The question about when you should retire can be a difficult one to answer. You may love what you do and choose to never retire. On the flip side, you could hate what you do and decide to retire early. There is also the possibility that you come down with an illness and your only option is early retirement. There are a lot of questions that need to be answered before you make this big decision. Here are some of the questions that you should ask yourself.
How is your health?
This is a very large influence on whether you can continue working or not. If your health is declining, you may have to retire an earlier than you wanted to. The question of your health could also make an impact on how you live during retirement. If things look bleak, then why not spend your golden years doing what you love, whether that is traveling or spending quality time with friends and family.
How are your finances?
Your financial state is also a big factor when considering retirement. How much you saved for retirement could determine if you continue to work, and it could also determine what kind of life you live during retirement.
How’s your job?
Do you like your job? If the answer is yes, how’s your health? If the answer is also yes, then you might continue working. You could stay full time, reduce your hours, or continue to work as a consultant. If you don’t like your job, but your health is good, you might consider a career change. Do something you really have a passion for. If you don’t like your job, and you have sufficient retirement savings, you may want to try volunteering for an organization whose cause you support.
How do you envision retirement?
Do you plan on traveling? If so, do you want to go to out of the country? Do you want to fly within the country? Or do you want to drive everywhere? The answer to these questions will help determine how much you exactly need in retirement savings.
The alternative to travel is to stay local. Would you rather spend time with family and friends, or maybe you would like to take on the role as the baby sitter for your grandchildren.
Where will you live?
My one recommendation about retirement is to not go into with any debt, including a mortgage. If you have paid off your current home and are looking to downsize, use the money you earn from the sale of your current home to pay for your downsized home in full. Perhaps you plan on moving to a different state. If you live in the north, you might consider moving somewhere warmer. Florida and Arizona are popular destinations. The weather is nice most of the year and there are no state income taxes, which saves you money.
There are many questions that need to be answered when deciding when you should retire. Your health, your finances, your job, your plan for retirement, and your living arrangements all have a big impact on when and how you retire. Take time to consider and answer all these questions before you make this big decision.
Note: The opinions in this article are those of the author. Any recommendations made in the article are not to be taken as personal financial advice. Please consult with a financial professional about your personal financial situation.