How to plan for retirement

Medical advances and better health means people are now living longer than ever – placing an even greater importance on planning correctly for retirement. Having strategies in place to help build your retirement savings as much as you can before you retire is an important step towards helping to ensure you enjoy your retirement years.

What kind of lifestyle do you want?

It’s hard to look ahead when you’re in one of the most expensive and work intensive times of your life – with mortgage payments, family expenses and work pressures being top priorities for most people. However, it’s important to consider what you want your retirement years to look like so you can start planning now.

Ask yourself what you want – do you want to downsize, move to the beach or the bush, hit the road in a caravan or spend time travelling to see family? These activities sound great but they won’t come easily for many unless they are planned and worked for. 

How much will you need for this lifestyle?

Once you know what kind of lifestyle you would like you can then look at how much this will practically cost you and what you will need to do to make it happen. Now is a good time to do a review of your financial situation so you know where you’re starting from. Here are a number of things to look at:

  • Superannuation – how is your super being handled? Is it being invested appropriately, do you need to contribute more now so you have more later?
  • Investments – if you have managed funds, shares or property, what is the investment strategy? Will they help to accommodate your changing lifestyle?
  • Insurance – are your family covered if anything happens to you? Make sure you have the right level of life and income insurance.
  • Daily finances – what is your general spending like? Can you cut back and find areas of saving? If things in your life have changed have you altered your spending to reflect this? For example, if your children have left home have you cut back on your weekly grocery spend? It’s surprising how many people find themselves spending out of habit.

Do you need to play catch up?

Once you’ve done a review you might find you need to play ‘catch up’ with your superannuation or savings to make sure you have enough to retire with the lifestyle you have in mind. If you are at the peak of your earning potential now might be a good time to put money away for your retirement. A financial planner can help you with this.

Talk to a financial planner

Planning for retirement can be a daunting process, some may even find it stressful without the help of a professional. Now is the time to consider talking to a professional financial planner to help you review your situation and strategies moving forward. A financial planner can provide you with strategies to help make your ideal retirement a reality.

Heritage has teamed up with Bridges, one of Australia’s largest, national financial planning and stockbroking organisations. To find out more visit Heritage’s financial planning hub. 

Bridges Financial Services Pty Limited (Bridges). ABN 60 003 474 977. ASX Participant. AFSL No 240837This is general advice only and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation and needs. Before acting on this advice, you should consult a financial planner. In referring members to Bridges, Heritage Bank does not accept responsibility for any acts, omissions or advice of Bridges and its authorised representatives. Bridges is part of the IOOF group.

* Based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. WARNING: This comparison rate is true only for the examples given and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.

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