Many people do well with their everyday finances simply by using common sense. However, addressing all aspects of your financial life requires time and knowledge and very likely some research. Formal financial planning brings focused time to your financial needs or objectives by someone who does work you cannot do, or don’t have time to do or don’t know how to do.
The most beneficial approach looks not just at how much money you have, how much more you will have and where to invest it. The best approach addresses those things but also takes into account your bigger life picture, working to fit your upcoming stages of life, objectives, dreams and aspirations and your finances into a comprehensive plan.
One aspect of that plan is retirement. Retirement means different things to different people, whether already retired, waiting to retire or wondering if retirement will even be possible.
Do you plan to retire to a life of ease, to doing something new, to traveling or to spending time with far-flung family? Is there a passion or dream you can’t pursue during your “working” years? Consider your future needs and desires ahead of time and know what you want to do when that phase of life arrives. Then make a financial plan that will enable you to be happy and healthy and also allow you to achieve your needs and desires. This includes living comfortably, managing healthcare needs and doing things you want to do. Make a plan to manage your resources for your retired life and then to leave something behind to benefit others. Most importantly have a plan. If you don’t aim for a target you will miss every time. Good planning will give you the necessary time and resources to “live” well in retirement.