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Re: What Is the First Thing a person should do when they have decided to retire?

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One word. Dominicana. It's the only place worth spending retirement years. I had had my wedding there, and I can't imagine any place on the globe being better, though I've been on almost every continent in dozens of countries. Just check the photos and say that I'm wrong Punta Cana photographers.

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Re: What Is the First Thing a person should do when they have decided to retire?

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If I understand your question correctly you are asking what the first thing you should do when you decide to retire.

 

First thing is find out what your income will be in retirement.  Next, figure out how much you will need to have as income in retirement.  If the first is not equal to or less than the next, you cannot retire.

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Re: What Is the First Thing a person should do when they have decided to retire?

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The first thing is you should join the AARP, of course! Second thing, hopefully preplanned, is what are you going to do with all your free time and how much discretionary income will you have? Most of us will have less $$ than when working, and may have to live at a simpler level.

 

My biggest tip is to have dinner parties at home with friends instead of meeting in restaurants. MUCH cheaper, probably healthier food, and you can chat as long as you like, with no waiter wanting you to pay up and leave. 

 

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Re: What Is the First Thing a person should do when they have decided to retire?

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I, too, have a part-time gig in a sports industry. It lets me earn a few dollars, and keep active and in shape, and gives me the social contact I think we all enjoy. 

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Re: What Is the First Thing a person should do when they have decided to retire?

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I especially agree with getting rid of stuff. Unfortunately, decades of various hobbies left us with huge houseful of stuff, from woodworking, beer making, canning, reloading, sewing; the list goes on and on. We pared back much of it, but still need it to enjoy our hobbies. 

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I was forced into early retirement this year which caused great panic at first about my finances. I did receive a severance package where I received my normal paycheck for eight months after I left. Once I regained my composure, I immediately started living off of what my pension was going to be and putting the rest of my severance check in savings. What I found out was it wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be to cut back and live off of a little less income if you prepare ahead of time. I also had good bit of extra money in my savings account afterwards.

So my advice for soon to be retirees is to figure out what your retirement income will be (use an adviser if your not 100 percent sure) and start living off of that now. Put the rest in savings. This way you will find out if your going to be happy with that income. If not you can make adjustments now before it’s too late.  Good luck and enjoy your retirement. It’s GREAT!

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One would think that, but after 38 years on a job, I have found that no matter how qualified you are as a worker, when it comes to those of us who actually save for retirement, handling large sums of money becomes difficult and requires assistance way past what a lot of jobs are offering. 

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🥂

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Re: What Is the First Thing a person should do when they have decided to retire?

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Often, people going into retirement do not realize how the federal tax structure will affect them. This is particularly true when RMD (required minimum distributions) kick in at age 70.5. This is money the goverment forces a person to withdraw from his or her retirement accounts which is then added to taxable income. The surprise is, this additional income can make most of social security benefits taxable, causing the tax rate to skyrocket.

So, I think an important thing to do when preparing for retirement or if retired and younger than 70.5 is to begin periodic conversions of money from trational IRA's to a Roth IRA. Yes, income taxes will have to be paid on the conversion amount, but tax rates are now lower than we'll probably ever see again and will be through 2025. Now is the time to convert funds to a Roth IRA in an amount that still falls within a lower tax bracket. Then, the RMD will be smaller and taxes will be less later on. 

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Of course finances are of the utmost importance in retirement as discussed by several others.  But if you have your finances in order, then what?  I think the most important thing is to find some meaningful activities, not just to occupy your time but to stimulate your mind and body.  After doing my excercises each day and taking care of the house, I spend a lot of my time volunteering.  I joined Peninsula Food Runners where I take leftover food donations from company lunches and deliver them to people in need.  I also took up photography for which I never had enough time while I was working.  I have a full calendar most days and love retirement.

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