List – Write down your personal goals for your retirement years, exploring your dreams, priorities, and values.
  7. Extended Care – Make arrangements in the event that you or a loved one encounters a health issue requiring full-time care.
  8. Estate Strategy – Develop an estate approach that includes how you want your assets to be allocated and who will handle your estate.
  9. Health Insurance – Understand your options with Medicare, and define a strategy for covering health care expenses for the long haul.
  10. Social Security – Have a sound plan for claiming Social Security, in order to maximize your benefits.

Whether you’re months or decades from retirement, contact your trusted financial professional to discuss your checklist.

1Distributions from 401(k) plans and most other employer-sponsored retirement plans are taxed as ordinary income and, if taken before age 59½, may be subject to a 10% federal income tax penalty. Generally, once you reach age 72, you must begin taking required minimum distributions.

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