Retirement is something that not everyone likes to think about. It can be daunting for some as they may wonder how they’ll cope on what they’ve managed to save so far and the implications this could have on when they can retire. However, ignoring retirement doesn’t take away its inevitability. It’s best you start making plans and putting them into action so that you have peace of mind knowing you can retire comfortably. In case you’re unsure where to start, you should continue reading below. Take a look at these practical and stress-free ways that you can work towards retirement.
Get Rid of Debt
Before you can secure anything for retirement, one of the first steps to take would be getting rid of any lingering debt. Sometimes, this can be the most intimidating step to take, especially if you have a large amount that you’re owing. You can start by looking through all of those letters that you haven’t opened from debt collectors and seeing who you owe, and how much. Alternatively, you could visit a credible credit repair company website such as https://creditrepaircompanies.com/ and choose one that’s capable of managing all the stress of sorting out your debt for you. In terms of repayment, you’re likely to get some offers to pay off some debts with a one-off payment, while others can be paid on a monthly basis.
Come up with a Plan
Once you’ve been able to resolve any debt you have, you’ve got an opportunity to start planning your retirement on a clean slate. Seeing as it has been found that most Americans close to retirement have saved only 12% of what they need to retire comfortably, it may be a good idea to develop a savings plan if you haven’t done so already. One of the easiest steps to take is to open a savings account dedicated to saving for retirement. Although the interest rate may not seem like much, it should compound over time. For the most part, think about how much you want to live on when you retire and how much you need to save to achieve this.
Participate in 401 (k)
Another ideal thing to do would be to check with your employer whether you can participate in a 401 (k). When you choose this option, your employers match your contributions as a way to encourage you to participate. An added advantage of the 401 (k) is that when you sign up, the money you save will be deposited into the account before it’s taxed, meaning that less of your income will be taxed. There is, however, a maximum pre-tax contribution, so it may be worth finding out what that is beforehand.
For many people, investing is something that can seem scary. This is especially true if you’re terrified of losing your hard-earned cash. However, there are so many investment options and many that are suited to your level of risk. Some of the most basic investment options are stocks, bonds, and cash. It is advisable that a retirement account has a mix of all three. You can buy stocks and bonds individually or via mutual funds which are a collection of stocks and bonds or a mix of the three.
Build an Emergency Fund
As you likely already know, emergencies are likely to arise so planning for them is essential. The best way to do so is to save up to six months’ worth of living expenses or more. The purpose of this would be to keep you from dipping into your retirement fund when you’re in need. Also, in many cases, if you withdraw from a retirement account too soon, you could be heavily taxed for it which you may want to avoid.
Ultimately, in order to save, you’ve got to learn to be financially disciplined. One of the best ways to do this is by avoiding impulse spending and cultivating the habit of budgeting. If you’re unable to do this, it may seem as though you never have extra money to save and put towards retirement. However, by remembering what the end goal is, you may find that you’re less inclined to spend on things you don’t need. Also, try and automate your pension-related savings, so that it comes out of your income before you’re able to spend it.
Retirement is something you have to work towards and it’s a lot closer than you think. You should try and focus on putting plans in motion as soon as possible as the sooner you do so, the better your chances of having enough when you finally retire.