Saturday, August 24, 2013

Nine Essential Ways to Boost Your Retirement Fund

Do you have enough money to retire when you turn 65? If you want to travel the world, live debt free or buy a beach cottage, you need to plan to save enough money. With these nine tips, you can successfully boost your retirement fund. 

1. Buy Needs, Not Wants

Do you know the difference between a want and a need? If not, you’re probably spending instead of saving a lot of money.
You’ll save thousands of dollars by simply evaluating your needs and wants. Then, before you spend a penny, buy only what you need and rarely what you want.

2. Save Automatically

It’s human nature to say you’ll save and then spend the money instead. Ensure your retirement fund grows when you automatically transfer money to your retirement account every week. You won’t miss that automatic deduction in your checking account, but you will appreciate your growing retirement fund.

3. Build an Emergency Fund

Sometimes, life events like a roof leak or medical bill hit hard. They tempt you to withdraw from your retirement account or stop automatic savings. Instead, build an emergency fund to cover unexpected expenses that aren’t in your household budget and ensure your retirement stays on track. 

4. Decrease Credit Card Debt 

Nothing sucks money out of your pocket like credit card debt. It’s often accompanied by high interest rate and monthly fees. Find a debt repayment calculator online, stop charging and plan to get out of debt quickly.

5. Pay off Your Mortgage

A long-term expense, your mortgage keeps you tied to your day job. Free yourself by repaying your mortgage so that you can retire on time. 

6. Accumulate Experiences, Not Stuff

Buying collectibles, clothes and tools may make you feel good in the moment, but then they’re a hassle to dust around or maintain. They don’t enrich your life, build relationships or fulfill your dreams.

Experiences, however, provide long-term benefits. They are worth every penny, and you’ll relive the time you swam with sharks, taught your grandkids to play chess or rebuilt a car with your dad’s 1950 Ford Mustang Parts. Yes, experiences cost money, but they are worth their weight in gold compared to the value of stuff.

7. Diversify Your Portfolio

Don’t place your retirement egg in one basket. Create a portfolio of investments that includes a mix of high and low risk options, and protect your money. 

8. Organize Your Paperwork

Do you know where your retirement fund statements are located? Find, organize and inspect each one to ensure you understand the charges, changes and growth of your retirement money. 

9. Remember Your Dream

Post your retirement dreams in your checkbook, on your closet door and near your computer. That list keeps you focused on saving rather than spending money.
Don’t simply hope and dream that you’ll have enough money to retire. Implement these nine tips, and retire like you want. 

BIO: Alicia Lawrence is a content coordinator for a tech company and blogs at MarCom Land in her free time.

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