Retirement should be the best stage of life – a time when you can enjoy life to the max, free of worry. However, many retirees make mistakes with managing their money which mean they aren’t able to achieve the kind of retirement they deserve. If you want the last thirty or so years to be the most extraordinary time of your life, here are the key mistakes to avoid.
- Failure to plan. Time goes very quickly in retirement – just ask any retiree! It’s hard to make a plan for the next thirty years but it’s quite easy to make a plan for the next five years with reasonable certainty. Set broad goals for ten years after that and also think about where you might spend the last years of your life.
- Having too much money in property. It’s great to have a beautiful home to live in when you retire, but if you have no money in the bank or other investments you might find yourself living a miserable life. Try and have at least half the value of your home in other investments to avoid being asset rich and cash poor.
- Investing too conservatively. Investing all your money conservatively for 20-30 years is a good way to run out of money more quickly than you need to. Investment strategies should be linked to your investment time frame – that is, the time frame in which you wish to spend your investment capital (not the income from the capital).
- Living off investment income and not capital. People are living longer and investment returns and low, so it is increasingly difficult to eke out a living in retirement by using the income from investments. Investing for income is also likely to lead to lower returns and less tax efficiency.