Not so Fast: How to tell if you’re ready to retire

When you start getting close to retirement age, you might be overcome with just a tad bit of nerves as you plan to say so long to working for good.

But if you’re not ready to retire that sentiment might have to be changed to saying so long to work for now, since you might find yourself back to work after your retire too soon and thus run out of income or money saved.

That scenario is the most feared by all individuals who have retirement in mind, so pulling that proverbial trigger on retiring often is met with fear and a sense that no time is really good enough. Now, if you have employed a financial advisor or someone to watch your money grow, help you invest it, and they’re giving you remarkable advice and assure you that you’re time is right, then so be it.

That timing might be on point since a good financial planner is going to ask you what you need to live on after you retire and, for instance, if you want to have enough money to travel nine months out of the year after you’re 62, then disclosing that allows the planner to build the retirement that is right for you.

Not having a financial plan is really the first sign that you’re not really ready to retire because, quite frankly, you’re not thinking about it the way you should be. A financial plan really is your path from the working world into your golden years with a transition that is smooth and won’t be met with going back to work after 10 or 15 years retired.

Retirement also is something you view as the most opportune time to actually quit working. If you bought a new house at 50 or you have some other major financial responsibility, you certainly can work that into your retirement plan but it certainly makes it much more challenging to budget and have a plan that works when you have much more financial responsibility as you reach 60.

And that includes debt you might be carrying. Some individuals will take out a home equity loan on a house that is paid off to take care of debt and thus have that one home equity payment and nothing more, but if your debt is significant and can’t be solved in a way that eliminates it or gets it under control, you might want to focus your last decade of working on paying down as much debt as possible.

Retiring is a big step, and one that shouldn’t be entered into lightly or at a pace that isn’t on point with where you are financially.