Baby Boomers and Retirement
Here we are, 65 years of age or older thinking about retirement or we are about to retire. I want to share my take on a few nifty programs I recently downloaded that will help set you on a path, if are like me and still working, of setting a savings goal. We’ve discussed before through medical advancements we are all living longer.
In the last decade or so, 65 year olds were able to retire with full benefits and be on their merry way. Most of us are living until 80 and beyond and the age for retirement is now 66 1/2 years old in order to collect full benefits and still be able to work without a monthly limit. That’s 15 plus years of living longer – on a fixed income!
For those of us lucky enough to have opened a 401(K) and/or an investment account, we may be okay if we work until we are 70 or 75 years of age. It’s not practical to simply retire at the age of 65, unless, of course, you are rich or have won the lottery.
I lived paycheck to paycheck for so many years, that saving when I was young was difficult. Food, mortgage and car payments came first. Saving money wasn’t really on my mind back then. When we are young, we are not thinking about dying; right?
It’s Never Too Late
Fear not! It is never too late to begin saving and investing. You can start with just $10 a week. If it’s automatically withdrawn you won’t miss it. That’s $40 a month. Then, choose to reinvest all your dividends and there you go, compound investing!
How do I know? Because I started my savings and investment account. It’s called Stash. I couldn’t believe how easy it was. I just connected my bank account and each week $10 is withdrawn and deposited into my savings account. I also have an investment account and since I had an extra $150 that month so I invested in some stocks. The program helps you build a savings and investment plan based on your goals for the future. Mine plan is pretty short, five years. I chose a balanced investment portfolio, however, there are other plans to choose from.
A smart investor never puts all their eggs in one basket, so to say. It’s important to diversify. Stocks, bonds, mutual funds are not too risky, but don’t forget real estate. I found another online resource called Fundrise. With Fundrise, you invest with many other individuals who want to expand their retirement portfolio. There is moderate, aggressive and balanced growth portfolios available. Your money is spread to several different projects.
Similar to Stash, you choose how much money you want to invest each month based on your answers to questions posed. Let’s say I want to save $25,000 in five years. Based on my goal, Fundrise calculates and analyzes the best investment method for me to deposit each month.
It’s most important, though, to reinvest your dividends. Again, compound investing! The program links your bank accounts and automatically withdraws each month the amount set and agreed to by you, the investor. What’s really exciting is these programs are mobile apps and can be accessed on your desktop as well. It only took one day for me to see a return on my investment! At this moment, I have 72 projects my money is invested in.
Other Ways to Save Money and Retire
Another thrifty downloadable program is called Trim. Don’t know where all your money goes each month? This nifty program will track all of your expenses as well as negotiate lowering your bills. It also suggests savings in other ways, too. Don’t have a budget? Ask Trim to create one for you based on your input and goals. I just signed up for the program and I’ve already saved $20 a month on my phone bill! I let Trim do all the negotiating.
There are other programs available to help you save money. I am using all three programs currently and my goal this year is to get a handle on my spending so I can start on my bucket list next year. It’s never too old to begin to save (well, almost never).