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" Often, we are in our highest income earning
years in the 10-15 years before retirement. Taking
advantage of this income by maximizing the tax
qualified retirement accounts through work or with
IRAs is important. It's the main reason the IRS offers
catch up contribution increases for people aged
50 and older and the IRS has been increasing the
contribution limits on these retirement accounts
to help people save more. For those who qualify to
contribute to a Health Savings Account, there is an
option for a catch-up contribution there as well.
One should consider taking advantage of these
" Make the right choices when it comes to when
to start taking a pension or file for Social Security.
Many people are inclined to take these benefits as
soon as they're able. This can be a costly mistake, "
suggests John N. Hall, President of Lynchburg
" Instead, understand the benefits of delayed
filing and come up with a plan that takes into
consideration all possible income sources.
Retirement age and Social Security filing age don't
have to be the same. Very often, it may make sense
to wait to file for Social Security months or even
years after separation from employment, " he says.
" There's always hope. If you feel hopeless, reach
out to someone who's been there or someone who
may be more familiar with tools and strategies
available to you. Mark today on the calendar as the
day you're going to take actionable steps to better
your situation. "
" The lower your cash outflow needs are, the less
you need to comfortably live during retirement, "
says Beedle. " And the longer you are willing and
able to work, the fewer number of years you may
need to support yourself in retirement.
" There isn't a secret way to come into a windfall
of cash and few are lucky enough to hit the lottery.
Not saving enough for retirement will leave
you scrambling to get by in old age. At the very
least, you'll need to work longer or make serious
adjustments to your lifestyle to get by.
" Start by beefing up contributions to your worksponsored
retirement plan. After that, look into
funding a traditional or Roth IRA to save even more.
To help guide you with your retirement planning
strategies, meet with a financial advisor to find out
which steps you should take first.
" By making your retirement a priority, you can
ensure you won't outlive your money, or worse:
wind up living in your kid's basement. "
Retire-VA.com / RETIRE-VA 2024
and remember why I was working to begin with. It was not to
retire with some gold medallion; it was to enjoy the fruits of my
labor with those I love. "
What she has found in her new work gives " me time out of
the house, to contribute and to do things with my time that are
enjoyable to me. My career had been financially wonderful but
not personally rewarding toward the end of my term. " She has
gone from corporate pro to a wellness instructor for Roanoke
County, working when she chooses.
She also has a small business called Trusted Housesitter,
pet sitting " in exchange for staying in the pet owners homes. It
doesn't drive up my income, so no taxes, and I spent six weeks
in Florida [during the winter]. " And there's more: " I also have a
commercial cleaning company still operating in Maryland that I
started from the ground up in 2014. "
She says she is still looking for the perfect balance, but her
quality of life compared to the salaried grind is no comparison.
" I love my life. I can only imagine what I could have done if I had
chosen to look at my numbers sooner and been more intentional
with my time and money. "
Jennifer Grover of Blacksburg has gone from grand
retirement plans to a job and situation she never dreamed of.
" When the plan tanks, make new plans. I'm a newly-minted city
bus driver and I have leased pastures and my barn to research
a herd of retired racehorses with an NIH (National Institutes of
Health) grant. How's that for creative reforming of goals? It's
paying the mortgage. "
Jill Barr Loope, retired Roanoke County Economic
Development Director, says, " Frankly it's been a lifetime of
planning with saving since I was 18 and in college working full
time. By saving a little at a time, I am reasonably financially
secure. Recently, I met with a financial advisor, then outlined a
game plan. I am also grateful for 32 years of government service,
which provided a good retirement plan. Finally, I bought a car,
finished some home improvements and paid off some debts. All of
which will better position me financially moving forward. " I
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