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Column: Creating 5 Yr Action Plan For Retirement - Bernews

[Written by Carla Seely]

Start with your current financial situation, specifically pay attention to how you can start to maximize your income and begin to reduce your expenses. For a lot of people, planning for retirement normally starts about five years ahead of schedule.

Carla Seely Bermuda October 2018 TC

Below is a helpful guide on areas that you should focus on. [It is important to note that this is to give you an idea only and should not be the only checklist used].

Five Years to Retirement Date

a] Meet with your pension provider and make sure to discuss the following:a. Review you current pension plan account holdings.b. Consolidate any other pension plans into one account.c. Discuss the current rules and regulations regarding accessing your pension at retirement.d. Determine the benefits of making additional voluntary contributions if needed.b] Review your bank account[s], if you have multiples do you really need them all?c] Review your investment account[s]; review the asset allocations and make sure the investment allocations match your time horizon.d] Review your insurance policies [i.e. life, home, car], do they reflect current values?e] Update your will or visit a lawyer and have a will created and filed.f] Update your beneficiaries on anything that has a listed beneficiary i.e. life insurance, pensions etc.g] If you still owe anything; mortgage, car loan, credit cards – time to pay those off.h] Look at your cash flow. Can you decrease your expenses and increase your savings?i] Determine where your retirement income is going to come from?a. Pensionb. Rental collectionc. Social insuranced. Investments

Two Years to Retirement Date

a] Review your risk allocation on your pension plan and start lowering the risk level.b] Crunch numbers for retirement income vs. retirement expenses to ensure positive cash flow.c] Consolidate your bank accounts to make sure you are streamlined.d] Start consolidating your investment accounts to ensure a clear investment strategy.e] If retiring overseas; make plans for your first initial trip to look at potential retirement locations.f] All debt should be paid off with no further intention of borrowing.g] Renovations to your house should be completed.h] Review your current cash flow and determine changes you will make at retirement.i] Determine options for long term care needs.

6 Months to Retirement

a] Request information on the various pension options upon retirement.b] Obtain information on individual health insurance from local providers.c] Request a copy of your Bermuda Social Insurance monthly benefits plan.d] Adjust any immediate insurance needs.e] Finalize annual or monthly retirement cash flow options.f] Finalise retirement budget for expenses.g] Review investment allocations for positive cash flow options.h] If retiring abroad make decisions on accommodations – renting vs. ownership.i] Enquire about long term care especially regarding the cost of treatment locally or abroad.

Retirement Day

a] Create your retirement folder with all your financial and insurance information.b] Ensure you have a clear understanding of your retirement budget.c] Plan for your retirement trip.d] Have a retirement dinner with your family and friends to celebrate the next chapter.e] If moving abroad, start packing.

- Carla Seely is the Vice President of Pension, Life and Investments at Freisenbruch-Meyer, if you would like any further details please contact cseely@fmgroup.bm or call 441 297 8686

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