Ten years before you retire

Mental Preparation

Rhonda Katz, a family therapist, suggests making a list well before retirement of all the things you’d like to accomplish. “Whether it’s paragliding along the B.C. coastline or building a model ship, write them down.  Then review the list ruling out the most unlikely activities while keeping the ones that make sense or are offbeat but still within reason.”

Renew lapsed friendships and broaden your circle of friends.  It’s important to keep cultivating new friendships, as existing friends will gradually pass on.  Start to develop new hobbies that you can enjoy through retirement.

Get physically fit.  Assess your dies and exercise habits.  Your health affects your psychological well being.


Financial Preparation

  • Concentrate on building your retirement savings.
  • Confirm details of government and company pension benefits.
  • List anticipated retirement expenses to help determine how much you’ll need.
  • Access your current expenses to see if you can divert money into your retirement nest egg.
  • Review your investment portfolio with your financial adviser.  Remember you still need to take on some risk to grow your investments because you’ll be living a long time.
  • Assess your insurance policies.  Will they reflect your needs as you and your spouse grow older?
  • Make sure your will and Powers of Attorney are updated, and begin estate planning to ensure your assets will be transferred to your heirs with minimal tax impact.
  • Explore your options regarding early retirement.  This can be an attractive option for some people who have sufficient savings and can maintain their standard of living.
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