With this in mind, it’s no surprise that almost 40 percent of adults 55 and older have less than $50,000 in retirement savings and about one-third have less than $10,000. But what happens when retirement creeps up and you don't have enough in your savings? Fortunately, there are ways that you can catch up.
Get a Hold on Your Finances
If you’re going to start planning for your future, you need to know what’s going on right now. Sit down, perhaps with a financial advisor, and get a grasp on your expenses. You may have to cut back on some of the things that provide you with immediate gratification, such as dinners out or the latest iPhone, but you’ll be using this money to secure your future.
Pay Off Your Debt
If you want to save money, you need to make sure that you don’t owe any. As you take a closer look at your finances, write down all of your debts, including credit cards, school loans and your mortgage. Focus on paying down the debts with the highest interest rates. You may also want to look into consolidating your debt into one easy payment.
Use a Financial Planning Tool
Planning for retirement can be overwhelming, but a financial planning tool will help clear the path for you. You can use this tool to plan your savings, pick the best investment strategies and track your short- and long-term goals.
Take Advantage of Your 401(k)
One of the easiest ways to bulk up your retirement is by utilizing your 401(k) account, if you have one. This is especially true if your employer matches your contributions, as it’s essentially “free” money. Make sure you’re contributing the maximum amount so that you can get the full match from your employer. Also, there are “catch up” contributions for people over 50.
Look at Social Security Payments
Social Security will be an important part of your retirement, and it’s recommended to hold off on payments for as long as you can. This way, you can collect your full payments. Consider that for every year you delay your payments from ages 62-70, you get an 8 percent increase.
Automate Your Savings
Once you’re on a good schedule to save, make it a habit. It’s easy to forget when you’re caught up in the busyness of life. That's why we often recommend automating your savings. Automation is effortless, and it ensures that you stay on track with your goals no matter what life throws at you.
In some cases, people need to delay retirement. Even a few years can make a big difference. You can continue working and putting money toward retirement without having to deplete your savings. To get a hold on your retirement, contact Leonard Financial Solutions. We have easy, effective ways to maximize your retirement savings while still living your best life.