When it comes to retirement, one of the most important things to consider is how much income you’ll need to maintain your lifestyle. This can be a difficult calculation to make, as it requires taking into account a number of factors, including taxes and expenses.
To get started, you’ll need to determine what sources of income you’ll have in retirement. This may include things like pension payments, Social Security benefits, and any other tax-free income streams.
What Assets Do you Have Available For Retirement?
- Pension Plan
- 401(k) or Individual Retirement Account (IRA
- Roth IRA
- Checking & Savings
- Non-Qualified Investment Portfolio
- Real Estate
- Life Insurance Retirement Plan (LIRP)
Once you have an idea of your total income, you can then start thinking about how much of it will be taxable.
For example, pension payments are often taxable at ordinary income tax rates, while a portion of Social Security benefits may not be. This will have a big impact on how much income you’ll actually need to maintain your lifestyle in retirement.
The age you elect to receive Social Security benefits can have a significant impact. The younger you are the lower the benefits. Conversely, the older you are the more significant the monthly benefit. There are programs you can access for purposes of determining which age makes the most sense to elect Social Security benefits.
If you’re unsure about how to calculate your retirement income needs, there are a number of resources available that can help. The most important thing is to start planning early, so you can make sure you have the retirement lifestyle you want.
From there, you can begin to estimate how much income you’ll need in retirement to cover your expenses. Keep in mind that this is just an estimate – your actual income needs may be different. But by doing some planning and calculation ahead of time, you can get a good idea of what you’ll need to retire comfortably.
Once you’ve determined your sources of income, you will also want to consider both your regular expenses and any one-time costs that you anticipate. Make sure to account for inflation when estimating your future needs.
For instance, if you have an existing mortgage how many more payments do you need to make until it is paid off? You will also want to get a better understanding of what your utilities cost and how much they have gone up or down over the course of the past year. Essentially figure out what all of your housing costs are.
You’ll also want to figure out how much you spend on food, entertainment, and fuel on a monthly basis.
Ask yourself how often do you purchase a car and how much do you usually pay for a car. Are there any trips you want to take? These are both examples of one-time costs that do not occur on a frequent basis.
There are a number of other factors to consider when estimating your retirement income needs, including inflation, healthcare costs, and leisure travel. You will want to make sure that you have a clear understanding of all of these factors before making any decisions about retirement.