As many of our Baby Boomer clients get ready to retire, some have shared valuable lessons that they have learned over the course of their careers and retirement planning. Hindsight is always 20/20, of course, and we endeavor to help clients course correct and remedy any mistakes that they might feel they’ve made.
But perhaps those tough lessons don’t have to go to waste. If you’re just beginning your career or right in the middle of it (you’re Gen Z or a Millennial) we can pass this wisdom on to you. Here are some of the ideas often shared by Baby Boomers who have just retired, or are planning to do so soon.
“I didn’t start saving early enough.” Those who have fallen short of their retirement savings goals realize that taking just one step could have made all the difference. Starting to save early in your career, in your twenties, makes an enormous difference in the eventual size of your retirement fund. That’s because, over time, all of the interest earned on your money also earns interest. Compounding interest creates the potential for much greater growth over time.
But if you haven’t gotten started yet, that’s okay. It’s never too late to set up a retirement account; just don’t keep waiting!
“I didn’t follow my passions.” Some of the older generation express regret over their career choices. Yes, going for a higher-paying job makes sense at first, but over time you lose interest in your career. That lack of passion shows on a daily basis, and can actually hold you back over time. On the other hand, pursuing a career that matches your passion can mean a slow start, but your enthusiasm for it might eventually launch you to greater heights.
“I didn’t save for emergencies.” Almost everyone can identify with the feeling of wanting to live your best life right now. But if you live beyond your means, and fail to save for emergencies, you could face regret later. During a financial crisis, you might be forced to borrow money or charge up high credit card balances… And the fallout from those choices can last for years.
“I borrowed money from my retirement account.” In the event that you do face an emergency, don’t make the same mistake reported by so many who have come before you. Yes, you might eventually replace the funds you borrow from a retirement account. But you can never replace lost time, and lost time means lost compounding interest.
If you ever face a financial emergency, find just about any other way to pay for unexpected expenses. Raiding your retirement account should be your very last option.
If you’re just beginning to think about planning for the future, give us a call. We can help you put time-tested wisdom to use in your own life, and create a retirement plan that helps you achieve your long-term goals.