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Determining Retirement Lifestyle

How do you determine your desired retirement lifestyle?

Yogi Berra once said “If you don’t know where you are going, you will wind up somewhere else.”   Envisioning a desired retirement lifestyle is crucial to your retirement planning.  Lifestyle will drive how much you need saved for retirement.  People who want to take annual trips to Europe and dine at five stars each week will need larger amounts than those that enjoy exercise, reading, and volunteering.  Below are two exercises to determine your desired retirement lifestyle.

The first thing is determining what day-to-day life might look like.  What do you enjoy?  Do you see yourself gardening, volunteering, spending time with friends or do you desire to travel?  What would a typical day look like?   T. Rowe Price’s Ready to Retire tool can help you begin processing these ideas.  The first part allows you to pick from different activities such as gardening or exercising then rank them according to importance.  If nothing else, it’s a great brainstorming module to process what you might enjoy in retirement.  Once you come up with the typical day, what about trips or gifts to the grandkids?  After listing your items, it’s time to run the numbers!

How much would it cost to live this lifestyle?  For example, if lunch and coffee with friends and family is important, how many do you see yourself doing per month?  If travel is your thing, then determine how many trips you may take each year and estimate the cost.  This need not be perfect.  It’s only an estimate, but it does get you closer to understanding the amount needed to live the lifestyle you want in retirement.

With this estimate, you can begin tailoring your financial plan to meet this number.  Then it’s not a number that a financial advisor gave you or one that just “felt” right.  It now fits who you are and what you want.




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Michael Pemberton is a registered representative of and offers securities through Kovack Securities, Inc. 6451 N. Federal Hwy., Ste. 1201, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33308  Tel 954-782-4771  Member FINRA/SIPC”  Advisory Services offered through Kovack Advisors, Inc.  Certus Financial Group is not affiliated with Kovack Securities, Inc. or Kovack Advisors, Inc.



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