4 Reasons Your Retirement Plan Might Fall Short

4 Reasons Your Retirement Plan Might Fall Short

Do you ever find yourself daydreaming about retirement? Whether your dream retirement entails traveling the world, dedicating time to beloved hobbies, or helping your children and grandchildren, saving enough for retirement is critical to enjoying all of these endeavors. Everyone deserves the best retirement possible, but numerous planning mistakes can cause retirement plans to fall short.

According to recent studies, retirement savings look grim for many Canadians for reasons such as living longer and the rising cost of living. A survey by Statistics Canada revealed of 14 million households, 65.2 per cent made a contribution to a registered pension plan, an RRSP or TFSA, but is it enough to last through retirement?(1)

If you have started saving for retirement, you’re definitely ahead of the curve. However, you could still be engaging in some of the biggest retirement planning mistakes—without even realizing it. How can you save enough to thoroughly enjoy your ‘golden years,’ without hurting your finances in the meantime? Here are 4 retirement planning mistakes worth avoiding:

Mistake #1: Focusing on the Return Rate

If you have an investment that produces a high rate of return, it’s easy to get caught up in always pursuing that outcome. However, be wary of that type of bias, as it could negatively impact your future investments. Rather than chasing rates of returns, shift your focus to creating a diversified portfolio that spreads out investments through a variety of fund types. Working with a financial advisor that helps you diversify your portfolio can help protect your retirement savings if/when the economy goes sideways. Plus, they’ll help you discover investments that match your retirement goals and risk tolerance.

Mistake #2: Retiring Too Early

Many of those saving for retirement aren’t saving as much as they need to continue their lifestyle during retirement. If that sounds like your situation, then possibly consider staying in the workforce a little longer. This will allow you to save longer and also maximize your benefits if you don’t apply for them before age 65.

Additionally, a study by Statistics Canada showed that 45% of Canadians hoped to retire before the age of 65, 24% planned to retire at age 65 or later, and 31% didn’t know when they would retire. If you want to retire early, you have to rely on your savings to help you bridge the gap between the age you retire and 65.(2)

With that said, pushing back retirement isn’t the best option for everyone. There are many reasons to retire as soon as you can, such as having health issues or other life circumstances that encourage early retirement. Whether you plan to retire early or need to retire later than expected, working with a financial advisor can help you determine the best way to prepare yourself for your specific retirement needs.

Mistake #3: Not Saving Consistently

One of the worst retirement mistakes to avoid is saving too little now and hoping you can ‘catch up’ in the future. The truth is, catching up rarely happens, and unexpected life circumstances can make catching up impossible in some cases.

According to the Economic Policy Institute, on average, Canadians have saved $184,000. Stretching this amount of money over 25 years is just not realistic in today’s world.(3)

To save more, work with a financial advisor to shed light on other financial strategies to boost your retirement savings.

Mistake #4: Not Factoring Taxes into the Equation

Another common mistake made during retirement is forgetting about taxes and their effect on your savings. Tax deductions change for many people once in their in retirement, and some retirees end up paying more in taxes. Consider speaking with a financial professional about tax planning strategy.

Want to avoid other retirement saving mistakes and create a personalized retirement plan? Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.

Sources

1 http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/census-canadian-saving-1.4287219
2 http://business.financialpost.com/personal-finance/the-magic-number-for-retirement-savings-is-756000-according-to-poll-of-canadians
3 http://business.financialpost.com/personal-finance/the-magic-number-for-retirement-savings-is-756000-according-to-poll-of-canadians