By Staff Reports
(DGIwire) – Reaching age 50 is a significant milestone. But when someone that age is blowing out the candles on their cake, they shouldn’t be wishing for enough money to retire on. Can someone with little or no savings at the half-century mark turn things around and retire comfortably? Absolutely, say members of the Silver Disobedience™ movement—a large and growing group of men and women who are rebelling against ageism and living their life to the fullest. Their overall message? It is never too late to start saving!
“Generally, once someone hits 50, their income is relatively high—so if they haven’t maximized their contributions to their 401(k) yet, they should do so right away,” says Joan Marie Gagnon, a Certified Financial Planner and author of Journal Your Way to Retirement. “An even more important step is to plan what lifestyle is desired once retirement has begun. Is downsizing from a big house an option? Is moving to a cheaper state desirable? What hobbies will occupy the retiree’s time? Every aspect of life in retirement should be considered—and not as much money might be needed for retirement as one might think.”
Martha Menard, senior researcher at Questis, says, “People who don’t start saving for retirement until age 50 will have some catching up to do, but it is possible. Planning to work even a couple of years longer can make a big difference. Research has shown that working just three to six months longer has the same result as saving an additional one percentage point of earnings for 30 years. Working just one month longer has the same effect as increasing retirement savings by one percentage point for 10 years before retirement.”
If someone hasn’t done any financial planning, it is important to meet with a certified financial planner as soon as possible, says Robert Finley, principal at Virtue Asset Management. “An individual should obtain a copy of their Social Security benefit verification letter, which will help them understand how much and when they can get benefits from Social Security, which in turn will help with their retirement calculations. Expenses should also be tracked.”
“One of the benefits of starting at age 50 is that one’s vision of what retirement means is much clearer,” adds Frank J. Corrado, founder of Blue Blaze Financial Advisors. “There are five key points to keep in mind. First, it is important to understand one’s tolerance for risk. Second, it’s crucial to understand the time horizon: When will the money be needed? Third, it is worth having a diversified portfolio of stocks, funds and bonds. In addition to this, a 50-something should make sure their investments are low-cost and are liquid, meaning they can be sold easily and without much cost in a controlled market. Finally, the person should not look at their portfolio every day, week or even month. Look at it quarterly at a minimum—and looking at it annually is even better!”
Through a collective of branded @SilverDisobedience social media pages and traditional media outreach, the messages of Silver Disobedience are heard and acted upon by a powerful audience. Its Social Media #Influencer Status is helping new understandings about “those of a certain age.”