Is it too late for you to plan for retirement? It is never too late to start to plan for retirement. If you start late, you just have to work harder to achieve your goals.
Develop a plan.
The main reason that most people have not prepared for retirement by middle age is because they have never formulated a retirement plan. It is too easy to drift through your younger years spending freely since the future seems so far away. With a lot of life left to live, younger people tend to think that big issues like retirement can wait until tomorrow or next year.
By middle age, most people can see retirement looming on the horizon.
You need to sit down and put a financial plan in place for your future retirement. If you are married, involve your spouse, or it may not be possible to implement the plan no matter how good it is. Your retirement plan should address any of the issues regarding your current and future income and expenses. Work hard on this. Since your time is shorter, you cannot afford as many mistakes as someone a decade or two younger.
Talk to a financial advisor.
A good financial adviser can lay out your options for investing and for future financial planning. You may want to talk to several advisers to become as educated about your financial future as possible. Whether you choose to use the services of an adviser or manage your own money, this effort will equip you with some of the tools that you need to prepare properly for your retirement years.
Change your lifestyle.
As much as no one wants to hear this, starting late on retirement planning will usually mean that your lifestyle needs to be adjusted downward. This will free up funds to invest for your later years. With a plan for the future in mind, you should be able to see the lifestyle modifications needed. It should not feel like a fall from riches to rags, but it might be painful for the first year or so until you a sure that you have a handle on your retirement investment plan.
Get out of debt.
Debt is a serious drag on building retirement funds. The interest rates on debt will always exceed the earned interest on investments. You will need to do a combination of retirement savings and debt retirement at the same time. If your debt is significant, this might be a large mountain to climb. Count your mortgage into this debt retirement plan. You really do not want a mortgage to pay off after you retire.
Downsize the house.
Getting a smaller house may be the first step toward becoming debt free. By retirement, you do not need a house with enough bedrooms for each child and grandchild. If you are getting a late start on your retirement plan, your children are probably already out of the house and on their own. Take a serious look at your housing needs and act accordingly.
Find extra income.
This is a message that is preached over and over, but it is needed in most cases. Late comers to the retirement investment game are at a real disadvantage. If you had enormous income, you would not be sweating retirement now. An extra hundred or two per month that can be funneled directly into retirement accounts will grow quickly if you have a decade or two before you need it to live on. More income at this point will only be a plus for your lifestyle in retirement.