Lose Your Benefits|Lose Your Retirement

Many employers are either cutting back or eliminating retirement benefits.  If your plan was to rely upon those benefits to support yourself in retirement, these cut backs could be devastating for you.

You need to find a way to replace those retirement benefits or you may never be able to afford retirement.

Retirement Benefits On The Chopping Block

Bye, Bye Pension Plans

Pension plans are a thing of the past.  They are no longer a reliable source of money at retirement.  They are being phased out by many employers; almost to the point of extinction…just like the dodo bird.

Pensions were the traditional retirement plan funded by employer money.   Pensions guaranteed an employee a paycheck during their retirement years; sometimes for the rest of their lives.

Most employers now offer 401k retirement plans instead of pension plans.   The main source of money used to fund these 401k retirement accounts is employee money not employer money.

Now You See The Match|Now You Don’t

Some employer’s would give their employees free retirement money by matching a percentage of the employees contribution to their personal 401k retirement account.

In an attempt to save money in this tough economy many employers are eliminating that match.   Translation: less free money for you; therefore plan on working longer to replace the money lost from that benefit.

Say Farewell To Long-Term Care Programs

Long-term care was often used by employers to add value to their  retirement benefit packages.   This was a great benefit because long term care expenses are not covered by health insurance, Medicare or Medicaid.

Many employers are now eliminating long-term care insurance.   If your employer paid for your long-term care insurance, you will now have to budget more personal money for to buy your own policy.   Therefore you will have less money to invest into your retirement plans.

Replace Loss Of Benefits|Stop Lost Retirement

Work With Your Most Reliable Source|You!!!

Since employer retirement plan resources are drying up, it looks like you will be your best source for offsetting the loss of some retirement benefits.

Hold on to your retirement benefits

photo by: pci-pcmcia-express

It’s Tune-Up Time

To boost your financial resources give yourself a retirement plan tune-up.   This is where you get to evaluate you.

  • Review your investment habits

Are you saving enough for retirement? How much money are you saving?  Are you saving all that you can?  Could you save more?

  • Use a retirement calculator

Since you are responsible for funding your retirement plan, you want to be as close to perfection as possible, do that with a retirement calculator.  These calculators help you determine when you will be able to afford retirement.

Try not to be shy with a retirement calculator.   The only way it can give you accurate information is by asking you for personal financial information.   It will ask for such financial variables as your current income, the value of current investments, your retirement plan contributions, your current fixed and variable expenses, your projected retirement income need.

  • Watch your spending habits

When you are not spending money you are saving it.   If you are overspending, you are wasting good retirement investment money.

You do not have to be cheap, just economical.   Reusing your tea bags three times would be cheap.  Learning to maximize your spending power by reducing your expenses would be economical.

Avoid using credit cards, the fees eat away at your retirement investments.

Buy based on needs not wants.   Needs are necessities; wants can be frivolous.

It’s Your Retirement

Many employers are reducing their responsibilities for employees retirement plans; the financial responsibility for your retirement is now on you.

When pensions were in vogue you did not have to worry about retirement planning; your employer did the work for you.   Now you are in the financial drivers seat.

Retirement planning responsibilities, retirement calculators and investment decisions may be a bit overwhelming at first, but if you focus on debt reduction, improving your investment habits and use some financial common sense you will do just fine.