Retirement planning can be simple, but it’s not easy, especially if you get too focused on all of the different variables at play. After going through each of the variables we discussed in this process, we believe you have now created a baseline plan. But that’s not where the work ends. How you feel today can change tomorrow. So after going through our process, remember to “Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing.” Keep your goals and your personal plans front of mind when life through you a curveball. Markets change, economies change, and our lives constantly change. News is abundant and cheap. So review your plan over time through the lenses of your goals and needs, not someone else’s.
Remember, a long and healthy retirement can last 8,000 days! Part of the fun in planning is then considering different scenarios.
- What if you work longer? How will your retirement lifestyle improve?
- What if you plan to spend less?
- What if you’re able to save more?
- Or what if it’s an even bigger lifestyle change like downsizing home or buying a second property?
Changing any one variable in your baseline plan will have a direct impact on the others. This exercise will help you realize those impacts to help you assess your options prior to making any major financial decisions. Having timely and relevant information can make decision making easier and can save you from a lot of financial pain and frustration were you to be surprised by any unanticipated outcomes well after the fact.
We use the tool called MoneyGuidePro® that allows you to store your baseline plan and then enter the “play zone“ to see the impacts of changing certain assumptions or variables in your plan. It boils down to a percentage likelihood of success that, in mathematical terms, grades your ability to do what you want to do in retirement based on your resources. It also provides the opportunity to track your progress over time and see where you stand in relation to your documented goals at any given point in time.
Retirement planning is simple but it’s not easy. And it’s a journey, not a sprint. Yes, there are a lot of variables to consider. And yes, there is a lot of data and many assumptions to assess. But having the proper conversations with the proper help [hire a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER found here – cfp.net] sure can make the process much less stressful and potentially increase your confidence.
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Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA and SIPC. Investment advice offered through U.S. Financial Advisors, a registered investment advisor. U.S. Financial Advisors and Haas Financial Group are separate entities from LPL Financial.