If you are preparing to retire, a visit with a financial planner might be helpful.
Not only will you have a better understanding of your financial situation, but a financial planner could also help you determine if you are truly ready for retirement. If you plan to retire in the next few years, consulting a financial planner now could help you spot problems while you still have time to fix them.
Here are three questions you should ask a financial planner well before you leave work.
1. Will I have enough savings?
Even if you think you have saved enough for your retirement, getting an unbiased and objective opinion will be essential.
While this is probably an obvious question to ask, it is an important one. A financial planner can help you predict how much you must have saved, how much you can withdraw each month, and better understand what your monthly budget will look like.
If you’ve saved enough, your financial planner can also help you understand where you can cut your retirement costs and help you decide when to take Social Security payments.
2. Is my estate plan complete?
Whenever you face a major change in your life, updating your estate plan will be essential. Even if you plan to have a long and fulfilling retirement, it will be important to have a detailed and up-to-date estate plan.
Financial planner Ryan Ashley says this is a question he gets often from clients who are about to retire. And, he says, it’s really a two-part question.
While part of estate planning is about the financial legacy you leave to those you love, another part is about delegating important decisions if you are unable to make them.
Having a last will and a will is a good start. But estate planning also includes having the right power of attorney documents in place, having the right beneficiaries on your accounts, and making a living will.
3. What can I do to be better prepared?
Financial planners may be able to see the things you missed on your trip to prepare for retirement. To be as prepared as possible, your financial planner may be able to suggest steps you can take now to help you later.
Schwab Intelligent Portfolios Premium financial planner Amy Richardson says she usually suggests several things to anyone looking to retire in five years.
She often suggests that her clients start saving as much as possible during their last five years of work, as well as start thinking about health insurance during this time. And, she says, it’s not too early to start thinking about the non-financial aspects of retirement, like how you’re going to be spending your time.
Your financial planner can help you start thinking beyond the basics of your planning and achieving your goals before you leave work.