Women have more to think about planning for retirement. On average women live longer lifespans than men. Men reaching age 65 have an average life expectancy of around 84.3 years. Women reaching the same age can expect over two extra years, reaching average lifespans of 86.6 years.
As a woman there will likely be living expenses well over age 80 and beyond. Women planning for retirement must prepare for 20-30 of living expenses or more. The following steps add value to any retirement savings plan.
- Know all the basic living expenses. Preparing a budget means knowing annual expenses. This helps determine the amount of income necessary for each year of retirement. With the basic expenses covered there is more time to experience the joys of retirement.
- Use pensions. Women with pension plans may have advantages over men. A consultant with Macro Consulting Group says women may actually receive larger lump-sum payments than men. This is because many plan payout calculations favor women. Lump-sum payouts can be reinvested in more profitable markets.
- Seek alternative income sources. Untouched savings accounts generate money for later expenses, or for leaving an inheritance. Pensions, social security, and other sources create a mix of income allowing savings to grow.
- Check legal paperwork. Married women listed as primary recipients of a spouse or partner’s pension want to make sure all legal and insurance paperwork is in order. Traditional plans cover basic survivor payouts, reducing the spouse or partner’s payout during their lifetime. Couples may fare better agreeing to a lump sum payout and reinvesting in life insurance.
- Put the brakes on Social Security. Retirees thinking of living off Social Security benefits may want to consider waiting. Social Security benefits left alone until age 70 pay higher monthly amounts. Retirees waiting until age 70 qualify for delayed-retirement credits, increasing monthly Social Security payments.
- Watch for lump sum Social Security payouts. A payout for uncollected benefits may cost delayed-retirement credits. Social Security may offer attractive lump amounts for uncollected payments beyond age 65. Read the fine print. According to a partner at Plaza Advisory Group in St. Louis, Social Security lump payments have a price. Delayed retirement credits are exchanged for lump sums, meaning lower monthly payouts.
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