Creating a retirement plan that works means making smart money decisions today. You need to decide how much income you’re going to need, how much you can reasonably set aside, and how much your money needs to grow. The goal is to create a long term investment plan that will buy everything you’re going to need for as long as you live.
It helps to partner with a financial advisor who can help you create a blueprint for your financial future. A financial blueprint is similar to the blueprints to build a new house; when building a house, you need to envision the complete home, and then lay out a series of sequential steps to build that home up from the ground.
The same is true with your financial, retirement, and long term investment plans. You need to design your vision for the future, and make the right investments today to make that future happen.
Create a long term investment plan for your ideal retirement
First thing’s first: you need to know what you’re working towards. It’s called the work-back approach, which is a term often used by companies building effective customer experiences. Envision your target goal, and then you need to create a series of milestones that work back from the destination to map out your path forward.
Start by closing your eyes and picturing your future. What will your “house” look like when you’re finished building it? How many other assets do you want to own? What city or country do you plan to live in when you retire?
These are only the first in a series of questions you need to ask yourself to plan your future. Go through a full checklist of what your life might be like when you retire, and determine which items on that list are necessary for you to retire comfortably. That becomes your goal and the foundation for your financial blueprint. Now, you can build a long term investment plan for how to get there.
Ask the right questions about what to do with your money
As you prepare to retire you’re not just thinking about how to maintain your quality of life throughout your post-working years; you may also want to think about your legacy; how you want to be remembered, what you want to bequeath to family and the causes you are passionate about.
When you look at your retirement picture this way, more questions will come to mind. Those questions, and their answers become key building blocks for your financial blueprint.
How do you financially protect your family?
Retirement is the next phase of your financial journey. The assets and/or liabilities you have acquired will carry on through your retirement and beyond. If you’ve created a proper will and assigned family as your heirs and inheritors, they’ll gain your assets and add to their own wealth.
However, the same is true for liabilities. Any outstanding debts you might have when you pass on will likely be absorbed by your family, and they will be required to settle up with banks, creditors, or whoever owns the debt to eliminate the red ink from the ledger.
One of the best ways to financially protect your family is to pay off or at least pay down outstanding debts. Minimize the accumulated liabilities as much as you can before you retire so that the financial burden assumed by your descendants is minimal, if not eliminated. This will protect your family from annoying creditors and ensure they maintain their own qualities of life.
What should you do about your estate?
Estate planning is about how and when you choose to transfer your assets onto your surviving loved ones. Thinking about what that should look like is your job. Once you’re clear about that, an estate planning attorney can create the necessary documentation to make it happen the way you desire.
First we get clear in our own minds, then the attorneys make it clear to everyone else. There’s no age requirement to start planning an estate transfer. In fact, if you can start succession planning sooner rather than later, you’ll achieve peace of mind for both yourself and your loved ones by knowing that the legal jargon is all ironed out and documented.
Consult with your financial advisor to discuss estate planning, and follow a series of estate transfer guidelines to ensure your wishes are clear. Leaving it to chance can produce unintended and undesirable outcomes.
Let a financial advisor be your long term investment guide
Making the right decisions is easier when you work with a trusted guide. Mission Street Wealth Planning can show you how to protect and grow your nest egg so you can confidently make long term investment decisions that will allow you to retire comfortably and stay comfortably retired, to build a retirement income that will buy you everything you need for as long as you live, and to transfer your generational wealth to the people you love and the causes you care about.
Hire us today and let us be your guide to your comfortable retirement.
Schedule time to talk to Gary about your plan. Do it now. Schedule it here.