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Important Steps to Take Before Retirement

Though the idea of retirement may seem daunting, it’s a major accomplishment and should be revered – not feared. It’s always wise to talk with a financial advisor about major topics like retirement but it’s just as important to learn about all the other steps that will help get you there.

You don’t want to just get to retirement. You want to be able to enjoy that freedom. Here are some things you should start thinking about before your retirement:

Enroll in a Debt Management Program

If you currently have debt, it’s extremely important to try and pay off that debt before your retirement. With the help of a credit counselor, a customized debt management plan can make the dream of paying off your debt come true – putting you in a great position to actually enjoy your retirement.  

Rather than having multiple streams of debt piling on and causing you stress, a debt consolidation company can take all your debts and combine them into a single – affordable – monthly payment.

Getting started is easy. All you’ll need is your monthly income, monthly living expenses, a list of all your debt creditors, a list of your financial assets, and a willingness to give yourself and your family a future free from debt!

Choose a Retirement Plan Right for You

Choosing a retirement plan isn’t as hard as it may seem -- and will provide a stable and hopefully ideal future for you in your golden years.

There are a number of plans to consider. If you’re enrolled in a company 401K plan, make sure to take advantage of any employer match and contribute more annually if possible. A 401K is funded with pre-tax dollars, which makes your taxable income smaller.

If you’re self-employed, a 401K may not be an option. Other plans include a Traditional IRA or Roth IRA, which are both routes to start saving for retirement. The difference between the two is that you will pay taxes on a Roth IRA upfront, allowing you to withdraw your funds tax-free, whereas in a Traditional IRA, your contributions are tax-deductible, but you pay taxes on withdrawals later.

When deciding which plan is right for you, there are some factors to consider. First, financial experts advise taking a look at your finances and deciding how much you think you’ll spend in retirement. It’s safe to say that you’ll need 70-80% of your annual income to retire and maintain your standard of living.

No matter where you are in life, it’s never too early to at least start thinking about retirement. Debt management plans can help ensure a bright future. If you’re nearing that age, it’s time to get the ball moving. But even if you’re just out of college, meeting with a consumer credit counseling professional or enrolling in a student loan repayment program can put you on a much better track towards financial success.