Retirement Looming? 5 Steps To Protect Your Finances Later

Is retirement fast approaching? The final few years before you retire is a good time to make last-minute moves that will reduce your expenses or raise your retirement income. What might you spend these years doing that will pay off when you leave work? Here are a few ideas. 

1. Meet With a Financial Planner

If you don't already have a financial planner on your team, now is the time to find one. Financial planners will offer impartial assessments of your financial preparedness and can guide you in fixing any weak spots in your plan. 

2. Focus On a Payoff

Do you still carry any debt? Many soon-to-be retirees carry debt ranging from car loans and mortgages to credit cards and student loans. Ideally, your goal should usually be to get rid of these debts entirely before retirement. However, if this is not feasible, focus on one or two that will make the most difference in your monthly budget and pay these off first. 

3. Create a Side Gig

A second income stream is a smart move for retirees. This will help you stretch your retirement funds and account for unexpected expenses and inflation. But don't wait for retirement to start your second income stream. Get a head start by turning a hobby into a small business, starting a consulting business, or developing a new skill you can monetize later. 

4. Learn To Budget

Sticking to a monthly spending plan will be key to making your retirement money last while still enjoying what's important to you. Take this time now to work on your budgeting and financial planning skills. Pare costs down over time. Develop self-management as a habit. And as you get closer to the big day, take your retirement budget for a test drive to work out the kinks. 

5. Prepay Expenses

While you have an active income, consider prepaying some potential retirement expenses. This can take many forms. Make costly repairs on your home now instead of waiting. Invest in tools or equipment you will use in your retirement endeavors. Set aside money for health insurance if you'll have a gap. Prepay utilities or house expenses.

Want more ideas for making the most of the last few years before retirement? Start by consulting with a retirement advisor in your state today. With their expertise and experience, you'll find the best steps to take so that your retirement is comfortable and exciting.