How to Have Enough Money for Retirement
Retirement. It's a time when you can finally kick back, relax, and enjoy the fruits of your labor. But for many women, retirement is also a time of worry and stress.
Will I have enough money to last me the rest of my life? It's a valid concern. Only 19% of women say they're confident about their retirement plan.
Don't let that be you! With a little bit of planning and some smart financial moves, you can make sure you don't run out of money to last you through retirement. Here are four tips to help you avoid running out of money in retirement:
Start Saving Early
The earlier you start saving for retirement, the better off you'll be. That's because when you start saving early, your money has more time to grow through compound interest.
For example, let's say you start saving $100 per month at age 25. If you continue making those monthly contributions until age 65 and earn an average annual return of 7%, you'll have nearly $300,000 saved up.
Now let's say you wait until age 35 to start saving $100 per month. Even if you continue making those monthly contributions until age 65 and earn an average annual return of 7%, you'll only have about $163,000 saved—nearly $140,000 less than if you had started 10 years earlier!
Save More Than the Minimum Required Amount
If your employer offers a 401(k) or other retirement savings plan with matching contributions, make sure you're contributing enough to take advantage of the match. For example, if your employer will match 50% of your contributions up to 6% of your salary, then you should contribute at least 6% of your salary each year so that your employer will also contribute 50%.
If you're behind on retirement savings, you can make catch-up contributions to retirement accounts such as a 401(k). For 2022, the limit for 401(k)s is $20,500. For people 50 and older, it's $27,000. For IRA contributions, it's $6,000 if you're younger than age 50, and $7,000 if you're older than age 50.
When it comes to investing for retirement, there are two main points to keep in mind: risk and diversification. First, as we get older we tend to become more risk-averse because we have less time to recover from any losses we might experience. That's why it's generally recommended that workers invest more conservatively as they approach retirement age.
Second, no matter how old you are it's important to diversify your investments across different asset classes like stocks, bonds, and cash equivalents. Diversification helps protect your portfolio from significant losses because not all asset classes move in lockstep with each other—when one asset class is down, another might be up (or at least not down as much).
Asset class diversification is especially important as you approach retirement because it can help preserve the value of your portfolio and provide some stability during periods of market volatility.
Review Your Spending Regularly
Just because you've been able to live on X amount of dollars per year doesn't mean that will always be the case—your spending needs will likely change throughout retirement as unexpected expenses come up or your lifestyle needs change.
That's why it's important to review your spending regularly and make adjustments as necessary so that your budget remains aligned with reality. Doing so will help ensure that your money lasts as long as you need it to.
With a little bit saved each month and some smart financial moves along the way, any woman can avoid running out of money in retirement!
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