One of the observations we sometimes see when we meet with seniors who have sizable debt is that they are not focused on setting new financial goals post-retiring. Perhaps you have achieved your financial goals and have retired as planned but unexpected expenses can still occur. It’s important to continue to be motivated to achieve your post-retirement financial goals.
Keeping on top of your finances can be difficult, especially if you’ve experienced tough setbacks.
Here are just a few simple tips on managing your money after you retire:
- Have a clear goal, accompanied by smaller goals
For most people, their broadest financial goal during retirement is to ensure that you have enough money to live the life you hoped for after you retire. This might mean that you still need to pay off your mortgage or other debt. Setting smaller goals is an important part of achieving the broader objectives and this requires conscious planning and managing your money. Big goals can, at times, feel unachievable, so set yourself small, monthly goals to support your long-term retirement plans.
- Keep a financial journal
Keeping track of your finances is the key to achieving financial success. Have a clear idea of when your money is coming in and where it’s going out, by recording your spending daily using a technology application such as Mint or a hand-written journal. At the end of the month, review where you spend your money and assess whether there are any expenses you could cut back on in order to give yourself more money to put towards your goals.
- Don’t keep your finances a secret
You should discuss your finances with your partner to ensure you are aligned with your goals and how you are going to achieve them. Have conversations about spending habits to avoid any surprises down the road. While it may be difficult to talk about finances with other family members, there may be a benefit in doing so. Opening this dialogue could help avoid expectations that you can provide financial support to family members while you are retired.
- Be prepared for financial setbacks
Financial setbacks can negatively impact your goals during retirement and can have a very demotivating impact on how you feel. It’s best to anticipate that there will be unexpected expenses, so it’s ideal to be prepared for them before they arise. One way of doing this is by having an emergency fund to help manage these unexpected costs without impacting your overall retirement plans. Creating this fund can be achieved by saving a small amount of money each month which is more manageable than having to fund a large cost using credit.
- Seek financial help
If you’re having financial troubles, seek help from a professional as soon as possible. It’s never too late to get back on track financially, and that’s where we can help. Meet with a Grant Thornton Limited debt solutions professional for a free, confidential consultation to learn more about your options.