How to Evaluate and Adjust Your Retirement Plan

Giving your retirement plan a checkup as a senior can help you stay on course for a comfortable future.

As a senior, you are probably either very close to retirement or already there. Congratulations on your hard work and preparation! Retirement is a great time to kick back and enjoy the fruits of your labor, but planning your finances doesn't end when you give notice to your boss. You'll need to give yourself periodic retirement checkups to be sure you are on the right path to keeping up with your lifestyle. If you've evaluated your retirement plan and think you need to make some adjustments, here are some important things to consider.

Supplement Your Savings
While you were working, you probably gained a great deal of expertise and experience in your field. Why not use that to your benefit while you are retired? You can supplement your retirement savings by continuing to work, just not on a full time basis. Retirement is a great time to start your own business and operate it during the hours that fit your lifestyle. Or you could also choose to do some consulting, freelance or part time work, which can give you the opportunity to enjoy a flexible schedule without dipping too far into your retirement savings. If you've evaluated your retirement plan and things feel a little tight, semi-retirement might be the right adjustment to make so you can live more comfortably.

Use Your Resources
Have you paid off your mortgage? If so and you are looking for a way to generate some income, you might be a good candidate for a reverse mortgage. When you get a mortgage to buy a home, you make monthly payments to a lender until the house is paid off. A reverse mortgage is just the opposite. A lender will make payments to you until you pass away or sell your home. There are certain age requirements involved in a reverse mortgage, and there are serious pros and cons. It's a good idea to consult a financial planner for help in understanding if this is the right move for you.

Be a Smart Shopper
A great way to adjust your retirement budget is by changing how you spend your money. It can be tough to squeeze credit card and loan payments into your budget while you are living on a fixed income, so try to keep your debt as low as possible. Also take advantage of the perks of being a senior by getting discounts at restaurants, hotels and other retailers. Though these savings may not seem like much right now, they can make a huge difference over time.

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