Most of us have a general idea of when we’ll retire, and our future income plans might rest heavily upon that timeline becoming reality. For example, you probably assume that you will work until a certain date, saving a particular amount of money each year, so that you can retire with X amount of money in your retirement account. This will hopefully allow for annual withdrawals that provide for your lifestyle.
But what if something happens, that triggers a need to retire earlier than expected? You might believe these situations are rare, but in fact, a 2016 survey by the Employment Benefit Research Institute found that 46 percent of current retirees had actually retired earlier than they originally planned!
Why do some people retire earlier than expected? According to the survey, 55 percent of “early” retirees had to leave their jobs due to health issues. Another 17 percent said they needed to retire in order to care for a spouse or other relative. The others cited reasons such as changes in their industries or company downsizing.
What can you do to prepare? We can’t always plan for everything in life, but we can sometimes take steps to prevent unforeseen events from causing excessive harm.
- Pay down debts throughout your forties and fifties, so at least you won’t carry a large debt load into retirement
- Take care of your health, to prevent or postpone the development of some chronic diseases
- Meet regularly with a financial advisor, so that you always know where you stand
We can help with that last item. Remember to schedule regular appointments with us, so we can perform a financial “check-up”. You should always know where you stand, have a reasonable estimate of your retirement income, and stay on top of making decisions that can impact your future – no matter what happens.
Employee Benefit Research Institute
US Census Bureau