NDSU Extension Service - Ramsey County


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Picturing Your Retirement

Picturing Your Retirement


          When you picture your future retirement, you may see hundreds of possibilities.  For many people, retirement planning means financial planning only but planning for later life means thinking about all aspects of life. And that can mean, many questions to be asked, considered and hopefully answered.

Do you plan to travel?  Do you plan to volunteer your time for a special cause?  Do you have a second career in mind?  Do you want to continue in your current job and slow down, just a bit?  Will you be caring for grandchildren or elderly parents?  Will you take classes or enjoy sport activities?

When do you plan to retire? • What is your life expectancy? Do you expect to retire at age 55 and live to age 95 without working again, or do you plan to work until age 70?

 Does your family have a history of certain health conditions? What are the chances that these or other health concerns will affect you?  Can you find ways today to reduce your chances of these conditions occurring?  Can you pursue activities such as exercise, cross country skiing, bowling, or golf that can be enjoyed today and will provide a healthy lifestyle in the future?

 What activities of daily life might become more difficult over time?  Who will perform daily tasks for you? For example, will you need help to climb stairs in your current home or maneuver through bathroom doorways too narrow for a walker or wheelchair? Would you need to leave or remodel your current home to remain independent?

If you could no longer drive, how could you access transportation to visit the doctor, buy groceries, take care of personal needs, and participate in the activities you enjoy? Will you be reluctant to arrange transportation a day or two ahead or walk a short distance to be picked up?

Where do you want to live?

How does your family fit into the picture? How close by are your children and other people who are important to you? How often will you plan to visit them?  Where will they stay when they visit you? As you age, will you need help from these important people? If so, will you plan to move closer to them at some point in your life?

How do you feel about living in a retirement community, assisted living, or a nursing home? How much will it cost you to live? Have you visited any senior living facilities lately?

Navigating the sea of choices will be easier in retirement if you spend time now thinking about the possibilities. It is up to you.

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