JOURNAL YOUR RETIREMENT BEFORE YOU RETIRE
Everyone should have retirement concerns early on in life even if it sounds ridiculous to think so far ahead. That’s part of the problem for lots of people especially those who live in the moment.
The future always seems so far away and not something that has to be tackled right away as there always seems to be time for that later.
As wonderful as retiring sounds the transition to retirement is not always cut and dry especially for people who love their job.
Last week we sat with our financial advisor to chat about going from term life insurance to a different product that would see our money invested differently.
How to cope with retirement
I don’t even know if anyone can answer this question until they are actually living the retirement life but in speaking with retirees in my time I’ve learned there are things we can do ahead of the game.
In the midst of the conversation we changed subjects to retirement concerns that Mrs. CBB and I often pondered.
Sometimes you look at different people and think they will have no worries about money in the future.
We’ve all done it because it’s human nature but everyone has or should have retirement concerns based on;
- Future Government changes
- Future Health needs
- Future Financial needs
If none of the above 3 even bother you in the least then your retirement concerns are nothing more than smooth sailing because you’ve got it all figured out financially.
You probably also have enough money to ensure the best health care outside of any type of government funding or assistance.
I wish that was us, but it’s not.
Learning to cope with retirement is one thing but if you don’t have a grip on the above it makes retirement even more stressful for someone who fears the unknown. It’s also a breeding ground for retirement depression which I will talk about a bit later on and can easily go unnoticed.
These are in no particular order.
Retirement Concerns #1 – Retirement Depression
Being bored in retirement is not uncommon as is post retirement depression because as humans we get used to routine. It’s not just people who retire from work because of age but also illness or other reasons beyond their control.
Staying at home day and night can be traumatizing for someone who has built their world around being on the go. If you’ve lost a spouse or are going through a divorce during retirement years that can cause further spiraling into the world of depression.
We see my mother-in-law who is all alone for her retirement and depends on everyone else for her happiness. She has no hobbies but loves to clean and talk to people but people know she is ill but she does not.
Solution: For Mrs. CBB and I we have started a retirement journal where we will be writing down things we want to do ahead of retiring. We have also talked about what would happen if one of us passes away.
Another thing that came up was to find things that make us happy so engaging new hobbies or learning something new that we can bring into retirement.
A few examples that we came up with for us;
- Recipe Creating
- Exercise outdoors or in a gym
- Reading novels
- Learning to play a musical instrument
- Building or fixing stuff for other people
- Earning extra cash on the side if health permits
- Volunteering opportunities
- Social Clubs and community centres in our area
Retirement Concerns #2 – Not Enough Retirement Money
Literally everyone should have this worry about retirement money because someone still has to pay the bills. Even if your house is paid in full and you have no mortgage you still have property taxes, utilities and maintenance fees.
If you still drive you have vehicle maintenance, insurance and pretty much everything you had to pay for before you retire. In the midst of our conversations Mrs. CBB and I both talked about travelling and the cost of travel insurance if one of us were ill.
What we did was create a retirement bucket list which I will talk more about another day but on it are all the things we would like to do when we retire. The plan is to think about what we’d like to see happen, what could happen and how to prepare for that now so we can still cross off destinations or desires on the bucket list.
Another thing we considered was the costs of retirement homes but trust me if you made some phone calls and visits to facilities in your area the prices would shock you.
If you want a private or semi-private room in a retirement villa or even long-term care you’ll be paying big bucks. Otherwise, you get what the government gives you and sometimes you don’t end up being placed in the city you live.
You pay for the level of care that you get whether it’s through your government pensions or your retirement savings.
Retirement Concerns #3 – Old-Age Health Concerns
Will my doctor still be around? Who will look after me? What if my spouse is gone? What if I become ill with a disease or dementia?
There are SO many what if’s in retirement that your head will spin but one of the biggest next to financial concerns is health concerns. When you are ill during your retirement years it really does cause set-backs with doctors appointments, life-style changes and financial changes.
All those dreams you had for retirement could be shot with one diagnose or one accident. Life is never predictable especially when it comes to what are supposed to be some of the best years of your life.
Many times we hear sad stories about people getting ill or dying just before or after retirement leaving one spouse alone.
If the remaining spouse is sick then there is the possibility of having to get in-home health care, selling a house, moving or possibly transitioning to a retirement or long-term care arrangement.
In our retirement journal we touched on this topic but plan to investigate what we need to do in the event any of the above happens to either of us. They say education is the key to life so it doesn’t hurt to find out about what might or will happen down the road and how it could affect our lives.
Retirement Concerns #4 – Little to No Family Assistance
Just because you raised your family in the hometown that you retire in doesn’t mean that they will stay living there. In fact many kids move away from their parents for school, careers and to get married and start their own family.
Some people don’t have kids at all and move away.
Being left alone with or without a spouse can be tough for any senior especially if you no longer drive or have never driven before.
Not having bus service in your area to get from place to place or declining health that stops you from getting out to do things like grocery shopping all play a big role in retirement happiness.
These are BIG concerns for us.
We decided that although we want to move out to the country we need to retire somewhere that made life easier for us in the event;
- One of us dies
- Loss of driver’s licence
- Health concerns
- Financial Issues
The other thing we considered was do we really need a large property at our age and do we want to live in a small town or the outskirts of a larger city in the country-side.
Our choices today will affect our future when our retirement years come around so airing on the side of caution now with a plan B is always ideal.
Retirement Concerns #5 – Lack of Friendships
As you know Mrs. CBB no longer works and she’s already seen a massive decline in friendships and she’s no-where near retirement. In fact, she hardly ever goes out with girlfriends at all.
It’s tough for her to get out and meet people and she can’t always do the things other can which makes things difficult. Not everyone wants to hang out with the sick person. That’s reality. Luckily she does have a couple of close friends but they don’t live in the same city as us but they chat often.
Friendships are important to us and is part of our retirement concerns because it’s nice to have people to meet up with that you know. Our goals moving forward are to continue meeting people, connecting and seeing where it will take us into the future.
You don’t know unless you try and building strong friendships that last a life-time whether they are close or near mean just as much when you need to make a phone call for support.
Retirement Concerns #6 – Fear of Loss
This one encompasses not only losing someone to death like a spouse, child or other family members but lose in ability to do the things we once were able to.
I have always said when you are a couple and working on your finances to make sure you both know what is going on at all times. It’s important to share passwords and to know where all of the important documents are located in the event one of you dies.
Then there is the simple fear that we will be left alone if one of us dies and our son has moved across the country like I did to be with my wife in Canada.
You don’t know but it can happen and then you are left on your own which is why our retirement journal is important to us so we can contribute ideas to the future.
What if you have no kids, no family, no spouse, no partner- just you?
Should You Worry About The Future
You know what? That’s your choice. You can consider what retirement concerns the future may hold for you and plan, research and educate yourself today or wait until tomorrow.
Uncertainty is never a friend which is why estate planning is so important. Look after yourself in every way possible while you can.
Discussion: Do you have any retirement concerns? Share your comments below as I enjoy reading your feedback.
Net Worth Losses and Gains
February and March 2019
What happened to our money in February and March?
I’m not sure how I managed it but I forgot to post the Net Worth update for February and almost March now, oops. I do have a schedule but the last couple of months have been chaos with illness around here somehow I messed it up. I’m human, that’s ok.
Anyhow, as you can see in February we were still increasing our net worth as we saw the markets increase as we had a large tumble back in December into the new year.
As any good investor would do instead of rushing to pull or move investments we hung tight because we’re in this for the long-haul and know this will happen again. This is the way the investing goes.
After a meeting with our advisor we’re looking at investing in long-term insurance which I will explain a bit more once that is complete and why we chose that route.
Also, after doing my taxes I noticed I don’t have much RRSP room left to contribute after my defined benefits pension contributions so I’ll have to reduce my monthly contributions come our next advisor meeting in a week.
I didn’t think that was too bad overall since I had a tonne of contribution room back a few years but I’m all caught up now and my TFSA is maxed out and caught up.
Other than that things are pretty steady in terms of income for us which is good because there was a few years of me working two jobs but it’s nice to be down to one.
On a good note… a new house on our street which is the same as ours but finished is up for sale $750,000. I’ll let you know how much it sold for once it’s sold. I’m nosey only for our own financial knowledge.
Understanding Net Worth
What Does Individual Net Worth Mean?
Net Worth is a snap shot of your financial health sort of like a picture or debt to net assets. In simple terms it’s a total of the value of your assets minus your liabilities.
We credit the growth of our net worth due to patience, perseverance, using a monthly budget and not giving up. Your numbers may go up and down but don’t let the numbers scare you rather understand why and move on.
If you would like to use our budget I offer a FREE downloadable budget which I created and that you can use at home just like we do. I don’t charge for it because I want you to save money not spend more!
There are tonnes of other free printable lists offered at Canadian Budget Binder to help you achieve some of those financial goals and build your net worth.
Calculate Your net worth
February and March 2019
Do you know how to calculate your own Net Worth?
We like to calculate our net worth every month so we know if we are still on track.
Some people calculate it yearly or quarterly but it’s up to you and how informed you want to stay.
Net Worth is only an estimate and not everyone uses the same type of figures to tally it up.
Some of you may not include vehicles like we do or leave out assets inside the home like we have. You might be that person that believes that your house should be excluded.
It depends on what you want to calculate or what you can sell today and make money on for tomorrow.
Figuring out net worth is fairly easy as long as you know your personal numbers or monthly finances which means you need to do your homework.
Net Worth is simply adding up all your assets (what you own) then taking away your liabilities (what you owe) which will give you a net worth number.
Understanding your net worth will help you determine if you are on track to meeting or beating your personal financial goals. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Net Worth = Assets – Liabilities
Why not go ahead and calculate your own using our Free Money saving Tool Net worth Calculator (Canadian Budget Binder 2012)
When budgeting anything is possible, we are proof of that although we still have a long way to go in our journey. These are our numbers and our goals, not a means of comparison towards your own goals to others target goals.
We don’t care how much money others make or if they have a high net worth or if it is lower than ours as it’s not a competition. I hope our experiences will help guide you along your financial path working towards debt freedom.
Not everyone has the same path in life.
Some of you may have had to start over like I did or go to school a second time and now have OSAP loans to pay back.
Others may have divorced, lost money in the stock market or other investments, suffered job loss, fell ill or injured on the job and so on but you can’t let that stop you from achieving your financial goals.
Some of you may have been given trust funds, paid-for homes, paid educations or perks in life that give you a financial kick-start and that’s OK too.
Remember what I said, “It’s not about how much money you make, it’s how you save it”.
The only reason people accumulate wealth is because they know how to save or invest it wisely even if they did inherit money or win the lottery.
The smallest improvements should mean big strides in working towards reaching your goals.
Sometimes we have to fail in order to learn and we’ve all been there. Money can be an evil force for some people especially those who have a negative attitude towards their own financial situation.
I urge you to be optimistic and little by little with determination you too should see improvements, if you want that to happen.
Net worth updates 2019
Click the links below to read 2017 net worth updates to see how we made out following our own budgeting and investing rules.
That’s all for this months net worth update but please check in at the beginning of March 2019 to see how we made out in February 2019 with our financial portfolio.