Every life stage brings new financial mistakes that could jeopardize retirement. Here’s what to guard against as you move through the decades:
Twenties: Not investing. Unfortunately, many individuals who are just starting their careers fail to invest or avoid taking considered risks when they’re in a position to absorb them. One idea: target-date fund options start out with riskier allocations that gradually become more conservative.
Thirties: Overwhelmed. The 30s is the decade of big commitments, such as getting married, having children, and settling down. However wonderful, these commitments can lead to unaffordable mortgages and credit-card debt. Focus on living within your means.
Forties: Misjudging expenses. In their 40s, many are halfway through their working lives, but still face major expenses, such as significant home repairs and kids’ college costs. Avoid withdrawing from retirement accounts early, and work to pay off the mortgage.
Fifties: Failing to catch up. When they reach their 50s, many people realize they haven’t saved enough for retirement. According to current life expectancy statistics, the retirement phase can last forty or more years. Many also may have lifestyles that aren’t sustainable in retirement. This decade is the time to plan ahead – decide how you want to live, how much money you’ll need, and how to obtain it.
Sixties and beyond: Not getting help. As assets grow, so often do the complexities. Some individuals may need additional help planning and executing those plans. Your advisor, who is up to date and who also knows your situation, can give you that support.